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Quest Means Business

Ukraine Says Russia Strike Killed At Least 51 People; Biden Administration To Build More Barriers On Southern Border; Pandora Shares Jump After It Raises Government Targets; Explosive Traces Found In Prigozhin Wreck; U.S. President Joe Biden To Pay Tribute To Senator Dianne Feinstein; Air France KLM Becomes Major Shareholder Of SAS; Call To Earth: Uganda; Korean Companies Using AI To Craft Perfect K-pop Stars. Aired 3-4p ET

Aired October 05, 2023 - 15:00   ET



ELENI GIOKOS, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: Markets are cautious ahead of a US jobs report that is expected on Friday. Let's check in to see how the Dow

Jones is faring right now, and you can see, we are flat with a slight positive bias, but mostly red across the day.

Well, those are the markets and these are the main events: Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelenskyy reiterates his call for more air defenses

after a Russian strike on a grocery store leaves at least 51 people dead.

Why the US economy is facing a season of strikes.

And the surprise shakeup in European aviation. The Air France KLM CEO explains why they are taking a stake in SAS.

Live from Dubai, it is Thursday, October 5th. I'm Eleni Giokos, in for Richard Quest and this is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.

Welcome to the show and tonight, Volodymyr Zelenskyy is calling an airstrike on a Ukrainian grocery store a deliberate terrorist attack. The

strike appears to have reduced the shop and cafe to rubble. Ukrainian officials say it killed at least 51 people in the small village east of


That would make the war's deadliest civilian attack in 18 months. Ukraine's Interior minister says nearly a fifth of the village was wiped out. Its

Defense minister said there were no military targets in that area, and we will be live on the scene with Fred Pleitgen in just a moment.

Meanwhile, I want to take you to another story. Zelenskyy says this attack highlights the need for air defense systems. He met today in Spain with

European leaders and also addressed the situation in the United States. Zelenskyy expressed confidence that Washington would stay in his corner

despite the political turmoil there.

The ouster of House Speaker Kevin McCarthy has paralyzed the US Congress. The hardline Republicans who forced McCarthy outs to oppose more aid to

Ukraine, and here is what Zelenskyy had to say.


VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT: Of course, a difficult election period for the United States, different voices. Some of the voices are very

strange. About this also, we will speak about this.


GIOKOS: Well, Zelenskyy said he discussed a new aid package with the Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and she said Italy will stand by

Ukraine, but cautioned that the war's consequences like inflation and migration must be handled well; otherwise, she said there's a risk of

waning public support.

We've got Ben Wedeman in Rome for us.

Waning public support, and look, here's the reality. This isn't the first we've heard of Ukraine aid fatigue. Can Zelenskyy keep support coming in --


BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: That's questionable. I mean, if you look across the board in Europe, there does seem to be

somewhat eroding public enthusiasm, shall we say, for the Ukrainian war effort.

Now, we've seen for instance, countries like Hungary, which for quite some time have been rather soft on supporting Ukraine. Now in Slovakia, there's

a new government that is against aid in Ukraine and Italy, which even though Prime Minister Meloni has rhetorically been supportive of the

Ukrainian war effort; in reality, Italy is not among the top 10 donors of humanitarian and military aid to Ukraine, and she stressed today when she

met with Zelenskyy on the sidelines of this EU Summit in Granada, Spain that there is the risk of public opinion shifting when it comes to support

of Ukraine.

Italians are worried about higher energy prices, which many believe are the result of the war in Ukraine, higher food prices, which are also they

believe, a knock-on effect of the war in Ukraine and also migration. There is the concern that as a result of higher world energy and food prices that

this is driving migration which of course is becoming a real political hot potato in Italy, as well.


So certainly the situation is looking rather bleak, and I think President Zelenskyy has good reason to be concerned.

GIOKOS: Yes, and it is a really good point because look, Zelenskyy warning that Russia will strike again, and he was referring to the

political chaos currently playing out in the United States with many people in Congress now questioning just how much aid is flowing to Ukraine.

Zelenskyy seems to be in a very tight spot right now, in terms of keeping the commitment, and people staying in his corner at this point.

WEDEMAN: Yes, and certainly, I mean, if you look at the situation a year ago, the Ukrainians had driven the Russians out of much of the Kharkiv

region, it really did seem that the situation was fundamentally changing in their favor. But since then, certainly, since this summer offensive, which

began in June, launched by the Ukrainians has really not achieved an awful lot in terms of regaining territory in terms of striking a body blow

against the Russians.

