Return to Transcripts main page
First Move with Julia Chatterley
Next hour: Biden and Putin hold critical call on Ukraine. Biden and Putin to Hold Call as Ukraine Tensions Mount; China Vows Retaliation after U.S. Diplomatic Boycott; U.S. CDC Urges Americans not to Travel to France; UAE Shifts Workweek, Weekend Now Saturday-Sunday; Nissan to Spend Nearly $18B on Electrification Drive; Prologis CEO on Tackling Shortages, Delays; Intel Shares Rally on Mobileye IPO Plans. Aired 9-10a ET
Aired December 07, 2021 - 09:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
PAULA NEWTON, CNN ANCHOR: Live from New York, I'm Paula Newton, in for Julia Chatterley. This is "FIRST MOVE." And here's your need to know.
Crucial call. Biden and Putin to hold a video meeting as Ukraine tensions rise.
China consequences. Beijing promises a response over the U.S. Olympic boycott.
And travel tensions. The U.S. warns over trips to France as COVID cases rise.
It's Tuesday, let's make a move.
And a warm welcome to "FIRST MOVE." Great to have you with us this Tuesday. A day when high stakes global diplomacy takes center stage.
U.S. President Joe Biden is set to speak with Russian President Vladimir Putin about an hour from now amid growing concerns of Russia's military
buildup on the Ukrainian border. Now, the U.S. warning that it will impose tough new sanctions against Moscow if it invades its western neighbor.
All this in the U.S. as U.S. announces a diplomatic boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympics over human rights issues. The Chinese government warning of
the harm this will do to U.S./China relations.
We have of course reporters standing in Ukraine, Berlin, Washington and Shanghai. We've got all of those angles covered for you.
But first, we want to take a check of those global markets. And a much better tone after last week's volatility you see it there with European
stocks higher for a second session. And this is the thing, U.S. futures too pointing to a solidly higher open after Monday's advance.
Now the Nasdaq is set to jump almost 2 percent as richly valued tech stocks that pulled back sharply last week, now steady. Investors heartened by
preliminary evidence that the Omicron COVID variant may not pose the significant health threat we all feared in the last few days.
Now, major Chinese tech names meantime are bouncing too after Monday's drop with Alibaba. This is really interesting, rallying 12 percent. Its biggest
one-day advance in almost two years. The Hang Seng soaring more than 2.5 percent after falling to 14-month lows. China's decision to pump more
stimulus into the economy helping sentiment although major concerns over the health of property developer Evergrande remain.
Yeah, I told you, it's going to be a jampacked show. So, let's get started. We're going to go right to those drivers.
We start with of course those closely watched talks between Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin due to start less than an hour from now. It is believed this
will be the first time they have spoken directly since July. And the main topic, of course, will be Russia's military activities along that border
We are covering this on multiple fronts starting with our senior international correspondent Frederik Pleitgen.
Fred, really good to see you. I know how closely you've been watching all of this for several years, frankly, not just months. Strategically, you
could argue Putin has played a great hand, right? He has got the attention of the U.S. president. In terms of Joe Biden threatening the strongest of
sanctions, do you feel that this could actually help broker some type of truce with Ukraine?
FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think that's going to be a very difficult issue to broach. And whether that's
going to have that desired effect. But I do think that one of the things that to President Biden had certainly has done which is definitely
reassured European allies. And I think to a certain extent reassured the Ukrainians ahead of this talk as well as that he has actually spoken to the
U.S.'s allies and of course Secretary of State Blinken also spoke to Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky yesterday as well to make sure that
Ukraine, the U.S.'s NATO allies and of course the U.S. itself are all on the same page.
And with that, of course, that threat of massive sanctions does get a lot more teeth. And if the U.S. were going it alone. You heard it really or we
heard it in a lot of media throughout the day from various European countries who are saying at that new internationalism certainly is making
the united front of western nations in NATO and of course also among the European Unions a lot stronger since the Biden administration has taken
office. So, I do think that that's something that is a very important.
Now the Russians, for their part, are saying with this talk of sanctions. And this comes from the spokesman for the Kremlin. He said, look, we've
heard it all before. We've heard about sanctions. The U.S. talk about sanctions all the time. The U.S. levy sanctions all the time.
So, they're sort of trying to brush that off a little bit. For the Russians, Paula, they've been saying that for them, they want to speak
about their own red lines that they have. Of course, that first and foremost being Ukraine's possible membership within NATO. They say that's
something that for them needs to be avoided. And generally, NATO eastward expansion as they put it. Of course, an important topic to the Russians as
Of course, the U.S. has rejected any sort of demands by the Russians, NATO has done that in the form of the secretary general and the Ukrainians as
well. So, it seems - it certainly seems as though with that talk coming up, there seems very, very little room for any sort of compromises or common
NEWTON: And yet that is what Joe Biden wants to try and find during this meeting.
