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Quest Means Business
Gas Prices Soar As Germany Suspends Nord Stream 2 Pipeline Approval; Violence Erupts On Poland-Belarus Border Checkpoint; Joe Biden Visits New Hampshire To Tout Passage Of $1.2 Trillion Spending Bill; Slack Tells Execs To Limit Office Time To Three Days A Week; Global Oil Price Rally May Ease Off Soon; Chinese COVID-19 Workers Kill Quarantined Woman's Dog; Dash To The Bell. Aired 3-4p ET
Aired November 16, 2021 - 15:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
PAULA NEWTON, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: Inflation is not spooking this market. The Dow has been solidly higher throughout the day. Take a look
there, up better than 125 points now. The NASDAQ and the S&P following suit. Those are the markets. These are the main events.
Pipelines and politics. Gas prices surge as Germany presses pause on Nord Stream 2.
U.S. officials say Joe Biden and Xi Jinping engaged in quote "some healthy debate" at their virtual Summit.
And as European countries plan new COVID restrictions, I will speak to the CEO of Slack about work from home.
Live from New York. It's Tuesday, the 16th of November. I'm Paula Newton in for Richard Quest and this is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.
And good evening, tonight, Germany makes a power play with a Russian pipeline and it is sending shockwaves through the energy markets. Nord
Stream 2 delivering gas from Russia to Europe is in limbo tonight after German regulators said that they are suspending their approval for
Now, the move has sent gas prices soaring and it comes as Europe is already in a dispute with Russia over the migrant crisis in Belarus. Now, the
situation along the Polish border turned violent earlier today.
Meantime, the British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the two issues have forced Europe to make important choices.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BORIS JOHNSON, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: And when our Polish friends ask for our help to deal with a contrived crisis on their border with Belarus, we
were quick to respond. And that -- and we hope -- I hope that others may recognize, other European countries may recognize that a choice is shortly
coming between mainlining evermore Russian hydrocarbons in giant new pipelines or sticking up for Ukraine and championing the cause of peace and
(END VIDEO CLIP)
NEWTON: Because of peace and stability. Well, Boris Johnson alluded to it there, but the Nord Stream 2 pipeline has huge implications for the whole
continent. The E.U. gets about 40 percent of its natural gas from Russia. Nord Stream 2 would completely bypass Ukraine, as the Prime Minister was
saying, bringing Russian gas directly to Germany.
You see the pipeline outlines there. Now, countries like the United States have been saying for so many years that this would just give Russia too
much power. Now Germany, is suspending its approval, though on a technicality.
Now prices immediately surged at the news. Dutch gas futures went up about 14 percent, you see it there. One commodity boss has already warned of
rolling blackouts -- can you imagine in Europe, if it doesn't sort out its energy supplies this winter. And remember, this is in fact, the second
pipeline problem facing Europe in as many weeks. We've already heard threats about gas pump, Yamal pipeline, which runs right through Belarus.
There are concerns about that becoming, of course, a factor in the ongoing migrant crisis. And we will have much more on that in a moment.
But first, Anna Stewart is in London with really some extraordinary news that has geopolitical consequences. You know, regulators and a suspended
approval on what we've been calling a technicality. Can you walk us through that? And does that mean that the pipeline could still be resurrected some
ANNA STEWART, CNN REPORTER: Yes, I mean, let's look at this. Is it a technicality? Is it a power play? I mean, I'll come on to the latter. But
in terms of what the German regulator is saying here, is yes, it is administrative, it's legal. It's all down to the fact that Gazprom needs a
German independent subsidiary to operate the pipeline in Germany. And well, Gazprom plans to do that, they say, it doesn't meet the full sort of legal
However, in terms of the deadline, it doesn't make much difference at all according to the German regulator. It says, it will stick to its four-month
window to come to a decision on this, which ends at the sort of middle of January point.
It doesn't end there, though, in terms of when we would see potentially this pipeline ever come online, then goes the E.U. Commission, they have
two months to certify it. And then there are lots of technical issues and hey, some E.U. member states particularly Poland, may take issue with this,
it could face many delays.
