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QUEST MEANS BUSINESS

Latvia Prime Minister Resigns; German Coalition; Berlusconi Expelled; Greece Report Card; Markets Up; EU Migration to Britain; H&M Living Wage; World Cup Stadium Accident

Aired November 27, 2013 - 16:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


(NEW YORK STOCK EXCHANGE CLOSING BELL)

RICHARD QUEST, HOST: And there we have Macy's ringing the closing bell on Wall Street. It is Wednesday, November the 27th.

Tonight on the program, as we have records on the markets, Latvia's prime minister tells this program why he's resigning over a tragedy.

Berlusconi has been flung out of parliament, expelled for tax fraud.

And trademarks and tartan. Burberry battles China over its checks.

I'm Richard Quest, tonight live in London, where I still mean business.

Good evening. Latvia's prime minister has resigned nearly a week after a supermarket roof caved in, killing 24 people. Valdis Dombrovskis said he and his government would bear moral and political responsibility for the tragedy on the outskirts of the capital, Riga, days ago, in which 54 people, I beg your pardon, 54 people died.

The country's Economics Minister said ineffective government oversight of construction projects was partly to blame for the collapse. It was Latvia's deadliest incident since it gained independence in 1991. Mr. Dombrovskis explained his reasons for leaving at a news conference.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

VALDIS DOMBROVSKIS, OUTGOING PRIME MINISTER OF LATVIA (through translator): Considering the tragedy in Zolitude and all those associated circumstances, and taking into account that at the moment, a government with a clear majority in parliament is needed that is able to solve the situation that has developed in the country, I announce my resignation from the post of prime minister, taking political responsibility for the tragedy in Zolitude.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

QUEST: Now, this Latvian premiership has been defined by the economy so far. The prime minister led efforts to overturn a financial crisis, which followed years of credit-fueled growth. He pushed through spending cuts and tax increases, all part of austerity.

The country's economy expanded by an annual 4.2 percent in the third quarter of this year. If you look at the numbers, it means growth rates are now amongst the fastest in Europe. The recovery has been nothing short of remarkable. And Latvia is now one month away from joining the euro zone.

The prime minister sounded sorry to be leaving as that new chapter, which he largely shepherded through, is about to begin.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DOMBROVSKIS (through translator): From my side, I'd like to say thank you to the Latvian society for the support and participation of experience during the hard recovery from the financial crisis that had allowed Latvia to return to the path of growth. I apologize for the things that did not succeed.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

QUEST: The prime minister, Mr. Dombrovskis, joins me now on the line from Riga. Prime Minister Mr. Dombrovskis, why -- clearly nobody blames you personally for anything -- you didn't have your hand on, if you like, the tiller at the time. So, why resign? Is this -- what's the reason that you feel the need to go?

DOMBROVSKIS (via telephone): Well, good evening. Certainly, I took this decision to resign to take political responsibility for the tragedy in Zolitude. It's actually the deadliest tragedy since we regained independence.

And it's quite clear that government and the prime minister is responsible for things which are going on in a country. And if such a deadly accident could happen, it's also government's responsibility. And it's also important --

(CROSSTALK)

QUEST: Right, but -- but you must -- you --

DOMBROVSKIS: -- that the country now needs a new government with a renewed credit of confidence, which can work and bring the country forward in the aftermath of this tragedy. And also a government which has clear mandate of confidence from the parliament and a clear majority in the parliament.

QUEST: Where was the failing of your government in this? Was this, as some people suggest, because of the austerity measures, which gutted large parts of the government regulations and the supervision of construction? Where do you believe the failing came?

DOMBROVSKIS: Well, it's actually for the criminal investigation to find out the reasons of the exact failure. And I'm confident the reasons are going to be discovered in the nearest future. But also, government is now taking systemic review of our construction regulations to identify what systemic shortfallings they're having and help to address them.

QUEST: What should other political leaders learn from the experience of this terrible tragedy in Latvia? Certainly one can say that the -- the Harry Truman, "the buck stops here" -- and in this case, laudably, you've said the buck stops with you. But in terms of government, what does one learn from this episode?

DOMBROVSKIS: Well, I think most important thing the government needs to do is really to understand the reasons of this tragedy. And not only in a narrow sense of criminal investigation, but also in a broader sense. And to take measures necessary to prevent this from happening again.

QUEST: But such as what? I mean, government -- no government willingly or openly sets out to have this sort of event happen, obviously. So in terms of what one learns, is it that you don't cut back on safety regulations? Is it that you have to be more careful when introducing austerity measures? I'm trying to understand what one learns.