Fred, we'll leave it there for now. Appreciate it.
Frederik Pleitgen for us in Berlin.
Now, a senior U.S. official says President Biden will make clear on that call, quote, "What the United States is prepared to do, if Russia attacks
Ukraine." Now, Russia has the capacity, of course, to mount an offensive as soon as next month according to U.S. intelligence.
John Harwood following it all and he joins me now live.
You know I'm interested to hear what White House officials are telling you about their bargaining leverage here. Of course, we've seen these stronger
sanctions or the threats to have those. They're on the table. Yet, you know, few expect the Biden administration to really impose them let alone
consider stronger military moves. Again, stronger military moves if that ultimately comes to it in Ukraine.
JOHN HARWOOD, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, look, there seems, Paula, to be zero chance that the United States is going to commit troops
to block a Russian aggression within Ukraine. So, what the Biden administration is trying to do and what Joe Biden will do in this 10:00
virtual conference call with Vladimir Putin is both provide some sort of diplomatic off-ramp. Something to give some sense of reassurance to
Vladimir Putin that the west is not seeking to increase pressure on Russia itself, but also lay out initiatives that has Joe Biden said late last week
would raise the cost to unacceptably high levels to Vladimir Putin.
Now, the most severe forms of sanctions they could levy are to unplug Russia and its energy companies from the international financial system.
That would be a very grave step. Europeans have talked about that for several months. Nobody has pulled the trigger on that yet. We don't know
whether or not European allies and the United States would be willing to do that. Lesser sanctions would be restricting the activities in the financial
wherewithal of Russian oligarchs, for example.
We know that previous presidents, George W. Bush, Barack Obama, were unable to deter Russian aggression in Georgia and in Crimea. So, Vladimir Putin
has got the troops on the ground. He's amassing the capability of invading Ukraine and Joe Biden is going to try to deter that.
Of course, there's a political backdrop here which is that the previous President Donald Trump did not want to deter Russian aggression. Donald
Trump had been helped in his 2016 campaign by the Russians. He then tried to shield Russia from the investigations into the hacking. Suggesting
Ukraine was involved. And he pressured the Ukrainian president to try to dig up dirt on Joe Biden.
So, in addition to the national security issues, there's a big political overhang, of course, that pressure on Zelensky triggered the impeachment of
NEWTON: Yeah. And some complex pressure to be sure. I think when it comes to the negotiating strategy, though, and told by Joe Biden - I mean, I'm
going to mention it, right, John? This White House tends to under promise and underdeliver at the same time. There must be something they're looking
for here. In terms of a diplomatic off-ramp, have you been given the outlines about what this might look like this afternoon?
HARWOOD: Not in detail, but I think the suggestion from administration officials is that the off-ramp would be some sort of reassurance from
Russia. You know, Russia, in addition to outward aggression exhibits its own insecurity about pressure from the west.
And so, Russia has been trying to get the NATO to promise not to admit Ukraine as a member. NATO does not want to do that. In fact, they've given
a road map to Ukraine for how they could become a member. But some sort of gray area in between there about indicating that the NATO and the west is
not trying to intrude on Russian affairs.
That's not the proximate issue now because Russia is, in fact, threatening to invade Ukraine and, of course, they have committed aggression repeatedly
over the years. So, some way of reassuring Moscow, I think, is the diplomatic off-ramp but there's only so much they can offer.
NEWTON: Yeah. And again, all eyes on that menu of financial sanctions if indeed the United States is going to outline those in more detail.
John Harwood for us from the White House. Appreciate it.
Now, as if the White House wasn't dealing with enough, another big challenge for Biden, China. The country says the U.S. will quote, "Pay the
price" for its wrongdoings after the White House announced a diplomatic boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympics. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ZHAO LIJIAN, CHINESE FOREIGN MILITARY SPOKESMAN (through translator): Out of ideological bias and based on lies and rumors, the U.S. attempts to
disrupt the Beijing Winter Olympic games. This will only expose its malicious intention to the world and will lead to greater loss of moral
authority and credibility.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
NEWTON: David Culver is live for us in Shanghai.
The Chinese seem to indicate that they will have more than just rhetorical reaction. Is there any indication of how they might retaliate?
