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First Move with Julia Chatterley

Austin: "No Doubt" Ukraine will Join NATO after War; Blinken Meets with China's Top Diplomat on Sidelines of ASEAN Foreign Minister's Meeting; Ukrainian General: U.S. Cluster Bombs Received; U.S. Stocks Higher Amid Market-Friendly Inflation Data; Low-Carbon Concrete helps Mitigate Climate Change; Sister Kim Yo Jong now Second most Powerful in NK. Aired 9-10a ET

Aired July 13, 2023 - 09:00   ET




ZAIN ASHER, CNN HOST, FIRST MOVE: A warm welcome to "First Move". I'm Zain Asher in for my colleague Julia Chatterley. Just ahead on today's

show finished forum U.S. President Joe Biden meeting in Helsinki with the leaders of five Nordic nations. Biden rather hailing Finland's entry

to NATO, Sweden's bid to join the alliance gaining traction as well.

U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin is also talking to CNN about Ukraine's future in NATO all of that and more all the very latest in

just a moment. Plus from reading lines to picket lines thousands of TV and film actors are poised to go on strike as long running contract

talks break down. All those as the writers guild continues its three months walk out the latest on Hollywood's worsening crisis just ahead.

And Pows progress U.S. investors hailing the latest encouraging news on inflation. A sign that the fed's aggressive interest rate hiking

campaign is working consumer inflation is at its lowest levels in more than two years. Just minutes ago a fresh look at wholesale inflation

prices at the factory gate open or rather up only a 10th of a percent over month in June.

And that was less than expected on global markets cooling inflation continues to give a boost to stocks. Look all that green there U.S.

futures in the green arrows pointing up after the highest close for FT100 (ph) in well over a year.

Europe on the advanced as well after a strong Asian hand over the HANG SENG the outperformer in Asia up more than 2.5 percent Chinese tech

stocks rallied amid new signs that Beijing's crackdown on tech is winding down. Oh so much together this hour.

I want to begin though in Finland President Biden meeting with the leaders of the Nordic countries and Finland; by the way that is the

newest member of NATO. His visit President Biden's visit comes after a NATO summit where Turkey made a surprise U-turn agreeing to support

Sweden's bid to join the alliance.

Following the NATO Summit in Lithuania, U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin sat down with CNN's Wolf Blitzer for an exclusive interview, just

listen to what he had to say.


WOLF BLITZER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: From a military standpoint, Mr. Secretary, how close is Ukraine to meeting NATO standards?

LLOYD AUSTIN, U.S. DEFENSE SECRETARY: Well, there are a number of things that will have to be done, as you know, they -- a big part of their

inventory is legacy equipment. And so in terms of training and equipping, there's work to be done.

But we're doing that work as we're helping them as they fight this war. And so things have been done up to this point, there's more that will

need to be done to ensure that they have a full complement of capability.

BLITZER: So you have no doubt that after the war, Ukraine will become a member of NATO?

AUSTIN: I have no doubt that that will happen. And we heard just about all the countries in the room, say as much. And I think that was

reassuring to President Zelenskyy. But there are other things that have to happen as well, you know, judicial reform things that make sure that

the democracy is in good shape. And so those things will take place over time.

BLITZER: So how much time do you think it will take after the war? Let's assume the war ends, God willing, it will end someday. How much time

will it take for NATO to join -- for NATO to welcome Ukraine as a full member?

AUSTIN: I won't speculate on that Wolf. I will just say that all the countries that that I've witnessed are interested in moving as quickly

as possible.

BLITZER: So you think all 31 members of NATO right now want Ukraine in?

AUSTIN: I think it'll be 32 by that time, but --

BLITZER: With Sweden?

AUSTIN: Right. But I do believe that everyone wants Ukraine to be on board.

BLITZER: As I said, Sweden is now set to join NATO. How is it from your analysis and you've got good data analysts? How is Putin reacting to

this expansion of data?

AUSTIN: Well, I got -- I'm sure Putin was very concerned and this is probably something that he didn't expect to happen although President

Biden warned him of this at the very beginning but you know he's brought NATO closer to his doorstep.


And so you know if you were him you certainly are concerned about what you're seeing. But countries like Sweden and Finland bring a lot to the

alliance and we're happy to have them on board. You know, I was just in Sweden a couple of weeks ago.

I got a chance to spend time with the Minister of Defense and visit some of their troops, look at their capabilities. They will bring value to

the alliance right away. And it's a strong debark democracy off and that's really that's the most important point.


