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Bangladesh Recovery Ends; Bangladesh Safety Deal; Oil Price Probe; EU Financial Ministers Meet; Fiscal Push; European Markets Up; US Markets Rise; Dollar Up; Future of Manchester City; Lights Out in London

Aired May 14, 2013 - 14:00   ET


NINA DOS SANTOS, HOST: Safety first. Retail chains come under mounting pressure to improve standards in Bangladesh.

Price-fixing allegations. The European Commission raid the offices of several oil giants.

And why Nokia's hoping for a photo-finish with its latest SmartPhone.

Hello, I'm Nina Dos Santos, and this is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.

Good evening. The search for bodies is over after the worst industrial disaster to strike Bangladesh in its history, and time is running short for the corporate world as well to take responsibility here. Tonight, we ask if the tragedy can bring real change, and I'll be speaking to a US congressman who says that the government also needs to do more worldwide.

The cleanup operation begins in Bangladesh. This was the scene at the site of the collapsed building in question on Tuesday. Rescuers have wrapped up the search for victims and the army has now handed the site to the local authorities for a full clear-up operation. CNN's Leone Lakhani reports now from the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka.



LEONE LAKHANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): "What of my son? My son?" This mother cries for her child. He'd been at Rana Plaza for just eight days when the building collapsed. Today, for many like her, the hope of finding their beloved is now gone forever.

On Tuesday, the army-led recovery effort was officially called off. A special prayer vigil marked the end of a tireless 21-day search for those trapped beneath the rubble of this garment building.


LAKHANI: Brohema's (ph) son is one of many still missing. Some 2400 workers survived. More than 1,000 did not.

LAKHANI (on camera): This is what's left of the nine-story Rana Plaza, now the infamous site of the country's deadliest industrial disaster. But many are hoping this will bring about the safety reforms that are much needed in this country, and the lives of all those lost were not in vain.

Leone Lakhani, CNN, Dhaka, Bangladesh.


DOS SANTOS: Well, the tragedy has drawn worldwide attention to the, of course, the dismal conditions that are present in some of the Bangladeshi garment industry and factories, but retailers also are now doing their part as well, which is good news, some say.

What they're doing is signing up to a new safety accord. Some of the well-known brands on the High Street that have signed up so far include these kind of names, like Primark over there, obviously a big name in Ireland and also the UK, but also Zara, which is owned by the Spanish retailer Inditex. And in the United Kingdom, another well-known High Street name, which is, of course, Marks and Spencer.

Stateside, we have the likes of Calvin Klein, as well as Tommy Hilfiger. Both of these two companies are owned by PvH in the United States. They're also onboard to this new fire and safety accord as well.

Let me run you through what the plan entails. It calls for independent safety inspections for companies to publicly report the findings as well of those safety inspections, and companies have to terminate business that they do with any kind of factory that refuses to make the necessary safety upgrades.

As I was mentioning before, there are a few holdouts, particularly in the United States, but not exclusively. We have the likes of Gap, also Next in the UK, and the big French retailer Carrefour as well that so far haven't signed up to this.

One of the organizations that's pushing for this agreement is the UNI Global Union. What they've done is to set a self-imposed deadline of May the 15th on it. Earlier, we spoke to the union's secretary-general, and he told us that companies like this can act quickly.


PHILIP JENNINGS, GENERAL SECRETARY, UNI GLOBAL UNION: People should make their minds up in the next 48 hours. We are talking across great distances. They can do the same thing. Sign up for this. And if they're using the talk as an excuse, then it won't hold water. Big names, big companies, big brands have signed up, and these other businesses who are hesitating should do likewise. The time is now.


DOS SANTOS: Our next guest says that it's just basically inexcusable that some companies have yet to sign onto that safety deal. George Miller is a US congressman and senior Democratic member of the House Education and Workforce Committee, and he joins us now live on QUEST MEANS BUSINESS from Washington, DC.

Great to have you on the show, George Miller. First of all, though, there are some of these companies that haven't yet signed up, but run us through exactly why they don't want to be part of this agreement so far.

REP. GEORGE MILLER (D), CALIFORNIA: Well, the existing system is a system that they designed. There's no transparency, there's no accountability, there's no power by the workers in this system, and they would like to keep it that way.

And unfortunately, it's now being led by US companies -- the Gap, Walmart, JC Penney's, companies like that who are trying to fight against this new fire and safety code, which is enforceable, which is transparent, which requires mandatory inspections, and funding for the improvement of the safety of these buildings.

So these big brands that are resisting, the Gap and others, they have to decide, do they want to continue to have blood on their label? Should the low price of their garments be subsidized by the blood of these poor workers in Bangladesh and elsewhere around the world?

It's time to bring an end to -- after more than a hundred and some years of sweatshop activities, to bring an end to it and give these workers the safety and the protections that they're entitled to --


MILLER: -- and it's a very, very marginal cost in terms of the cost of the garment to the consumer.

