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QUEST MEANS BUSINESS
Europe's Political Earthquake; European Markets Close Up; What La Pen's National Front Party Win Means for EU; Ukraine's Presidential Election; Business Leaders as Presidents; Next for Ukraine; Official Says Nigerian Girls Located; Exclusive: BP Chief on Russian Economy; Search for MH370 On Hold; Raw Satellite Data Guiding Search for MH370 to be Released
Aired May 26, 2014 - 16:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JIM CLANCY, HOST: Tonight, the great Brussels Backlash. Voters telling EU leaders they are sick and tired of the status quo.
From chief executive to commander-in-chief. Ukraine turns a billionaire president.
And drone is where the heart is. How unmanned aircraft can whisk you away on a virtual vacation.
I'm Jim Clancy, and this is Clancy means business -- no, it's actually QUEST MEANS BUSINESS, but Richard is on assignment.
Good evening everyone. Tonight, disgruntled Europeans have sent a message to Brussels. Voters across the EU moved to the political fringes to tell their leaders they want a dramatic overhaul of the single currency and the single market. The victors have claimed a mandate for government from within their countries.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ALEXIS TSIPRAS, SYRIZA PART LEADER (through translator): The message must be received that there's a reason why euro skepticism exists. We must build a better Europe in order to deal with such euro skepticism.
National elections must be called in a calm and organized manner as soon as possible.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CLANCY: National politics in each country playing a leading role in these elections. In Greece, a revolt against bailout imposed austerity measures gave the far-left Syriza Party a lead over the country's two major parties. Greece has been in recession for six years, now. It has the highest level of unemployment in the entire eurozone.
As Greece moved to the left, the UK and France lurched to the right. In Britain, the UK Independence Party took the greatest share of the vote. A poll conducted before the election showed UKIP voters want Britain to leave the EU and reduce immigration. They also express dissatisfaction with the major parties.
Meantime in France, voters for Marine Le Pen's National Front Party also said they were unhappy with the country's traditional parties. The National Front wants France to leave the eurozone and impose new limits on immigration as well.
Although centrist parties still command an overall majority, European leaders are worried about the shrinking center.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANGELA MERKEL, CHANCELLOR OF GERMANY (through translator): Regarding the success of the populists and the far right, it's remarkable and regrettable, but we need to win back the voters, and that's also true for France. I believe that a path directed at competition, growth, and jobs, is the best answer to the disappointed voters who cast their ballots the way we all did not wish for.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CLANCY: All right, let's get some perspective now. Karel Lannoo, the chief executive of the Centre for European Policy Studies, he joins us tonight from Brussels. How does Brussels react to this? Do they react?
KAREL LANNOO, CEO, CENTRE FOR EUROPEAN POLICY STUDIES: Good evening.
CLANCY: How does Brussels react?
LANNOO: It's important to say, tomorrow night we have the leaders, which will meet here. No, it's too early to say. But what I heard was a lot of concern, of course, at this stage, because we have about one in every seven members of the European parliament which is coming from a europhobe or a euro skeptic party. And of course, there is concern what impact this will have.
But of course, it's early. It's only one day after elections, and tomorrow night, the leaders will meet here to elect or to discuss a possible next Commission president. And the big question is, how will they take into account this result?
On the one hand, let's say they have said people take the leader from the largest party in the European parliament to eventually become the head of the European Commission, but this is not entirely sure, because the main parties' support have come down. Whereas, of course, as you heard, the euro skeptic parties have increased.
So, probably, they have to do, as you were saying, much more than only discuss the election of a next Commission president, they have to think about an overhaul about the way in which Brussels is being run.
CLANCY: It's not only about the direction, it's about the message as well. It has already been said by President Hollande, for instance, that we're going to make jobs, we're going to make growth a priority. But they've been saying that for how long now? Do the voters still believe them?
LANNOO: Exactly. Exactly. Hollande has been saying this two years ago before he was elected, and he was elected on a kind of a pact for growth. But he didn't do too much about this. On the contrary, you see the new incoming prime minister of France going for, again, another form of austerity in France.
And we don't see, for example, the French economy reacting positively to that. Apparently, we still need to find, really, the recipe to overcome this crisis, at least in a few European countries.
CLANCY: I'm going to ask you to look into your crystal ball a little bit here, Karel. How do these fringe parties across Europe, from the left and from the right, the euro skeptics, how do they play their cards during all of the controversial issues that are going to come up? What does this mean for the European parliament?