ASHER: Wolf Blitzer speaking to Lloyd Austin now. All right, there's going to be a lot more of the interview with Secretary Austin on the

Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer who just saw there at 6 pm Eastern time here in the U.S.

In Russia, the military has fired one of the most senior officers involved in the war in Ukraine. The Army General says that he was

dismissed after criticizing defense ministry leaders after the lack of support for Russian troops. Clare Sebastian joins us live now.

So Clare, as you well know, there is certainly no room for dissent in Russia, generally speaking, there certainly wasn't before the war. And

there certainly is not now, especially given that failed rebellion with Prigozhin. Just walk us through what the army general said?

CLARE SEBASTIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, so this is Ivan Popov. He was the Commander of the 58th army. They were based in Berdyansk,

Zaporizhzhia really, he was running troops that were active along one of the most important parts of the Ukrainian counter offensive down there

in the Zaporizhzhia.

Of course they're trying to cut through that Russian land bridge linking the Donbas and Crimea. The news of his firing came from an audio message

that was posted by a Russian lawmaker, a member of Putin's party himself, a former military man, and essentially Popov says that he

decided to tell the truth to his commanders about what was happening on the ground, take a listen.


IVAN POPOV, RUSSIAN GENERAL, SOURCE ANDREY GURULEV: I had no rights to lie therefore; I outlined all the problematic issues that exist today in

the army in terms of combat work, and support.

I called a spade a spade. I drew attention to the most important tragedy of modern warfare. This is the lack of counter battery combat, the

absence of artillery reconnaissance stations, and the mass deaths and injuries of our brothers from enemy artillery.


SEBASTIAN: So we haven't been able to independently verify that audio and the Ministry of Defense have not responded to a request for comment.

But certainly, if his claims are true, if the troops are not being provided, with enough support that certainly adds weight to claims that

have been coming out in the blogosphere.

And other areas throughout this war have not enough equipment, not enough supplies. All of that, of course culminated in that failed Wagner

rebellion. If his firing is true Zain, that also adds to the picture of sort of infighting that we're getting in the Russian army, particularly

again, after that Wagner rebellion.

And this has been a pretty dramatic week for the sort of top ranks of the Russian army. We have a former submarine commander gunned down while

running in the Russian City of Krasnoyarsk. There's -- Ukrainians are reporting that a Russian General was killed in Berdyansk.

Also this week, the whereabouts of Surovikin the Head of the Aerospace Forces is still unknown. He was said by a lawmaker this week to be

resting so a pretty uncomfortable time overall, to be in the top ranks of the Russian military.

ASHER: Clare Sebastian, live for us there, thank you so much. And returning now to our top story; President Biden is in Finland, on the

final leg of his high stakes visit to Europe. Nic Robertson joins us live now.

So Nic, I think symbolism is really important here. In Helsinki President Biden is going to be showcasing NATO's newest member of

Finland, but also, it's worth noting that with Finland joining the alliance that effectively doubles NATO's border with Russia just walk us

through what the message is going to be here.

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL EDITOR: Yes, it adds over 830 miles, something like 1200 kilometers of border with Russia go right up

to the Arctic North, which is something that will get discussed that this meeting is being hosted by the Finnish President.

You have the Norwegians there, the Icelandic's are there, the Swedes are there, and the Danish are there. This now represents with all of them,

apart from Iceland, being members of NATO, this large Nordic bloc.

They're talking about the interoperability now that they have their security and defense forces that they didn't quite have before Sweden

and Finland where coming into NATO. Now they can operate and have transfer of equipment and operate as and tighten essentially, their



They bolster the security of the Baltic's States as well as far as NATO are concerned. This long border that Russia now gets with you know,

doubled in length as U.S. says as long as the border that Russia now gets with NATO is not something that they were expecting.

And is going to be perceived in Moscow as a potential challenge, but at the moment, Russia very much focused and bogged down in the war in

Ukraine to really do anything significant. There has been, according to the Finns, no significant movement of Russian forces in that area along

the border.

But there's a lot of other things that they're talking about in that meeting, not only this unity of NATO, not only this military security

interoperability that they now have, but they're talking about, you know, the common issues of climate change.

And how to deal with that of AI technology of how to develop greener technologies and it's kind of interesting, listening to the different

leaders there, make their comments around the table, because there's a common theme, we have these common issues to deal with.