STEWART: Why? Well that's due to the politics. This is a really controversial pipeline. It's caused a lot of problems already when it comes
to the E.U. and Member States, lots of opposition from Eastern Europe, also, the U.S. for the very clear reason that it bypasses Ukraine.
Approving it would only increase the E.U.'s dependence on Russia. That's the other argument we hear. But from Ukraine, they call it a geopolitical
weapon -- Paula.
NEWTON: Yes, you have to get energy from somewhere, though, and given the surging prices, what options are on the table for Europeans? And crucially,
the businesses? You know, as so many businesses have pointed out in Europe already, this is just the start of winter.
STEWART: Right, and if you look at the sounds we're getting from the Kremlin, should this pipeline be approved quickly, they said this would
solve Europe's gas crisis, more energy would be piped to Europe, it would bring down those prices. But analysts and investors are very, very
skeptical of that, because of the long process it will take and also the technical issues.
And the fact of the matter is right now, Russia could potentially export more gas to Europe. There is capacity on existing pipelines, but they are
not. That is what the I.E.A. have said in recent weeks.
In terms of what Europe can do, though, with this terrible energy crisis that we are seeing and prices so high, spiking 10 percent on European gas
futures just today on this news alone, there is not a lot they can do. They are so dependent on Russia for gas.
Over 40 percent of the E.U.'s gas comes from Russia, and this is the huge problem, the dependency. And in terms of what you can do right now at this
stage, really, in terms of the E.U. member states, all they can do is issue things like subsidies and tax relief to try and insulate businesses and
consumers. But ultimately, they have to pay, they have to foot the bill of these very high gas and energy bills. It is coming at a cost, but that's
what it will take, I think to keep the lights on at this stage -- Paula.
NEWTON: Yes, yes. But adding, you know, the possibility that there could be brownouts, blackouts, whatever you want to call them, definitely an
escalation. Anna, thanks for walking us through that.
Now, in the meantime, not only are Europeans wanting to heat their homes, those who are caught now are in a geopolitical standoff.
A thousand kilometers south of where Nord Stream 2 begins, there were violent clashes between migrants trying to enter Europe from Belarus. Now
CNN's Matthew Chance was at the border checkpoint when it all broke out. He himself was also hit with water cannon, and he told us the mood there had
turned very quickly.
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: You feel very tense, the children and the women that were here last night, when it was a
very peaceful scenario, with them sort of confronting facing off against those Border guards has completely changed.
The women and the children have been moved back, the men have been brought forward and they are angry. They are throwing stones and you see the Pols
are responding with water out with water cannon, covering us in water, sometimes that water is quite acrid, it has some sort of pepper components
in it. And so it sort of stinging your eyes a little bit and making you choke.
But it's been successful in the sense it has pushed people back from those barricades, which have been wrecked by the migrants over the past couple of
hours as this violence continues.
You can see one of them here, a few people by me here, they are smashing rocks on the ground to get smaller pieces, and then they are using those
rocks to throw at the Polish lines.
The European Union, the West, the United States, accuses Belarus of manufacturing this crisis, to put pressure on the European Union. It is the
driving these migrants towards the border on the false hope that they are going to get access to the European Union and access to Poland, many of
them are from Iraqi Kurdistan and they want to go to the European Union.
But that's clearly not happening at the moment. The Pols have been absolutely determined in saying they are not letting these migrants
through, and the Belarusians are also not backing down. And so what we've got is a situation where there are thousands of migrants very frustrated,
living in awful conditions in these camps that have very little facility in terms of facilities, and the weather is getting increasingly sort of
freezing. They are frustrated, they are angry, and you know, they want their situation to be resolved.
NEWTON: Matthew Chance there. Fred Pleitgen is with us now from the Polish side of the border and Fred, incredibly disturbing images there from
Matthew and yet he also reported that they had moved many of the migrants to a so-called processing center. What do we know about this? And does this
represent a kind of, you know, de-escalation in any way, shape or form?
FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, at least, it is short term de-escalation. It certainly seems like in that processing
center, it actually seems to be right at the facility of that checkpoint, and I'm not sure whether all of the migrants who are there were brought
there, I think that some of them actually did go back to the first camp that they were at, but it certainly seemed as though at least the weakest
of those who were there, especially the women and children, and the families, those appear to now be in that processing center, at least have a
roof over their head and some blankets so that certainly is something that is a positive development at the end of what certainly was a very difficult
PLEITGEN: And I think one of the reasons why that is now happening is that simply because that barricade that the Polish authorities put up there,
that razor wire, the other barricades, of course, also those water cannon trucks, that those simply were impossible to penetrate by those migrants.
Of course, we did have that melee that went on for several hours today. We also saw a lot of commotion here at the last checkpoint on the Polish side
with a lot of the police vehicles coming in, military vehicles coming in as well. As you could see the Polish -- the Pols are really fortifying that
From the Polish side, they were saying that all this kicked off when there were migrants that started throwing stones and one of the other allegations
that the Pols are also making is they say that some of the people who were trying to charge that border, they also were armed with stun grenades that
they threw at the Polish security officers, at the police officers, and they say -- the Pols certainly say they believe that those stun grenades
could only have been provided to the migrants by the Belarusian Security Forces.
So some serious allegations that the Pols are making there. Of course, the Belarusians have for a very long time in saying that they have no
involvement in all of this. However, the Pols do believe that the movements that we've been seeing in the past sort of day or so where the people left
from that camp, went to the checkpoint, sat at the checkpoint, and today that melee, they certainly believe that that was steered by the
Belarusians, but they also believe that that did not have any success.
And of course, that's why now they have moved some of those people to that processing facility where again, at least they have the roof over their
heads as now Belarus first and foremost, but of course also this is a negotiation that is going on as to what exactly is going to happen to these
people next -- Paula.
NEWTON: Yes, and to that end, Fred, have you heard anything about any workable solutions?
PLEITGEN: It certainly still seems fairly difficult, and I think one of the things that Poland is certainly saying, the European Union is certainly
saying as well is one thing that is not going to happen is that border crossing is not going to be open. The Pols are absolutely unequivocal about
But it's quite interesting, because last night, the German Foreign Minister -- and of course, we always have to point out, Paula, that the vast
majority of the people who are there, don't want to stay in Poland, want to go on to a Germany -- the German Foreign Minister last night said that they
were also not going to get taken in by Germany, that the only solution would be for them to go back to their home countries.
In the short term, what the European Union says that it wants to achieve is that the UNHCR to be able to go in there and provide help for those people.
But in the longer term, they say that they simply need to return to their home countries.
And to that end, you also have the Iraqis that say they are going to send planes on Thursday to at least send people back who want to get sent back
and also a Belarusian strongman, Alexander Lukashenko, he said that, yes, he also believes that people should return to their home countries, but
also that the Belarusians were not going to return people to their home countries against their will.
So I think right now, there certainly isn't something that we would call a workable solution yet, but it certainly seems as though both sides have
mapped out what exactly is acceptable to them. And certainly, as far as the European Union is concerned, they are saying that this needs to end and
they are saying that people need to return to their home countries.
Of course, you do have the diplomacy that is also taking place. For instance, Angela Merkel speaking to Alexander Lukashenko, so at least those
channels are still open, but it is of course, still an extremely difficult situation and just very difficult for those people that have traveled so
far and must be extremely disappointed -- Paula.
NEWTON: Yes, not just disappointed. It is cruel at this point, given how they have been used as political pawns. Fred, appreciate you being there.
Joining me now is Nic Robertson, our international diplomatic editor. Okay, let's get to that border situation right? I mean, E.U. unity, Nic, is
holding for now. Do you think that the Belarusian leader and perhaps even Russia are reassessing their endgame at this point?
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: The situation the Belarusians clearly wanted to create at the border, they haven't achieved.
They haven't been able to break the European will. They haven't been able to physically get migrants to break through the border though, you know,
Polish Border Guards say that Belarusians forces have been cutting holes in the wire and trying to help and push migrants through.
So the Belarusians haven't succeeded. We saw today migrant throwing rocks at the Polish. Look, there's an anger there, there's a frustration there.