I think you're starting to see the resolve of the Europeans starting to erode. And of course, the United States is, in a sense of political basket

case over the last few years, and first with Trump and now with a divided Congress, it does appear that situation is not getting any better for the

Ukrainians and I think this is exactly what the Russians are waiting for.

It is a waiting game, and the Russians have always believed that time is on their side, and it does look as if they may be right -- Eleni.

GIOKOS: Yes, I mean, it's a really good point.

Ben, look, you've got Zelenskyy calling for more air defense systems from the United States. There is a clear call in terms of what it means to stay

committed in terms of helping Ukraine. On the other end, have the West weighed up the consequences of halting support in Ukraine, what it would

mean for the region, what it would mean for Europe, and specifically, the Baltic countries.

WEDEMAN: Well, I think in terms of, you know, weighing up the consequences, we're talking about politicians who are more concerned about

the next election than anything further down the line in the United States. And therefore, you know, I think that they are just simply not focused at

the moment. And the long term consequences are the last thing that go into their calculation, certainly in the United States.

I mean, you look at what's going on in Washington, and it really does seem to be a superpower of falling to pieces, the so-called arsenal of democracy

is now a political basket case.

And in Europe, it is somewhat more unified. In terms of, you have Germany, France, Britain, for instance, which are fairly strong in their resolve

when it comes to supporting the Ukrainians, but other countries, like Italy, I can tell you that sort of anecdotally, many Italians I speak with,

most of them, in fact, don't seem very supportive of the Ukrainians, many are supportive of the Russians.

In fact, there was an opinion poll conducted throughout Europe. In Italy, it was found that 27 percent of the respondents came out and said they

blamed Ukraine, the EU, and the United States for the Russian invasion of Ukraine. I mean, it sounds absurd, but certainly you have a variety of

prominent figures in Italian politics, who have never hidden their sympathy for the Russians, as opposed to the Ukrainians -- Eleni.

GIOKOS: Ben Wedeman, thank you so much for breaking that down for us. Great to see you.

We are going to a very short break and we'll be back right after this.

Stay with CNN.



GIOKOS: I want to take you back to the latest on that deadly airstrike in Ukraine.

Ukrainian officials are saying it killed at least 51 people in the small village east of Kharkiv. Our Fred Pleitgen is on the scene in eastern


Fred, great to have you there.

Look with the latest deadly missiles strike, it is clear, Zelenskyy needs more air defense systems and absolutely more resources, but tell me where

you are, what you've seen and what you're hearing.


We are absolutely on the ground here Hroza, which is indeed a very small village in the Kharkiv area of Ukraine. We're not that far actually from

the frontlines where the fighting is going on, but still very, very far away when you consider that the strike took place here, I'd say about 25

miles away from the frontlines.

You can see, I'm in front of the building that was destroyed, and as you can see, it's a scene of utter devastation that we're seeing here. And you

guys were alluding to the fact that what this building was, the authorities here say was a supermarket, but also a cafe. It seems to us as though, it

was more of a small events center, it seems.

And what was going on here was the funeral wake of a Ukrainian soldier who had been killed about a year ago and was supposed to be re-buried here.

This area was under Russian control, it is now under Ukrainian control and that soldier was to be re-buried here.

Now, the authorities are telling us that the people who were at this wake, when it was hit, were all civilians. There was one soldier possibly here,

but the rest of the people were all civilians. And certainly, you know when we got here, there was a lot of carnage still here. There was still a lot

of bodies that were strewn all over the place, some of them and devastating state. And it certainly didn't seem to us as though there were any military

among the dead that we could see.

The Ukrainians say one of the reasons why there were so many people who were killed, more than 50 people who were killed was that the Russians,

they say hit this building within Iskander missile and I want to show you again, the damage that was done to this building, you can see that some of

the walls are still standing, but otherwise, that rubble is reminiscent of very powerful earthquakes in other places.

That building has not only been knocked down, it's been completely annihilated, and they say the reason for that is that this Iskander

missile, which has a very heavy warhead of about a thousand pounds is normally one that would be used against troop concentrations, and even

armored vehicles.

And so obviously, when it hit a building like this, it completely destroyed the place and that is also why the Ukrainians say, so many more people were

killed on the ground here.

As we got here a couple of hours ago, there was still a big search and recovery effort, search and rescue effort still going on. There were still

crews who were going through the building, or what was left of it, but that has since ended.