But they're all talking about it in ways that we might describe as what we'd expect from Nordic countries, in terms of looking after social

cohesion and the welfare of citizens. So this seems to be a common thread around the table there as well. But it's the security dynamic, of

course, that's on everyone's minds right now.

And this high Arctic North with the climate change the ice -- the seas there being free of ice, it becomes a more important military and

economic sphere, for Russia, for China and, of course, for the Nordics and the United States.

ASHER: One of the sorts of highlights in terms of President Biden being in Helsinki is that while he's in Finland, he's going to be meeting with

the Swedish Prime Minister as well just explained to us. And I think there is still some curiosity over the exact nature of the concessions

that were offered to Turkey's President Erdogan in order to get him to support Sweden's bid to join NATO.

Just explain to us whether we will get any more color on that. I mean, there is curiosity. I'm certainly curious myself, what are your thoughts


ROBERSTON: Yes, I think we're all curious because we've seen the headlines as reported by NATO that we know as well that Sweden changed

its constitution and changed its laws, so that it could crack down on the PKK.

The Turkish authorities see as a terrorist group, Kurdish group opposition group, in Turkey. There also seems to be an agreement with

Sweden that it will also crack down on other opposition groups, the -- group, as Turkey calls them, and also the PYK, a Syrian Kurdish group.

So there's the fact that Sweden has said it's committed to helping Turkey raise its voice to get into the European Union, which we heard

Erdogan, say a few days ago, was super important to him still, and a commitment to self-defense weapons to Turkey, with Turkey as a big army.

They'll now be members of NATO, no reason not to be able to sell, let's say, Swedish fighter jets, the -- which is something that, you know, is

actually a highly sought after fighter aircraft on par people talking about it on par with the F-16 which Turkey is trying to get upgrades for

those from the United States?

So there's that dynamic, but again, as you say, the details in it, we just don't know and improved economic cooperation has been discussed. I

don't think we'll get those on the readout from this particular meeting that President Biden has with the Swedish Prime Minister Kristersson but

I do think that over time, we will see and it will become apparent what those concessions were.

ASHER: All right, so we should all be -- Nic Robertson live for us there. Thank you so much. A fresh, high level interaction between

Washington and Beijing; U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken meeting with China's top diplomat one year on the sidelines of the ASEAN Foreign

Ministers meeting in Indonesia, Anna Coren has the latest.


ANNA COREN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (on camera): U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with China's top diplomat Wang Yi on the sidelines of

the ASEAN Summit in Jakarta this evening.

COREN (voice over): The media was allowed to film the two men and their delegations for less than a minute. No comments were made before the

press was asked to leave. The meeting took place behind closed doors at the St. Regis Hotel. Wang was not supposed to attend the Summit in the

Indonesian Capital, Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang was scheduled to represent China however he is ill.

Just last month Blinken and Wang met in Beijing the first visit to China by a U.S. Secretary of State in five years, with the aim to reset

relations and communication between the U.S. and China, which has been at an all-time low.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen was in Beijing last week. U.S. Climate Envoy John Kerry will be flying there this weekend. Well, this

diplomatic activity has raised hopes of improved relations clearing the way for talks between U.S. President Joe Biden and Chinese Leader Xi



Revelations that Chinese hackers have breached email accounts of two dozen U.S. organizations, including some government agencies such as the

State Department has raised concern, Microsoft and the White House have confirmed the hack was a spying campaign aimed at sensitive information.

Adding to tensions U.S. led NATO issued a strongly worded communique at the end of their meeting this week, saying that China challenged its

interests, security and values with its ambitious and coercive policies.

Well, Beijing responded angrily saying it's opposed to any attempt by the military alliance to expand its footprint into the Asia Pacific

region. Earlier Wang met with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on the sidelines of the Summit, saying that China and Russia firmly support

each other's legitimate interests.

They will also support ASEAN centrality and to be vigilant against interference by external forces. Wang also said that China and Russia

will help ASEAN countries in grasping correct direction of East Asia cooperation. A strong indication that China and Russia even closer as

the Kremlin says that Russian Leader Vladimir Putin is planning to visit Beijing in the near future, Anna Coren, CNN, Hong Kong,


ASHER: So Hollywood's biggest stars may end up hitting the picket lines along with the writers who produced their scripts. Union leaders are

expected to formally authorize a strike putting pressure on major studios and streaming services as well an attempt to reach an agreement

ended last night without a deal.

Natasha Chen joins us live now from Los Angeles. So, Natasha the last time we saw actors go on strike that was way back in the 1960s -- is

going to be meeting later today to issue a sort of final vote on whether or not to authorize a strike.

