10/02/2017 World Business Report


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10/02/2017

The latest business news with informed analysis from the world's financial centres.


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Abe, Trump, and the $69 billion elephant in the room.

:00:18.:00:19.

That's how much more Japan sells to the US than it buys from the US

:00:20.:00:23.

and that's what will dominate talks at the White House later today.

:00:24.:00:29.

Greece's debt crisis returns to haunt Europe.

:00:30.:00:32.

Or will we have to add Grexit to Brexit?

:00:33.:00:38.

Good morning, Britain, and hello, world. Welcome to the programme. We

:00:39.:00:57.

have got that Friday feeling. If you are tuning in for the first time,

:00:58.:01:01.

stay where you are. I am only asking to ten minutes, that is all I have.

:01:02.:01:06.

I will give you an exciting snapshot of all the latest in a world of this

:01:07.:01:10.

the same money. We start in the United States, where you have in

:01:11.:01:13.

hearing that Japan's home minister, Shinzo Abe, meets with President

:01:14.:01:16.

Trump later today. -- Prime Minister.

:01:17.:01:18.

Remember, one of Mr Trump's first actions as President was to withdraw

:01:19.:01:23.

from the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal,

:01:24.:01:25.

signed by Obama and strongly supported by the Japanese.

:01:26.:01:28.

Mr Trump called it a terrible deal for the US.

:01:29.:01:31.

He wants a fairer trading relationship with Japan -

:01:32.:01:33.

Last year Japan sold almost $69 billion of more stuff to the US

:01:34.:01:44.

That trade surplus, as it's called, is one of the biggest any nation

:01:45.:01:56.

To give you an idea of why, look at this.

:01:57.:02:00.

In 2015, the latest figures we have, the US exported a little over 16,000

:02:01.:02:04.

Here's how many Japanese cars were sold that year

:02:05.:02:07.

Most of those cars are actually made in the US.

:02:08.:02:18.

Mr Abe is expected to stress that 1.5 million American jobs rely,

:02:19.:02:21.

either directly or indirectly, on Japanese carmakers.

:02:22.:02:23.

On top of this you have the so-called currency wars.

:02:24.:02:26.

Mr Trump has claimed the Japanese yen is kept artificially low

:02:27.:02:30.

against the dollar to help Japanese exporters.

:02:31.:02:33.

And there's another big figure that is causing tension.

:02:34.:02:43.

$5.5 billion was the bill to keep US troops in Japan last year.

:02:44.:02:47.

Japan actually paid for almost half of that, according to their defence

:02:48.:02:52.

ministry, but Mr Trump says the US is shouldering too much

:02:53.:03:00.

of the burden of security in the region.

:03:01.:03:08.

So how best to diffuse all this tension?

:03:09.:03:15.

Over a round or two of golf of course, as Samira Hussain reports

:03:16.:03:26.

Japan's Prime Minister will be meeting with President Trump at the

:03:27.:03:32.

White House on Friday. But where most of the diplomatic charter may

:03:33.:03:37.

actually take place is on the links. American presidents have a long

:03:38.:03:42.

history of Wayne Gulf, and Mr Trump is no different. -- play in goal. In

:03:43.:03:49.

a recent interview, the President said he believes playing golf is a

:03:50.:03:52.

better way to get to know somebody then having lunch, one of the

:03:53.:03:56.

reasons he has invited Shinzo Abe, a fellow golf enthusiasts, to join him

:03:57.:04:00.

at Mar-a-Lago, the winter White House. This is a testament to the

:04:01.:04:04.

importance the US places on the bilateral relationship and the

:04:05.:04:07.

strength of a bite -- our alliance and the deep economic times -- ties

:04:08.:04:13.

between the US and Japan. But the Japanese Prime Minister's trip to

:04:14.:04:16.

Florida is raising questions of conflict of interest. Who will pay

:04:17.:04:19.

for the Prime Minister's stay at Donald Trump's resort? I braise for

:04:20.:04:25.

also raised when the Prime Minister met with the then president elect

:04:26.:04:29.

Trump after his election win. The present's daughter, Eve Anke Trump,

:04:30.:04:32.

was also there. That raise questions of potential conflict of interest

:04:33.:04:37.

between the President and his family's Isner 's ventures. So what

:04:38.:04:41.

will the two leaders be discussing? Security and trade will be top of

:04:42.:04:45.

the agenda. Now that the US has pulled out of the TPP, the 12

:04:46.:04:49.

country trade act, Mr Trump is going to be looking to try to get some

:04:50.:04:53.

sort of a lateral trade deal with Japan on the books. -- why lateral.

:04:54.:04:58.

