05:40 PM GMT, March 8th, 2013
(CNN) – Venezuela's Hugo Chavez, who died this week, built his support on a populist platform of sharing the country's oil wealth with the poor.
Yet Venezuela's economy, and the future of its oil industry, remains deeply vulnerable.
CNN's John Defterios talks with Fereidun Fesharaki, the chairman of FACTS Global Energy, who says the country's oil industry is in a "shambles." So what challenges a new leader face?
07:22 AM GMT, March 6th, 2013
Hong Kong (CNN) – The United States may be on the cusp of the cheapest stimulus package its citizens can imagine - in the form of a free trade agreement with the European Union across the Atlantic Ocean, according to Karel de Gucht, the EU’s trade commissioner.
But Mexico's candidate for the top job at the World Trade Organization said a deal between the two could pose problems in Geneva.
“The challenge that is posed by the negotiations between the EU and the US is enormous,” said Herminio Blanco.
“We think it's a no-brainer that the United States and Europe should be in negotiations to have a comprehensive, ambitious agenda to not only lower tariffs…but also to deal with regulatory issues, to deal with services,” said Myron Brilliant, senior vice president for international affairs at the US Chamber of Commerce to CNN’s Richard Quest.
Responding to Quest’s challenge that such an endeavor could not be achieved in “our lifetime”, Brilliant said he is mistaken.
“I'll tell you why you're wrong about that. The United States needs jobs. We have an OK economy. We've seen a resurgence in manufacturing. We've seen a potential for a reduction of energy prices, right? But we need a global economic agenda.”
In a lively exchange best watched in the video here or above, Brilliant said the biggest impediments to US-EU success for a free trade agreement - already valued at $5 billion - is regulatory.
06:44 AM GMT, March 6th, 2013
Hong Kong (CNN) - For Renault-Nissan, relativity may help manage expectations for a 2013 already predicted to end in the red.
“The (automobile) market in Europe continues to decline and the contraction is even bigger than what we have foreseen,” said CEO Carlos Ghosn to CNN’s Richard Quest.
“Even with this very bad start to the year… we’re going to go from a very bad market to a bad market. Instead of having an 8% decline, we’re going to probably see something like (a) 3% to 5% decline for the year.”
The Brazilian-born auto chief made the forecast at the 2013 Geneva Auto Show. The annual event opens to the public Thursday.
European governments can help automakers, Ghosn added, by bringing predictability to the economy and “eliminating uncertainty”.
“One of the reasons consumers are not buying cars or other goods is because they are uncertain about the future.”
As head of Japan’s Nissan Motor Company since 1999, Ghosn said he hopes the country’s new government of Shinzo Abe will bring the currency to a “historic level” of 110 to the dollar.
Since October 1, the yen has already risen nearly 20% and currently hovers near 93 yen to the dollar thanks to Abe's promises for a weaker yen, looser monetary policy and pledges of fiscal stimulus.
“Finally we have a government which has a vision and trying to do something about deflation (in) Japan.”
05:04 AM GMT, March 1st, 2013
(CNN) - Only 1% of kids leaving schools in developed countries understand coding, "and yet that is where a lot of the jobs are," said Frank Meehan, CEO of Kuato. "And kids understand that, they want to learn."
That point got more traction this week, as Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg appear with a host of other internet stars talking about the importance of code education.
Kuato CEO explains how it teaches children the basics of coding.
04:57 AM GMT, March 1st, 2013
Hong Kong (CNN) – The world has at least 1,453 billionaires, with about half of those residing in the U.S. and China, according to the Hurun Global Rich List.
In terms of cities, Moscow is home to the greatest number of billionaires with 76, followed by New York (70), Hong Kong (52), Beijing (41) and London (40).
"For every billionaire that Hurun Report has found, I estimate we have missed at least two, meaning that today there are probably 4,000 billionaires in the world," said Rupert Hoogewerf, chairman and chief researcher of Hurun Report, a Shanghai-based publishing group that tracks China's wealthy.