DOMBROVSKIS: Well, the point is that we still need to discover the actual reason of this failure, the actual reason of this tragedy in order to actually take lessons which are drawn from this. But nevertheless, we already started this overview of the system of our construction regulations to see what potential shortcomings could have led to this tragedy.

QUEST: Right. And finally, Prime Minister, do you think the -- the message of your action really is -- one of the messages, one of the messages is more leaders need to take political responsibility, or more political leaders to take responsibility, not just for their immediate actions, but for their wider actions of the governments they lead?

DOMBROVSKIS: Well, certainly political leaders need to take political responsibility. But it's also important to underline that political responsibility is not an end in itself. So, we also need to look at what is the best way forward for the country. And in this case, I believe that renewal of the government is needed also to regain a credit of confidence from the society so that new government can be more effective in addressing the aftermath.

QUEST: Prime Minister, thank you for joining us, and the tragedy, again, we send you once again our commiserations to you and your country, but thank you for joining us and talking about these important issues.

Now, as one European government falls, another's been agreed. Germany's formed its grand coalition after Angela Merkel struck a deal with the Center Left Social Democrats. Chancellor Merkel insisted austerity must continue in Europe. In Germany, she's making few concessions.

The coalition is planning to introduce a new minimum wage of around $11.50 an hour from 2015. The retirement age would fall for some workers.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ANGELA MERKEL, CHANCELLOR OF GERMANY (through translator): The question of the uniform, countrywide legal minimum wage was one of the big issues we had to overcome. This was known for some time. The CDU idea was different in the government program, but I think we have found a fair compromise.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

QUEST: Italy's former prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, has been dealt one of the biggest blows of his political career. After months of political wrangling, the Italian Senate's voted to expel Berlusconi from parliament after his conviction from tax fraud. He's now been stripped of his senate title, he's lost partial immunity and could face further prosecution.

Our international -- senior international correspondent, Ben Wedeman's with us, live tonight from the Italian capital in Rome. Ben, we have spoken many times about Berlusconi and the trials and tribulations. You once told me it was very unlikely he would ever spend a day in prison, but he's certainly not going to lead a political party again.

BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I wouldn't say that, actually. If you look at the Italian political scene, there, one of the main political parties, the Five Star Movement, led by Beppe Grillo -- Beppe Grillo, the comedian, is not a member of parliament.

He's never been elected to office because of a manslaughter conviction from the 1980s, but he still runs that party, and he's been seen as a possible example of what could happen to Silvio Berlusconi now that he's lost his seat in parliament.

And indeed, if you look at the sentence he's facing for tax fraud, it's not to bad, actually. It's a year of community service and a two-year forced rest, a ban from holding political office. Let's not forget that the man has a lot of money and a very nice house, so his life isn't going to be too bad.

I think he's a bit unhappy at the political humiliation of being expelled from office, but this is a man, even though he looks -- even though he's 77 years old, despite his looks, has the energy to carry on and still has a lot of strings he can pull in Italian politics. Let's not forget, he's a media magnate, he very much is able to influence the tenor - -

QUEST: All right.

WEDEMAN: -- of his channels on television. So, let's not write him off yet, Richard.

QUEST: All right, Ben Wedeman, once again offering me a suitable cautionary note against the former prime minister. Ben, good to see you tonight, Ben joining me from Rome.

Let's stay with events in the euro zone, and Greece must cut the red tape and resign itself to another year of recession. Now, those are the three Rs according to the OECD, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

It has presented its latest report card for Greece, and it says while the country has made substantial progress, it informs it hasn't yielded the expected results. Look at the classroom. Now, this is what the OECD has been handing out, and they've been handing out the D grades.

Let's start with D. The first D is for Deregulation. Red tape is choking the recovery. This is how the OECD puts it: "Greece, less 555 regulations across four industries would have a saving of $7 billion." It would generate $7 billion into the economy if they got rid of 555 regulations across four industries.

And then you've got Deflation and Debt. Prices are forecast to fall by 12 percent by 2020, so the mechanics of this are, if prices fall by 12 percent, than debt will become 160 percent of GDP, because obviously the deflation makes debt problems worse. It's the exact opposite of inflating away the debt. This deflates, and therefore, makes the debt much worse than the EU-IMF forecast.

So, these are the two sort of fundamental, technical areas of the three Rs. But then you have our old favorite GDP and forecast. The decline -- the OECD predicts a seventh straight year of recession, and it's at odds with a positive forecast by Athens, the IMF, and the EU.

So, the OECD is very much in a different line, down 7.1, down 6.4, and forecasting for 13 and 14 those two as well.

Now, as the United States comes to the end of a session just before Thanksgiving, this is how the markets have closed. Shares are up 24 points, that is a record, at 16,000 and change -- or more than change, it's a gain of 0.15 percent.