The crews are telling us there is no hope to find anybody alive here anymore, so they sort of stopped all of that, and what they've done is

they've cleared the bodies that were here and obviously there's a lot of forensic work that's going on.

A tragic thing that the police here told us is they say that there are some bodies that right now, they simply are not able to identify because they

are in such an awful state and there was one thing that really stood out to us on a final note.


There was one gentleman that we saw who was sort of kneeling over one of the body bags and he was too distraught to talk to us, but we later found

out that it was his wife, who had been killed here in the strike. And as the bodies were being cleared, the sort of final thing that he was able to

do for his wife was lift her onto the truck that was bringing a lot of bodies away from here.

So some really tragic scenes in this very small village, and it is one with a very small population and the villagers themselves are telling us, a

large part of that population was killed today in the strike -- Eleni.

GIOKOS: Harrowing, Fred, and of course, just seeing the damage behind you just gives you a sense of the extent of this attack.

Thank you so much for the update. It is great to have you on the ground there. Fred Pleitgen for us.

Well, in the US, the Biden administration is waiving 26 federal laws in order to build more barriers at the southern border. In the notice, federal

officials justified the decision in what they called high illegal entry.

The new wall is set to go up in the Rio Grande Valley and its budget is already approved. The US Border Patrol reported over 300,000 encounters in

that area between last October and August.

President Biden said he would not build any more wall when he was running for the White House.

Kayla Tausche is at the White House for us. Kayla, great to have you there.

This is a major policy pivot from the Biden administration. We know in 2020, he said not another foot of wall would be built. It's a huge walk

back on that campaign promise. Take us through why?

KAYLA TAUSCHE, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, the White House is trying to make a more nuanced argument today saying that the funds

were already approved by Congress back in 2019, and either they had to use it or lose it.

The administration is saying that it tried to appropriate those funds for other purposes, but were turned down by Congress because they had already

been allocated for the border wall.

And so, the Department of Homeland Security filed a filing last night saying that these funds would indeed be earmarked to create, construct

these additional 20 miles of border wall. But in that filing, the secretary of Homeland Security cited an acute and immediate need to prevent unlawful

entries, as the reason why these funds needed to go forward to construct the border wall, which has become a much more difficult argument for the

administration to defend.

They are, as you mentioned, waiving dozens of federal laws including the Clean Air Act and the Safe Drinking Water Act that are sure to anger

environmentalists as a way to move forward with building this wall, and it all comes against the backdrop of funding talks with officials on Capitol

Hill about how the government will fund itself from mid-November through the following year.

And of course, many Republicans have been seeking wholesale changes in border policy as part of those talks. So certainly, this policy change is

going to figure into those conversations -- Eleni.

GIOKOS: Kayla, thank you very much. Great to have you with us. Kayla Tausche, thank you.

All right, a sparkling report from jewelry Retail, Pandora has caught the eye of investors. The company raises growth targets and announced plans to

expand. Pandora's shares rose nearly 11 percent after presenting an ambitious capital market's day report.

The affordable luxury brand known for its silver charms and bracelets has its sights on India, as well as other Asian markets. Pandora is also

warning recovery in China is taking much longer than expected due to weak consumer spending.

Joining me now is Alexander Lacik, the CEO of Pandora.

It is so great to have you with us. Thank you so very much for joining us.

Look, I've been going through your numbers. They look absolutely fantastic. It's clearly because you've shifted strategy. You've figured out what your

core market is, and you changed your price points, and I am just wondering in this environment, knowing what your market is, knowing the uncertainty

that exists. Are you concerned whether you can keep this up?

ALEXANDER LACIK, CEO, PANDORA: Well, first of all, thank you for having me here. We've had a very good day today. The reception of our next three

years has been very positive.

I just like to correct, we actually haven't changed our pricing and that's probably one of the reasons why we're still weathering, let's say the macro

which is you know, it's been kind of tough in the last two years, in fact.

But I think what we have is a brand that's kind of found back to its roots and now is gaining momentum. So, you know, the jewelry market this year has

been quite actually in slightly negative space, whereas we are in the positive space, which means that we're building market share everywhere.

So we have more customers coming into the Pandora brand now than ever before.


GIOKOS: In terms of the new markets, I mean, you're looking at India, you're looking at Japan and South Korea, some exciting places that you're

eyeing out. But of note, China seems to be a place where things are slower than I think anticipated. I think that goes for the rest of the world

looking in on what the Chinese market could mean, but that is still an unexplored area, which could, of course, offer a lot of growth. Where are

you eyeing out the best opportunities right now?