LANNOO: Difficult to say, again, because the main thing is will these euro skeptic groups become a fraction in European party? But if you look at them, they represent fairly different agendas.
If you compare UKIP from the Front National, to the PVV in the Netherlands or to the Danish Folkeparti, or if you compare it to the extreme lift, as you were mentioning, in Greece, they all are elected on a somewhat different ticket.
So, the question whether they will be capable to exercising some force on the European agenda will depend on the degree to which they will hang together.
However, we have seen and it has been widely in the media, Nigel Farage, when he was already for UKIP the last five years in European parliament, making a lot of use of seat in the European parliament to make publicity against Europe, and to use it to come out with all forms of slogans on whatever political leader, whatever European policy.
So, it shouldn't be underestimated even if they were not capable to organize themselves, the damage they could do to Europe and to further undermine the European project.
However, this could then lead to a reaction from the main parties to strengthen themselves and to kind of get out with a better European agenda and to do, probably, something about this growth agenda, which Europe desperately needs. But --
CLANCY: It --
LANNOO: -- the thing is, what has been surprising, according to me, in this election campaign before the European elections is that there was only in campaign against Europe. There was very little of a campaign in favor of Europe.
CLANCY: Interesting times lie straight ahead. Karel Lannoo, I want to thank you very much for being with us and lending your expertise.
Meantime, stocks in Europe closing a bit higher as investors reacted to these elections in the EU and in Ukraine. In Frankfurt, the Xetra DAX hit a record high, helped by Daimler and BMW shares. Shares in Milan boosted by a rise in Italian bank stocks. Exchanges in New York and London closed this day.
Meantime in France, the question isn't whether the election victors want to stay in the EU, it's whether they want to abolish it altogether. Voters in France have been shocked by the strong support for the National Front. They are now very divided on what it means for the European project as a whole.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): I think it's more a vote of revolt on behalf of the French, and that's a pity, because people do not necessarily measure the consequences of what that can have. We must be able to have a system of federations, states that are united, and one day go towards what the US did.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): There's no European project anymore, which is clearly explained to the Europeans. People retreat into themselves and no longer think clearly because they do not understand what Europe is. Nothing will change yesterday's elections. It's not a disaster. But it is a message that regardless, European leaders will now have to take into account.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CLANCY: And joining me now from Paris, Christian Malard, an international diplomatic consultant. Christian, good evening to you. What do the voters --
CHRISTIAN MALARD, INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC CONSULTANT: Good evening, Jim.
CLANCY: What message did the voters send to President Hollande?
MALARD: Well, we have two messages, Jim, here. First, I think when they voted better than expected for Madame Le Pen and the extreme right Front National, I think the French had two messages. One for Europe, because they are a bit afraid or a bit fed up, too, with what they call heavy bureaucracy, technocracy in Brussels.
But the main message which has been sent, conveyed, has been to President Hollande. Two months after a disaster already in the last regional and municipal elections, they delivered another same kind of message to him and saying we don't trust your politics, you need to change drastically your economic policy to have unemployment -- the rate of unemployment slow down.
We need to create jobs in this country. This is the key message. Mr. Hollande has been promising, making a lot of promises. He has never been held.
And tonight, on television, when the French listened to him saying we need to reform Europe, we need to reorient Europe, and I think the French people who voted for Madame Le Pen are among whom many employees -- 43 percent of the workers in France voted for the extreme right. It's just amazing.
Tonight, the message is, instead of reforming Europe or reorienting Europe, Mr. President, first you should reform yourself, reorient yourself, reorient your government. This is the kind of message people would address him, would send him tonight after what they have listened to him on television.
CLANCY: Is there really a belief, Christian, that jettisoning the EU is somehow going to jettison France's economic woes?
MALARD: Well, the problem is we have never explained what about Europe properly in this country. There was no interest, really, in Europe. And when you have Madame Le Pen trying to make her electorate believe that we could get out of the euro currency system, I think it's a tragic joke. I think we cannot believe that.
And some people think we should get out of Europe, but I think our future is still in Europe, and the French have to bear that in mind. Madame Le Pen has promised a lot of things also, but she is not the one who has the key or the solutions to our main problem. So, France right now has no good power, no good president, no good government.
The right-wing traditional government, which is the UMP, is entangled in big political financial scandals, and Madame Le Pen is promising the moon, and she will never be able to deliver the moon.