DOS SANTOS: But have we actually reached that tipping point, now, where the customer, the ultimate consumer of these products, actually says no, I don't want to buy a $3 t-shirt because the likelihood is that if it says "Made in Bangladesh" and it's that cheap, it may not have been done to the same specifications and labor rules that I would expect. Have we reached that tipping point?

MILLER: Well, the fact of the matter is, I assume that H&M is a very, very good retailer, they're one of the largest in the world, and other -- Benetton and people who have signed onto this understand that, and they recognize that this is somewhere between maybe a nickel and a dime a garment.

But that's what you do to have safety. And I think certainly in America, consumers don't want this low price to be subsidized by the death and the harm to these young women who are desperately in need of these jobs.

And the fact of the matter is it appears that many of the big international brands, mainly European brands, have decided that they can live with these new requirements, and that what we now have is, apparently, an act of lobbying effort by Walmart and the Gap and Children's Gap and others to keep this from happening.

And I think it's just really unfortunate, and I would hope that the Obama administration would get involved and tell that they have to do this to make sure that this is a safe working place.

DOS SANTOS: Which is particularly shameful, because some of these names that you've mentioned have also been pretty big on the kind of ethical labels, as well, haven't they? Notably companies like the Gap, they had a whole Red Label, which was supposed to be ethical. Doesn't this fly in the face of that?

MILLER: Well, it appears that they want to have a good public image if it doesn't cost them any money. But the fact of the matter is, consumers are really distressed by the Tazreen fire that took place several months ago, and then by the Rana Plaza collapse. They see the horror that this visits upon these workers.

And so, if you just want to improve your label by public relations, then it's not going to be sufficient, and it's really unfortunate, because I've worked with these companies over many, many years.

I've worked with the Gap, I've worked with Walmart, I've worked with in Cambodia, in Vietnam, in the Mariana Islands, in Malaysia, and the fact is, they've been helpful from time to time.

But now, they really have to decide whether they're finally going to go for safety codes that are enforceable, that are transparent, and provide the funding so the workplace can be improved. Right now, they're balking, and its unfortunate.

DOS SANTOS: Have we reached a fork in the road here where some of these retailers, if they can't sign up to some kind of industry-wide code that is acceptable, that government needs to step in?

MILLER: Well, I -- I can't force them to sign up, that's why you have to go to the consumer. But it's really in the hands of the big labels, because they in many areas dictate to governments what they will and will not accept in these very poor countries. And it's very unfortunate. And they've got to make a commitment to have an enforceable and transparent safety code for these workers.

DOS SANTOS: OK, George Miller, there, US congressman and senior Democratic member of the House Education and Workforce Committee. Thanks ever so much for your time and your impassioned views there on the situation in Bangladesh and that new code of conduct, perhaps, you might be seeing signed by some of the world's biggest retailers.

Well, coming up after the break here on this show, oil raids: the European Commission pays unexpected calls to some pretty big oil majors like Shell, BP, and Statoil.


DOS SANTOS: Welcome back. European authorities have raided several major oil groups, including the likes of Shell, BP, and Statoil, over allegations of price-fixing. Let's go over to our Jim Boulden, who joins me now, live in the studio. Jim, run us through the latest.

JIM BOULDEN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Nina. Well, these unannounced raids happened in three European countries today. And Shell, BP, and Statoil, and the publisher Platts have all confirmed this investigation.

Well, what is it about? Well, the EU is concerned about collusion in reporting distorted prices to a price-reporting agency. That price- reporting agency is Platts. But more on that in a second. Shell and BP have released the usual statements that say they are cooperating with the investigation.

Interesting, though: Statoil of Norway has gone a bit further and said that this probe is investigating whether prices were fixed or manipulated dating back to 2002.

Now, as we said, Platts is at the center of all of this potential price-fixing. It's a trading and reporting platform. It's a unit of McGraw-Hill Financial, and oil prices are assessed and published by agencies like Platts for a benchmark.

And that sets physical and derivatives markets around the world and helps set the prices. And for Platts, it's the so-called on-closed prices. In other words, when prices close, if those prices are purposely distorted, that could change the price for things like petrol, Jet fuel, biofuels, and products that are used in many other goods, Nina.

DOS SANTOS: Well, that's exactly what I was going to come to, Jim, because obviously the average person watching will be thinking, I already pay an awful lot at the pump for my gas. Is this going to have been affecting it? Presumably, yes.

BOULDEN: Yes. But what does this remind us of. Remember --


BOULDEN: -- Libor, when the banks -- banks like Barclays Bank, for instance, were accused and found to be manipulating libor. Manipulating means it could affect the price either way, so we can't say it affects the price to make things go up necessarily, but it's supposed to be -- Platts is a private company, this is a voluntary agreement, as it were, to help set these prices.

But that emanates out. And of course, these companies -- who, of course, we can't say have done this, it's just an investigation now -- if these companies are found to be doing it, then they are abusing the market.

It's interesting to see why the Platts was investigating -- it's being investigated as well, because they take the data from these and they put out a number, but this that number being distorted? Has that number been distorted since 2002, as Statoil says it might have been?