DAVID CULVER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Please wait and see, Paula. Those are the words from the spokesperson at the foreign ministry. So, they're not laying
out any details, but they are assuring there will be countermeasures that will be put in place. As you said, that they want the U.S. to pay for its
wrong doings, pay the price and that the U.S. shot itself in the foot.
OK. So, what can we expect that would possibly be done to counteract this U.S. boycott of the Olympic games? Well, it's likely that they're going to
do something that will push ahead their ideological agenda, something that we have seen enhanced over the past even 12 months as they've seen
crackdowns on big businesses. And you've seen really a scaling back of any sort of western influence. And it could also be something that is very
unlikely to escalate the tensions between the U.S. and China in the sense of they're not going to do any sort of sanctions or put any sort of visa
restrictions, let's say, on U.S. diplomats. The fear would be that the U.S. would do that in reciprocity to that. They put exactly the same sort of
measures back in place.
And so, they don't want to go that far. But I think we can see, expect to see at least, potential influence cracking down from the west, particularly
from the U.S. There is some speculation, even online here, that maybe there would be a withdrawal of the upcoming "Spiderman" film that is supposed to
be debuting around the world.
Now, that may sound strange but western films have this, the Chinese market to look forward to because it is the largest movie market. And to do that,
would send a message to the rest of the western world that no longer are they going to be looking to the west for influence. That could be one way
that they approach this.
Businesses here in Shanghai, a few of them have told me, American ones at that, that they're expecting potential repercussions because of this. Maybe
they're going to try to curb, influence the businesses have within this massive market with 1.4 billion people and consumer base.
It really remains unclear but it's really unlikely that they're going to do something that's going to cause damage to either China's own businesses
outside of the country or even some of its own diplomats.
It is also interesting to see, Paula, that they're pushing this ahead in state media. Because that was something that just 24 hours ago, they were
hesitant about when it was just expected that the White House was going to go forward with this diplomatic boycott.
And now that it has in fact happened, you're seeing a lot more of a vocal stance in state media showing support for China and its really what they
position themselves to be, the victim in all of this. They say that these claims of human rights abuses in Xinjiang against the ethnic Uyghur Muslims
are rumors, they are lies, and that the U.S. is using this, Paula, in their words to politically manipulate.
NEWTON: It is really interesting that it has made it to state media because it went from censorship you know a little bit more than 24 hours ago -
NEWTON: -- to now using it too obviously stir that nationalist sentiment.
David Culver, thanks. Really appreciate it.
Now, these are the stories making headlines right around the world.
The United States CDC is urging Americans to avoid traveling to France as a fifth wave of COVID infections builds. French officials say protective
measures will be tightened up.
CNN's Melissa Bell is live with us in Paris with more.
Melissa, I have to tell you. As a case study, France really is incredibly worrying. When I look at the vaccination rates, they're relatively high,
and yet this is just before the holidays. More restrictions, shutdowns now, work from home being encouraged for as many as who can get that done. And
this is what's so worrying. Hospitals apparently being, again, overwhelmed.
MELISSA BELL, CNN PARIS CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Paula. And you're right to point this out. France is one of those countries that has had a
strict system of a COVID pass to get into restaurants, bars, cafes, since the summer. High vaccination rates. People really wear masks whenever they
go indoors here.
And yet, those really remarkably fast rises, more than 50,000 new cases a day on some days these last few weeks. And that tells you really just how
virulent this Delta variant is. That's what's driving this particular wave.
And what we've seen, what the French authorities have said, is that by the end of January, if things continue as they are, hospitals will once again
be overwhelmed. It's the sharpest wave they say of the last few.
So, these fresh restrictions, nightclubs, Paula, closed from Friday. Fresh measures inside schools. And most importantly perhaps, given that it is the
young that are proving so crucial in the transmission this particular virus at this stage.
Vaccination that will be open to those under 12. Whether or not that will be enough is the key question. And you're right, this is just ahead of
Christmas, the French economy can simply not afford to shut down.
NEWTON: Yeah. And I want to ask you quickly. Most of the time that we have, you know you mentioned the fact that this is really spreading amongst young
people. The European countries, some of them have not been that quick to really vaccinate the young there. How is that program going in France?
BELL: Well, for the time being this has been open to people who are over 12. And you're right, those vaccination rates are incredibly high, but now
the pressure is getting the young to get vaccinated. What we've seen in other European countries these last few days is also a remarkably virulent
Delta variant driving a fifth wave that is proving catastrophically dangerous and worrying for the weeks and months ahead in terms of its
pressure on hospitals.
Germany, one of those countries that's looking to perhaps vaccinate people on a mandatory basis.