But at a point that's going to turn also on their putative hosts, the Belarusians and that must be beginning to dawn on President Lukashenko at
They are providing some kind of shelter and some kind of medical attention for those that are in the more desperate -- more desperate need of help
close to the border. The recognition will be coming that this is a problem that they're going to be left stuck with.
So the solution is going to have to come from them and Josep Borrell, the U.N.'s High Representative for Foreign Affairs spoke with the Minister of
Foreign Affairs in Minsk this evening, a telephone conversation, and you know, the dialogue was from the Minsk side that they want to help and they
are serious about helping in the humanitarian situation and getting the UNHCR in there, as Fred was speaking about, about getting the International
Organization of Migration in.
ROBERTSON: So yes, the Europeans have stood firm. The Belarusians weren't able to organize a big enough number of migrants to achieve their goals and
create instability to create a crisis at the border. You know, it's in the hands of some of the most determined migrants at the moment what happens in
the next few days, but it must be dawning on the Belarusians that they now need to find a solution.
NEWTON: And this is just so linked in so many ways to the North Stream pipeline. We heard Boris Johnson, his influence on Europe at this point.
Perhaps we don't know, but certainly what he said about the pipeline crystallized an undeniable fact. Right? We've been talking about this for
Nord Stream 2 would have bestowed Russia a geopolitical weapon. What has changed now that even if it's a technicality that Germany has said no, for
now to that pipeline?
ROBERTSON: Yes. It's a geopolitical weapon, really, that's most weaponized against Ukraine. And Ukraine, of course, is the focus of President Putin's
attention. He is building up forces along the border there. The intent, again, is unclear. But it is a threat, certainly, that's being, you know,
felt in Ukraine by the authorities there at the moment.
You know, Boris Johnson's words, do seem to, you know, have fallen on fertile ground in the European Union. The U.K. gets gas, and when it's been
short of gas, you know, in previous years, it has turned to Russia to sort that out.
Gas is coming from Russia to the European Union via other pipelines, the old Nord Stream pipeline, which isn't working at capacity. So this is
really an issue about Ukraine, about the money that Ukraine gets from the passage of gas through the old Nord Stream pipelines through Ukraine, and
how that helps solidify and strengthen the government there, which is something that Vladimir Putin wants to undermine. That's all recognized and
understood by the European Union.
And at the moment, they see the manipulation of Putin or they believe there's a manipulation by Putin, so they are standing firm and Germany has
a technical clause and reason not to allow that pipeline to turn on.
But it is really that -- it is really Ukraine that's in the crosshairs, because that's the country that Vladimir Putin most wants to undermine,
most wants to keep out of European NATO sphere of influence. Because, in part, because Crimea, which he annexed that is part of Ukraine is hugely
important to his Navy to have a warm water port. And for that reason, he will go a long distance to ensure that that is not threatened.
NEWTON: Yes, absolutely. And again, the U.S. and the Europeans, of course, have expressed their worry about what Russia is doing right now at this
hour in Ukraine and on its borders.
Nic Robertson, appreciate you taking us through that.
Now, Chinese President Xi Jinping describes the U.S. and China as two giant ships that shouldn't, yaw, stall or collide. We look at the obstacles ahead
for the two superpowers. That's next.
And as COVID surges once more in Europe, regional and national governments look to -- wait for it -- unfortunately, bring back pandemic restrictions.
I'm not kidding. We'll have that for you next.
NEWTON: Wall Street is picking up steam after what was a flat Monday. The Dow, you see it there, about a hundred -- almost 140 points now. All the
major averages though are up with the NASDAQ trying to reach, yes 16,000. Can you believe that?
Okay, President Biden is hitting the road to tote that huge infrastructure package. He is visiting an 82-year-old bridge in the state of New Hampshire
to talk about how the money will help much needed repairs and getting to those repairs and how that will inevitably help American families. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: This isn't some gigantic bill -- it is -- but it's about what happens to ordinary people,
conversations around those kitchen tables that are both profound as they are ordinary. How do I cross the bridge in a snowstorm? What happened?
No, think about it. You know you're in a situation -- what happens if the bridge collapses and there's a fire on other side? It's going to take 10
miles longer to get to the fire. People can die.
I mean, this is real. This is real stuff.