DOS SANTOS: And the other interesting thing about this is that a number of the banks have big oil trading debts as well, and we haven't yet heard whether or not --

BOULDEN: Exactly.

DOS SANTOS: -- they'll be implicated in this. Jim Boulden, thanks ever so much for that.

Let's move along and talk about things economic, because in Brussels, EU finance ministers remain split over how exactly to deal with the issue of failing banks. They can't agree on who should lose money when a bank actually collapses. That is the big issue at hand.

Germany, the Netherlands, and Denmark want to tap the richest depositors on a par with other creditors as well. In an alternative plan, though, the European Central Bank would also bail in those depositors with more than 100,000 euros in the bank.

But only -- and this is the catch -- only after shareholders and bondholders have contributed. So something a little bit like Cyprus, but also something like Greece as well.

Well lastly, France and the United Kingdom say that as a rule, depositors shouldn't actually have to share the losses, with a few exceptions, though.

Sweden's finance minister says that Europe needs a fiscal push to get it back on the road to recovery. Anders Borg spoke to me earlier from Brussels today as those talks were ongoing, and he said that now European economies have regained some market credibility, it's time to think about loosening the budget belt right around the bloc.


ANDERS BORG, SWEEDISH FINANCE MINISTER: Europe is in a very difficult position. We have very weak growth, and unemployment seems to be stuck at 12 percent, so I strongly believe that we need to push energy into the European recovery.

We cannot do that by only using the left hand. We also need to use the right hand. So, we need to combine expansionary monetary policy with also more expansionary fiscal measures.

DOS SANTOS: And sometimes the left hand and the right hand just don't seem to meet in the middle, and that's been the issue with the banking union discussions.

BORG: Well, we need to use both of the hands, because Europe's problems are basically structural, and we do have a particular problem, given that the banking sector is so weak. And that, I think is a key argument for also using more fiscal measures, particularly measures that are long-term and pro-growth and improving the labor markets.

So, I think we need to, given that we have now much more market confidence and the deficits on average are getting down to maybe 2, 3 percent, I think also fiscal policy could be used to push a little bit of demand into the economy.

DOS SANTOS: Let's go back to the banking union, though, because that has dominated the discussions throughout much of today in Brussels. We still don't know whether it would require chiefly change for the kind of resolution fund that what many people are saying out there would be essential to try and set up this banking supervisory body and make it actually have teeth and do something.

BORG: Well, I think we need to move forward on the banking union. We have a very strong fragmentation of the European banking system, particularly hitting at Southern European countries. So, discussions on treaty change should not be an obstacle for moving forward.

And we've had a good discussion today also on banking resolution, and I think we need to have a higher degree of flexibility for the countries outside of the eurozone, because we have some special needs. We are not under the ECB umbrella, so you need to have more flexibility for the countries outside. But overall, we need to move forward on the banking union.

DOS SANTOS: What kind of flexibility are we talking about here? Is that to do with, for instance, the resolution fund insurance so that if a bank does have to fold, that it can be done so in a coherent and structured manner? Because that's been the problem and the threat dominating the markets so far.

BORG: Well, the countries outside are not having a collective backstop in the same way as the euro countries are, and we are not under the ECB liquidity umbrella. So, therefore, we must have greater degrees of freedom to deal with problems in our own different banking systems.

And those solutions could be a little different between the countries. So, I think we need more flexibility in the proposal so that we have a little bit of greater room to maneuver.

DOS SANTOS: The UK government is coming under increasing pressure to try and renegotiate its position within Europe, and if we do see the door open to treaty change on a banking union, that opens the door for the UK to make demands. How does Sweden view that, as being, like the UK, outside of the eurozone?

BORG: Well, I think we need to find a compromise. We could move on a fast track to a technical treaty change on the banking union, but that would obviously have to include the fact that there might be other treaty changes that have to be considered.

We would like to keep the UK in the European Union, that's a key priority for us, but that also means that we will have to listen to what kind of worries and demands that the UK can come to with the table.


DOS SANTOS: Well, despite the mixed signals that are coming from Brussels on the front of the European banking union, the markets in the region had a fairly strong session in today's session yet again. It's a trend that we've seen over the last few months or so dominating the agenda. Economics may say one thing, but the markets seem to be saying something completely different.

As you can see, all four of the major indices across the region ended the day high, and particularly the German market. I was talking about the Xetra DAX there, take a look at that, closing at an all-time high despite disappointing investor confidence numbers coming from the ZEW investor sentiment index, which is broadly flat for the month.

Markets also received some support from the United States, and let's have a look at exactly how the Dow Jones Industrial Average has been doing. The big board, there, as you can see, rising about six-tenths of one percent.

The Dow has actually been bouncing back after the hedge fund manager David Tepper says that he remains bullish and this means, according to the latest reading that we have on the Dow, 15,175.24, that both the Dow and the S&P 500 have hit yet another all-time high.

Let's move along from equities to currencies, now, and time for a Currency Conundrum for you out there. Amazon has launched a virtual currency to pay for its apps and games in the United States on its Kindle Fire.