CLANCY: Christian Malard, laying it on the line, live from Paris tonight. Christian, as always, great to have you with us. And coming up straight ahead --
MALARD: Thank you.
CLANCY: -- Ukrainians speaking out. The country has voted a new president into office. We're going to have a look at what lies ahead as the nation tries -- tries -- to move forward.
CLANCY: Ukrainians taking part in an historic presidential election under fire this weekend. Violence escalated during the vote in the eastern city of Donetsk. Pro-Russian gunmen stormed the airport there. They're in a standoff right now with Ukrainian military troops.
Earlier, there were reports a Ukrainian combat helicopter was sent circling, and separatist reinforcements are moving toward the airport. We're going to have a live report from the ground a little bit later, right here on QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.
Petro Poroshenko claimed victory in Ukraine's presidential vote. The billionaire candy maker leads all candidates with more than half of the vote counted, and he's avoided a run-off election, by all indications here.
He's known as the country's chocolate king. He's largely seen as a pro-European Union choice. The president-in-waiting faces the daunting challenge of trying to unite a deeply fractured country. Despite that, Poroshenko says the European integration is going to be his priority.
Now, businessmen often campaign on the notion that success in the corporate world is going to somehow translate into effective leadership in government. Historically, however, they've often made poor presidents.
Former US president George W. Bush attended Harvard Business School. He was chairman of an oil company and owned a baseball team. He promised to bring corporate ideals to the White House. When Bush left office in 2008, the country was in economic disaster, and a banking crisis led to a $700 billion government rescue program.
All right, to Italy, where Silvio Berlusconi founded an Italian media empire before serving three terms as prime minister. His government failed in the European debt crisis, and he was forced to resign in 2011.
In Thailand, Thaksin Shinawatra founded the country's largest mobile phone operator. He was overthrown as prime minister in a military coup. He's since been living in self-imposed exile in Dubai, outside the country.
Now, CNN's Charles Hodson spoke to Ukraine's acting foreign minister, Andrii Deshchytsia, and asked him what is next for Ukraine.
ANDRII DESHCHYTSIA, UKRAINIAN ACTING FOREIGN MINISTER: We have to be united in supporting reforms in Ukraine, in supporting territorial integrity of Ukraine, and supporting Ukraine's efforts to stabilize the situation in Ukraine.
CHARLES HODSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL BUSSINESS CORRESPONDENT: In concrete terms, what does that mean? Does it mean going further with sanctions, or does it mean something more than that?
DESHCHYTSIA: We have to be prepared for sanctions. We have to continue pressure on Russia. So far, Russia has only announced -- made some statement that they would tolerate and would recognize the result of the Ukrainian elections. But what we need is real steps and the recognition of the Ukrainian new president and the Ukrainian government.
And if Russia will not stick to its promises, then I think that -- and continues supporting the terrorist groups in eastern Ukraine, I think that the West has to be prepared to push further with sanctions and impose new sanctions on Russia.
HODSON: Well, obviously, it's hard to see an end to the arm wrestling that's going on between yourselves, on the one hand, and President Putin of Russia on the other. But in the longer term, yo have to have some kind of practical working relationship.
You have not to be friends, but you at least have to be able to get on with each other and to have a dialogue. Do you think that can be achieved in some kind of realistic time period?
DESHCHYTSIA: We need to reestablish relations with Russia, and we have announced a few times that we are ready to talk to Russians. We are ready to continue our trade and economic relations. We are ready to support people-to-people contact.
But it's now up to Russia. If Russia will recognize the legitimate powers, presidential and governmental powers, in Ukraine. And if so, we would be able to continue dialogue with them.
CLANCY: Breaking news just being confirmed now by CNN. Nigeria's chief of defense reports the military knows the location of the more than 200 schoolgirls abducted last month. The official told state media the Nigerian military would not use force to rescue the girls.
The girls were kidnapped from their school dormitories in northern Nigeria. The Islamist group Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for those abductions some 41 days ago.
Returning now to the Ukraine and the crisis there. The chief executive of BP says he hopes Western leaders will think carefully before preparing any new sanctions against Russia. Bob Dudley was one of the few Western bosses to attend the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum last week. In an international television exclusive, he told our John Defterios why he was willing to engage with Moscow.
JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNN EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR: You thought it was important to come to St. Petersburg. Why is that? Because of the stake you have in Rosneft and not to try and stay away from Russia when it needs the support?