Austria has already announced that it's going to do it. That is the key. Getting those not vaccinated. Either because they're hesitant or have been
too young to get vaccinated in order to try and stop the spread, Paula.
NEWTON: Yeah. And I - especially appreciate that granular detail. Because as I said, if you look at France as a case study it can worry many of us
quite a bit.
Melissa Bell for us in Paris. Thank you.
Now, the United Nations says more than 850,000 people in the South Sudan have been affected by months of severe flooding. You cannot believe the
video here. In unity, state roads and villages are completely submerged. And thousands of residents have been displaced with little access to food
and vital supplies. Officials say it's the worst flooding the area has seen in about 60 years.
Now, in the next few hours, CNN's Clarissa Ward will bring you more on South Sudan's climate emergency.
The UAE is shifting its work week to align with global markets. This is interesting. The Gulf state will now give workers Saturday and Sunday off
and ask them to work a half day on Fridays. UAE workers used to have Friday and Saturday off so that they could attend Muslim prayers on Friday.
Still to come right here on "FIRST MOVE."
Nissan's ambition. The car maker takes on speedier rivals with an $18 billion move into the EV Race. I speak to the chief operating officer.
And the global supply chain crisis. I speak to the head of the world's largest warehousing company to talk about tackling gridlock.
NEWTON: And welcome back to "FIRST MOVE."
All systems go for a strong open on Wall Street. Stocks set to rise for a second day on variant. Hopes still no evidence of a serious illness such
good news associated with this new strain. It's of course helping to boost airlines, cruise lines, and other reopening stocks.
Now, the CEO of Goldman Sachs saying in an interview today that he's encouraged by what he's hearing about the Omicron variant so far. David
Solomon says that at this point, the Fed's policy path will probably have a bigger impact on markets than any new variant concerns.
Fed policymakers could announce as soon as next week that they are speeding up the process of removing pandemic support.
Oil meantime, an interesting story here, trying to rebound after six straight weeks of losses. Crude is up for a second day as traders monitor
the latest health news. Signs that Iran will not be able to resume oil sales anytime soon as nuclear talks stall are lending support to crude as
All right. We want to revisit one of our top stories here.
Beijing threatening the U.S. with retaliation after the White House announced a diplomatic boycott of the Winter Olympics over alleged human
rights abuses in China.
Joining us now, former U.S. ambassador to China, Gary Locke. He's also here to discuss the issue of global vaccine inequality. The former Commerce
secretary says the U.S. should not support intellectual property waivers on COVID vaccines.
I want to welcome you to the show, Ambassador. And we will get to that issue of vaccines in a moment. But first, I wanted to try and tap your
knowledge on China here.
Listen, the United States really hitting back here diplomatically. And yet this really brings us back to the issue of what do you do with China? Do
you think anything like this will have any influence? Because what we have been discussing here is whether or not there will be a decoupling now
especially in the business environment between China, the United States and its other allies?
GARY LOCKE, FORMER U.S. AMBASSADOR TO CHINA: Well, first of all, it's a pleasure to be with you, Paula.
I think that the Chinese will find a way to symbolically retaliate against the United States. This is the gesture by the United States is an insult to
them. But quite frankly they're going to be focused on putting on very successful games.
And the truth of the matter is that very few diplomats from the United States would have been attending anyway given so many of the COVID
restrictions within China. But real diplomacy really begins with people-to- people exchange and that really means the athletes interacting with athletes from all around the world including from China. And that's
important that the athletes and the games continue on.
NEWTON: That is important from an Olympic perspective. But I need to ask you about what this means a little bit deeper. You know American businesses
had a quandary recently, whether it's Tesla or NBA, they're all taking a different path in terms of do you engage in China, do you invest in China.
That has to go part and parcel with what the Biden administration is doing here on policy.
Listen, it's been a bit of an earthquake in the last three or four years in terms of these businesses doing it - doing this. What would you suggest
LOCKE: Well, obviously they're going to be balancing their own values as a company, against their desire for increased markets. More business, which
also means jobs for the employees back here in America. But United States has to stand up for its values --
NEWTON: Ambassador, I'm sorry to interrupt. You say jobs at any cost, but that's the whole issue, right? Should they really be courting China at this
point in time or do you start to engage in that decoupling?
LOCKE: Well, that's a judgment that each company has to make but certainly America has to stand up for its values and while the actions of the United
States might make relations, business relations with China much more difficult. I think you're already beginning to see some signs of a
decoupling, not the economic decoupling that others have called for. But you're seeing China saying that they don't want to buy from United States.
They don't want to be so reliant on high-tech goods from the United States in case an administration, Democrat or Republican, says that American
companies can no longer sell certain types of equipment or technology or even Corning glass that goes into cellphones.