So, what I want to know from you this evening is, how much is each coin of it worth? Is it A, $1? B, $10? Or C, 1 cent? We'll have the answer for you later on in the program.

Speaking of the dollar, it's up against the euro, the pound, and the Japanese yen. We'll be back with plenty more QUEST MEANS BUSINESS after this.


DOS SANTOS: One of the world's richest football clubs is looking for a new manager. Manchester City has officially given Roberto Mancini the push, saying that he club has failed to achieve any of its stated targets so far this year.

The club's Abu Dhabi owners, it seems, have eventually lost their patience, and in about 20 minutes' time, they'll be watching Man City take on Reading without Mancini. CNN's John Defterios reports on the shakeup and how it's all part of the billionaire owner's grand plan.



JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNN EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR (voice-over): From hero to zero in just one season. Today, Roberto Mancini finds himself out of work, shown the door because, according to those familiar with the thinking of the UAE owner and chairman of the club, Mancini lost the players and that the club was not where it needed to be.

Here in Abu Dhabi, reaction to the Italian's summary dismissal despite winning the league last year is mixed.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He didn't do anything for the team.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The decision was wrong because Mancini is a good coach.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mancini was not bad. He achieved good results.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think it's the right decision, because he has no good results in the past.

DEFTERIOS: Since buying Man City back in 2008, the discrete billionaire Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has poured over $1.5 billion into the club, transforming the stadium, revamping the playing staff, and even establishing a range of community development projects in Manchester.

It's all part of the grand strategy to transform Manchester City into a global sporting brand, and it is a strategy where failure is not part of the script.

DEFTERIOS (on camera): Mancini raised eyebrows last month when he suggested that Abu Dhabi may have to spend even more money to compete with cross-town rival, Manchester United, for marquee players. The source familiar with the thinking of the owner and chairman said, is it the players or the facility to bring the players to form? Adding that support and financing are still not a problem.

DEFTERIOS (voice-over): Abu Dhabi is currently in the midst of a massive five-year local and international investment span. Billions of dollars on revamping local infrastructure, and publicity-grabbing projects, including an F1 racing circuit, Ferrari World theme park.

Even new flights direct to Manchester, courtesy of its carrier, Etihad. Sitting on 9 percent of the world's proven oil reserves gives Abu Dhabi the means to back up its lofty ambitions.

STEVE MCKENLAY, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, "SPORT 360": I think the sacking of Mancini is a very clear indicator that Sheikh Mansour wants Manchester City to be the best football club in the world, and to do that, they're going to have to win the Champions League.

DEFTERIOS: Abu Dhabi is not alone in the Gulf in investing in top- tier international football. Newly-crowned French champions Paris Saint- Germain are owned by the Qatar Investment Authority. Dubai's Emirates Airlines sponsors Arsenal Football Club and Formula 1. FC Barcelona is sponsored by the Qatar Foundation.

Both the UAE and Qatar are prolific investors around the world. But Abu Dhabi's foray into football has already proven it has both great highs and lows, as Mancini's firing seems to prove.

John Defterios, CNN, Abu Dhabi.


DOS SANTOS: And if you're rich enough to buy a football team, well, the chances are you can probably also afford a house in London. Some of the most expensive homes in Britain can be found in the city's famously leafy squares. But owning a trophy property and actually living in it can be two very different things, as I found out when I explored London's empty avenues.


DOS SANTOS (voice-over): The Bentley may be parked outside and the topiary neatly trimmed, but knock on a number of these doors, and you're unlikely to get an answer. Street after street, London's most exclusive neighborhoods are fast becoming empty.

YOSHI NISHIO, KNIGHTSBRIDGE RESIDENTS ASSOCIATION: There's always been a few people in squares such as ours that were from abroad, and the rest were locals, so-called. But in the last five years, I think that proportion has changed.

DOS SANTOS: A 30 percent increase in home values since 2008 has turned London's prime real estate into the ultimate safe haven for money from abroad. But for a whole host of reasons, the capital's wealthy new homeowners don't actually want to live here year-round.

HOMA RASTEGAR, ONEFINESTAY: People are often not living here for tax reasons. There's loads of different reasons that people don't live in their homes 365 days a year.

DOS SANTOS (on camera): This is Number One Hyde Park, one of the latest luxury developments to grace the London skyline. Apartments in this complex behind me can go for up to $240 million. But despite those high price tags, nearly three quarters of the owners in this block list their properties as secondary residences.

DOS SANTOS (voice-over): As the sun sets, swathes of districts like Knightsbridge, Belgrade, and Mayfair lie vacant, sapping the soul of once- vibrant communities, and critics say the absentee homeowners are contributing nothing to the local economy.

NISHIO: There are big blocks of flats and so on, well-known ones, where you look up there in the evenings, and there are no lights on, or maybe there's one light on. So, very obviously there, people aren't really living there, which is a shame.

And then you see a lot of different people. Some of my neighbors we know very well. But other ones, we see hardly ever or never.