What does it mean if a school bus or water treatment trucks or logging trucks can't cross? It means jobs. It means -- it means time, it means
(END VIDEO CLIP)
NEWTON: Arlette Saenz is with the President in Woodstock, New Hampshire. You don't have to convince Americans. I mean, Woodstock is gorgeous. I have
been there several times, I've probably been on that bridge, and yet, the one thing that does not escape me, Arlette is that New Hampshire is a swing
ARLETTE SAENZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it certainly is, and that is not going unnoticed here as the President is making his very first
pitch of that infrastructure bill that he signed into law just yesterday. He decided to come straight to New Hampshire. This is one of those
battleground states that the President won in the general election. It wasn't so kind to him in the Democratic primary.
But tomorrow, the President is also heading to Michigan, yet another swing state, as they are looking ahead to 2022, THE midterms there and then also
the 2024 general presidential election.
But the President decided to come here to Woodstock, New Hampshire, to use the backdrop of that 82-year-old bridge over the Pemigewasset River to try
to tout and promote what exactly and how this bill will help Americans when it comes to improving roads, railways, bridges, also clean water systems,
broadband access, these are all things that the President is hoping will really resonate with the American people as they are learning more about
the elements in this plan.
Now, this bridge in particular that the President was standing on and talked about, the needs for repair for it, it has been on the list of Red
List projects here in the state that are under poor condition since about 2013, and what this bipartisan infrastructure law will now do, the state is
planning to use about $4.5 million from the allotment that they are getting to try to refurbish and repair this bridge.
What was also interesting is this is a rural area in New Hampshire. So, often a lot of those infrastructure projects that are getting attention are
in those larger cities along larger routes, but the President also stressing that rural communities need to have enhancements on their roads
and bridges and other forms of transportations as many of the companies in the area depend on bringing their products over some of these bridges.
So the President and the Vice President and other members of his Cabinet are planning to fan out across the country over the coming weeks trying to
sell this directly to voters.
SAENZ: Now one thing here in New Hampshire, this is also a very competitive a race for Senate next year. The Democratic Senator Maggie
Hassan is running for re-election, and it was notable that the President when he opened his remarks immediately started praising her and the work
that she has done to try to get this bill across the finish line.
Ultimately, what the White House and Democrats are hoping is that they can really ride the wave of this bill, create some momentum among the American
people heading into those midterms next year.
NEWTON: Yes. They seem like a long time away, they are not in terms of politics in America.
Arlette, thanks. Appreciate you being there.
Now, last month -- last late Monday night -- pardon me -- in Washington, Chinese President Xi Jinping told the U.S. President Joe Biden, they are
two countries that must be careful to avoid a metaphorical shipwreck. At their virtual Summit, Xi said, "The two large vessels of China and the
United States should go forward together against the wind and must not yaw, stall, (this is key) or collide."
Despite soothing words of the Summit though, these two ships are still in choppy waters. The Biden administration has kept in place Trump era
tariffs. U.S. officials say they are considering removing some tariffs, but Beijing hasn't yet lived up to its trading commitments.
Taiwan was also discussed extensively. Chinese military maneuvers have raised tensions there. The White House says Mr. Biden also raised human
rights concerns including China's treatment of its Uighur minority.
David Culver now reports from Beijing.
DAVID CULVER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): A pandemic style face-to- face meeting.
XI JINPING, CHINESE PRESIDENT (through translator): I'm very happy to see an old friend.
CULVER (voice over): The first time President Joe Biden speaking virtually with Chinese President Xi Jinping. The conversation lasted more than three
hours, covering a range of issues that have brought relations between these two countries to an all-time low.
A senior U.S. administration official calling the talks respectful, straightforward, and open, a healthy debate in which Biden was clear and
candid on a range of human rights concerns. In response, Xi telling Biden that China is ready to have dialogues on human rights on the basis of
mutual respect. But we oppose using human rights to meddle in other countries internal affairs.
On trade, Biden also pressing Xi to uphold China's commitments to the Phase One Trade Deal negotiated under former President Trump. They also talked
Taiwan, China's so-called red line. China has been putting military pressure on the self-ruling democracy, firm in believing it should be
reunified under Beijing control. Xi stressing that on Taiwan, the U.S. is playing with fire.