Shinzo Abe will be coming to Washington with a massive business

:04:59.:05:02.

proposal for Japanese companies to invest in the United States in

:05:03.:05:04.

infrastructure and job creation projects. And the Prime Minister has

:05:05.:05:09.

already picked up on the subtleties of this new game. He has said he

:05:10.:05:16.

will give Trump a credible figure. -- tweetable figure.

:05:17.:05:22.

It slack Mr Trump may have to pencil in a lot more golf, certainly some

:05:23.:05:27.

with resonance Xi Jinping of China. -- some with President Xi Jinping.

:05:28.:05:31.

We've just had some figures that show China is still selling far more

:05:32.:05:34.

More than $21 billion in December alone.

:05:35.:05:38.

That puts those Japan figures in perspective somewhat.

:05:39.:05:41.

Let's go straight over to the Singapore bureau, where Mariko Oi

:05:42.:05:48.

joins us. I know that you are married to a golfer. A professional

:05:49.:05:53.

golfer, actually. So I want to know, has he told you anything? The

:05:54.:05:58.

Japanese run minister, he is a dab hand at golf? I am wondering who is

:05:59.:06:03.

the best, Trump or Shinzo Abe? We do not talk about golf at home, Aaron,

:06:04.:06:07.

nor do we talk about news, because we have no interest in each other's

:06:08.:06:11.

sessions, unfortunately. But I am sure they would both be welcome if

:06:12.:06:16.

they come to Singapore, that is for sure. I think I have to say, it is

:06:17.:06:20.

fair to say President Trump would the having a much you issue with

:06:21.:06:23.

that China trade surplus than Japan. I think I minister Shinzo Abe will

:06:24.:06:29.

be emphasising that when he meets the President, that, hey, our trade

:06:30.:06:35.

surplus is not as big, and Japan actually contributes to the US

:06:36.:06:38.

economy. You are talking about the jobs that are ready in America, but

:06:39.:06:42.

he has reported they are also offering to create 700,000 US jobs.

:06:43.:06:47.

Whether or not that is achievable is another matter, because if it is

:06:48.:06:51.

that easy he really should have done it back home already. That will

:06:52.:06:54.

definitely be high on the agenda. For the rest of the world, or at

:06:55.:07:00.

least for the rest of Asia, China's trade figures are not actually bad

:07:01.:07:04.

news, because as you mentioned, the trade surplus with the United States

:07:05.:07:08.

is huge, but also its exports are rising 8% and its imports are rising

:07:09.:07:14.

to 7%. Both beat expectations. That indicates China's economy is off to

:07:15.:07:19.

a good start. That is great news because China is the biggest trading

:07:20.:07:22.

partner for many Asian countries. Indeed. Thanks for that. I am

:07:23.:07:26.

wondering what you do talk about at home, then, if you don't talk about

:07:27.:07:32.

your job or about golf? I kid! Do you actually talk to him? Do you

:07:33.:07:37.

talk about things with your husband? We talk about our daughter a lot,

:07:38.:07:41.

yes. Have a great weekend. See you soon. We are also looking at this.

:07:42.:07:44.

Welcome it is coming. We are also looking at Greece,

:07:45.:07:45.

which today has to pay back 1.4 It's the latest instalment

:07:46.:07:49.

on the country's 320 billion euro And it's just one in what will

:07:50.:07:53.

become an avalanche of payments over The crunch will come in July -

:07:54.:07:57.

when Greece will need fresh funds from its European and international

:07:58.:08:02.

creditors to stay afloat. The problem is, the International

:08:03.:08:04.

Monetary Fund says it won't pay any more unless Europe agrees to write

:08:05.:08:08.

off a sizeable chunk And it warns that Greece is not

:08:09.:08:10.

doing enough to reform. I think we would agree that Europe

:08:11.:08:30.

has provided extraordinary support to Greece and we would agree

:08:31.:08:33.

that it is encouraging that Europe indicates, reiterates again today

:08:34.:08:36.

that it will stand by Greece We obviously welcome

:08:37.:08:42.

both of those things, but I think it's important to say

:08:43.:08:52.

this also that that support The standards chief of the US

:08:53.:08:56.

Congress says a senior Trump aide Kristian Scholz joins us. Thanks for

:08:57.:09:19.

coming in. You know what I'm going to say to you. I am so bored of

:09:20.:09:24.

this. I am so bored of it. I cannot believe it is back, I feel like I am

:09:25.:09:29.

either in a timewarp warp or it is Groundhog Day. The same old

:09:30.:09:32.

arguments, Greece needs more money, Greece is not performing. The

:09:33.:09:35.

European lenders and Europe are battling over what to do. Can I put

:09:36.:09:42.

a gun to my head now? What do you say to that? This is square one.

:09:43.:09:47.

