18/08/2016 BBC Business Live


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This is Business Live from BBC News with Sally Bundock


Companies from China and Hong Kong have until today


to convince Australia to sell them its largest electricity


But will the Australian government continue to block the deal?


Live from London, that's our top story


The clock is ticking as the business day is nearly over in Australia -


so why has the government there now got cold feet on a deal


to sell its main electricity network to investors in China or Hong Kong?


Also in the programme, Olympic bonuses for medal winners


at the Rio Olympics, some countries are paying


But in the US, the tax man takes a cut.


And financial markets are unsure where to go today


thanks to a less than clear report from the US Federal Reserve.


As ever we'll talk you through the movers and shakers.


And we'll find out how one organisation is helping women


in Africa to rise the ranks in the boardroom -


The co-founder of She Leads Africa will discuss the group's


And on that cash bonus for medals story -


If you win a gold for Singapore - they'll


pay you three quarters of a million bucks.


Should countries be incentivising their athletes with bonuses


for winning medals at the Rio Games - or should it be


Companies from China and Hong Kong have until today to convince


Australia to sell them its largest electricity network - Ausgrid.


In a preliminary decision last week, the Australian government blocked


China's State Grid corporation and Cheung Kong Infrastructure


of Hong Kong are after a controlling stake.


China is the world's third biggest international investor -


having spent $123 billion overseas in 2014.


That number is set to rise - and while projects need funding,


some Chinese practices have proven unwelcome.


In the last month, the British government decided


to postpone final approval of a nuclear power station


at Hinkley Point - reportedly over concerns


about Chinese investment and involvement.


And across the pond, similar concerns led technology firm


Fairchild Semiconductors to reject a $2.5 billion bid


from a Chinese firm - in lieu of a lesser offer


Fairchild said it was worried about getting congressional approval


Thanks for coming in. Australia said the clock is ticking, the Australia


is on deciding, whether they will or won't. But this is not just China


and Australia, China has been on a buying spree of power around the


world, not just Australia. Yes. Chinese overseas investment


initially was for raw materials. All the things China needs to keep its


economy going, it is very resource poor and people rich. That has


changed and Chinese companies are increasingly buying into foreign


utilities, partly because prices are controlled at home in China but


often the inputs, coal, for instance is going up, and they can make


better margins by buying elsewhere. So they are getting better returns


around the world for buying these power things. To countries like


Australia... China is Australia's biggest trading partner. Countries


like Australia, the UK here with Brexit, possibly leaving the EU in a


couple of years' time and Britain will have to rely on China in some


ways I guess for trade. Do these sorts of countries have to tread


carefully in rejecting certain deals by going, but we want your money and


we want your trade? You want trade with China, you want Chinese


investment in a world where there is a lot of liquidity around but it is


sometimes difficult to get international investment into these


kind of big infrastructure projects. The Chinese are keen on that. There


are long-term investors as such. And they are an important trading


partner. On the other hand, what has happened in the last few years, the


Chinese economy has slowed down, we are no longer in turbo-charged


double-digit growth, it is six or 7%. And also China is making more


things itself and importing less. There are some long-term exporters


to Germany, -- to China, Germany for example. But everybody else is still


trying to get on the bandwagon and finding it harder and harder, and


you are getting national security concerns coming up. How is this


likely to play out? On the one hand the commerce Department in China


says this action is protectionist, they are not treating us fairly.


You've got the likes of Donald Trump who could be getting quite icky job


in November, who has his views against China. Certainly Europe, I


think there are 15 potential steal actions against China from the EU,


plus the Hinkley point issue here in England. I think it's sentiment


changes here. Three or four years ago everybody wanted to do deals


with China. There was this feeling that China will dominate the world


and so on. Well, it won't, and people have woken up to that. You've


had internal hiccups in China, stock market fiasco last year,


uncertainties about the currency, foreign companies finding it


increasingly difficult to operate in China. Partly simply because the


Chinese are doing things themselves that they used to buy in. And this


general feeling of rising protectionism in Australia, which


the Prime Minister denounced in a speech yesterday, and secondly the


whole tension in East Asia which has come up over Chinese sovereignty


claims and so on. Australia is on the edge of that. Great stuff, we


really appreciate your time and your input, Jonathan.


When we hear how it works out for Ausgrid we will update you.


Two of Australia's largest lenders have been named in a US lawsuit


related to the bank-bill swap rate, along with 17 other


According to a report by Bloomberg, Australia


New Zealand Banking Group and National Australia Bank -


both confirmed in statements that they were subject


The world's biggest personal computer maker, Lenovo,


has reported strong earnings - with its profit rising


by almost two thirds in the three months to June.


Net profits grew to $173 million - far beating analysts expectations.


US tech giant Cisco is slashing up to 7% of its global workforce.


It's estimated the plan to cut 5,500 jobs will cost the company


But the number is far less than what had been feared


after reports earlier suggested 14,000 jobs would go.