BOB DUDLEY, GROUP CHIEF EXECUTIVE, BP: Well, I think we have a significant stake in Rosneft. I'm on the board of Rosneft. We have business that is important. So, I think it was important to come.
I also think it's very important to come to watch and listen, to be able to sense where things are going. It's an enormous investment for BP, and I think I have a responsibility to be here and be part of this thing, as well as our own business here in Russia.
DEFTERIOS: Do you think that stage three of the sanctions, this idea you go to financial sanctions on Russia would be not only a mistake to ratchet up tensions, but also could be a contagion to the global economy? How do you see it as a businessman.
DUDLEY: Well, I think -- I hope that short-term political decisions can have unintended consequences that can spread and move in unintended ways. And I hope those that are thinking about these things actually think through steps three, four, five, six, and seven on how it could affect the world.
I think it's something for careful thought and reflection. Again, I have no special insight into what might happen.
DEFTERIOS: But the White House intensified this debate around St. Petersburg by asking CEOs, particularly American CEOs, to avoid Russia right now. What do you make of that?
DUDELY: Well, I think there are signals being sent on both sides. And no one contacted me, I think because as a large British oil company, that I know -- I've heard of such things. But for us, we are the largest investor in Russia, and I think that would be something -- I need to have a responsibility and stand with partners during difficult times. And of course, we've got a lot of interest as well.
DEFTERIOS: The game-changing deal in China, does this suggest that Russia can go east and west, this $400 billion over 30 years with CNPC.
DUDLEY: I think it's a natural evolution of the direction anyway. There's a huge amount of resources in Russia, there's a huge amount of demand in China that's only going to grow, and I think this was only a matter of time before that was going to happen.
CLANCY: John Defterios there with that. Now, as the hunt for missing Malaysian Flight 370 is due for a serious pause, the serious raw data keys to the search, how it was conducted, are going to be made public. We'll have that story straight ahead.
CLANCY: The search for missing Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 will be put on hold this week and may not pick up again until August. That is according to Australia's top transport safety official.
Now, once the American Blue Fin 21 drone, this device that you see there underwater, is taken out of the water, it's going to take at least two months, if not more, until new underwater vehicles can be deployed.
Meantime, families of the missing passengers clamoring for access to the raw satellite data that has guided the search up to this point. Some say searchers are looking in the wrong place. Saima Mohsin reports now from Kuala Lumpur.
SAIMA MOHSIN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Last week, the acting minister for transport promised to release the Inmarsat data that families have been demanding. Now, CNN has been told that Inmarsat handed that data over the Malaysian authorities last week. Now the minister assures me that it will be released within the next 24 hours.
HISHAMMUDDIN HUSSEIN, MALAYSIAN ACTING TRANSPORT MINISTER: Inmarsat, probably tomorrow.
MOHSIN: Probably tomorrow.
HUSSEIN: Yes. So wait until tomorrow. What's the hurry? Does it matter? The most important is getting to the truth.
MOHSIN: Well, isn't it important to release the data as promised?
HUSSEIN: Yes. So, 24 hours is not going to make that much difference to the truth, right? We still have no --
MOHSIN: So, we'll get the data tomorrow?
MOHSIN: But it does matter. It matters to the loved ones of those onboard MH370, because this satellite data is all that the multinational search is relying on to locate the plane. And, in fact, today we've learned that the minister says that they have been reviewing the data themselves since receiving it from Inmarsat.
HUSSEIN: The possibility of maybe there might be other areas that we need to focus on. But all the signs, as Angus has indicated in the last week or so, Angus Houston, all the signs still point to the area that we are looking at. But even the area that we're looking at is not small.
MOHSIN: This is undeniably an unprecedented situation the Malaysian government has found themselves in, and a huge challenge for the multinational effort to find the missing plane. And it's because of this great mystery that the families of those onboard want their own independent review of the raw satellite data in its original form.
Saima Mohsin, CNN, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
CLANCY: And coming up right here on QUEST MEANS BUSINESS, fighting between Ukrainian military and pro-Russian militia forces escalates in the country's east. We're going to give you a live update from Nick Paton Walsh in the region, next.
CLANCY: This is CNN, I'm Jim Clancy, and here are your headlines this hour. Nigeria's chief of defense reporting the military does know the location of more than 200 schoolgirls abducted last month. The official telling state media the Nigerian military would not use force to rescue the girls. The girls were kidnapped from their school dormitories in northern Nigeria. The Islamist group Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for the abductions.