DOS SANTOS: Yet, the city's ghost homes, as they've been dubbed, have opened an unexpected window of opportunity. OneFineStay arranges luxury rentals in the best parts of town and are seeing increasing interest in its service.

RASTEGAR: There are a lot of homes in central London that are empty, and I think that was basically what started the idea for the company. A lot of them are gone 11 months of the year, and this is an investment property, and they're looking to get a little bit of money out of it. But also, it's a security angle for a lot of people.

So, this is a home owned by an Italian lady who basically lives in Italy and uses this as a secondary home.

DOS SANTOS: And while London streets get busier by the day, its most desirable addresses remain eerily empty.


DOS SANTOS: Well, straight ahead here on QUEST MEANS BUSINESS, we'll take a look at Nokia's new phone and ask will it perform a disappearing act?


DOS SANTOS: Hello and welcome back. I'm Nina dos Santos. These are the news headlines this hour.


DOS SANTOS (voice-over): The U.S. State Department still isn't commenting on Russia's detention of a U.S. diplomat in Moscow. The Russians say that his name is Ryan Fogle and that they caught him trying to recruit Russians to work for the CIA. He's been handed back to the U.S. embassy, but Moscow wants him expelled.

The Turkish prime minister is blaming the Syrian government for attacks on Reyhanli, a town near the Syrian border in Turkey. Well, Recep Tayyip Erdogan says that he told his party members his party -- excuse me - - his administration will, quote, "give back as good as we get."

Actress Angelina Jolie has announced that she's had a double mastectomy as a preemptive strike against possible breast cancer. In a "New York Times" op-ed, Jolie wrote that she had the surgery because she carries a gene mutation that dramatically increases the risk of her developing that type of cancer.

In Bangladesh, hundreds of mourners gathered at the site of the collapsed building to pray for the souls of the people who died. Rescuers have wrapped up the search for victims and the army has now handed the site to the local authorities for the full clearup operation.

Miners working for the world's third largest platinum producer have called a wildcat strike and protests at the death of a union official. Lonmin says that operations at the Marikana mine have been halted. Last August 34 strikers at the mine were shot dead by police in one day.



DOS SANTOS: Back to business news, and Larry Page, the CEO of Google, has revealed that he suffers from vocal cord paralysis. The condition, he says, came on some 14 years ago. The admission explains why Page didn't speak publicly for several months last year. He says that he's personally funding significant research into this condition.

Let's go over to Maggie Lake in New York, who can tell us more about exactly what he said, and also what he's got, Maggie.

MAGGIE LAKE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, you know, Nina, this is shocking, this news just breaking in the last 30 minutes. But you're right. It does put an end to some of the speculation and concerns, frankly, that had been out there about his health.

So on an update on his Google Plus account, Larry Page says he has something called vocal cord paralysis or he suffers from something called vocal cord paralysis.

Now it's a condition that does not appear to be life-threatening, but it does impact his ability to speak for long period of time. It means his voice is a lot quieter, not as strong as some other voices. It also explains that hoarseness that led to a lot of this speculation. And it also affects one's ability to breathe during peak aerobic activities, although he says despite that, he still is very active.

He says he is able to do everything he needs to do in terms of work and home. And this was quite sweet. He joked that his Google cofounder, Sergei Brin, says that he thinks this makes him a better CEO, because he needs to choose his words very carefully. So he has a sense of humor about it.

But this is a big deal for investors. Larry Page, an absolute tech giant, considered one of the pioneers, one of the bright minds out there. And investors are going to watch this closely. There has been a lot of discussion about how much information public companies need to give their investors and shareholders about this CEO's health.

And you remember, this was a hot button issue surrounding Apple and of course the late Steve Jobs when it came to light, his many health problems. They were very tightlipped about it. A lot of investors didn't like that.

So this is an issue, this is Larry Page coming out for the first time publicly that this is an issue that Google is going to have to continue to sort of grapple with and figure out how they are going to communicate with the investment community about this, Nina.

DOS SANTOS: As you were saying, yes, it's certainly a hot button issue, not least because so many of these tech CEOs are visionaries in their fields, aren't they? Tell us how it's impacting the stock price of Google as well, Maggie.

LAKE: And you make a very good point, Nina. When you're talking about another industry where the CEO's incredibly important, but is seen as a manager, it's very different from the world of technology where, again, these are visionary; they are very much seen leading the company.

And Larry Page has been getting very good grades as he really took over the formal -- as formal CEO. People have been very happy with Google.

Let's talk about that stock price. The stock actually not selling off. It is still trading higher in an overall market that's higher. It's up about 1 percent. But it's sort of incredible, the news comes out today, because Google share hitting a new all-time today, stock up 25 percent this year, which is about double the overall market, right, extraordinary run. They're trading above $888.

Our colleague, Pauline Monica (ph), on CNNMoney today, just put an article out a short time ago about people talking about Google 1000. So this is a stock that is widely followed, a lot of hopes hang on it. It is an absolute star in the tech sector. We've been talking about Google Glass. They're really seen, pushing into new frontiers.