Following the meeting, Chinese state media immediately reporting their version tweeting, "Biden reiterates that the U.S. government does not
support Taiwan independence." But the White House had a different take. In a statement stressing, "The United States strongly opposes unilateral
efforts to change the status quo or undermine peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait."
JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: To ensure that the competition between our countries does not bear into conflict --
XI (through translator): China and the United States need to increase communication and cooperation.
CULVER (voice over): The meeting as expected, there will be no major outcomes.
PAUL HAENLE, FORMER WHITE HOUSE N.S.C. CHINA DIRECTOR: The sort of the long-term structural challenges between the U.S. and China have really yet
to be addressed. This could be the start of a process for that to happen.
CULVER (voice over): Perhaps the warm gestures, a sign of progress, encountering the frigid relations.
David Culver, CNN, Beijing.
NEWTON: Working from home, big deal at the start of the COVID pandemic. We talk to the CEO of Slack about how his company is adapting as the pandemic,
we'll call it evolving, it is kind of worrying actually. What does the new normal look like?
NEWTON (voice-over): Hello, I'm Paula Newton. There's more QUEST MEANS BUSINESS in a moment. When COVID cases are rising in Europe, it means the
great work from home experiment will continue for a while.
And the U.S. calls Russia's anti-satellite missile test reckless and dangerous.
But first, this is CNN and the news always comes first.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NEWTON (voice-over): Jurors began deliberations this morning in the Kyle Rittenhouse homicide trial. He faces five felony charges.
At least three people were killed and 33 others hurt by twin suicide bombings that rocked the capital of Uganda. One was near the central police
station in Kampala and another near parliament.
Pfizer says it will license the production of its experimental COVID-19 pill for worldwide use. The deal will let generic drug makers make the pill
available at a cheaper price. Pfizer will not get any royalty of sales in certain countries.
NEWTON: France says it's in a state of alert as COVID cases rise there and across Europe. Ten days ago, the virus was taking the stairs and it's now
in the elevator. The seven-day average has risen steadily over the last month. I want you to look at this three-month chart.
Berlin has banned unvaccinated people from restaurants, bars, cinemas and other entertainment venues. Slack CEO Stewart Butterfield joins us now.
The euphoria we all felt over vaccines earlier this year may have left a lot of businesses wondering how long this would last.
As you see more countries and businesses retrenching, do you see work from home as a more permanent feature?
STEWART BUTTERFIELD, CEO, SLACK: I do but maybe not from inside of people's homes. Often their homes are not designed for it. A lot of parents
with kids, no child care, arguing over who gets to use the kitchen table or too small apartments.
But I think the days of 9:00 to 5:00, Monday through Friday, are over. I think there's a huge value to people getting together and I'm looking
forward to it.
But the autonomy and flexibility that workers got over the last few years is going to be difficult for people to give up. And the great resignation,
wage inflation, it's everywhere. Software engineers and bankers to people working in factories and the warehouses, it's a pretty big shift.
NEWTON: Yes, and during that shift, communication is key. To get back to your platform, you said you've rebuilt Slack to make it simpler, more
productive. I can't keep up with all the ways I'm already supposed to communicate with everyone.
Are you saying that, for employees who use Slack now, you can merge all the communication, streamline it?
Let me know what is going on here.
BUTTERFIELD: Yes, a little bit of merging and streamlining communication and ore knitting together all the services that people use. This is not
exciting all the time.
But if you think about what people do, whether they're benefits administrators or financing, accounting, HR, there's a lot of filling out
forms, approval, receiving notifications.
So to make this a realer example, imagine you're a recruiter and you send out an offer letter using DocuSign. You get the notice back and now you
have to update the tracking system and close the job and say the candidate has a start date and tell the hiring manager.
It's that kind of stuff. So people build flows that tie together all the services they use. And it's a huge simplification and it allows for a lot
of rapid evolution and agility.
NEWTON: Does that mean that companies will be able to design Slack the way that they want to?
BUTTERFIELD: Yes, that's exactly it. And I'm sure you've had a couple of experiences in your life, with an airline or a credit card company or a
telco, when they say, I'm sorry, the system can't let me do that, they're telling the truth.