LACIK: Well, I mean, first of all, we have a number of markets where we have a pretty strong organization, and we have a strong brand presence,

then there's a next layer where we also have an organization, but the brand has quite some penetration opportunities.

That would be markets like Germany, France, Spain, to a degree, Mexico has had a really good run lately, and that is kind of where the core of our

future growth is going to come from.

On top of that, we have kind of, let's say, renovated the company over the last few years. And now I think, we have a setup, which is very strong, we

have a set of people that are very strong, which also allows me to kind of look a little bit into the future and start kind of peeking into those

markets, like South Korea, Japan, and India.

Now, we're just starting to map the opportunities there. So with the guidance that we've given the market today for the next three years

actually does not include those market that I just mentioned. The growth will still come from our core markets, and as I mentioned, some of these

important markets that still hold penetration opportunity for us.

GIOKOS: Yes, I was -- when I was reading up about what you do. I mean, I didn't know this, the charms on bracelets have been around for 60,000

years. You know, and here's the thing, the hope is that it's going to continue in terms of demand in what people view as a great opportunity for


But you're also getting into diamonds in a very different way, right? The lab grown diamonds. You're thinking about recycling gold and silver as

well. You've got a target for that. How do you see your company evolving with such an incredibly strong history and legacy.

LACIK: So I think the reason why the brand is strong at its core is because we're serving up to human need. You know, people like to tell

stories, be it about themselves or aspirations they may have, and that is the fundamental on which the Pandora brand has kind of been coming to


Now, we're trying to expand our horizons a little bit. We have a huge audience. We have six to seven hundred million visits to our platforms each

year, and we convert roughly eight percent of that into a transaction, which means that the runway is phenomenal to do more.

We have spoken to our consumer base and asked them permission to say, would you be interested if we expanded our offering beyond charms and bracelets,

and we get a big thumbs up.

So in fact, we've already started building that out a few years ago, but now essentially, we're going to be much more deliberate in trying to

elevate our brand to be associated not just with charms, but actually with meaningful jewelry as such, and therefore they will kind of open up the

addressable market for this company enormously, and which means that we have a growth prospect which is very interesting for the future.

GIOKOS: Yes. Fantastic. Alexander, great to have you on. Thank you so very much for joining us. Much appreciate you for your time.

LACIK: Thank you.

GIOKOS: Well, there has been growing demand for diabetes drugs like Ozempic that are now being used for weight loss, but a new study finds, the

two popular drugs have been linked to an increased risk of serious digestive problems such as stomach paralysis, pancreatitis, and bowel


The study authors note that these problems are not mild bowel obstructions, for example can be medical emergencies. Despite the risk, demand is still


Meg Tirrell has an exclusive look at Eli Lilly's efforts to ramp up production of one drug which could soon get FDA approval for weight loss.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Wegovy helped us lose weight.

MEG TIRRELL, CNN MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): They are some of the most in demand medicines in the world.

Wegovy, FDA approved for weight loss.

Diabetes drugs, Ozempic and Mounjaro being used off label also for weight loss.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: People taking Mounjaro lost up to 25 pounds.

TIRRELL (voice over): In the final three months of last year, there were an estimated nine million prescriptions for drugs like these, a 300 percent

increase since 2020. Without insurance, a one month supply of one of these drugs can cost more than $1,000.00. All three are on the FDA's list of

drugs in short supply.


And by the end of the year, Mounjaro's manufacturer, Eli Lilly expects FDA approval to treat obesity and potentially millions more people seeking it


EDGARDO HERNANDEZ, EXECUTIVE VP AND PRESIDENT, MANUFACTURING OPERATIONS, ELI LILLY: I feel a strong responsibility that we have to scale these as

fast as we can.

TIRRELL (voice over): We got exclusive access to this Mounjaro manufacturing plant in Durham, North Carolina where the company is ramping

up supply.

In this room, plant manager, Dan VonDielingen shows us how it takes only milliseconds to fill the drug into syringes.

TIRRELL (on camera): How many can this do in an hour?

DAN VONDIELINGEN, SITE HEAD, LILLY RTP: This line -- this is a high-speed filling machine, so on an annual basis, this will fill millions of


TIRRELL (voice over): They're running this factory 24/7 tracking every step of the operation along the way.

VONDIELINGEN: You're able to see, again, every batch as it flows through the facility.

TIRRELL (on camera): Is it common for manufacturing sites to run for 24/7?