So now this health news about Larry Page, well, certainly we're happy he seems to have a handle on it. He is speaking publicly about it. It's going to be on that's closely followed, Nina.

DOS SANTOS: OK, Maggie Lake, thanks so much, bringing us up to date with all of that. And as Maggie was just saying before, obviously these are really important issues in the technology sphere, because of course, the founders of these companies are viewed as the corporate visionaries.

Well, speaking of the technology sector, we're going to be keeping our along the lines of that theme when we come back after the break, because the soft pledge on SAP is going (inaudible) for new customers.

So there's a new scouting app. But I wanted to know how things were faring away from the bright lights and big unveilings. The company's co- chief executive will be talking to me about the outlook for SAP up next.





DOS SANTOS (voice-over): Time now for the answer to today's "Currency Conundrum," earlier in the show you may remember I asked you what is the value of one Amazon coin. And the answer is C, 1 cent. There are other virtual currencies around out there. You can also buy Microsoft's coin for Xbox Live and also credits on Facebook.


DOS SANTOS: Now Nokia, the Finnish smartphone maker, has launched its new look, Lumina 925. Initial reaction from investors was less than positive. But the phone's designer told our Jim Boulden that it's worth the wait.


STEFAN PANNENBECKER, SVP PRODUCT DESIGN, NOKIA: We wanted to create a metal product with great antenna performance that feels great in the hand and that it has a beautiful craft quality.

JIM BOULDEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's not too heavy. I thought it might feel a bit more metally. But it doesn't. But it's got -- it's solid.

PANNENBECKER: Yes, absolutely. Yes. I mean, those types of products, when you work on those, the idea is really that you want to create an absolutely solid-feeling product that sits great in your hand, looks beautiful, right, very sleek.

And it's very simple.

BOULDEN: One of the things Nokia's been pushing lately, obviously, has been the camera technology and the maps as well.

So is this a new level for the camera technology and the maps as well? Or is it just a bit of an upgrade?

PANNENBECKER: This is an upgrade of the camera technology. And then of course, what we're going to do is with the amber (ph) update, we're also going to bring some of these improvements to our other products.

And then, of course, we have a new application as the Nokia Smart Lab (ph), which is really a nice application. It allows people to take 10 shots -- 10 frames per shot and then allows people to edit those 10 shots in --


PANNENBECKER: -- yes, exactly. So this is -- so when I'm now clicking on this link here, it all -- the application opens the editor view. And then it -- then the application, for example, shows me what would be the best shot or reaction shot, for example, as well. What you see in a moment, where all the images are superimposed on top of each other.

BOULDEN: So it takes 10 frames with one snap.

PANNENBECKER: Yes, exactly, yes. So that's an application. That's really quite powerful and it's really nice to play with it, because as you can imagine, if you can catch children playing or if you are with your friends and you play football or something like that, you can capture these moments and really play with them and edit them.

BOULDEN: One thing that bothers me with some phones is that it takes a long time to actually get the lens open and to take that first shot. It may take me 3-4 seconds. Some of the later phones have now made it very quick. It's just very quick to get it up and going.

PANNENBECKER: Yes, absolutely. And you know, Windows (ph) phone comes first of all with a shortcut to the camera as well, which is a hard piece. So that already is, I think, really important. So --


BOULDEN: A hard key where I feel like I'm using a camera.

PANNENBECKER: Exactly. And then you take the shot. And that was the shot. It's super direct.

BOULDEN: Nokia has had an easy ride as far as the media and some experiences. I'm just wondering how much you think that kind of technology can help Nokia rebuild the brand.

PANNENBECKER: I think that we are on a really good path. I think that we are, as a company, incredibly focused. We have a very clear strategy. We know very much what our differentiators are, such as imaging, for example. And we believe, given the feedback that we get, and the momentum that we have, that we're on a really positive path. So I'm very excited.


DOS SANTOS: That's change tech. German investor confidence as measure by the ZEW Center (ph) rose less than forecast for the month of May, according to the latest figures released today. One German giant says that it's still winning, despite the tough trading conditions out there.

SAP is currently hosting its annual Sapphire Tech Conference in Florida in the United States, where it told the world that it's now come up with a new software including an app to manage talent scouting that it hopes might reshape the world's sporting industry.

Just a short time ago, I spoke with the co-CEO of SAP, Bill McDermott, from Orlando, Florida, and I started out by asking him about the company's core businesses and how they're faring in traditional markets like Europe.


BILL MCDERMOTT, CO-CEO, SAP: We're one of the few brands in the world that has done extremely well in Europe in spite of an overall difficult economic environment. And we all know Spain, Portugal, Italy and Greece, but even in those markets, we're growing in double digits.

And here's the reason why: if CEOs have to do more with less and take cost out of the equation, they'll need a platform like SAP's.

They're willing to invest in innovative software that makes them run better. If they want to grow, and they want to reach new consumers in new markets, especially reaching beyond the borders of Europe, they're going to need SAP software. So theoretically, we should do well in down as well as up markets. And so far in Europe, knock on wood, that's been the case.