I want to show you this because I liked the look on his face, Sir


Philip Green, the retail mogul as they used to call him, the man


behind top shop and also for our international viewers a chain store


here called BHS, homewares and all that. Which unfortunately had to


shut down, bankruptcy. He bought it, he siphoned off, allegedly, he sold


it for ?1, now it has a big hole in its pension and 12,000 people are


out of work. He was sailing down the Mediterranean on his ?100 million


yacht. He was being harassed by people like us. It was Sky News


actually. He said I'm going to throw your camera into the sea.


Let's take a look round the world at what's business stories


First, let's take at a look at Philippines, which has just


Sarah Toms has been following the story.


What's going on, Sarah? Good news, the economy is soaring. Growth from


April to June hit 7% compared to the last time last year. This figure is


much better-than-expected, the fastest growth reported in three


years, and it also makes it Asia's fastest-growing economy in that


period. It's doing even better in China. So what helped achieve the


target? Strong domestic demand but also massive campaign spending and


public and private investments in the lead up to the elections. You


will note that Roderigo Giteau Tay was voted in as president. Most


analysts are optimistic he will honour his pledges. But exports were


slow so it might be hard to maintain a rate of growth. Really


interesting. The growth seen in the Philippines. And the other big story


in Asia was the massive drop-off in exports coming out of Japan in the


month of July, mainly because the Japanese yen has been strengthening.


Half an hour ago at dollar was buying under 100 yen. That's a huge


headache for the likes of Toyota and Sony. It closed down one and a half


percent, no big surprise. Elsewhere in Asia a fairly good day. You can


see Wall Street, behind me. The other issue traders have been


grappling with is the Federal reserve minutes. What on earth are


they trying to imply when it comes to the cost of borrowing and when it


will go up again? Some are saying we will not see another rate hike this


year in the US and the dollar has been sliding on the news. Slight


gains across the board after Europe closed down yesterday.


And Samira Hussain has the details about what's ahead


Walmart is the biggest employer in the US, and it accounts


for 10% of all retail spending here, excluding automobiles.


So Walmart is seen as a real barometer for middle


So its earnings report will be closely watched


Now, the uptick in consumer spending, along with Walmart's


investment in wages, has led to better stocked shelves,


more staffing at checkout registers, and improved customer service.


Now, Walmart recently acquired the e-commerce start-up Jet.com,


so investors will have questions about that.


And staying with retail, Gap is reporting earnings on Thursday.


Now, sales at Gap have been struggling, so it's been trying


to woo back shoppers from popular fast-fashion retailers by offering


But the unseasonable weather also meant that customers stayed away,


which will have hurt its Banana Republic brand.


editor with the times. Yesterday we were talking about Dudley, this


permanent member, you vote on the board who makes these decisions up


and down, he came out yesterday and said, September, we could get a rate


rise, then we saw the minutes from the meeting overnight, it's as clear


as mud. His reputation will be as sharp as Mark Carney's. They do


appear to be divided. The market very much interpreted the minutes as


meaning we probably aren't going to get a rate rise in September.


Pricing and 18% chance now. They do appear to be divided. But they are


keeping the door open and keeping everyone guessing in a way. They are


not supposed to do that in this brave new world of central banks


letting us know what their plans are. Let's remember that back in


December 2015 when they raised rates for the first time in seven years


they let us know there were going to be four rate rises this year and we


are still waiting for one. Do you think Jana Given will be having a


quiet word with Mr Dudley or are they allowed to say whatever? Maybe


it was deliberate. Any of these policy committee members are allowed


to be divided. Let's talk about oil. $50 a barrel? Nearly at $50. We are


up almost 17% this month. Still cheap as chips, isn't it? It is


cheap but more expensive than a couple of weeks ago. We have a


meeting at the end of September when there is speculation that we could


see some sort of production freeze after years of everybody flooding


the market. That is an Opec meeting? They will be meeting on the fringes,


it is not an official Opec meeting. We have got to move on, you are


going to take us through the papers, we're going to talk about cash for


medals. What do the Brits get?


Zilch! helping women in Africa climb


the corporate ladder - we meet the woman behind


an organisation You're with Business


Live from BBC News. Now, it's later and


softer than expected. But the UK Government has


published the details The measures include


a voluntary sugar reduction Joining us from the business


newsroom is our economics Andrew, the Government, Theresa May,


the new Prime Minister, they kind of did a U-turn, this is a big


softening, isn't it? Yes, the idea of the targets being voluntary is


the kind of thing the industry would like. In fact, they would like to


see an entirely voluntary approach, they have been campaigning quite


vigorously against the tax on sugary soft drinks, which of course they


are still going to get. They argued that it will achieve only a five


calorie reduction in energy intake, and it would be that risk 4000 jobs.


So certainly there is some degree of relief, I think, for the industry,


for the soft drink manufacturers, the businesses involved in retailing


it, sugar processors and indeed farmers who produce the raw


materials, some relief for them. But I think they are still going to have


to live with this tax. They live with the tax, we do not know what it


will be yet, is that right, Andrew? And it is not 100% clear what will


be in this plan, because Theresa May has changed it quite a bit? Sure,


things are undoubtedly are moving, and in particular I think the idea


that these targets should be voluntary, I think, is something


that a lot of people will see as being something that reflects or may


well reflect lobbying by the industry. So a lot still to be


fleshed out, a lot more detail to be filled in in these proposals. Thanks


for joining us, Andrew Walker from the business newsroom.