And so, the Chinese are trying to say, well, we need to be a lot more independent of materials coming from China just as we in America are saying
as demonstrated during the COVID situation. We don't want to be so reliant on critical supplies from China.
So, I think you're seeing, in my ways, all countries around the world trying to solidify their own supply chains. Trying to make things much more
-- well, getting more things from their own countries.
NEWTON: And as I said, we'll continue to watch that carefully. I found it interesting from our David Culver in shanghai who said that one retaliation
now might be actually not releasing the "Spiderman" movie in China, which is really interesting symbolically, if not materially.
OK. We want to talk to you as well about the Biden administration. And you say the Biden administration is wrong to support IP waivers for COVID
vaccines. You indicate that it will put research and innovation at risk. Why? Because the W.H.O. says it's time to move off that paradigm, right?
That it's old and that it doesn't really serve public health globally.
LOCKE: Well, first of all, the Biden administration needs to be commended for committing and pledging more than a billion doses of the vaccine to
other countries, especially the underdeveloped and poor countries of the world. The world really needs about 11 billion doses. So, all the countries
of the world, including the United States and especially the other countries that are wealthy, need to commit and put all hands down now in
terms of providing extra vaccines.
The problem, though, is that for instance, in Africa, many of the countries are saying, please don't send us any vaccines. We have too many because the
problem isn't really right now insufficient doses of vaccines. It's the inability to deliver the vaccines into the countryside to store them or
even personnel to put the vaccines into the arms of the people.
I mean South Africa, which has actually been asking for this waiver of intellectual property has been saying please, we have too many. We can't
use them. They're going to go bad.
The reason that waiving intellectual properties is a bad idea is because if you want people to continue to experiment, to invent, to do research and
development, they have to know that the secret sauce, the formulas that they come up with will be protected and not just given away to a rival or a
competitor. Because why invest years and years and years of your blood, sweat and tears, your own money into research and oftentimes the research
doesn't work out. A lot of things end up in failure before you have success.
So, if you're just going to give away the secret sauce, the formula to your competitors, what incentive do you have to keep plugging away? The real
issue is making sure that these drug companies give away licenses for free to even their rivals to manufacture the vaccines and distribute it around
And our companies, Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, have been sharing the technology with trusted partners who they know will not then turn
around and use the so-called secret sauce to develop vaccines or medicines for -- against other diseases or other pandemics.
NEWTON: Right. Ambassador Locke, we have to leave it there. I mean I will note that that - they say that puts big pharma in the driver's seat at all
times. Something that a lot of people have decided we need to get away from. I have to leave it there though.
Ambassador Locke, thank you so much for joining us. Appreciate it.
LOCKE: My pleasure.
NEWTON: And we'll be right back with the opening bell after the break.
NEWTON: Welcome back to "FIRST MOVE."
Yup, the bulls are back in action on Wall Street as stocks continue their comeback after last week's market volatility. Now, the buy on the dip
market strategy seemingly back in vogue at least for now.
You can see it there. The Nasdaq is still down, we have to remember, some 1 percent in December so far. And markets will be headline driven and
vulnerable to any negative news on COVID at all. And, of course, that all important Federal Reserve decision on tightening.
Meantime, bitcoin getting a boost from today's risk on mood. It's back above $50,000 right now. The crypto currency recovering after a 20 percent
bear market drop over the weekend.
Tesla meantime which fell into bear market territory. Monday is higher for the first time in five sessions. Tesla shares sank more than 6 percent
yesterday on reports of an SEC investigation into solar panel safety. But it closed off those session lows.
Now in just 30 minutes or so, we'll remind you, President Biden will begin a crucial video call with Russia's Vladimir Putin. As we've been reporting
Russia's military buildup on the border with Ukraine is likely to dominate talks with many in Ukraine and beyond, fearing an invasion maybe imminent.
Matthew Chance is in Odesa in Ukraine right now for us.
You heard for yourself the Ukrainian defense minister, he told you, we don't need U.S. troops here. We've got this. What we're looking for from
the U.S. and the allies is that we need more support. Are they worried though that even tacitly if not publicly, the U.S. will agree to Russia's
red line that Ukraine will never be a part of NATO?