And one of the things to note in the course of what was a lackluster day on the market, shares in American Airlines owned AMR, up 1 percent. The bankruptcy judge has now approved a settlement between the DOJ and the airlines. Basically, American, US Airways will merge before the end of the year.

Still to come on QUEST MEANS BUSINESS tonight, a nasty country. That's what Britain risks becoming, says one European Commissioner, and it's all over the attitude towards EU migrants. We'll wade into the debate on immigration --

(RINGS BELL)

QUEST: -- after the break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: A rather nasty row over immigration has broken out between Britain and the European Union, with one commissioner saying that Britain risks being seen as the bloc's "nasty country." It's a dispute which comes a month before restrictions are to be lifted on Bulgarians and Romanian citizens who want to work in the UK. The prime minister, David Cameron, says he plans to restrict unemployment and housing benefits for EU migrants.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DAVID CAMERON, PRIME MINISTER OF BRITAIN: What we're doing is just sending a signal that of course there is the right to take up job places around the European Union, and people take advantage of that. But actually, it is right to say that it's not a right, that it's not a freedom to claim benefits.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

QUEST: Now, the EU Justice Commissioner, Viviane Reding, says the UK knew what it was getting into in terms of freedom of movement in the single market when it joined up.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

VIVIANE REDING, EUROPEAN COMMISSIONER FOR JUSTICE: Now, free movement is a fundamental pillar of the single market, and the single market is something Britain has signed up to, and it's very dear to the heart of Great Britain.

But you must know that in the single markets, there are four freedoms. There are the free movement of capital, of goods, of services, and of persons. You want the four, or you want none.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

QUEST: Strong words from Viviane Reding. David Cameron blames the previous Labour government for the increased migration from Central and Eastern Europe.

A member of the Labour Party, which made up that government, I spoke to the UK Shadow Immigration minister, Labour politician David Hanson, who says the migration goes both ways, with many Brits working and living in Europe.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DAVID HANSON, UK SHADOW IMMIGRATION MINISTER: We're in the 40th month of David Cameron's prime ministership, and we're five weeks from January the 1st, with Romanian and Bulgarian accession, and now he's bringing forward proposals which actually we were talking about nine, ten months ago.

So, our beef is not with some of the proposals, although there are some we're not sure when they're going to be delivered. Our beef is with the idea that he's left it so late and that actually he's still got some gaps in those proposals that I'm happy to talk about with you tonight.

QUEST: Right. Well, what to you is the missing part of the equation, here? Because there's the right to deport beggars, there's a restriction on the amount of benefits that can be claimed and the length of time that benefits can be claimed, and there's a requirement to be looking for or having a meaningful chance of work. What else would you like to add in?

HANSON: Well, there are several things, Richard, and first is he's mentioned today also increasing the fines on the minimum wage, because many people are brought to the United Kingdom and are brought under false pretenses or brought to deal with issues which then mean they're not paid the minimum wage. We need to have a date for that to be enforced.

QUEST: But if you support the majority of the proposals being put forward, then Labour is at much at risk, according to the -- Laszlo Andor, the European Commissioner, of being -- the risk of presenting the UK as the "nasty country" in the European Union. You are advocating similar, nasty - - in his words -- policies.

HANSON: What we're trying to do is to make sure we have a fair playing field for people in the United Kingdom. That's why the labor market issues that we're trying to bring forward and we have argued for for the last year, which are an anathema to the government, that's why we're arguing for those, because that gives a fair playing field for employment and for people who are coming to the United Kingdom.

I have no great problem with people working. There are a million Brits who work in Europe at the moment, and they are people who, with free markets, can do that, can earn money and can send that back to the United Kingdom.

The key issue for me is David Cameron is now talking about restricting the free borders he supported as opposition leader. He's not actually going to be implementing some of the things he said today very early in the new year, as he promised.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST: Now, let's stay with issues relating to labor and -- in the terms of the work force. And H&M, the clothing company, says it will pay factory workers a fair living wage. It's a pledge which comes in the wake of the deadliest garment factory accident in Bangladesh's history.

H&M did not make clothing at the Rana Plaza site. You'll recall a thousand people died. But H&M said that it was frustrated by a lack of government action, and it won't raise prices as a result of offering a living wage. In the words of the company, "We are willing to pay more so that suppliers can pay higher wages."

I spoke to H&M's head of sustainability, Helena Helmersson, earlier, who joined me on the line from Stockholm, and I started by discussing the two ways of creating a living wage: you either take it out of the profit of the company, the profit margins, or you put it on the price of the goods and the consumer pays more. Which is it?