Very quickly, on our web page, the world's most liveable city goes to


Melbourne, I am from Sydney, I am not picking this up! I think Sydney


is a better city but... You are a little bit biased!


This is done by the Economist Intelligence Unit. Vancouver,


Toronto. The least liveable city is Damascus,


Syria, go figure! You are with business life, our top


story today is that companies from China and Hong Kong are trying to


convince the Australian government to sell a large stake in their


electricity network, Ausgrid. The Australian government, the


question is, will they continue to block the deal, what time is it now


there? You should know! It is late, time is


ticking away. A quick look at the markets, all


headed up slightly, Germany up nearly 0.5%, London lagging behind.


They all closed down on Wednesday, today given a bit of a boost because


oil is higher, energy stocks are doing well.


Today we are getting the inside track on some


of the difficulties faced by African women in the working world.


Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest rate of female


entrepreneurship across the world, which is still only 27%,


but these are usually one-woman businesses


with no employees or growth potential.


women hold 12.7% of board directorships


in 307 listed companies across 12 African countries.


But an organisation called She Leads Africa


It hosts events, provides training and is creating a global network.


In just two years, it has built a community


of more than 30,000 members across Africa and the diaspora.


The co-founder of She Leads Africa, Yasmin Belo-Osagie,


is in London for a sort of bootcamp for entrepreneurs called SheHive,


Welcome to the programme. Thank you for having me. I think this is a


global problem, right, women on board? We talk about it in the UK,


Australia, Europe. Asia does better than many parts of the world. So is


it the same struggles, in that sense, the same hurdles that you


face in Africa, women face in Africa to get on board be CEOs? Yes, I


think we are focusing on getting more women into these leadership


positions, we are talking about how you motivate young women to aspire


to BBC Alba, the CFO, taking African companies global. -- to be the CEO.


We are talking about creating really dynamic and scalable businesses, why


can't the next Facebook come from a young woman in Africa? You are


talking about that gap, because as we mentioned, there are many women


running small businesses, often helped by micro finance projects,


that kind of initiative, it is about them earning a living to enable them


to, in some cases, just feed the family, enable their children to go


to school. But you are trying to get them to the next level, beyond that,


where they are running larger companies, employing people. It is a


bigger vision. Exactly, and we don't have anything against micro finance,


but the challenge is that there is not just one African female


experience, right? I think there are diverse, the problems are diverse,


and the solutions need to be diverse, so we just see ourselves as


one other provider in the ecosystem which needs to bring African women


fully into the party. SheHive boot camp. Yes... I tried British


Military Fitness, that was torture! But this is why you are in London.


One of the initiatives that we came up with was this boot camp, which we


have called SheHive. They are inspired by fiance, we try to make


everything we do be young and engaging. -- by Beyonce. We post


them on the continent, in the Dyas broke, we have done Abu Dua, like --


diaspora, Abuja, Lagos. Lot of the content is general discussions, but


people want to learn about marketing, about distribution, these


core skills. Do you have to pay? It is easy, you get your ticket, you


show up, we have a group of interesting speakers, really


focusing on people build tangible business kills. But also help them


build a network of other young women. We found that a lot of the


times when young women were coming together, it was around


entertainment or passion, but not many opportunities to talk about


your ambition and be not ashamed about the fact that you want to


build a $1 million company and have people working around you that are


in line with that, supporting what you are doing. Wow! It is


fascinating, thank you for coming in, good-looking fit. Thank you so


much. -- good luck with it. The Business Live pages where you


can stay with all of the day's breaking business use and keep you


up to date with all the latest details, with insight and analysis


from the BBC's team of editors right across the world. And we want to


hear from you, get involved on the BBC web page. We are also on


Twitter, and you can find us on Facebook. Business Live on TV and


online, whenever you need to know. Richard is back, we do not have a


lot of time, straight into it, the US taxman, if you win a medal, he


will take some money back, they get a cash bonus! And they are not the


only ones, the Australians get $15,000. What do the Brits get?


Zilch! It is all about taking part! If you win a gold medal for


Singapore, it is $750,000! It is hardly the greatest argument for


performance related pay, because the Brits, who you will admit, we are


doing quite well... My hat is off, you guys are on fire this year! My


wife is British, come on! Viewers have been sending in their


comments, David said, with all the problems leading up to the Olympics,


it is only fair that athletes are paid for their time and effort.


Caleb said, if they are rewarded, they will compete well. But in the


US, you get taxed on a bronze medal, it is $4. It is based on the value


of the metal. Incidentally, this story is in Money Subscriber, we


found it on their website. What does Italy give? Cashrich Italy(!)


$185,000! Do you think it is right or wrong? It is wrong, it is the


taking part! Says the Brits, good on you!


That is Business Live for another day, we appreciate your company, see


you tomorrow, bye! Good morning, a bigger change in the


way, expect wind and


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