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I mean they have to be worried about that, don't they? I mean not least because the idea of
Ukraine becoming a member of NATO right now is a long way off. They haven't been promised membership of the western military alliance. And part of that
reason is because there's this ongoing conflict underway with Russia backed rebels in the east of the country. There are also all sorts of other
democratic reforms that Ukraine has been engaged in. And until that reform process is completed, they don't really qualify for NATO or for European
But yes, the Ukrainians are concerned that they're going to get thrown under a bus as it were by the United States in the interest of preserving
international security. Because remember, Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, is going to be you know dialing into that video call with
President Biden and he's going to be assertive in his demands, which are for NATO, for him to get legal agreements that NATO will not expand
eastwards towards Russia's borders which, of course, includes bringing in Ukraine.
And more than that, Russia now wants a guarantee that NATO military infrastructure, sophisticated weapons systems like missiles will also not
be deployed to Ukraine because their concern is that Ukraine will become if not a member of NATO then some kind of forward operating base for NATO
It's the response to that demand by Vladimir Putin. The response by President Biden. That is going to likely to determine whether the military
tensions that are very real here in this region at the moment, ratchet up even further or whether they deescalate.
And so, in that sense, this is a crucial diplomatic meeting. And of course, perhaps the most important foreign policy meeting encounter that President
Biden has had so far as president.
NEWTON: Matthew that sets the stage well. We are less than half an hour from that meeting.
Matthew Chance for us in Odesa. Thanks so much. Appreciate it.
Now Japanese automaker Nissan plans to spend almost $18 billion pivoting its focus to electric cars. It says that half of all the cars it sells will
be electric by 2030. Look at the calendar. That's pretty soon. Between now and then, it plans to unveil 23 new EV models and to dramatically reduce
the cost of batteries. Nissan's announcement follows earlier green pledges by bigger rivals of course including VW and Toyota.
Joining me now is Ashwani Gupta, he is chief operating officer of Nissan. A real pleasure to talk to you today.
OK. EVs, this is your future. You guys have set that out. Analysts say though for now that future remains Tesla's. That's what we've been hearing,
in fact, on whether it's tech or infrastructure. How do you propose to compete on that level and are you going to lean heavily on what the battery
technology price, the recharging infrastructure, what's the secret weapon here?
ASHWANI GUPTA, CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER, NISSAN: Thank you.
For Nissan, electrification is not for the first time. We are not starting from the scratch. In 2010, we were the first one to have the mass electric
Now, moving forward, what we have announced is $18 billion investment in product and planned ecosystem and especially the factory. Why we are
announcing this investment is Nissan believes in a natural shift to the electrification. And natural shift of electrification can only happen if
customer is making a natural choice.
So, the job which Nissan has to do is to become an enabler for this natural shift. And this enabler includes battery technology. And that's why the
battery cost as well as its performance is important. Hence, we decided to invest in the in-house development of all (INAUDIBLE) factory, which is
going to be cost competitive but also high performing battery.
NEWTON: When you say cost competitive on battery and also matching that with performance, do you think that will be a game changer or do you think
it's just going to mirror specs that we're used to from Tesla and others?
GUPTA: Also, the battery will be the game changer. Reason is there are three things, which also battery has got advantage. Number one, autonomy.
Number two, the charging speed. And number three, the packaging.
So, today, the challenge to package the battery on the higher segments like T-segment and the trucks is always a challenge. But when we have the solid-
state battery, because of its packaging, definitely we get a more space. So, we do believe all solid-state battery will bring a new way of having
the performance on the battery electric cars.
NEWTON: I want to talk to you a bit about one of the constraining factors beyond batteries and it's been chips, right? Do you see that shortage
easing sometime next year or is this here to stay as a long-term problem?
GUPTA: I would say that the situation is getting better day by day because there's always a lead time between the decisions of the capacity investment
and the start of the production. However, I do believe that this will continue for a while for a simple reason that this demand is not only
driven by the automotive industry, but this demand is also driven by the non-automotive industry. So that's why we need a very strong supply chain
system to manage the demand coming from auto and nonauto. That's why we believe it will continue a little bit more.
NEWTON: So, a little bit more, 2023, 2024 or beyond that horizon?
GUPTA: We don't hope so. I think that FY 22 should be the maximum.
NEWTON: OK. I want to talk to you a little bit more broadly about the supply chain issues. Not just on logistics but on procurement. And then
there's this issue of the problem in general. Some people say that it is easing. What do you guys see on the horizon?
GUPTA: I would say that you know when we say it is easing it is always compared to what we were yesterday. And because the demand exists and
definitely everyone is going for capacity investment. What investments were done eight, 10 months or 11 months before, we clearly see the improvements.
Unfortunately, we have different incidents which always keeps the supply chain being disrupted. And one of the most important disruption came from
the pandemic. Started with one market, continued to the second market, then third market.