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

HELENA HELMERSSON, HEAD OF SUSTAINABILITY, H&M: Let me give you a short review of our strategy, because it's based on four cornerstones. It's H&M, it's our suppliers, it's the factory workers, and it's governments.

And in achieving our vision of fair living wages for the workers, H&M has an obvious role with our purchasing practices and the prices that we pay. But the result, when it comes to the result, we are depending one working with other stakeholders, such as worker representatives, suppliers, and government. Because these are the ones setting the wage levels.

QUEST: They're setting the wage levels because companies are sort of saying what they -- large companies are saying of what they will pay, and what they will pay is what customers are prepared to pay. I'm trying to understand why you won't put the customer into one of your pillars.

HELMERSSON: When it comes to the strategy, we want to enable our suppliers to pay the workers a fair living wage, and that we can do by improving our own purchasing practices.

But also, we can do that by implementing pay structures, allowing first of all the workers to have a wage that is according to their skills and according to their performance. Secondly, that it's negotiated on the factory floors. And thirdly, we ask the workers about the level of the living wage.

QUEST: Do you get the feeling that there is an industry-wide wish, determination, goal to do something? Or is this one of those things that companies like H&M may stand out in front, but everybody else will head back to the hills?

HELMERSSON: No, of course there are major things happening, now. We've seen with the accord and the alliance when it comes to fire safety and building safety in Bangladesh, definitely we are collaborating also when it comes to living wages.

So, we have built the road map, but to a big extent, the approach is such working with different stakeholders is something that we actually share and we collaborate with many other big brands on that.

QUEST: And a final question, ma'am. If it becomes clear that really the only way to do this and to create a living wage is to charge more to the customer, is this something that H&M will do?

HELMERSSON: For now, we want to make sure that we pay for this. So we pay for it, we invest this in the customer offer, but we don't think that this will have an impact on the prices, because you have to also realize that not having stable purchasing markets is very costly for us.

Having strikes and violence, that is costly, because we have a lot of delayed orders. So, longterm, we think that this will be profitable for H&M, but also for the suppliers.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST: That's the head of sustainability for H&M, and it's a story we will continue to follow closely on QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.

As we return after a break, it's a deadly crane collapse, it happened in Brazil. Two workers were crushed to death at the stadium that is due to host the World Cup next year. The latest from Sao Paulo.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: In Brazil, two people have been killed in a stadium that's due to host next year's World Cup. It was a falling crane that struck the Arena Corinthians in Sao Paulo. It's under construction ahead of the opening match, which is in June. Work on the stadium was supposed to be finished by the end of December.

Our correspondent in Sao Paulo is Shasta Darlington, and she joins me now this evening. It's obviously a tragedy that this happened. Do we learn any more about it? This stadium is just about complete. So what happened?

SHASTA DARLINGTON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Richard, like you said, it's a tragedy. This is a huge crane, apparently the biggest crane in Brazil, the pride and joy of Odebrecht, the construction company, and it was lifting the last piece of roofing onto the stadium, 94 percent complete already, when it toppled over and, as you said, killed two workers.

They don't really want to talk about how this affects the FIFA calendar, the deadline. They say they want to focus on the grieving families, the grieving workers. But they did let slip out that they're only going to halt construction for three days. They'll be back on the job on Monday.

So, as long as their on schedule, that really shouldn't have that big an impact on when this stadium will be done. But that's if you believe that it was going to be done at the end of December anyway, Richard.

QUEST: OK. One hesitates to make any points out of a tragedy, but what's it telling us about Brazil and its now readiness for the World Cup? Are there still real fears that this thing will happen -- the World Cup will obviously happen, but it could be messy at best?

DARLINGTON: You know, Richard, I think everyone wants to draw conclusions from this, and I think it's something that's hard to do, honestly. Odebrecht is a huge company. They are involved in constructions across Brazil and around the world. They're a very well-respected construction company. So to try and so, oh, well this means --

QUEST: Right.

DARLINGTON: -- that all of the stadiums could be dangerous, I think it's hard -- but people will be asking that question. I think it's a fair question. I just -- I don't think that we can really jump to any conclusions because of this.

QUEST: Right. Shasta, that's why we pay you the money to be in Sao Paulo to give us the assessment of the position on the ground. For that, we're grateful to you tonight. A tragedy, but we'll put it into proper perspective.

Now, when we come back, we're going to talk about Burberry. A spot of tartan trouble in China for the check company -- "check" with a "C-H" if you get my drift. Its celebrated pattern has lost its trademark in relation to some leather goods. The company isn't happy. QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.