VONDIELINGEN: It is for us. The demand is very high and we're doing everything that we can to stand up and supply.

TIRRELL (voice over): Eli Lilly is pouring $4 billion into this plant and another one it is building just two hours southwest in an effort to double

output by the end of the year.

HERNANDEZ: It's a massive scale what we're trying to do. I don't think we have never done this as a company, and I think probably nobody else in the

industry has scaled this as fast as we are trying to scale.

TIRRELL (on camera): Can you move any faster than you're already going?

HERNANDEZ: We're moving as fast as we can, but we have to follow certain controls to make sure that the final product meets safety and quality


TIRRELL (voice over): In recent weeks, Lilly and one of its competitors, Novo Nordisk, have both filed lawsuits against med spas, clinics, and

compounding pharmacies for allegedly selling unapproved unsafe versions of their drugs.

Both were also recently sued over claims that their drugs can make the stomach empty food too slowly resulting in abdominal pain and severe

vomiting. In response, they say they closely monitor the drugs for safety.

Back on the Mounjaro line, VonDielingen says the team knows the importance of bringing the shortage to an end.

VONDIELINGEN: It's really a privilege to be able to make medicine, medicine that's life changing for our patients.

TIRRELL: As the demand for weight loss drugs shows no signs of slowing down.

Meg Tirrell, CNN, Durham, North Carolina.


GIOKOS: And still to come tonight, on track for the hottest year ever, and we will have more on the record breaking temperatures that have

scientists sounding the alarm.




GIOKOS (voice-over): Hello, I'm Eleni Giokos. There's more QUEST MEANS BUSINESS in a moment. A terrifying milestone that's become all too routine.

September is the latest month to experience record heat.

And the CEO of Air France KLM tells us why he's preparing to snap up another European carrier.

Before, that the headlines this hour.


GIOKOS (voice-over): Russian president Vladimir Putin said investigators found fragments of hand grenades among those killed in a plane crash with

Wagner chief Yevgeny Prigozhin.

Putin added the investigation is still ongoing. Prigozhin was on a private jet that crashed near Moscow in August just two months after a short-lived

mutiny against Putin.

Syrian officials say at least 80 people, including women and children, were killed after a drone attack on a military academy graduation ceremony. More

than 200 people were injured. The Syrian defense ministry is blaming terrorists for the attack. No group has claimed responsibility.

The 2023 Nobel prize in literature belongs to Norwegian writer Jon Fosse. The award committee praised his innovative plays and prose, which gives

voice to the unsayble. He's best known for writing a seven-book volume made up of a single sentence with no breaks.

(INAUDIBLE) San Francisco city hall this hour to remember the late senator Dianne Feinstein, who died last week at 90. She was born in San Francisco

and was the city's first female mayor, a position she held for 10 years.

Her funeral, getting underway in about half an hour, will be closed to the public, Feinstein's office citing increased security. President Biden is

among those who are expected to speak at the memorial. Kyung Lah is in Los Angeles for us.

Could you take us through what we're expecting for the ceremony?

Great to see you.

KYUNG LAH, CNN SENIOR U.S. CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it's about an hour but it's expected. This is a ceremony that was open to the public for some time. But

because of so many dignitaries who wanted to the attend this service, the Secret Service said they had to expand the perimeter too much.

So it's now closed to the public. But what we saw in the last 24 hours, people of San Francisco, members of the public, who were able to stop by

the casket as she lay in state at city hall.

What we're expecting today is Vice President Kamala Harris, Nancy Pelosi; there's going to be a taped address from President Joe Biden. All of this

will take place on the steps of city hall.

For those who haven't paid too much attention to what Dianne Feinstein means to the state of California and the city of San Francisco, is this is

truly a return of an iconic leader here in the state of California.

This is a woman who rose to power more than 50 years ago. This is when the city of San Francisco was in extreme chaos. The mayor and another

supervisor, Harvey Milk, had been shot by a fellow supervisor. And a young Dianne Feinstein came in and led the city through an incredible storm.

And then she rose to prominence to become the first female mayor of the city, became the first woman to represent the state of California, along

with Senator Barbara Boxer that year.

This is a woman who broke through so many barriers, so many glass ceilings and she's returning home to the steps of city hall, where it all began, for

the nation to say farewell.

GIOKOS: What an incredible legacy. Just incredible, the work and the roads that she was able to open up for women.