So, I think this is in sequence and we do believe that we are getting out from one crisis, but we get into another crisis. That's why we believe it
is continuing. However, we hope with all the decisions which have been taken by the suppliers to increase the capacity will ease out the situation
NEWTON: When you say, "ease out the situation," how much do you have to factor in some protectionism that's happening in a lot of countries as
well? I mean look, this is highly complicated in terms of supplying parts for Nissan vehicles. How much are you actually monitoring on that as well?
GUPTA: I would say this year. This year we are seeing roughly 12 percent drop in our retail sales, mainly coming from the semiconductor shortages.
And I think this gap will reduce next year. But I do believe the way the demand is increasing for the cars we will keep supply/demand gap for the
Having said that, this supply/demand gap has also brought us a new way of manufacturing, the new way of selling. And that's where I think (INAUDIBLE)
per unit, I would translate it into profit per unit is also improving because of the more leaner, efficient, and effective manufacturing and
selling system. So, let's not say only that supply chain is having only negative impact. I would say it is also having a positive impact on
improving the efficiency.
NEWTON: Yeah. And despite government's incentive price as you know becomes a barrier for many, many people in terms of the electric vehicle. On that
though, before I let you go. You didn't really bite on whether or not you would be taking on Tesla and how. As I said, a lot of analysts saying that
Tesla owns this game for some time to come?
GUPTA: I mean you know, in 2010, no market, no customer asked us to launch the battery electric car. We did it. We did it to demonstrate that we have
the capability to do that. And since then, you know, we were alone in the world to talk about cleaner environment.
Now we believe, and I'm very thankful to the awareness, Tesla and other EV makers have made, thanks to them, people are getting aware of cleaner
environment. So, we appreciate, we welcome the competition, because it creates better options, better choices for the customer, and that's where
we believe that thanks to Tesla, thanks to other EV makers. We are getting into the healthy competition, which is at the end, good for the planet,
good for the customer.
NEWTON: That's awfully collegial of you.
Mr. Gupta, we appreciate your insights here. And we will note that you did say that look, the supply chain issues will be here for some time to come.
Ashwani Gupta for us, chief operating officer of Nissan. Appreciate it.
GUPTA: Thank you.
NEWTON: Now next here on "FIRST MOVE."
In the face of global supply issues that we were just talking about, we speak with the CEO of a company that's looking to help the logistic sector
America's largest port complex is holding off on slopping extra fees on importers that don't move containers off the docks promptly. Port
authorities were threatening to make freight carriers pay on unprecedent daily charge of $100 for each unremoved container. But now they say
progress is being made in reducing a massive back log.
Now, meanwhile, the Biden administration insists it's working to tackle wider supply chain disruptions.
Hamid Moghadam is the CEO of Prologis, which develops and invests in the warehouses and other facilities that make up corporate supply chains. He
joins me from San Francisco.
I will say, they are propping up lots of different neighborhoods outside of lots of urban centers here as well where we see those warehouse facilities
cropping up everywhere.
Straight up here. I have to ask you. Some say supply chain issues are easing, others say the crunch is here to say. What are you seeing?
HAMID MOGHADAM, CEO, PROLOGIS: I think both of those segments are true, Paula. I think the base is easing, and I think it will -- things will feel
a little bit better after Christmas. But I think the fundamental underlying problems are going to be with us for some time.
NEWTON: When you say the fundamental underlying problems, a lot of people talk about labor, we heard about the issues certainly with trucks. I know
as well though that climate has been playing a role in this too. What are you seeing if you had to list off kind of like the three - top three or
MOGHADAM: Well, on the demand side you had a situation with COVID where demand fell off the face of the earth, manufacturing shutdown. And then
there was a surge in demand. So basically, everybody was caught in a surprise. And that's probably the biggest factor is the variability of
All these supply chains have really been optimized around a very predictable pattern of demand. And when you have disruption like COVID,
climate change, et cetera, that raises havoc with how things flow and creates capacity shortages. But on the supply side you have a labor issue.
You have a shortage of transportation assets. And you also have the assets that you have in the wrong places. Like your empty containers are all on
the consumption side of the market.
So those are the three or four issues that will take longer to resolve. And, you know, obviously the ports -- port of L.A., Long Beach are very
good visual because everybody talks about the 70-odd ships that are waiting to get in. But really you got to look up and down the supply chain and
you'll see the problem in a variety of places.
NEWTON: And I'm going to drill down on that with you in a moment. But before we get to that quickly, when we talk about all the challenges that
we just went through, how much do you see prices being impacted by that as well?