(RINGS BELL)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: Hello, I'm Richard Quest. There's more QUEST MEANS BUSINESS in a moment. This is CNN and, on this network, the news always comes first.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

QUEST (voice-over): Latvia's prime minister, Valdis Dombrovskis has resigned almost one week after a supermarket roof collapsed in the capital, Riga, which left 54 people dead. Speaking to me earlier on QUEST MEANS BUSINESS, the PM explained his decision.

VALDIS DOMBROVSKIS, LATVIAN PRIME MINISTER: I took this decision to resign, to take political responsibility for the tragedy in solitude. It's actually is a (INAUDIBLE) tragedy since we regained independence. And it's quite clear that government and prime minister is responsible for things which are going on in a country and if such deadly accident would happen, it's also a government's responsibility.

QUEST (voice-over): Italy's Senate voted to expel the former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi from Parliament after his conviction for tax fraud. It's a big blow to Berlusconi's political future. Expulsion opens up the possibility of prosecution and possible charges in other cases.

In Syria, state media is reporting that the government will send a delegation to an international peace conference to be held in Geneva in January. It's still unclear which opposition groups, if any, will take part.

Brazilian authorities are investigating a deadly accident at a stadium under construction in Sao Paulo. They say a crane collapsed and crashed onto the stadium, killing two workers. The venue was supposed to host the opening match of next year's World Cup.

A controversial euthanasia bill has passed its first legislative hurdle in Belgium. A Senate committee approved a bill that would allow terminally ill children to seek to end their own lives under certain specific conditions. The measure needs approval from the full Parliament before becoming law.

(MUSIC PLAYING)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

QUEST: Tension is running high in the airspace between Japan and China after Beijing declared a new air defense zone over a large part of the East China Sea. Japan's two largest airlines were asked by the government not to submit flight plans to China when they fly through disputed airspace.

Now there's no suggestion there are planes -- the airlines are running any unnecessary risks by flying through the zones that have been claimed by Beijing.

The dispute is between Japan and China and it boils down to a set of small, uninhabited islands in the East China Sea. Karl Penhaul and David McKenzie give us, as you can see, from the map, both sides of the argument.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The message from Beijing, "We're watching you."

MCKENZIE (voice-over): Defense officials say they monitored the entire course of the American B-52 bombers as they tested China's new and highly controversial air defense zone, claiming they have the capabilities to control the airspace. It's the latest round of rhetoric since China announced the zone just days ago.

Stretching from China's coast and pushing east, bisecting what China calls the Diaoyu Islands, claimed by both China and Japan. Both the U.S. and Japan have called the unilateral move a dangerous escalation that could lead to a military flashpoint.

China says the defense zone allows it to monitor aircraft that could threaten their national security.

LIU JIEYI, CHINESE AMBASSADOR TO THE U.N.: It's indeed the right of every country to defend its airspace and also to make sure that its territorial integrity, its sovereignty are safeguarded.

MCKENZIE (voice-over): But analysts say it's a way for China to flex its military muscle, to stake claim to the region and counteract the U.S.' so-called pivot to Asia. China is now sending their sole aircraft carrier to the South China Sea for what they call a routine training sale.

MCKENZIE: All of this could just be saber-rattling because no only really believes that Beijing wants to start a fight with the U.S. or Japan.

KARL PENHAUL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The real issue here in Tokyo may be less about what's going on in the air and more about what's going on on the ground.

PENHAUL (voice-over): The Japanese government said it fears this is part of a new push by China to asserts its claims over what Japan calls the Senkaku Islands.

HIKARIKO ONO, SPOKESPERSON FOR JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER: Japanese government is ready to respond to this kind of provocative act of Chinese flight in a resolute yet calm manner.

PENHAUL (voice-over): The eight uninhabited islands and rocks are about twice the size of New York's Central Park. Experts say they may harbor oil and gas deposits. Tension in that corner of the East China Sea has long been running high. In 2010, Japanese Coast Guard cutters crashed into a Chinese fishing boat, sparking a diplomatic spat.

Japan says it already scrambles fighter jets on an almost daily basis to intercept Chinese aircraft over the islands. Incoming U.S. ambassador Caroline Kennedy is calling for level heads.

CAROLINE KENNEDY, U.S. AMBASSADOR TO JAPAN: In dangerous times, the United States has always stood for the principle that disputes should be resolved through diplomacy and dialogue. And we are ready assist this process in every way we can.

PENHAUL: Japan's commercial airliners say they won't comply with orders to identify themselves to Chinese authorities, that they fly through the airspace to Taiwan and Hong Kong. The airlines companies insist passenger safety is not at risk. I'm Karl Penhaul in Tokyo.

MCKENZIE: And I'm David McKenzie in Beijing.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST: Now Burberry's right to the Haymarket check may be under threat in China for some of its good.