We'll see what happens in about a couple of hours from now. But if you have a dual writer strike and an actor strike at the same time, just

walk us through how that changes the landscape for the entertainment business right now?

NATASHA CHEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is a huge ground shift Zain. We're talking about a writer strike that has already stopped so many

productions because the only things that really have been able to continue right now with shoots are productions that already had a script

locked in, that don't require further writing work on those as they continued to be produced.

But if you're talking about 160,000 members of an Actor's Guild not working, then you really have way more productions grind to a halt. Now

the last writer strike in 2008 lasted 100 days. Right now the writers have been on the picket line for more than 70 days.

And by noon, Los Angeles time today, we could see the actors join them as well. The chief negotiating team for SAG-AFTRA sent a statement that

said in part, the studios and streamers have implemented massive unilateral changes in our industry's business model, while at the same

time insisting on keeping our contracts frozen in amber.

The studios and streamers have underestimated our members resolve as they are about to fully discover. Now we've already seen a number of

actors join writers on the picket line this week, anticipating what's about to come.

They really have a unified sense of what they are fighting for better wages, but also protections regarding new technology like artificial

intelligence that could really take over some of the work that they currently do. Here's one of the actors talking about their struggle.


JOEL KIM BOOSTER, MEMBER OF SAG-AFTRA AND WGA: I think like, people assume that, you know writers in Hollywood or actors in Hollywood are

all sort of wealthy and successful. And, you know, why we should need even more money than we're getting now.

But what I don't think people realize is that there's a whole middle class of writers and actors that is disappearing, because they're making

it more and more difficult to just make a living.


CHEN: And the studios have said that they actually did create a groundbreaking offer with higher wages and protections with AI. They

said in a statement, in part that they're deeply disappointed that SAG- AFTRA has decided to walk away from negotiations.

This is the union's choice, not ours. Rather than continuing to negotiate SAG-AFTRA has put us on a course that will deepen the

financial hardship for thousands that depend on the industry for their livelihoods.

And we're not just talking about people who work on movie sets and TV film sets. We're also talking about all of the businesses that feed and

serve these productions in major film hubs around the world, specifically, in the United States.

We've already seen layoffs and hours cut back in restaurants, delis, dry cleaners, makeup artists and set and prop warehouses people I've talked

to who are so below the line as they say in Hollywood that they're even below the credits.


And right now, they don't know how they're going to pay the bills, even as many of them tell me that they are supportive of the Union, Zain.

ASHER: Yes, I mean, it's interesting. I mean, there has to be a sort of fine line that's walked here. And I thought that sound that you played

with that actor on the picket line was really important one because there are so many actors in Hollywood who are just starting out, we're

not household names.

We're not a-list celebrities, who are really struggling to get by and you don't want that middle class of actors to disappear. That would be

unfair as well. Natasha Chen, live for us there, thank you so much. Now still to come, Ukraine hails, the latest American referees who arrive as

a potential game changer will take you to Eastern Ukraine, after the break.


ASHER: Welcome back to "First Move", Ukrainian General says cluster munitions controversially supplied by the U.S. have reached Kyiv. The

General told CNN they could completely transform the situation on the battlefield but Ukraine has not deployed them just yet.

CNN's Alexander Marquardt spoke with the General about the new weaponry. He joins us live now from Dnipro in Eastern Ukraine. So cluster

munitions. I mean, these have been a major talking point this week and last week when we first found out that the U.S. was going to be sending

cluster munitions to Ukraine.

They are incredibly controversial. Now they're in the country just explain to us how they could indeed be a game changer on the

battlefield, especially given that this counter offensive by Ukraine is off to such a slow start.

ALEX MARQUARDT, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Zain, you're absolutely right. Hugely controversial, you know, more than 100

countries banned their use in their production. The Ukraine and the U.S. are not signatories to that convention. And but the U.S. has held out on

giving Ukraine these cluster munitions because of how controversial they were?

But then eventually decided to give them they say, because of shortage of more standard artillery, but now they are here in country we're told

they have not yet been used. But General Oleksandr Tarnavskyi, who we spoke with earlier today, said that they could have a radical effect on

the battlefield. The Russian troops he believes will be afraid of them and -- vacate areas where they could be most effective.


Now, according to the General these cluster munitions will not be used in highly populated areas that are in line with the agreement that was

struck between Ukraine and the United States and we'll also keep track of where these munitions are fired for later demining efforts. Here's a

bit from that interview earlier today. Take a listen.


