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This is Business Live from BBC News with some new chap called
The Dutch prepare to make their choice in a critical general
election, with the economy up and crime down why are
Live from London, that's our top story on Monday the 13th March.
Could the far-right Dutch candidate, Geert Wilders, provide another
setback to the European project and what could it mean for the Euro.
Also in the programme, all change at HSBC!
A new boss for the global banking giant.
We'll head live to Asia fopr the latest.
We'll head live to Asia for the latest.
And markets on the move - Asian markets mostly
higher on Monday, this is how Europe has opened
after that much better than expected jobs report in the US last week.
The Chinese economy may be slowing, but tourism is booming
we'll get the Inside Track on China's rise
Another form of tourism doing well is adventure
With retirees fuelling the growth, swapping the cruise ship for the
canoe. Is it your idea of holiday hell. We want to hear from you.
Decision day is getting ever closer for the Dutch
and tonight they get what - for many - could be a decisive last
and tonight they get what, for many, could be a decisive last
look at the candidates before Wednesday elections.
The leading candidates will hold their final TV debate later.
The Dutch vote is the first of three big elections across Europe this
year casting uncertainty over the continent.
Soon after come the votes in France and Germany.
Financial markets are watching them all closely.
Not least for what their results might mean for
The current Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte faces a tough challenge
from the far-right populist candidate Geert Wilders who has been
But there is no standout leader in the polls giving greater
Whilst the rise of populism is often linked with falling living
standards, the Dutch remain one of the wealthiest
Average income is nearly $53,000 per person.
And economic growth is forecast at a steady 2% for this
year with wages growing and unemployment falling.
So one key election issue has been the foreign ownership of Dutch
companies with the Labour Party, part of the current coalition,
proposing the government should be able to block takeovers they deem
Our next guest is from the Netherlands but working in the UK.
Dr Stijn van Kessel is Lecturer in Politics
Talk us through, from your perspective, what is on the minds of
those going to the polls? There is an open race at the moment, no clear
party is standing out. So voters have a tough choice if they want to
determine who will eventually govern the country. It is an open race
between six or seven parties which are all predicted to win around ten
and 15% of the vote. From the international point of view, the
focus as being on Geert Wilders, immigration and the far right, as it
were. In the Netherlands, what have been the issues when it comes to
what they have been debating and discussing and how will be enticed
people to vote for them? They are important issues and they may become
more important because of the diplomatic row between Turkey and
the Netherlands. But there is a wide range of issues such as euthanasia,
the ability to end your life for the terminally ill. Pension age is an
issue, which came up a lot. But culture and immigration is the
biggest issue. What do you think the outcome will be on Wednesday, it is
difficult to predict? Yes, I don't want to make any predictions. It is
difficult to predict their memory. In most elections, there is normally
two parties clear. But the previously smaller Liberals and the
Greens are doing well. There is no clear horse race affect. We put it
in the context of Europe, many have said Brexit equals Donald Trump,
equals Nexit. Internationally speaking, there is these events, so
there is Brexit, Donald Trump and the French and German elections
coming. So this vote is about Geert Wilders and whether people see this
populist right-wing splurge. The difference between Brexit, Trump and
the French elections, the outcome of this election doesn't signify a
winner takes all principle. Geert Wilders, will perhaps win between
around 15 and 20% of the vote but it doesn't get him very far because all
of the other parties who are most important have ruled out of
governing with him. Thank you for your time. Fascinating and it is
something we will keep a close eye on here at the BBC.
Just want to take you to the BBC website. It is important day here as
well as far as Brexit is concerned. Ministers are expected to reject the
changes by the House of Lords. They sent it back to the Commons and
wanted two significant changes to the proposed bill before it would
allow the Prime Minister to trigger Article 50. If they do agree on it,
it formally starts the Brexit process and that could happen as
early as tomorrow. So all eyes will be on the Commons as far as that
vote is concerned. Change at the top of HSBC. Let's speak to the
Macdonald in Singapore. Talk us through the significance of this, it
is a big change? Yes, Mark Tucker is due to take over in October. He will
succeed Douglas Flynn. And he is a one-time professional footballer but
has had plenty of experience as an executive. He was the head of AIA
and prior to that he held a leadership position with Prudential.