Chinese authorities have revoked the trademark on the distinctive beige, black and red patterns for leather goods. The luxury retailer is fighting the decision and, indeed, while it's on appeal, the trademark is actually under -- is still being enforced.

China's a crucial market for Burberry. Sales in the country jumped 20 percent year-on-year ending in March. China's 14 percent of Burberry's retail and wholesale sales and revenue. As for the famous pattern, one Chinese company said Burberry was monopolizing Scottish heritage by trademarking the tartan. A Scottish Registers of Tartan defines and refers to the design as Burberry.

So Ilya Kazi is the patent attorney, the partner and the Internet for property firm Buzzer Squire (ph) and we always go -- we need to understand these matters. We talked to you on these things. What's gone wrong here? I mean, everybody knows not only what Burberry check looks like but how it's been knocked off and copied the world over.

ILYA KAZI, PATENT ATTORNEY: Yes. But it's a technical process, registering trademarks. When someone tries to enforce a trademark, it's natural for someone to say, well, you shouldn't have got that registration; it wasn't distinctive, or you haven't been using it, which is another defense that's been used.

And it may simply be no more -- nothing more sinister than Burberry didn't get the right evidence in in the right form in the right time, and their evidence didn't convince the Chinese authorities. Now they're going to appeal, as you've said. They may be able to get better evidence in. But the patent office has to look at the evidence it has. It can't just say, oh, well, everyone knows it's Burberry. We'll let you have it. They have to look at what's --

(CROSSTALK)

QUEST: Yes, well, it's rather startling if Burberry -- pardon my French -- cocked up their application.

KAZI: It would -- yes, I can't comment; I don't know what they did. But it's possible that they just didn't present convincing evidence and the other side presented more convincing evidence --

QUEST: Right. If they were to lose this valuable trade (INAUDIBLE) on appeal, but if they do lose this trademark for the Burberry check in China, is that significant for a company like Burberry?

KAZI: It is significant. But there are other things they can do. They can try and reapply. It's not the end of the world, so that they're appealing this decision; they could always reapply with more evidence and they start the clock again and they can try and enforce other rights as well.

So I'm sure they won't give up.

QUEST: But why is the check -- sure the check is only important when the name goes with it.

KAZI: Exactly and --

QUEST: But you see -- and we're looking at various Burberry products (INAUDIBLE). I suppose it all depends on the user. You take out an umbrella like that, I am not going to think Ilya Kazi's got a knockoff umbrella that he's pick up on the Alcan Road.

KAZI: Yes. And I don't. But --

QUEST: I'm glad you clarified that, just in case there's any doubt.

KAZI: Exactly.

QUEST: But you see what I mean?

KAZI: Yes, exactly. So yes, they will -- this has no effect at all on their registration of the name mark, which is the critical mark. If they lose the registration for the tartan, well, OK; that gives people a little bit of wiggle room. They can't call it a Burberry tartan and Burberry will try again to protect it.

So it's an annoyance.

QUEST: No, but I remember some years ago on Oxford Street in London and on 5th Avenue (INAUDIBLE) New York, this sort of tartan's everywhere, all those people who were selling that, breaching the trademark of that tartan.

KAZI: Look, keyword there is this sort of tartan. And if you're not an expert in Scottish tartans, a lot of tartans look alike and the point is Burberry had a registration for a very specific tartan. And so people can sell --

(CROSSTALK)

QUEST: Does it make a whole nonsense of it? If you can -- if you can move away just a little bit from the Burberry tartan and de facto to the untrained eye and it looks like a Burberry tartan --

KAZI: And there are lots of people who do. And there are lots of things that -- like that. So they can't call them Burberry and I think (INAUDIBLE). And they can't, at the moment, they can't use exactly the same tartan.

But some are wanting to make a competing product, saying people like things which look tartan, can make something that looks.

QUEST: You've obviously been on both sides of this equation, haven't you? You've obviously been protecting people's and you've obviously been (INAUDIBLE).

KAZI: Exactly. And you can see --

QUEST: How far -- if somebody says, look, I want to get something just as close as we possibly can to the QUEST MEANS BUSINESS logo, but we can't call it QUEST MEANS BUSINESS but we want to make it look pretty close, how close can you get it?

KAZI: Well, it's a game. It depends on how much risk you want to take. So you can say if you do this, you're safe; if you do this, they're likely to complain. They're going to have a better case. It's a question of how brave you feel and how much it's worth. And as you said, there's a lot of money to be made out of Burberry in China. So it's worth people trying to get closer to capture more of that money.

QUEST: Considerably more money to be made for Burberry in China. There may be as the QUEST MEANS BUSINESS (INAUDIBLE).