BRIGADIER GENERAL OLEKSANDR TARNAVSKYI, UKRAINIAN ARMY: In general, this is a very powerful weapon.

MARQUARDT (on camera): Have you used them already? And how much do you think they're going to change the fight?

TARNAVSKYI: We just got them, we haven't used them yet but they can radically change the battlefield. Because the enemy also understands

that with getting this ammunition we will have an advantage.


MARQUARDT: Now Zain, one of the big reasons or at least excuses that the U.S. felt they could give them to Ukraine was that the Russians are

using them already and have been doing so since the beginning of the war. In response to the U.S. announcement, Russia did say that they

would respond in kind if these cluster munitions are used.

And we heard from the Former President Dmitry Medvedev was a bit of a firebrand online, he's still a Senior National Security Official, he

said the Russia should now empty its arsenal of these inhumane weapons. But again, Russia has already been using these cluster munitions as for

progress on the battlefield General Tarnavskyi says it is slow going.

He says there has been some success, but what they're up against is mile upon mile, kilometer upon kilometer of dense mine fields that are very

hard to cross. And they're coming up against fierce Russian attacks, but he is rather optimistic. And again, he believes that these cluster

munitions could have a profound effect on this fight, Zain.

ASHER: Alex Marquardt live for us there, thank you so much. On Wednesday, U.S. President Joe Biden, G7 leaders rallied behind Ukraine

at the NATO summit. The new joint declaration of support aimed at boosting the country's military capabilities, security guarantees comes

as data shows that the overall level of new pledges from countries that support Ukraine has been trending downwards.

Ukraine support tracker shows that from February 25th to May 31st, commitments to Ukraine increased by 13 billion euros to about 165

billion euros. However, there has been an increasing trend towards military aid rather than financial assistance. The tracker shows that

the beginning of the year, over half of the needy pledged aid was military in nature.

Joining us live now is Christoph Trebesch. He is Head of the team that produces Ukraine Support Tracker and a Professor of Macroeconomics at

Kiel University. Thank you so much for being with us, Christoph. So it's one thing for a country to promise aid to Ukraine or to make some kind

of pledge with another thing to actually deliver exactly what you have promised, no less.

Just explain to us where the gaps are in terms of what Ukraine has been given and what they have been promised?

CHRISTOPH TREBESCH, CREATOR OF UKRAINE SUPPORT TRACKER: Well, there's a gap across all areas, financial, military, and humanitarian between

commitments and actual deliveries. We show in particular that for Western promises are often take longer to arrive. Only about 50 percent

are weapons committed, are actually now in Ukraine. And that gap is smaller for Eastern European countries that deliver faster on average.

ASHER: The U.S., of course, has been the most generous. I mean, obviously, there are fights they have. They're at a much greater

advantage financially, just in terms of the GDP of the United States, they have been the most generous. Are there countries, though, that have

the means to do more, but who aren't yet stepping up to the plate? What have your research found on that front?

TREBESCH: Well, Europe has been catching up in the past months, all of Europe's aid taken together as about as much as the U.S. aid package as

a whole. So there has been some catching up. But Europe is a rich continent than many powerful economies. And some of the countries have

been doing quite little Spain, France, Germany has caught up has not done much initially, but recently has committed more and more.

But still as a measure of GDP, they are still ranking somewhere in the middle. So these are rich countries, they could definitely do more. And

if they have shortages in military domains, they could do more financially. So I do think there are still a lot of things that could be

done if the political will was there.

ASHER: How sustainable are this level of support and this pace of support really, over the long term?

TREBESCH: Well, I mean, again, these are powerful economies.


We have compared domestic spending power already since the start of the wars to the spending and promises to Ukraine and the gap is huge right?

We're talking about 20 times as much money pledged for energy subsidies to cope with the shock of the increased energy prices than what was

given to Ukraine.

So the money is there. It's just only a fraction of the newly mobilized financial resources are devoted to Ukraine, right? So it's a matter of

political decisions. Europe has shown also during the Eurozone crisis during COVID that it is able to mobilize much more than what it has

mobilized for Ukraine.

So I wouldn't be worried about sustainability if the political will is there, it's a political decision.

ASHER: Right, Christoph Trebesch, live for us there, thank you so much. Still to come here on "First Move", Elon Musk diving headfirst into the

world of AI we'll discuss his plan to build a rival the ChatGPT, after the break.