In eastern Ukraine, all flights canceled at Donetsk Airport. Government forces attacking Russian separatists, who have taken control of a terminal. Ukrainian combat helicopters have fired at targets on the ground. We're live in Donetsk in just a moment.
The billionaire candy tycoon Petro Poroshenko declaring himself the winner of Sunday's presidential elections in Ukraine. At a news conference in Kiev, Poroshenko said closer integration with Europe would be his priority.
Meantime, EU leaders say they will focus on growth and jobs to win round frustrated European voters. Leaders are holding a summit on Tuesday after fringe parties took major victories in European parliament elections. The German chancellor and French president say Europe's competitiveness should be the focus.
Egyptians going to the polls for the first time since Mohamed Morsy was overthrown, that was last July. It's the first day of the country's two-day presidential voting. Retired army chief Abdel el-Sisi is widely expected to take the top job after stepping down from the military to run in this election earlier this year.
One day after the presidential election in Ukraine, a major battle erupted at the - in the -- country's East. Ukrainian troops are pitted against pro-Russian separatists who storm the Donetsk Airport. CNN's senior international correspondent Nick Paton Walsh joins me now live from Donetsk. Nick.
NICK PATON WALSH, SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT FOR CNN INTERNATIONAL: Jim, unclear quite what today's violence has resulted in. The militants themselves are accepting they have casualties, not giving a number. Ukrainian officials not suggesting they've lost many at all, but we have heard for many hours today around that key part of Donetsk's infrastructure, a red line, frankly in the eyes of the pro-Kiev authorities the separatists were never supposed to touch. We heard intense gunfire, heavy artillery be used and a sense certainly here in a city which had felt it was perhaps on the sidelines of the unrest trying to pretend it wasn't happening. The violence is now very much in the heart of where they live.
WALSH: Donetsk Airport was a red line the separatists knew when they took it so quickly. Ukrainian military jets alone flew over it. Paratroopers move in, separatists too. Oddly, both sides agree how this started.
Male, TRANSLATED BY WALSH: An SU 27 fired two strategic bombs this separatist said, echoing Ukrainian official. This man adding that it was inhuman to bomb a suburban area.
WALSH: Locals course in this. Those explosions a clear sign of the continuing intense gun battle around the airport. The worst violence really that this key population center in Eastern Ukraine has seen as the start of this crisis and coming hours literally after Ukrainian President- Elect Petro Poroshenko says he'd like to negotiate potentially a way out of this crisis.
Separatists well-armed, disciplined, trained amassed, facing Ukrainian gunship. They fire at it and it hits the target then comes back. Rural suburban worlds ruptured. His family says they support the separatists who protect. As you can see over there on that roof, one of the stray rounds has landed into a house where fortunately there was nobody there at that time. Police stopped traffic but not the separatist busloads flooding in. Both sides later claimed they held the airport but the fire burning here just as Kiev's new leader calls for peace hence at how Ukraine may be rushing headlong towards collapse.
WALSH: And the real fear is too it wasn't just the airport we saw violence at. Reports of one person killed, two injured at the railway station here, further reports certainly bounce around Donetsk even to the north in Slavyansk. Potentially, some think maybe there's a new phase now in the Ukraine military operation here. There's certainly a new phase in the violence, and that is in such stark contrast to what we heard from Petro Poroshenko. The Ukrainian president-elect he has brought a statement that he welcomed negotiation, welcomed diplomacy as a way out of this. Instead, today we've seen a whole new phase of the violence here breaking out. Is that perhaps Ukraine trying to improve its negotiating position? At some point it is suggested it's not entirely incapable of resolving this through its own force, it's not entirely clear. What is clear are the people of Donetsk, the large population center here, would like to carry on as normal, but feeling very afraid tonight. Jim.
CLANCY: You know, the "Kiev Post" quoted a woman today as saying, "Nothing good is coming our way." Looking at the elections, even with Vladimir Putin saying he could work with Poroshenko, Poroshenko saying he's open to compromise. The people there are losing hope that the politicians have a solution.
WALSH: Well I think in some ways today some Ukrainians make take heart that at least their military doesn't appear entirely impotent, they were able to put up a fight for that airport whether they actually moved in or not we still don't know. But they are more in evidence as a military force here on the ground than they really have been since the start of this crisis in many ways, and actually being more active. But that does bring the potential for those calls from separatists here for Russia to intervene, to potentially be realized?