HSBC is in the middle of the board and executive reshuffle, which
showed poor profits last year which blamed Donald Trump and
uncertainties caused by Brexit. The markets seem to like what they see,
shares rose more than 2% on the Hong Kong exchange after the
announcement. We will get the reaction from London in a little
while. First order of business will be to find news chief executive to
succeed Stuart Gulliver, who is planning to next year. Good to talk
to you. We saw the figures from the markets on the screen. All of that
coming of the better-than-expected jobs figures in the US last week.
This is how Asia is looking at close on the Dow on Friday. Let's talk
about what Europe is doing, the stronger growth is helping prop up
the wider market. This is what Europe is doing. As well as the Fed
meeting, central banks in four other rich economies, they are due to
deliver their decisions on Thursday. We should Saint none of them expect
to follow what the Fed is doing and tighten monetary policy, but they
have the job of trying to get their economies back on track. For the
Bank of England, it is trying to prepare the UK for Brexit. We will
talk about that in a moment. Michelle has the details from New
York. It'll be a busy week. On Tuesday, the US Federal Reserve will
begin its two-day meeting. After the stellar job report and the
continuing strengthening economy, the Fed will likely raise interest
rates for only the third time since the global financial crisis. The Fed
chair will be holding a press chair will be holding a press
conference at the end of the policy meeting on Wednesday, where
journalists will be asking her about her outlook on the US economy. And
the equity markets will likely react as well. Other events, the White
House budget director will release the Trump administration's budget
proposal the same day. The US is also running up against its debt the
newly installed Treasury Secretary has said the US will have to use
extraordinary measures to pay its bills at the March the 17th, or else
it runs the risk of defaulting. Michelle in New York. A busy week
ahead in the United States. Always lovely to see you Justin. Brand-new
trading week. The Fed is very much in focus. We have seen confirmation
that the American economy is in very good shape. Contrary to what
President Trump has been saying. Unemployment figures are good and
growth is fine so rates will be going up. Janet Yellen, has told us
last week that rates were going up and so she will stand up and confirm
it. What we want to know is are they going to go up any more after this?
It is pencilled in for two more rate rises this year. Not so worried
about growth this year, it is going to 18 and 19 when you slow down and
that is when you start putting rates down. You cannot cut rates until you
raise them. So this is good news, even though some people might be
worried. Compare what other central banks are doing, they are trying to
get back to normality? Central banks in the UK won't be raising rates.
The head of Bank of England has said they will focus on growth. That is
right, because of the concerns over Brexit and economy could be slowing.
In Europe, the Eurozone, there is more talk about rates going up
because the economies are doing well. It is interesting, the
whispering in the markets that perhaps rates could go up in the
Eurozone has caused the Euro to go up. If that were to happen, it would
be a way of? It doesn't have to happen yet. We were talking about
September. We were listening to the head of the ECB and he said not yet.
But the next move is going to happen and that is a positive sign. We are
asking our viewers for their least favourite holiday idea. You have got
many scary stories? Yes, but some joys of going into Uganda, probably
not the best place to go. Where are you going next? I going to Galilee
to do a date. I know what it means doing a date, what does it mean?
Digging on a Roman empire and it will be northern Israel. Any issues,
you are in a trench so you should be OK? Yes, I will take a tin hat so I
will be fine. Moral of the story, don't go on holiday with you. Have a
good week. Still to come, why
China is booming - not for manufacturing,
or exports - but for tourists. We speak to one firm that's cashing
in the rising demand You're with Business
Live from BBC News. If you're in the UK and you plan to
travel by rail, you will have noticed disruption.
Guards and drivers working for Northern Rail and Merseyrail
are striking over the introduction of Driver Only Operated trains -
and similar action is continuing on Southern Rail.