MOGHADAM: Well, prices are being impacted to a great extent by that. I -- I'm not in the camp that thinks inflation is going to run away from us
because of some endemic problem. I think inflation is going to run higher for sure because of monetary policy, which is being tightened. But the
supply chain issues are seriously impacting the rate of inflation in the short term.
NEWTON: In the short term. It will be interesting to see what the definition of that is going forward. I want to get into the specifics of
your business now. I'm curious as to what you're leaning into. Is it automation? Is it A.I.? What are you guys leaning on to really smooth out a
lot of those supply chain issues and obviously make it more cost-effective?
MOGHADAM: Sure. We own warehouses. We own about a billion square feet of warehouses around the world, in 19 countries and four continents. So,
that's the part of it that we're working on. We're not in the transportation business or the shipping business or the trucking business.
But our customers are.
So, we're trying to build more and more warehouses in the key locations, which are the consumption markets. You know the thing that doesn't get
talked about nearly as much is that there is a shortage of warehouse space, because all these goods that are coming in need to go somewhere before
they're deconsolidated and sent to either homes directly through e-commerce or through stores and then homes eventually.
So, there's an acute shortage of warehouse space in this country. Particularly in places that you want to have them. Major metro areas. And
the regulatory environment around building more warehouses is getting tougher and tougher every day.
So, we have a pretty significant land bank and we're trying to bring on that capacity as quickly as we can in the right markets. We also are trying
to address the labor issue for our customers. We launched about three years ago, way before this.
In Prologis community workforce initiative, that's designed to train 25,000 people within two remaining years of that program. And we're going to scale
that up, because 25,000 even though it's a pretty significant number is only scratching the surface. So, we're really planning to expand that
program over time. So, labor and space, is where we're focusing.
NEWTON: Yeah. I don't have a lot of time left but we are looking at some video right now though of what I was getting to with the automation, with
the robotics, with the A.I.
NEWTON: Quickly, how much more are you investing in that?
MOGHADAM: A lot. Automation is ultimately the answer to the labor shortage. And a lot of people have talked about automation as being the threat to
labor. It's not. It's a way of augmenting the productivity of the labor that you have.
NEWTON: Yeah. And hopefully take a lot of the drudgery and the hard part out of a lot of the work.
NEWTON: So, more people could be using their brains as opposed to their brawn.
Hamid Moghadam, thank you so much. Appreciate your time.
MOGHADAM: You're welcome. Thank you.
NEWTON: And we will be right back with more "FIRST MOVE" in a moment.
NEWTON: And welcome back to "FIRST MOVE."
Intel shares are among today's early session winners. Shares of the chip giant are rallying on news that it will take its self-driving car unit,
Mobileye, public next year. The deal could value Mobileye at an eye popping $50 million.
Paul La Monica is here who is going to tell us why this actually sounds like peanuts in comparison. It's funny because we're used to obviously
talking about Intel in terms of chip shortages. This is a completely different unit here.
PAUL LA MONICA, CNN REPORTER: Yeah, definitely. Their self-driving technology unit competes with the likes of Qualcomm and Nvidia which
obviously Intel competes with them in many parts of the chip world as well.
Now, Paula, I think what's interesting here is that Intel bought Mobileye for just, just $15 billion. So, if they are able to take it public at a $50
billion valuation, that is a nice return on Intel's investment. Intel is going to retain control of the Mobileye unit. But I think a lot of people
on Wall Street are looking at this as potentially something that could give Intel some momentum which it needs. Because it really has lagged in terms
of financial performance, stock performance and buzz compared to Qualcomm, Nvidia and then also AMD, which really has had a resurgence under Lisa Su.
And it started to take some market share from Intel.
NEWTON: Yeah. And Paul, take us further down that road, right? To use a term where these cars are like mobile tech units, especially when it comes
to their reliance on the development of chips, right?
LA MONICA: Exactly. I mean, any Tesla or Rivian or Lucid or any electric vehicle from the likes of the big automakers like GM, Ford, and Volkswagen,
it's going to depend on the hardware, the chips and then obviously software as well. But this is a much more complicated manufacturing process than an
old, gas-guzzling cars. So, companies like Intel with Mobileye are incredibly important, a very vital part of automotive food chain, if you
will, supply chain going forward as more cars go electric and autonomous.
NEWTON: Yeah, absolutely. A lot of things to keep track of with that EV market component.
Paul La Monica, good to see you. Appreciate the update there on Intel.
And that is it for us. Want you to stay with CNN for more coverage of the crucial diplomatic call between the leaders of the U.S. and Russia that is
getting underway any minute now.
"Connect the World" with Linda Kinkade is up next.
And good news, Julia is back with "FIRST MOVE" tomorrow.