And that era of software design I think is being superseded by a world where companies are building their own systems. There's a little bit more
technical expertise inside of every country across the board.
And that allows them to be much more nimble in shifting. It's the salespeople that know how to make it easy for salespeople. It's the
accountants who know how to make it easy for accountants, not the professional software developers.
NEWTON: I don't have a lot of time left. But you can see the eye roll, the eye roll is happening here.
Just in terms of how Slack will work to make work from home work better for everyone, is there anything succinct you can tell me?
BUTTERFIELD: Yes, I would say, historically, leaders have spent a lot more time on real estate leases, conference room designs and all that. But
imagine some alternate universe, where, in March of 2020, you would still have your office but none of the companies don't have the software they
We would cease to exist. So there is this infrastructure that is critical to support productivity and collaboration and I think it's time to be a
little bit more thoughtful about how to communicate.
NEWTON: If that gives us more time and makes us work more efficiently, we're all for it. Stewart, thank you for being here.
BUTTERFIELD: Thank you.
NEWTON: Oil prices are moving higher and OPEC is not budging. I'll speak to Angola's finance minister about how high prices may get.
NEWTON: The big oil rally in prices may be about to slow down. That's according to the International Energy Agency. OPEC countries have so far
refused to pump more oil, to keep prices from rising too fast. Brent crude is around $82 a barrel.
Angola is one of OPEC's 13 members. The oil sector makes up a full third of its GDP. Vera Daves de Sousa is Angola's finance minister and she joins me
Thank you for being with us. Angolan production has decreased.
Is there any sense that will change in the short-term, no matter what you have planned for the long term?
VERA DAVES DE SOUSA, ANGOLAN FINANCE MINISTER: (INAUDIBLE).
I think unfortunately, we're having trouble hearing you.
Let's try again.
Minister, can you hear me?
It's Paula Newton in New York.
Can you hear me?
DE SOUSA: (INAUDIBLE).
NEWTON: That's a little bit better. Let's give this a try.
Any prospect for a short-term production increase in Angola?
DE SOUSA: Yes, we're following closely all these movements that is happening. Angola is part of OPEC. We believe on the gradual increase of
production. Angola has a strategy, age-old (ph) carbon strategy, that intends to motivate oil companies to do more investments, to take all
advantage of marginal oil fields, to make sure that we are producing as much as possible.
We're not able to yet to reach the quota that we have. So we are below that quota. So even when OPEC decides to increase the productions, we will
remain below that. So we're doing our best to motivate the oil companies to invest, increase production. And we take advantage of this movement.
Despite that, we still committed with the non-oil sector just to make sure that we have our economy resilient enough to possible shocks because we
know that oil sector is quite volatile. And we can see movement on the oil price that can be again (INAUDIBLE).
NEWTON: Yes, I want to talk to you about that resiliency. Your president says your economy has to diversify.
It's a matter of life and death. But what can you say in concrete terms? Because we have been hearing that for years.
DE SOUSA: We can start this talk about other business, because now we can rely totally on the water consumption, water table consumption with local
production. We can rely on eggs production, production fruits, vegetables. So we're seeing a lot of local production on the agribusiness sector.
We still need to work on the industry side, small industry, big industry. So we're working on the business environment to attract direct investment
to those areas. Also to tourism.
And we're seeing a lot happening. And the non-oil sector, we're performing well regarding GDP and also fiscal revenues. So yes, it's not only words,
it's acts. And we'll keep pursuing that -- the results (INAUDIBLE).
NEWTON: Because the Angolan people have not benefited from what was supposed to be the oil boom and we may be on the cusp of a mineral boom.
Nearly 1 in 4 Angolan children are involved in some kind of forced labor. And I appreciate that an action plan was just passed.
But what can you do concretely to make sure that some of that child labor is attended to?
Because so many families send their children to do child labor because they're desperate because of the situation with inequality.
DE SOUSA: So we're acting in two fronts. The one front is regarding a cash assistance, with a program with the World Bank (INAUDIBLE) where we deliver
money to the families that are struggling with the poverty. We deliver money, in a combined effort with the World Bank.