Steph McGovern is at Leeds Railway Station.
Getting busy, the rush hour underway, but some people could
struggle to get to where they want to go? They certainly could. If you
look at the board is it doesn't look too bad because actually the
majority of the services, the Northern Rail operators are on time,
but this is the revised timetable. but this is the revised timetable.
When you talk to commuters, a lot of them have been waiting for trains.
Northern Rail say they are only operating 40% of their services
today. Also they have had to put rail replacement buses. We were
chatting to people earlier who said they had to get the bus. It all adds
to the roads and we know what they like during rush hour. Lots of
commuters are facing this headline when they are handed this paper this
morning. March madness as a million hit by train chaos. This is a main
station for Northern Rail services. In the north-west you have
Merseyrail. They are also facing disruption. They were hoping to put
trains on every half an hour. They are normally on every 15 minutes,
but there are quite a few drivers who haven't crossed the picket line
so therefore they haven't got the drivers in order to be able to
operate as many trains as they had hoped today. If you couple that with
what is going on on Southern rail, they have faced so much disruption.
They are also saying there will be disruption today but they are
running 90% of their services. If you are going on those lines, look
before you travel. But is it from me. I know how cold reads train
station is, I am loving that fur collar. zbLez Bovis grabbed the
headlines since it revealed two take-over bids have come through
over the weekend. House-builder shares doing extremely well on the
FTSE 250 today on the back of that development.
China, once a net exporter of tourists around the world,
is now opening its borders and welcoming visitors in greater
China is now the world's fourth most popular tourist destination,
Nearly 57 million people travelled to China in 2015 for holidays -
according to the World Tourism Organisation.
Most foreign visitors come from elsewhere in Asia
But there are huge numbers of Western tourists
visiting China every year - especially from the US.
Wendy Wu Tours is cashing in on this trend specialising in off-the-beaten
track tours to China, and has seen a big jump in bookings.
Joining us now is Wendy Wu, founder of Wendy Wu Tours.
Welcome. Good morning. Just tell us Wendy about how it started for you.
You established your company quite a long time ago, but what caused you
to go down this road in the first place? When I was 20 I went to
Australia. I decided to go on a big holiday to China. I'm Chinese so I
did all the research myself, but I didn't want to go by myself. So two
weeks before the holiday I put a little ad in the paper to say, "This
is how much it will cost. This is the place I'm going to go to.
Whoever wants to come along, I will be your free guide." That was the ad
and that's how we started and we took off from there. And from that
point, of course, you've grown into a huge business. It is not just
about booking a holiday, it's about everything that you get with it,
it's the package, it is not just about a flight or hotel or a
commute. Yes. And that's the most important thing because for many
people going to China, it is the unknown. They don't know where to go
and what to see and you put all that together and that's your unique
selling point, is it? Ben, you've got it. What we do all the special
experiences. I'm Chinese and I know Tibet inside out. So therefore, for
example we take you to to see the Great Wall and we have the best
guides in China and we also, because we know where we go, so therefore,
for example, our customers will come back again and again with us. That
helps us to grow. So we say OK, I helps us to grow. So we say OK, I
have been to China so many times with you and where else do you want
to go? Then we take them to Japan. China is just growing and growing
because of that. It is growing and Western interest in holidays in
China has exploded. And you have made the most of that and this year
in terms of your turn over you've smashed last year's increasing turn
over, haven't you and we're only in March. What I found interesting, I
looked at your website and it was great and interesting, but I
understand from last week you could book online. Is that not a little
bit backwards? I would have thought you should have had us booking
online many years ago? Yes. We grew very fast and because the
destinations that we do such as China and Japan, people like to talk
with us and they need our expertise and knowledge. We do audio
experiences for example, over our holiday. Our job is to make it easy
for you to go to China and experience the hole thing. So it's a
three meal stay and all the entertainment and everywhere in
China. So that's the reason we grow so fast. In the past, even working
with our travel agents they are very strong for us so we grow on the back
of that, but technology is very, very important especially for the
future. So we decided we want to do it right. So we bought the
technology in-house. So we have the technology in-house. Where will the
growth come from? Will it be from the website or travel agents that
you have relied on for so long? OK. You're right, we're doing both
because for us in the past we actually, the customer asked for
brochures so we have beautiful brochures and we have travel agents.