Another thing that is or is the same is that there is a deadline

:09:48.:09:49.

approaching, and external deadline. At some point Greece will have to

:09:50.:09:53.

make a payment. The big ones are perhaps in April, and the really big

:09:54.:09:57.

one you mentioned is the repayment of the ECB. That is private

:09:58.:10:01.

creditors, in July. Does it have the money now to make these payments?

:10:02.:10:04.

Probably has the money for the April payment but not the July payment. By

:10:05.:10:08.

July, it needs that big amount of money. It needs to pass the second,

:10:09.:10:13.

only the second review of the programme, which was agreed back in

:10:14.:10:18.

2015. But the problem, or the issue, which is slightly different this

:10:19.:10:21.

time, is that it is still so many months away. The first understood

:10:22.:10:26.

half months away. The second is four and half months away. It is almost

:10:27.:10:31.

half a year away, and we are already in a mode where it feels like we are

:10:32.:10:35.

on the brink. We are not on the brink. We still have lots of time.

:10:36.:10:39.

There is no liquidity issue. And if that is the case there is always,

:10:40.:10:43.

well, if there is an immediate deadline... They won't do anything

:10:44.:10:47.

until they get to that deadline. An important difference this year is

:10:48.:10:49.

that Europe could look very different come the end of this year.

:10:50.:10:55.

In terms of politics, right? We have more Eurosceptic parties coming out

:10:56.:10:59.

in favour with a lot of the population. We have the French

:11:00.:11:03.

elections, Netherlands, Germany. Greece could be dealing with a

:11:04.:11:06.

completely different Europe, and a Europe that may not have the

:11:07.:11:10.

appetite to give the Greeks any more money. Absolutely. We are in a big

:11:11.:11:15.

election year. This time it is the creditor countries, not the

:11:16.:11:17.

countries are explained in Portugal and Greece with elections. This time

:11:18.:11:21.

it is countries like France and Netherlands and Germany. They are

:11:22.:11:25.

under pressure to deliver for their populations results on Greece, but

:11:26.:11:28.

there are reforms, that there is great that the Greeks are running

:11:29.:11:31.

the primary and fiscal surpluses that they need to repay the debt.

:11:32.:11:36.

That is not coming through the not going to give Greece any help. -- if

:11:37.:11:42.

that is not. This is a highly controversial year, because of the

:11:43.:11:46.

politics. You and I have sat here over the years talking about Grexit.

:11:47.:11:49.

That was well before rags it happened, it was all about Grexit.

:11:50.:11:56.

-- before Brexit happened. Everybody said that cannot happen, you cannot

:11:57.:11:59.

have a nation leave the European Union. Yes, you can! With Brexit now

:12:00.:12:04.

happening, could the European say, you know what, it is OK. Just let

:12:05.:12:08.

the Greeks go as well? I think there is a big difference between Grexit

:12:09.:12:18.

and Grexit. -- Brexit and Grexit. In terms of financial stability Grexit

:12:19.:12:22.

is probably the big deal, it is just leaving the EU, not leaving the

:12:23.:12:29.

currency like a Grexit is. We have had the German finance minister

:12:30.:12:32.

several times saying that it is conceivable that Greece leads the

:12:33.:12:35.

euro, it does not reform. That is part of the article or whatever, one

:12:36.:12:39.

of the articles. It is written in stone, isn't it? I have to wrap this

:12:40.:12:45.

up. But you cannot write off your debt, and if you cannot pay, you out

:12:46.:12:49.

of the euro. There is the no bailout clause in Europe, and the no bailout

:12:50.:12:53.

clause means no direct transfers to know countries. No writing off of

:12:54.:12:58.

debt. Kristian, always a pleasure. Thank you to coming in. Have a great

:12:59.:13:02.

weekend, by the way. Let me just touch on this story before I leave

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you. The standards chief of the US

:13:04.:13:04.

Congress says a senior Trump aide was "wrong, wrong, wrong" to promote

:13:05.:13:07.

Ivanka Trump products Kellyanne Conway told

:13:08.:13:09.

Fox News on Thursday, Retailer Nordstrom earlier this

:13:10.:13:12.

month dropped the US first daughter's clothing line,

:13:13.:13:16.

citing a lack of sales. The White House said

:13:17.:13:21.

President Donald Trump "absolutely" continued to support Ms Conway,

:13:22.:13:27.

despite intense criticism There you go. You can full amount

:13:28.:13:40.

to, I will be back with James to take us over the papers in a little

:13:41.:13:44.

mile. -- you can follow me on Twitter.

:13:45.:13:53.

The BBC has learnt that the organisation responsible for

:13:54.:13:57.

advising English health trusts on security of staff is ending that

:13:58.:14:00.

work despite a steep increase in attacks on doctors and nurses. NHS

:14:01.:14:02.

Attacked

:14:03.:14:04.