DOS SANTOS: Well, if you take a look at the ZEW index, investor sentiment over in Germany, that one's still come out flattish.

A lot of people are concerned that Germany is going to be the next economy that's going to perhaps might skirt a recession but its economy at least flatline. And you're one of the biggest German companies around. What's your take on where we're going? Are we out of the woods yet or still in risky territory?

MCDERMOTT: Well, we're in much better territory than we had been over the last couple of years. So I'm far more optimistic than most people. Companies have a lot of cash. A lot of cash, and they need to put the cash to good use.

Now if I was in the commodity technology business, and I was making commodity and trying to sell them on thin margins, I'd be real worried about my business model, because there's a move away from hardware.

And services that don't add value, there's a bias for investing that discretionary investment into software because it's viewed as the innovation layer of technology which can help you do things better. So we're feeling more optimistic about the climate in general. But we're particularly bullish on software because we think that's where the spend will take place.

DOS SANTOS: And in fact, you've been hedging your bets quite well by investing in the world of cloud computing for some time. Presumably that and mobile, as you've just been saying, the four is the future for companies like SAP.

MCDERMOTT: You're absolutely right, Nina. You know, we saw the trend for mobile; we were the first mover and now we're the de facto standard in mobile security and mobile applications. We saw the move for the cloud.

We didn't have the DNA at first. We went on a little bit of an investment spree and we put $8 billion U.S. investment in cloud computing for line of business executives, head of sales, head of procurement, head of finance as an example, head of H.R.

So we really started to talk to the consumer at that line of business level and recently we announced the HANA Enterprise Cloud. Now companies can run their entire corporation. The SAP complete business suite on top of HANA in a private cloud environment.

Now you're talking huge costs out of the equation; you're talking amazing efficiencies and you're talking companies that will win the game with SAP like never before.


DOS SANTOS: Well, things aren't just looking pretty uncertain when it comes to the economic climate. The weather forecast, especially for places like Germany and the rest of Europe, isn't looking too favorable, either. And here to tell us more is Jenny Harrison at the CNN Weather Center.


JENNY HARRISON, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Hey, Nina, you're right; it's not as -- (inaudible) for you in the U.K., my goodness, it's once again, I'm afraid, you've returned to the wet, the windies, the rather cool as well. And just look at the satellite map. That gives you a pretty good indication as to what has been going on.

There's not a huge amount of clear fine weather out there at all. Look at this, the last few hours. We can see this next system really impacting the northwest, the U.K., but also across in the western northern France, the Low Countries.

And again, those showers across into central and northern Germany, but really is across areas of Wales, for example, in the southwest of England, the last few hours, some very heavy amounts of rain actually coming through. There's actually two areas of low pressure impacting the U.K. (inaudible) right now. One in the north in Scotland, and this is the second one, which is impacting the south.

Have a look at this, because yes, an all-too-familiar sight, Weston- Super-Mare in England, and yes, the pier, open for business, not sure how much is actually going on with the wind and the rain. It's all be coming through. There's not, I'm afraid, much end in sight, either. And if that's not enough, we've got some very cold air in place. And so it is feeling pretty miserable.

We've got this east-west split. We've been talking about it for the last week or so. And across in the east, it is very nice. We've got temperatures there well above the average. Doesn't help you out across the west. Temperatures have been on the decline in the last few hours, 9 in London right now, 11 in Copenhagen. In Moscow, in actual fact, it is still 21 degrees.

And look at the high that we got this Tuesday in Moscow, 29, 18 is the average. So 11 degrees above average. And it really has been that way for about a week now. This is the forecast over the next few days.

You can see temperatures stirring above the average in the east and actually improving even in Warsaw, so staying very unsettled, even some snow across the high elevations and obviously those temperatures in line with that west and windy weather, Nina.

DOS SANTOS: OK, Jenny Harrison, thanks ever so much for that.

Well, from west to east and back again, after the break, we'll examine why manufacturing in America never looked quite this attractive. Maggie Lake looks at the onshoring trend that's catching on in the United States.



DOS SANTOS: Bangladesh's deadliest industrial disaster has led many companies to face up to some tough questions about worker safety and welfare. The tragedy has also revealed that many consumers do actually care about where their products are manufactured and the conditions that they're actually made it.

As such, all this week, we're looking at businesses bringing manufacturing back home, onshore, so to speak. For years, U.S. companies have moved jobs overseas to keep those costs down. But now, well, things are starting to happen in the opposite direction. As Maggie Lake now reports.


LAKE (voice-over): Workers are cranking out precision machine parts at the Como Manufacturing Plant in Lakewood, New Jersey.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're in a process of building some moving table machines here. These are.

LAKE (voice-over): Two years ago, this work was done by Chinese laborers in the city of Nanjing (ph). Today production and jobs has moved back to the United States.

LAKE: Hi, guys, how are you? Nice to meet you.

LAKE (voice-over): More than 50 people are now employed here, many of whom were unemployed a few years back.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So I said I need to go get this product back here because that's what our workforce wants; that's what the customers want.