GIOKOS: And I guess it's really sad for the general public who wanted to attend the ceremony. Officials are saying increased security measures need

to be put in place.

What does it mean that it's become more of a private memorial service?

LAH: Well, what it means is that it has to be a virtual farewell for a lot of people. To give you some sense of what it was like yesterday, as people,

as mourners stopped by to say farewell to Senator Feinstein as she lay in state at city hall.

The hours had to be extended because the lines were so long, because so many people wanted to say farewell in person. Let me explain exactly why

this had to happen.

If you have been to the city of San Francisco, it's a very small downtown. It's very tight. So there is only so far the perimeter can be expanded to

keep the city safe. That's why, essentially, they said this is a now private ceremony and people have to watch this virtually.

GIOKOS: Thank you so much for bringing us that story. Great to have you on.

Air France KLM has become a major shareholder of Scandinavian airlines better known as SAS. This comes about a year after it filed for bankruptcy

protection. Richard Quest spoke with Air France KLM's CEO Ben Smith about the move.


BEN SMITH, CEO, AIR FRANCE KLM: We have been looking at stats for a while. It wasn't new. But it wasn't at first number one on our list. But as we got

to a line in sight (INAUDIBLE). Once we got a line in the group, we decided to go forward (INAUDIBLE).

RICHARD QUEST, CNN HOST: I'm guessing the intention is to -- well, as you say, don't you -- would it be to grow it to full ownership in the fullness

of time?

SMITH: Well, we have an option in two years to take a much larger stake. We felt that this 19 percent start stake was a great way to be able to

secure that market, to get SAS into SkyTeam and start to work on a plan to develop SAS to its full potential.

QUEST: That's the interesting part about this deal. You've taken 19 percent but you are already requiring or moving toward leading Star for SAS

into SkyTeam, which I believe is the first time a founder member of an alliance has shifted.

SMITH: I think so. I think you're right. A founding member doing that (INAUDIBLE). Look, one of the -- one of the I guess most important things

for the stakeholders of SAS was to partner up with a group that was interested or were going to invite SAS into a (INAUDIBLE) joint venture.

And that was not the case with SAS today looking at partnership Star.

QUEST: (INAUDIBLE), that proves the significance of the JV oversay (ph) alliance over coach fare.

SMITH: Correct. SAS has been, in our view, at a disadvantage versus many other carriers. Have been in an alliance and not being part of a JV in the

most important, most valuable market in the world that we believe is the trans-Atlantic.

So being part of Star Alliance and being kept out of the trans-Atlantic JV performs as part of the Star launch for the most powerful carriers

(INAUDIBLE) held SAS back. And along with our partner, Delta, we intend to integrate. That is SAS into large JV. Of course, it means regulatory

approval. It takes some time.

But that (INAUDIBLE).

QUEST: If I look at the map now of aviation, I mean, by taking this stake in SAS, you've essentially created vast swathes (sic), don't you, between

France up north through the Netherlands, right the way through Denmark and up to the Scandinavian countries, which essentially -- I mean, my words,

not yours -- becomes fortress Air France KLM.


SMITH: That's one way of looking at it. KLM, one of two major brands of our group, has an extensive position already in Scandinavia. We have a big

market and customer that flows through our (INAUDIBLE) hub and a smaller percentage flows through our CVG.

So it's on a new market for us. As I mentioned earlier, we do believe strongly that SAS can further develop. Whether you call this a potential

fortress position, we view this as a stronger position within Europe, so to have a third level up or a fourth level up. We think it's important.


QUEST: Let's talk about the ownership structure; 20 percent odd of the Danish government. Now Air France KLM is also owned partially by the French

and the Dutch governments. So SAS is now partly owned by the Danish, the French and the Dutch governments.

Have I got that right?

SMITH: Yes, that's an indirect way, yes, got that right. But SAS itself, no. I mean, because we don't have a controlling stake in SAS. Of course, it

just depends on how you want to look at it. But we as Air France KLM, we had three government stakeholder partners once this transaction will

hopefully be completed in the coming weeks.

QUEST: This is going to be tricky or not?

Am I wrong?

SMITH: No, I don't think so. What we're looking to do with SAS will bring a lot of advantages to the states that this depend on air travel

(INAUDIBLE) SAS is being done in service (ph). So it's a net positive if we're able to better position SAS successfully like we've done in

Amsterdam, like we've done in Paris.



GIOKOS (voice-over): Right. Coming up, one man's mission to save Uganda's national bird from extinction. We'll tell you how after this break.