Moscow's made it very clear it's distanced itself publically from this separatist movement but potentially Putin could be forcing some sort of action if there's adequate loss of life here on the ground amongst the separatists, he'll be put in a very difficult position there amongst the constituency he's courting both domestically and abroad as well. So, it's a messy situation certainly but the potential now for Kiev and Moscow to talk could assist in some kind of clarity.
The real question we can't answer, Jim, is do these gunmen on the ground here answer to a political leader? Have they felt themselves disenfranchised by Moscow now pursuing their own agenda, or does that idea from Washington and Kiev, they're all basically Russian proxies still hold good and can Moscow turn off the taps. We don't know the answer to that, but we do know today has been the worst day I've seen since this crisis began. Jim.
CLANCY: Nick Paton Walsh giving us some perspective on how the story continues to shape up tonight in Donetsk. And coming up right here on "Quest Means Business," the king of Thailand giving his blessing to this new military junta. How they're putting economics first next right here on "Quest Means Business."
CLANCY: In Thailand, the king giving his backing to the army general leading the country under martial law. The endorsement holds sway with some Thais. It's unlikely though to change the minds of the hardcore opposition who are going ahead with protests despite the real possibility of a brutal crackdown. Paula Hancocks is on the streets of Bangkok.
PAULA HANCOCKS, INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT FOR CNN INTERNATIONAL, BASED IN SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA: It's quite a noisy standoff here in Victory Monument this is in central Bangkok. You can see the military has moved in here. They're trying to tell hundreds of protesters - maybe 2 or 300 to go home. They've been telling that that they are disrupting the traffic, they're disrupting the country and they need to go home. But at this point the protesters are not listening. They want to get their voice heard. They are anti-coup protesters, they're ignoring the fact that martial law says only five - no more than five - can actually get together in some kind of a demonstration. OK, no problem. They're also saying that they will continue to protest until (inaudible) progress. They're also saying that they'll continue to protest until there are elections. Their General Prayuth has said this Monday morning that elections may be further in the future, he doesn't know when. He's saying there could be a stronger military crackdown now for these demonstrators. You can see at this point that isn't making any difference to them. They are determined to make their voices heard. Paula Hancocks, CNN Bangkok.
CLANCY: Well, despite the continued unrest and you could hear there in the streets in Thailand, the nation's army chief is moving quickly trying to prop up the economy he says. Thai finance ministry officials have been instructed to restart government spending and stimulus programs, hoping to get the economy growing again. Thailand's benchmark index closed slightly lower in Monday's trading. Long-term markets have been generally undisturbed by the continued political unrest. Now here to discuss what's ahead for the fragile Thai economy is former Thai finance minister, Korn Chatikavanij, he's the - as I say - former finance minister. The National Council for Peace and Order or the military junta has already announced that they're going to try to pay out all those rice subsidies promised to farmers. Can they argue that this coupe was staged for economic purposes - the purpose of economic stability?
KORN CHATIKAVANIJ, FORMER FINANCE MINISTER OF THAILAND: Well certainly businessmen in Thailand appear to be happy that there is now stability and they can look forward to normal business. So, the -
CLANCY: But they're also a part of the elite -
CHATIKAVANIJ: -- (inaudible) I think the economy will improve.
CLANCY: -- they're also part of the elite that wanted -
CHATIKAVANIJ: I'm sorry?
CLANCY: -- they're part of the elite that wanted Thaksin Shinawatra's allies out of power, including his sister.
CHATIKAVANIJ: I think it would be dangerous to categorize all businessmen as being either or pro- or anti- Thaksin Shinawatra. I think businessmen in Thailand are like businessmen everywhere else. I guess they want stability and certainly they weren't getting that for the past several months almost for the full year. Now that the military has delivered that at least from that perspective, they're not unhappy.
CLANCY: You know, the continuing protests - people have argued that, you know, it seems that Thailand has weathered all of this quite well, but it actually used to be a real engine of growth in the region and now it lags behind countries like Indonesia and others that surround it. I'm just wondering your perspective here. Is a coup bad for business?