ASHER: Hello and welcome back to "First Move", the opening bell sounding on Wall Street. We have gotten a stick look here. Green arrows across

the board after Wednesday solid advanced DOWs continue to get a boost from encouraging inflation data. New numbers show wholesale inflation at

its lowest levels in almost three years.


Strong earnings coming in from well-known blue chip companies as well Delta ally and soft drink giant Pepsi both reporting better than

expected results. Delta in fact reporting record earnings in the second quarter, both firms are also raising their profit guidance too.

Disney shares are higher as well on news that CEO Bob Iger has extended his contract another two years. He's now set to stay at the helm of

Disney through 2026. Meanwhile, just released employment data shows that the U.S. jobs market is still strong, first time jobless claims falling

unexpectedly, last week.

Rahel Solomon joins us live now coming in at 237,000. I believe this was an unexpected fall. What does this tell us Rahel, about the overall

health and resilience of the U.S. labor market?

RAHEL SOLOMON, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Zain, good to be with you. So this report is the most real time look indicator of what's

happening with the U.S. labor market. It's a weekly report, and how many Americans are filing for unemployment benefits and as you said, it

unexpectedly declined.

We were actually expecting unemployment claims to rise a bit so fallen 12,000 to 237,000. Zain, if we go back a few more weeks, and we can pull

this up for you can see we've been sort of in this range and the two hundreds to put that in perspective that is still very low, we've been

ticking up.

But in historical standards, historical perspective, this is still very low, and is the sign that the U.S. labor market is still very strong.

The caveat with weekly claims is that the data can be a bit noisy it can be a bit volatile. So we don't take one week necessarily, and sort of

extrapolate a large picture from that.

But it does give you a better sense of what's happening on a real time week to week indicator. But Zain, this is the second report this morning

that came in better than expected. I want to turn your attention very quickly to the Producer Price Index, which you just mentioned there that

also coming in a cooler than expected both on an annual basis and a monthly basis.

On an annual basis prices, and I should say Producer Price Index, this is the Inflation Index for the producer of goods and services. And so

the idea is what you see in this report, we will tend to see in the Consumer Index report a few months down the line. But so prices decline

both on an annual basis, Zain, and on a monthly basis.

And we're getting to the point where some economists say we might be now looking at deflation, not just a decline in growth of prices, but

actually deflation. I want to bring your attention to one quote that caught my eye this morning, this coming from Gregory Daco of Ernst

Young, the Chief Economist saying the underlying details in this report being PPI.

There were encouraging and arguably more so than the CPI data. He goes on to list some of the factors here with base effects i.e., favorable

comparisons with last year's elevated food and energy prices subsiding, easing demand for goods and services, the past through from softer

housing price inflation and cooling wage growth should lead to faster disinflation.

So all that to say, we might be looking at the end of the road here, Zain, shortly when it comes to this record high inflation, and I'll be

the first one to say -- you're here.



ASHER: All right, Rahel, always good to see you. Rahel Solomon, thank you so much.

SOLOMON: You bet.

ASHER: All right, Elon Musk has Tesla, SpaceX and Twitter on his resume. Now he's adding a new company. And its focus is artificial intelligence.

It's called XAI. The billionaire says the company's goal is to understand the true nature of the universe. And he says we'll work

closely with his other companies too.

Musk was an early backer of open AI, which created the groundbreaking ChatGPT but later criticized it for adding safeguards designed to

prevent offensive responses being generated. He also joined other tech leaders in calling for a pause in AI development to assess the dangers

it could pose to humanity.

Clare Duffy joins us live now. So Clare, Elon Musk basically saying that the goal of this latest venture is to "understand the true nature of the

universe". He's also referring it to a truth telling AI version. Just walk us through what more we know about this brand new AI venture by

Elon Musk?

CLARE DUFFY, CNN BUSINESS WRITER: Yes Zain, I mean, this is a situation where I have many more questions than answers at this point. But what we

do know is Elon Musk has announced the creation of this new company, it's not clear exactly how AI will help him understand the true nature

of the universe.

But he plans to hold a Twitter spaces event tomorrow to give more details about this company. I'll be looking forward to listening to

that. He will be running this company along with a team of about a dozen research scientists from places like Google, Microsoft, open AI, all of

whom I will say appear to be men.

And you know its interesting Musk has sort of waffled back and forth in terms of his stance on AI. On one hand, he has talked for a while about

wanting to create a competitor to ChatGPT which he has criticized in his words as being too woke. But he's also talked about the fact that AI

could cause humanity destruction, civilization destruction.