04:53 AM GMT, March 1st, 2013
(CNN) – The European Union has pushed through legislation that caps banker bonus at two times a banker’s salary, which has drawn an angry reaction from the city of London Mayor Boris Johnson, who calls the cap will help Wall Street and Singapore, drawing financial talent away from the City. "This is possibly the most deluded measure to come from Europe since Diocletian tried to fix the price of groceries across the Roman empire," Johnson said.
CNN’s Richard Quest explains the ramifications of the move.
04:24 PM GMT, February 28th, 2013
03:05 PM GMT, February 20th, 2013
(CNN) - The Moscow Stock Exchange is the latest company to trade on its own platform.
It comes after the company sold its shares at an Initial Public Offering last week - at the low end of the IPO range.
The stock began trading Friday , providing a valuation of more than $4 billion.
John Defterios sat down with Kirill Dmitriev, the chief executive of the Russian Direct Investment Fund and asked him why, despite the lukeman response, he sees potential in the exchange.
03:39 PM GMT, February 14th, 2013
(CNN) - Former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown tells CNN’s John Defterios that protectionism has “taken over” in global trade, while advocating an agreement between developed economies in the West and emerging markets in the East.
Brown, who was UK premier from 2007 to 2010, said the problem that Europe and the U.S. face is that both do not have a big enough share of each other’s markets.
His comments come after the U.S. and European Union announced talks will begin later this year on a multi-trillion dollar free-trade pact to boost economic growth.
On the UK’s membership in Europe, Brown said British jobs depend on the EU and the idea that Britain could leave “offends” the country’s history, economics and culture.
04:55 AM GMT, February 13th, 2013
(CNN) - The IMF says global growth in 2013 will be an uphill climb but projects growth to reach 3.5% with emerging markets providing much of that boost. We’re already seeing signs of this through the scope of corporate earnings. In January, corporate earnings drove stock markets up, thanks in large part to emerging markets. GE’s fourth quarter revenues rose 4% beating expectations. GE cited China and other emerging economies as the driver for them. Apple reported record quarterly profits. CEO Tim Cook said in an earlier interview with Xinhua News Agency, “China is currently our second largest market. I believe it will become our first.”
While it’s not new that emerging markets are giving much-needed horsepower against the headwinds of the US and the Eurozone, it is interesting to note that countries like China, Indonesia and India still hold a wealth of untapped potential for investors. Younghao Pu, UBS chief investment officer for Asia Pacific, points out that emerging markets account for 50% of global GDP, but only 20% of stock market capitalization. That means there’s a lot of potential to grow. He believes Tier 1 Chinese cities like Beijing and Shanghai are saturated, mature markets where growth is decelerating.
“In China, multinationals need to penetrate into Tier 2 or Tier 3 cities like Chengdu and Xian where the growth rate is stronger,” Pu says. “Different companies are using agencies and I don’t think that model is building up the potential there in those cities.”
One reason for under-investing appears to be multi-layered. The business advisory group, Economist Corporate Network, recently surveyed 500 corporate clients about the current business climate in Asia. The majority of responses were from Western multinationals. According to the survey results, the companies found “murky” investment climates in certain regions, regulations that swung from unpredictable to protectionist and difficulty in finding reliable local employees.
Hans Paul Burkner, chairman of Boston Consulting Group, takes a much more optimistic approach and looks at emerging markets from the inside looking out. He recently spoke with CNN about what he calls “global challengers,” companies from emerging markets that are growing quickly. These are companies like Malaysia’s Air Asia, China’s Alibaba Group and Brazil’s building products company Tigre.
"They are fast growth, high ambition…and acquiring business models in North America, Europe and Japan. You should not be afraid because it’s not that they are coming in, sucking out all the technology and walking home. They want to really build a position (globally.)”
About Business 360
CNN International's business anchors and correspondents get to grips with the issues affecting world business, and they want your questions and feedback.