We're moving not so quick as we want because we need to identify those families, to make sure that they start having the ability to manage the
money, to buy a mobile phone, get a banking account. So we're progressing on that front of giving assistance.
But we're also creating space for the companies to start operating, to create employee. We also have a program within the municipalities to build
schools and to make sure that those kids are ables to get access to education.
And with that, being able to have access to a more formal way of work. But we are working on those two fronts, assisting them and also investing on
the education infrastructure and attracting private investment, local and foreign, to create jobs. And (INAUDIBLE) long term, we want those kids to
be financial and economically well.
NEWTON: Thank you for joining us.
Now Russia has sparked international outrage after blowing up one of its own satellites. We'll talk about the explosive space race, that's next.
NEWTON: We already know Chinese quarantine rules are strict but these coronavirus protection workers are entering homes and killing pets while
their owners are in quarantine. A warning, this video has images that are disturbing and upsetting. Here's Will Ripley.
WILL RIPLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Even in China with some of the world's harshest pandemic protocols, what you are about to see crossed
a line. Security footage from Southeast China Friday sparking outrage on Chinese social media, shared by a devastated dog owner. Some viewers may
want to look away.
COVID prevention workers forced their way into a locked apartment; one with a plastic bag, the other a crowbar.
"Did the leader say we need to settle it right on the spot?" one says?
"Yes," the other replies, before taking a swing at the head of a small corgi, cowering behind a table. The dog whimpers, runs to another room and
the workers off camera finish the job.
ASHLEY FRUNO, DIRECTOR OF ANIMAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS, PETA: Absolutely heartbreaking, shocking and totally brutal.
RIPLEY: And in your view completely unnecessary.
FRUNO: There is no justifiable reason why this should ever be done to a companion animal.
RIPLEY: The dog owner in quarantine. No pets allowed. A handful of people in her building tested positive for COVID. She tested negative. Her dog was
never tested. Some Chinese cities like Shanghai allow people to quarantine with their pets.
In many places, pet owners are forced to leave their animals behind. A local government statement confirms the corgi was killed as part of a need
to thoroughly disinfect homes in the area. The workers safely disposed of the dog, the statement says.
They apologized for failing to fully communicate with the owner. Both no longer on the job. CNN reached out to the dog owner and authorities, so far
no response. Other pets have died in China's zero COVID crackdown including these cats in September, killed without their owner's consent. She was in
the hospital with the virus.
FRUNO: There's no scientific evidence that dogs and cats can spread COVID to humans. There is a risk if an infected person were to touch or handle a
cat or a dog but that would be exactly the same risk as if you were touching a doorknob after an infected person.
RIPLEY: Less than three months before the Winter Olympics in Beijing, China accused of extreme measures to fight a fresh outbreak. Millions of
people under mandatory lockdowns. Just over 1,300 reported cases nationwide.
Chinese authorities under tremendous pressure to eliminate the virus. Some call this a heartbreaking example of unchecked government power in the name
of public health -- Will Ripley, CNN, Taipei.
NEWTON: The closing bell just minutes away. We'll have the final numbers, after a break. Stay with us.
NEWTON: Time to check in for our last few minutes of trading on Wall Street. The Dow was up more than 200 points. Still up 80 points and that is
significant. U.S. retail sales and the home builder index both higher than expected.
And President Joe Biden says he hopes to make an announcement about his nomination for Fed chair in about four days from now. Sources inside the
administration say that Jay Powell is the favorite to keep his chair for another term. His current term expires in February and he needs
And Home Depot is at the top of the Dow after beating estimates again, posting a nearly 10 percent jump in sales. Nike, Visa, Microsoft leading
higher. Boeing at the bottom, with some profit taking. But it had significant gains yesterday, getting a bounce from some new orders, all
fueled by DHL converting its freighters.
Walmart, the chemical company and the Dow, are the ones that are lagging. And the major averages on the continent were up. Some believing the
European stocks still remain undervalued.
And that is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS for this Tuesday. I'm Paula Newton in New York.
Do we hear the closing bell yet?
"THE LEAD" with Pamela Brown starts right now on CNN.