KAZI: Who knows?

QUEST: Good to see you. Many thanks indeed for joining us.

Coming up, just ahead, it's the eve of Thanksgiving in the United States. (INAUDIBLE) Americans are heading home for the holidays and they're not getting anywhere fast. The storm is causing commuter chaos. We'll have the details.

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QUEST: The "Business Traveller" update this week, and all travelers in and out of the United States have a nervous few hours ahead of them. I actually flew over from New York last night. That's Tuesday into Wednesday because I was so terrified about leaving Wednesday into Thursday when I was originally scheduled, not that you really care.

Jenny Harrison, you have no great interest in my travel arrangements, do you?

JENNY HARRISON, CNN METEOROLOGIST: No.

QUEST: And I don't see any reason why you should have.

HARRISON: No, not really, no. I mean, you're always flitting about here, there and everywhere. We get no say in it. We don't, you know, I don't get to approve these plans, you see. You need to get me to approve them.

Shall we talk about Thanksgiving weather? I want to start with that because we've been talking about it for the last couple of days We've had the winter weather; we've had the rain, some very high totals, the ice as well, the whole storm system moving very rapidly now off into the northeast of Canada.

But you can see in the last few hours, quite a bit of rain around. That's mostly what we've been dealing with in Washington and also in New York. There's goes the system. You can see the timeline up here. So by Thursday afternoon well up there in Canada, in fact nearly offshore once again, the snow will continue to accumulate again heaviest calls actual the Northeast. And you can see a little bit just on these high elevations. So again, New York, Boston, D.C. It should be fine but we've got more warnings in place. But again, it is all well on this high elevations.

What we have got is also warnings for rain, because we have had a lot of that. There's actually huge area under the flood watch Maine across into New Hampshire, Connecticut as well and Massachusetts too, and of course also a flood warning. So a lot of rain still to clear and still to come off the roads.

So what we need to know how is what's the forecast for Thanksgiving Day itself. Well, very, very cold and a windy day as well, the high temperature of 2 Celsius. But when you factor in the wind, which is looking to be about west-northwest at maybe 30 kph, it will feel a lot colder than that so it all depends of course as to how strong the winds will be when they've got all those big balloons up there.

And I've just polled it at 8:00 am for the simple reason these are wind gusts, 57 kph, that's the forecast wind gusts. And now in fact 55 kph is the cutoff. Anything higher than that they can't get those balloons up there. They're not allowed, so it's too dangerous. So we'll have to wait and see. It's going to be a watch and see, I think, really. (INAUDIBLE) will happen on Thursday. It will stay pretty cold as we head through the next few days.

Look at this, the average is 11 Celsius in New York and we've got temperatures just above freezing and really below average, even as far south as Atlanta as well. And then if you head across to Europe, I have to say, Mr. Quest, you did head to Europe in the right time. We've got quite a bit of cloud across the north and the west, still more snow across these central areas. And 10 cm more snow in Croatia, another 11 cm in Austria; still the totals keep adding up.

And of course it will stay pretty much like this as we go through the next few days. But if you're thinking you'd like to somewhere nice for the weekend, I have got a couple of good spots for you. First of all, St. Petersburg in Russia. Yes, it's going to be cold and Sunday some snow flurries, but how beautiful, just think of it, the beautiful city, -1 the high on Saturday, 2 Celsius on Sunday with some snow flurries in between possibly some even sunny skies and then look at this, (INAUDIBLE) London, Richard, but your weekend, very nice indeed, much milder than it is actually in New York. And if you're heading to London as always, there's loads to see this time of year, Richard, in the glorious I'd imagine all the Christmas lights are up, are they?

QUEST: The Christmas lights are up and they are looking sensational. Jenny Harrison, many thanks indeed, the lights are really quite extraordinary. And it's nice and warm. Well, not warm, but it's not as cold as it is in New York.

Staying with the traffic and travel in the U.S., as millions race to get to bad weather for home for the Thanksgiving, three of our intrepid correspondents joined in.

So which method of travel is the quickest in the bad weather? Three separate journeys from New York to Washington by plane, by train and by automobile. The race has just finished and the results are in.

And the winner was, the great race, Nic Robertson came in first. He traveled by plane. He said there's Lisa Desjardins (INAUDIBLE), came in second. And in last place was Brian Todd, who is still traveling by automobile from New York to Washington.

They've all been tweeting during the trip. This is live pictures of Brian's car, Brian Todd on the road. There may be no traffic, but it's taken Brian a heck of a long time. Ah, there it goes, the old windscreen wipers.