That's something that he said in an interview a couple of months ago, and he signed on to this open letter calling for a six month pause and

AI development which apparently he no longer believes or Zain, he just wants to be the one in charge of building yet.


ASHER: It is so hard to keep up with Elon Musk, so many different things said back and forth. It's hard and my head is spinning already.

DUFFY: -- six company that he'll be. He'll be involved in running it. I mean, he's got so much going on right now.

ASHER: Clare Duffy, live for us there. Thank you so much. We appreciate it. All right still to come after the break, taking the heat out of

concrete new ways to mitigate global warming and it starts from the ground up, that story next.


ASHER: Alright we are tracking several extreme weather events around the world starting with a heat wave in Italy which is being blamed for the

death of a road construction worker this week while authorities in Rome say several tourists collapse from heatstroke is also actually expected

to get even hotter on Friday.

Just after -- in Phoenix, Arizona and temperatures there already reached 36 Celsius. The city has endured 12 straight days of brutally hot

temperatures above 42 degrees Celsius. And in India around 30,000 people have been moved from their homes after Delhi's Yamuna River exceeded its

highest flood level, a government official describing it as an unprecedented situation.

Let's turn now to ways to mitigate harmful air pollution which heats up our planet. The world relies on concrete for construction and road

building the -- nature estimates over 33 billion tons of concrete are used every single year. According to one estimate in 2016, concrete

accounted for 7 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions worldwide.

Mainly in the production of cement, the glue that holds concrete together. This is where carbon built comes in. The company wants to

partner with existing producers and retrofit their production plants. They say that technology can cut the carbon footprint by between 70 and

100 percent with costs recouped within three to five years.

One plant in Arizona is already making their products. Rahul Shendure is the CEO of CarbonBuilt and joins us live now. Rahul thank you so much

for being with us. So essentially, as I understand it, this sort of concrete alternative is lower costs, it costs less.


And also it essentially removes carbon emissions from the atmosphere. Just explained to us how this technology actually works?

RAHUL SHENDURE, CEO OF CARBON BUILT: Thanks Zain, appreciate the opportunity to be with you and your viewers today. So you gave a great

summary there at the start. So in terms of how it works, there are two basic steps. First, we replace the high carbon cement, concrete glue, as

you said, with low carbon materials.

And then we activate or cure these materials with carbon dioxide, which ends up being permanently stored in the concrete. In order to do this,

we have to put a little bit of new equipment at the plant. But together these two steps resulted in a 70 to 100 percent reduction in carbon foot


We call that ultra-low carbon concrete. And very importantly, as you said, it doesn't cost more it performs the same way. And it's available

today at our first retrofit in Alabama.

ASHER: I mean, the technology sounds pretty significant. Just explain to us how you think this will revolutionize construction, especially given

the benefits for the atmosphere?

SHENDURE: Yes, I think you know, the biggest thing for us is less about the details of the technology and the fact that we're able to do this

with no price premium, our producers don't have to charge a price premium to their customers. And really, I've been working in climate

tech in different verticals for over 20 years.

It's very rare to find a combination of economic benefit and significant climate benefit from the get go. And that's what got me enthusiastic

when I found this technology. And what makes me so bullish about our ability to make an impact, both in terms of industry transformation and

climate impact in the near term.

ASHER: Sir, how hard has it been to actually get companies to actually sign up for these sorts of retrofits?

SHENDURE: Yes, I mean, this is a conservative industry, right? So it's not unlike tech, or medicine, it's not one that adopts new technologies

quickly. So, you know, the work on this started about a decade ago, it UCLA, and it was in 2019, 2020, where, thanks to the help from the

Department of Energy.

We're able to pilot the technology and show that it could work and to deliver products that met the same performance requirements. And, you

know, it starts with having the first plant out there that others can come see and see that it's working. So this is you know, the milestone

we reached back in May, turning our first plant on is huge for that process of convincing new customers.

I will say that, right now, our customer pipeline is more than we can handle, we're working with concrete producers that are, you know, from

small ones, to very large ones and this combination of economic benefits where they do not have to sacrifice profits or charging premium in order

to get the sustainability benefits.

You know, in combination with everyone realizing what's happening in the world around us. I mean, you talked about these events happening around

the world, which are tough to ignore, right? And you combine those together, and we are seeing customers move on this.