GIOKOS: Hi, welcome back.

Now nearly half of the bird species in the world are in decline. And the situation only ever seems to get worse in. Uganda the national bird is in

trouble as its habitat structure and urbanization are endangering the gray crowned crane. One man at least is on a mission to reverse that trend.



BILL WEIR, CNN CHIEF CLIMATE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In the wetlands of Western Uganda, avian life reigns supreme. The landlocked nation African

is home to around 1,000 species of birds but none as iconic as the gray crowned crane, proudly emblazed on the heart of the Uganda flag.

This gentle terrestrial bird is said to be a symbol of progress for the country.

ACHILLES BYARUHANGA, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, NATUREUGANDA (voice-over): The cranes is one of the most gracious bird. I'm not surprised that Uganda

chose it as one to be our emblem.


BYARUHANGA (voice-over): I have been studying and working with birds for the last 28 years. So this (INAUDIBLE) since I left university, I started

working with birds. I like them. I love them. Birds are beautiful. They're (INAUDIBLE). In Uganda, we've got about 1,000 (INAUDIBLE) different species

of birds.

At the global level, we've got about 10,000 different species of birds. So (INAUDIBLE) what about between 9 percent and 10 percent of the global

population of the wild birds.

WEIR (voice-over): Over recent decades though, habitats for these colonies have come under severe threat. Since the year 2000, a quarter of Uganda's

wetlands have been lost, an average of nearly 5,000 hectares a year, causing rapid and irreversible change to the cradle of the cranes.

BYARUHANGA (voice-over): It is estimated that, if this degradation continues, we shall lose all the wetlands by 2030. And that will be a very

big disaster for the country and for the world.

We started conducting research here in 1995. That's when we discovered that this wetland had very many species, some of which are endemic to this area.

In other words, if this wetland goes, it means all those species will disappear forever. And that's when we started working with the communities

to make sure that (INAUDIBLE) protected.

WEIR (voice-over): Across the past three decades, Achilles has pioneered a large scale restoration program, successfully campaigning for the

establishment of 12 wetland sites of international importance across Uganda.

This vital intervention is helping cranes return to their natural habitat and providing a buffer to the human settlements that threaten the hunting,

poisoning and electrocution from power lines.

BYARUHANGA (voice-over): We started communities and started incentivizing them so that they can participate. It takes long to walk with a community

(INAUDIBLE). You start with community leaders. You start making associations. You sometimes start supporting (INAUDIBLE) initiatives into

the community.

And now we don't need to push anybody because now they know.

WEIR (voice-over): NatureUganda has also established a network of crane custodians who serve as educators for local communities and bird-loving

tourists alike.

CADRE BUSYABIRI, CRANE CUSTODIAN (voice-over): The work of conservativism is not only in the hands of the custodian but in the community.

(INAUDIBLE), people say it's a crane (INAUDIBLE) It's a crane (INAUDIBLE). It's a crane (INAUDIBLE).

So I come to help and I'm very (INAUDIBLE) proudly.

BYARUHANGA (voice-over): And this is what we need to fight for. We cannot lose our national symbol. We still have an opportunity to serve this

beautiful species.


GIOKOS: Let us know what you're doing to answer the call with #CalltoEarth.





GIOKOS: The closely watched U.S. jobs report comes out Friday with one of the biggest stories in the labor market. Probably won't be reflected in

September's data. Workers across multiple industries have walked off the jobs, looking for better wages, benefits and more. Brian Todd has the story

for us.


BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Striking employees of Kaiser Permanente walk the picket lines in Springfield, Virginia. Starting

Wednesday, more than 75,000 unionized employees of Kaiser have walked off the job, making it the largest health care worker strike in U.S. history.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We feel like we're overworked, stretched thin, rushing.

TODD (voice-over): Workers say they have been hard pressed since the crushing COVID pandemic.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They're working 14, 16 hours so they're tired.

TODD (voice-over): Their demands, improved staffing levels and better pay and benefits.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We want wages that keep up with the cost of living.

TODD (voice-over): Kaiser says it has offered a wage bump and a plan to staff up but no deal yet. Kaiser Permanente serves 12.7 million people in

the U.S. The company says some patients could see nonemergency and elective services affected.


have trouble getting access to health care. They may appointments that are going to be cancelled. They may have to reschedule those appointments.

TODD (voice-over): Kaiser workers are not the only ones on strike right now. The United Auto Workers are in their third week of strikes against

Ford, GM and Stellantis, which makes vehicles under the Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge brands. A work stoppage that has slowly grown to 25,000 workers at

dozens of locations.