Magnanimous in victory, Nic Robertson says, "@LisaDCNN and @BrianToddCNN, I'm waiting for you, not smug, just relieved -- very relieved -- and very lucky. Great fun, thank you."

Now with our CNN correspondents tweeting their way across the East Coast, it just goes to show that traveling needn't be of the solitary experience that it once was. Today -- and I know this as much as anybody, because I love tweeting when I'm on the road, it's like taking everybody with me. These days, you all come along, thanks to technology, how very Millennial it all is.

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QUEST: What do you do?

QUEST (voice-over): Teresa Lee is the quintessential Millennial traveler.

TERESA LEE, SR. ANALYST, HBS HOSPITALITY CONSULTING: People always say tech is a big thing for us. It's -- we literally grew up with it. So to us, it is a necessity. And it's not just, oh, mobile check-in or just social media. It's how all these things tie in together with peer review. We get real-time information. We check in at real time and we look at reviews in real time.

And we made decisions in real time.

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QUEST (voice-over): Twenty-three years old, Teresa traveled up to five times a month for work.

LEE: I really don't know anybody who uses an alarm clock anymore since everybody has probably used their cell phone. That's the difference between us. This is my whole life. This is also my wallet. There are my credit cards, my I.D. and my building card, Metro card, everything.

QUEST: But if you lose it, you've lost a lot.

LEE: Exactly, that's why I hold onto it. This is my whole life. This is all I need when I go out.

I got a little dinner snack on my trip home and I posted a picture on my Facebook and that really just shows the power of social media and leveraging it, because I can reach all of my friends at once.

QUEST: And what about this business of taking pictures of everything and posting them?

LEE: Yes.

QUEST: Why?

LEE: Why not?

QUEST: Because it's an internal experience.

LEE: Really? How so?

QUEST: You're there. Seeing the Sistine Chapel or seeing the Empire State, this urgency to take a picture of it and share it before you've sat and thought about it.

LEE: Taking a picture and standing in front of something, that's cool. But that's not the main reason we go anywhere anymore. Like for example, if I went to Paris right now, the last thing I'd want to see is the Eiffel Tower because it's just so common. We've already seen pictures of it everywhere.

QUEST: So you check it online obviously.

LEE: Or on my phone.

QUEST: But did you (INAUDIBLE) sort of perforated (INAUDIBLE)?

LEE: Well, they don't even do that anymore. They just scan the code when you board at the gate.

QUEST: All right. So it's on board the plane, what do you pay extras for, if anything?

LEE: Sometimes wi-fi, if it's a longer flight. Food, definitely for food.

QUEST: Do you collect frequent flyer miles?

LEE: Oh, yes.

QUEST: What are you looking for particularly in the hotel? Will you pay for wi-fi?

LEE: I can expense it. So technically it's not even my money. But it's at the point where wi-fi is so necessary for our generation, it's almost against my personal belief, like why are you charging us for wi-fi, for $15 a day?

QUEST: Here's the deal.

LEE: OK.

QUEST: You and I have to take a trip. And we'll see how you do it and we'll see how I do it.

LEE: (INAUDIBLE).

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QUEST: Now I've traveled many tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of miles over the years. But I've never met a flight attendant like Cath (ph) on last night's United flight from New York, Newark, to London. Cath (ph), in her spare time for the last few months has been learning how to make balloon animals. And she gives them to the -- she gives them to the young passengers and those who are not so young, like me, as we left the aircraft this morning.

Cath (ph), thank you very much. And safe flying on your next trip.

We'll get back to Newark tomorrow.

I'll be back after the break.

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QUEST: Tonight's "Profitable Moment," it is rare that politicians take responsibility wholeheartedly when things go wrong. Tonight one did, the Latvian prime minister Valdis Dombrovskis. He said on this program, "I apologize for the things that did not succeed," and with deeply understated contrition. And as he pointed out when he talked to us tonight, "We do not yet know who is really to blame," who are the actual to blame for the deaths of 54 people in that Riga building collapse.

Well, Dombrovskis isn't waiting to find out. He senses that after Latvia's most deadly tragedy in recent years, it's a case of somebody must accept the burden of care.

You could put it another way: it happened on his watch. And now, it seems, that is reason enough and of course for Latvia, it would give them a new government with a new mandate. It's difficult to remember the last time a politician went before he or she was pushed and dragged out of the door. And even harder to think of those who have gone purely because of a public failure rather than a private scandal.

Latvia's prime minister provides a fittingly sobering example of knowing when to quit, and he's done so on one of the most serious times that you can imagine.

And that's QUEST MEANS BUSINESS for tonight. I'm Richard Quest in London. Whatever you're up to in the hours ahead, I hope it's profitable. I'll see you tomorrow.

END