They know us inside out and they have customers every day, so they
have expertise in their area so they know how good we are and the growth
comes from yeah, that experience, it is our inside knowledge that makes
us grow and in future, for example we are building a special platform
with the travel agents so we can grow with the customers. Take a
look. In a moment we'll take a look
through the Business Pages but first here's a quick reminder of how
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and you can find uson On Twitter, we're @bbcbusiness,
and you can find us on Business Live on TV and online,
whenever you need to know. Get in touch. No excuses. You can
see and hear about Dominic on our website.
The BBC's Dominic O'Connell is with us.
To say to Dominic and all of you out there, we have been enjoying your
tweets about your least favourite holiday. We have got a travel theme.
Ben, I don't know if you want to talk about those. Ritchie says,
"Anywhere that's cold is his nightmare holiday. I would rather do
beach, sun and sand." Marie says, "I hate beach and drinking holidays.
Benidorm is my nightmare." Chris' favourite holiday is a beach holiday
with no luxuries. Dominic, what's your holiday from hell? Being
originally from New Zealand the idea of a seaside holiday where there is
rain and cloud is kind of strange. Why would you go to the sea... So
you haven't hold dayed in Wales? There is a perverse enjoyment to be
had from with standing the elements. The wind break, what is that? That's
the must have when on the beach in the UK! If it is that windy, don't
go! Let's look at some other stories out
there. This one grabbed my attention, Iceland to end capital
controls in place since 2008. Iceland is back. Yeah, well, it is
the end of a saga, if you excuse the pun. In 2008 Iceland built up a
banking sector which was 14 times the size of its economy. Completely
crashed the economy. The controls were put in place to protect the
economy from more damage because a lot of Icelandic people had
borrowings in foreign currency and it was to stop all that money
rushing out of the Icelandic economy and slowly, over the years, those
controls have been released. Even up until recently, if you are an
Icelandic person and wanting to go on holiday and buy currency, you had
to go to the bank with airline tickets to prove you were going.
That's nine years after the crisis they are finally back in the wider
international community. Yes, it is fascinating and you see the
repercussions on a big clamp-down on where money goes? It was three
banks. It was a big deal for many UK bankers as well? Yes, lots of retail
banks and British Councils had borrowed and the original
entrepreneurs bought up a huge chunk of the high street. What's
interesting is the turn around story of Iceland given the crisis it was
in and you look at other countries in a financial crisis and they are
in the thick of their crisis. Iceland is not? Iceland has been a
rich economy based on primary industries, fishing, tourism and
agriculture. It has gone become to those traditional strengths and it's
doing well. Can we talk about IKEA? Are you any good at putting IKEA
furniture together? I don't mind. It is screws and Alan keys. It is fine
if you haven't got kids running off with the bits! No screws and no Alan
keys, it clicks together, it is like giant Lego. It takes the fun out of
it. When you can put together a really complicated IKEA kit you've
made it. It probably saves them cost because they're not having to put
components in, but it comes down design in every day life and it's
stuff like this that really shows the power of design. It is all made
to an amazing standard. Not many IKEA kits go wrong. When was
last time that you had an IKEA kit last time that you had an IKEA kit
when the parts weren't there. It is when the parts weren't there. It is
perfect example. Sell a lot of them perfect example. Sell a lot of them
and sell them cheap. Dominic, thank you. So what's your holiday hell
then? Oh, always having to work on holiday, and e-mails on holiday, but
beach holiday all the way for me. Holiday without the kids! No, not
necessarily. Family holidays are great too! See you soon. Bye-bye.