Their demands?

Higher wages, better benefits, better job security. The automakers saying they have already made generous offers including a wage increase of 10

percent to start, reaching 20 percent by year four.

KAYES: Companies and organizations are really struggling to get enough workers these days. So workers have the power now. They can leave, they can

quit, they can go on strike, they can ask for better benefits, they can ask for a working wage.

TODD (voice-over): And while the writers strike in Hollywood has been resolved with them getting significant advances and late-night talk shows

resuming, the standoff between the actors union and the Hollywood studios continues. So the production of new shows and movies is at a standstill.

Are all these strikes hurting the economy?

QUEST: They're not helping but they're not damaging to a huge extent. The U.S. economy is truly huge. What would be damaging in a bigger sense would

be the longer the strikes go on and the more there are of them.

TODD: While the Kaiser strike is temporary, there could be a longer, more contentious Kaiser strike in November if a deal isn't reached.

And Chris Kayes of GW University warns, there's another potential strike on the horizon that could affect a wide swath of the country, a possible

airline pilot strike in the coming months -- Brian Todd, CNN, Washington.


GIOKOS: Could K-pop be the next victim of AI?

It's an industry many tried to get into but few succeeded because of the grueling demands. Here's a twist. AI has created the perfect group of

singers as well as dancers, who will never age and do not need rehearsals. CNN's Ivan Watson spoke with a company who made that possible.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Show me your best double-triple. Double-double, triple-triple.

WATSON (voice-over): This video by girl group Eternity racked up 6.5 million views on YouTube in nine months. But not all is as it appears here.

WATSON: My name is Ivan. What's your name?


WATSON: Can you tell me about your band?


WATSON: "I'm from the world's first virtual K-pop girl group," she tells me.

Zae-in and the 10 other members of Eternity aren't real. Techtainment company Pulse9 created these characters and face-swapped them over human

actors using artificial intelligence. I'm speaking to an AI pop star.

WATSON: Is this the future of entertainment?


ZAE-IN (through translator): Of course, we cannot be seen in person but if you have a device, you can communicate with us anywhere, anytime. As a

virtual group, we are not limited by location. We can broadcast anywhere. The only thing we cannot do is sign an autograph.

WATSON (voice-over): And Eternity isn't the only AI K-pop creation.

MAVE is another virtual girl band with videos that have tens of millions of views.

KANG SUNG-KU, CHIEF TECHNICAL OFFICER, METAVERSE ENTERTAINMENT: We captured human performance and then turn it into 3-D animation with AI

WATSON (voice-over): Kang Sung-ku and Metaverse Entertainment created MAVE.

WATSON: Designers say the goal isn't to try to replace human artists like BTS or Beyonce. Instead, they want to create something like the next

generation of Siri.

ROBOTIC VOICE: I'm Siri, your virtual assistant.

WATSON: But in this case, it would be an avatar that sings and dances that you actually want to talk to.

KANG: They will remember you. They will know about you and they will talk based on that information.

WATSON (voice-over): AI creations would theoretically develop a unique relationship with every user and be available around the clock on every


TYRA, VIRTUAL PERFORMER (through translator): Hi, everyone. This is Tyra from MAVE.

WATSON (voice-over): And not limited by language.


WATSON (voice-over): Designers are programming these AI pop stars to interact with fans. The technology still has a long way to go and some

programmers concede there may need to be laws to regulate these creations.

SANG: We have to be careful, actually. If somebody evil can use it, it might be a disaster.

WATSON (voice-over): Designers say, unlike human celebrities, these AI pop stars won't age and won't ever tire out and can do anything they're

programmed to do.

WATSON: It's like science-fiction. Like, the robots could be taking over.

ZAE-IN (through translator): Yes, like the robots that conquer the human world, we've appeared to conquer the pop music world to steal people's


WATSON (voice-over): This may be a glimpse of entertainment in the not- too-distant future -- Ivan Watson, CNN, Hong Kong.


GIOKOS: I'm disturbed and impressed at the same time watching that story. Right. Just moments left to trade on Wall Street. We'll have the final

numbers and the closing bell right after this. Stay with CNN.




GIOKOS: Right. U.S. markets are struggling to eke out gains ahead of tomorrow's jobs report. All eyes on that report.

Now the Dow is currently flat, slightly negative at this point in time. I want to just take a look at how the Dow components are doing.