LAKE (voice-over): One big reason: quality control. Customers of Como's metal and wood cutting machines perceive products made in China as cheap. And while Chinese labor is less expensive than in the U.S.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I find that I hire one skilled mechanical assembler or electrical assembly here, I would probably need five over in China. I mean, that's the skill difference.

LAKE (voice-over): The bottom line?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have become more profitable, I think, because of this move.

LAKE (voice-over): Como is not the only manufacturer bringing jobs back to the U.S.

As wages in low-cost factory centers rise, the cost-benefit of outsourcing is fading fast. Apple says it will make more computers here, and Walmart is committed to stocking more American-made products.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The renaissance is definitely there. America is now, I think, a more attractive place to manufacture, partly because the dollar is at a more appropriate level and also because we've got a lot of cheap energy coming online.

LAKE (voice-over): A renaissance, maybe. But times have changed.

LAKE: Fifty years ago, manufacturing was the pathway to the middle class for many Americans. Even if you didn't have much of an education, if you were highly motivated and smart, you could succeed. But experts say the future of manufacturing in America may look very different.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A lot of the jobs that are basically tied to manufacturing now are sort of white-collar jobs, if you like, or service sector jobs rather than factory floor jobs.

LAKE (voice-over): Challenges remain. But with millions still out of work, any jobs returning to the U.S. can make a big difference for community.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He came into the lobby. He was a veteran of World War II in Iwo Jima. And he just wanted to come and shake my hand and thank me for bringing manufacturing back to the United States.

LAKE (voice-over): The American flag is proudly on display again at Como. Many in the U.S. hope that it's here to stay -- Maggie Lake, CNN, New York.


DOS SANTOS: Well, CNN's "Made In" series continues on Wednesday, when our attention turns toward China. Shenzhen is a major center for manufacturing jobs. Pauline Chiou reports on why some entrepreneurs prefer to have their products made almost exclusively there.

Well, let's have a look at how the U.S. markets are faring for a final check of how things are doing on the trading floor.

As you can see, the Dow and the S&P 500 hovering around all-time highs. And (inaudible) before Dow Jones industrial average just off a smidgen from what we saw earlier last time we looked it was up 0.6 of 1 percent. It's now up around about half of 1 percent, but still hovering near an all-time high.

These kind of markets have been boosted in particular by remarks made from the influential hedge fund manager, David Tepper, saying that he's still bullish about the outlook for U.S. equities. Well, coming up next here on QUEST MEANS BUSINESS, how much would you actually pay for a chance with this man?

He'd be pretty useful if you got an iPhone on the blink, but you'd need a pretty deep wallet. We'll have the full details next.



DOS SANTOS: Welcome back. If you like to browse online auctions for something a little bit special, well, there's a couple of interesting sales that you might be interested in bidding in these days, starting out with this.

How about going for a coffee with the Apple CEO, Tim Cook? There's about an hour left to bid on that one if you're interested. All the proceeds are going to charity. And the last time we checked, well, the bidding had reached a whopping $605,000 -- that's right, $605,000 for just half an hour of this man's precious time.

I've got something a little bit more expensive here on my left. On eBay, this document is purporting to be the original recipe for Coca-Cola. That's according to Cliff Pluger (ph), modern-day treasury hunter from Georgia. He's selling it for a Buy It Now price on eBay of a whopping $15 million. The question is, what makes him so sure that this article is actually genuine.


CLIFF PLUGER (PH), AUCTIONER: On the last page of this, it says on page 83, the extractor's original Coca-Cola formula. That's what I'm basing most of this on. They had access to the original formula.


DOS SANTOS: Now we should add that Coca-Cola doesn't believe that this is actually the real thing, and says that the original 19th century recipe is actually safe and tucked away in a vault.

And that's it for QUEST MEANS BUSINESS. Thanks for joining me. I'm Nina dos Santos. I'll be back with a full recap of our news headlines in a moment.



DOS SANTOS (voice-over): The U.S. State Department still isn't commenting on Russia's detention of a U.S. diplomat in Moscow. The Russians say that his name is Ryan Fogle and that they caught him trying to recruit Russians to work for the CIA. He's been handed back to the U.S. embassy, but Moscow wants him expelled.

The Turkish prime minister is blaming the Syrian government for attacks on Reyhanli, that's a town in Turkey near the Syrian border. Recep Tayyip Erdogan told members of his party that his administration will, quote, "give back as good as we get."

In Bangladesh, hundreds of mourners gathered at the site of the collapsed building to pray for the souls of the thousands of people who died. Rescuers have wrapped up the search for victims now and the army has handed the site to control of the local authorities for the cleanup.

Well, the U.S. attorney general, Eric Holder, says that he's recused himself from last -- he recused himself last year from the investigation that led to the seizure of Associated Press phone records. He says that deputy attorney general made the decision. AP says that the government secretly took two months' worth of phone records and haven't said why.


DOS SANTOS: That's a look at the main stories that we're watching for you here on CNN. "AMANPOUR" is next.