The other piece that I think is critical is that we're working in a product segment where the products can be tested right at the factory

gate, so these questions of you know, does the product work? Will it be good enough? Can be tested long before the product ends up going to


ASHER: Yes, it's interesting. Also, I think another important I wouldn't say hurdle. But another important goal, I imagine would be broad

adaptation because there are some parts of the United States that are open to sustainability practices and other parts that are not so open.

And so I imagine that a goal of yours would be luring in or reining in a huge number of companies and the goal would be broad adaptation across

various parts of the U.S. but Rahul, Shendure, we have to leave it there. CEO of CarbonBuilt, thank you so much for being with us.

All right, coming up here on "First Move", North Korea making headlines with its most powerful weapon and its most powerful woman, that story




ASHER: North Korea is hailing its latest missile tests as the longest one has ever flown. State Media reports the fossil 18 intercontinental

ballistic missile flew for 74 minutes on Wednesday, before crashing down in the waters near Japan. The solid fuel ICBM has been called the

North's most powerful nuclear weapon.

But it's unclear if we could actually deliver a nuclear payload. State Media says leader, Kim Jong-Un personally guided the launch just days

after his powerful sister issues and serious threats. CNN's Will Ripley explains.


WILL RIPLEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): -- milestone for North Korea's missile program. Pyongyang latest ICBM

launch, breaking its own record for the longest ever missile flight a staggering 74 minutes hurtling high above the earth at supersonic speed,

hitting 6000 kilometers before splashing down in the sea, the massive missiles potential striking range the entire U.S. Mainland and most of

the world.

Pyongyang's most provocative launch in months, coinciding with this NATO summit in Lithuania quickly condemned by Japan as an unacceptable threat

to regional stability. South Korea's military ready to overwhelmingly respond. The ICBM a crown jewel in leader Kim Jong Un's nuclear arsenal,

protecting the power fortune and future of the ruling Kim family.

His young daughter Kim Ju Ae often appearing alongside her dad, barely 10 years old, the rising star of a state propaganda campaign, carefully

crafted by Kim's younger sister the mastermind of the Kim family brand. The leader is loyal confidant, trusted advisor and perhaps the most

powerful woman in North Korea.

CHUN SU-JIN, AUTHOR OF NORTH KOREAN WOMEN IN POWER, DAUGHTERS OF THE SUN: She is the number two. Well that is for sure. But actually she is

very smart lady and she actually knows that her position is secure only when her brother is secure.

RIPLEY (voice over): Just five years ago, very few people knew of Kim Yo Jong. She stepped on the South Korean soil, the first member of North

Korea's ruling family to cross the DMZ. She carried a message of peace from Pyongyang. North Korean athletes and cheer squads got a warm

welcome to the 2018 Winter Olympics.

She rose to fame as a fixture at her brother's side steady silently behind Kim as he met with Former President Trump that brief period of

diplomacy feels like a distant memory. The silent sister now a loud voice of defiance issuing fiery statements on state media often laced

with crude language.

This week, she threatened to shoot down U.S. spy planes, accusing them without evidence of entering North Korean territory warning, in case of

repeated illegal intrusions, the U.S. forces will experience a very critical flight. Past actions prove she's not all talk. In 2020, a

dispute with South Korea ended with a bang.

Kim ordered the demolition of a joint liaison office at the border turning diplomatic dreams into a pile of rubble.

RIPLEY (on camera): She ordered the demolition of a building partially because she was angry that South Korea wasn't doing enough to stop

activists from sending propaganda leaflets in balloons to the north.


And she's accusing the U.S. and South Korea of having the most hostile and aggressive behavior calling the South Korean President a fool. And

those two countries now strengthening their military alliance, which means there could be even stronger responses from North Korea and the

second most powerful person in North Korea, Kim Yo Jong. Will Ripley, CNN Taipei.


ASHER: Alright and finally here on "First Move", surfers are used to doing battles with the waves but in Santa Cruz, California, they're

contending with a sea otter that seems intent. Look at that intent on damaging and stealing surfboards. Video shows a bit of a tussle in

progress with a sea otter trying to get on that surfboard.

And an expert told The New York Times it's not normal to see these kinds of interactions, but that doesn't mean they never happen. The sign has

been put up to warn surfers and swimmers enter the water at your own risk. Authority says that they will try to rehome, the otter because of

the threat to public safety.

Alright, that is it for the show. I'll be back in a couple of hours with one world "Connect the World" is up next. You're watching CNN.