CHATIKAVANIJ: Well, to be fair, the economy has been a laggard now for several years actually, so it hasn't just happened because of the coup a few days ago. We had a mini recession last year and already this quarter we were down before the coupe took place from the quarter before. So from that perspective I think we need to ask the question what is it we've been doing wrong? It's very easy to condemn a coup. It's very easy to blame everything on the military, but the fact is things have been going wrong for some time. And a large number of Thai people feel in fact that democracy and certainly politicians have failed them. So I think we need to take stock and review what went wrong in order to avoid the same thing from recurring again because we certainly don't want this to be the very last coup in Thailand.
CLANCY: What do you see in the midterm -- in the short term and the midterm - as the fallout from this action? How does it affect not only tourism and foreign direct investment, but the overall economy?
CHATIKAVANIJ: Well, the economy as I said has been moribund at best for some time. I'm hoping the best-case scenario is that the military government will now push ahead in coming up with next year's budget which was looking like it was going to be substantially delayed. And with that, hopefully, domestic consumer confidence will be regained and we'll be able to find some footing. That will take some time I think for foreign investors to regain back confidence. But as you see, with the stock market, today it was down just a little bit, some foreign selling, certainly no panic or no --- or concern - amongst local investors. So I think things are stable. Let's hope things stay that way so that we can get back to normalcy and the general election as soon as possible.
CLANCY: Korn Chatikavanij, the foreign finance minister of Thailand. I want to thank you very much for lending your perspective -
CHATIKAVANIJ: Thank you.
CLANCY: -- for us tonight to better understand the situation on the ground in Bangkok and Thailand.
CHATIKAVANIJ: My pleasure. My pleasure.
CLANCY: Well, coming up, a staycation in Monument Valley, or how about some fun in the sun in Malibu all from the comfort of your sofa? We're going to tell you how you could be doing that tonight, straight ahead.
CLANCY: If you just got home from a long weekend after battling your way through holiday traffic, perhaps you should consider taking your next holiday by drone. You can visit Monument Valley or Malibu here in the U.S. from your sofa. Lots of other places to choose from around the world. There's no shortage of destinations. It's all possible thanks to Jan Hiersemenzel's website TravelByDrone.com, that's TravelByDrone.com. And Jan joins me now from Zurich. Jan, great to be with you. When we look at this website, all kinds of possibilities come up. But I want to begin with what gave you the idea to do this - describe it a little bit as we show people because it's specifically directed toward aerial views.
JAN HIERSEMENZEL, FOUNDER, TRANSPORTBYDRONE.COM: Hi, Jim. Thanks for having me on the show. Yes, a year ago I started buying drones myself and I noticed how difficult it was to find really nice footage - drone footage. And I was around on the internet and found all of these great videos scattered everywhere, and I wasn't happy with that. I wanted to put these together, bring them together and create a library where you can go from drone footage to footage around the world and watch yourself through all of these amazing videos.
CLANCY: So people essentially have map, Jan, and they can click on any location on the map around the globe and there they will be connected with someone who's done images just like these - aerial images of that part of the world?
HIERSEMENZEL: Exactly. You choose your destination, you zoom in on the map, and you have a choice of drone flights you can hop on and fly. If it's on a beach, if it's along monuments, it's your choice. Go, go go and explore the world.
CLANCY: All right Jan, we're going to have to leave it there. I tell you, it's a great place too for people that have these drones that want to go out there. You can go to that website and check it out. It is TravelByDrone.com and you can submit your video. I would ask you this - where there's enough of the new age elevator music already behind some of these images, and it might be good to get some natural sound in there. Jan, great job. I like the website.
HIERSEMENZEL: Thank you very much, Jim.
CLANCY: Well, breaking news tonight. Nigeria's chief of defense says that they have located those 200 or more Nigerian school girls they were kidnapped last month. It sparked international outrage. Let's bring in Arwa Damon now live from the Nigerian capital Abuja. How much do we know about this, Arwa?
ARWA DAMON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well very little at this stage, Jim, and these comments were being made as the chief of defense Alex Badeh was addressing a group of protesters saying that they knew where the 200+ girls were but that at this stage they could not disclose that information. Really urging people to give them the room and the time to conduct whatever investigations they may have underway. Now, do these comments mean that they have a general idea of where these girls are? Are they following perhaps specific leads that have been gathered from those numerous air surveillance missions that Nigeria and other nations have been running as well? Or are these more broad comments trying to just calm the situation down at this stage?
We've been reaching out to numerous government officials trying to get more specific details as to exactly what the chief of defense may have meant with those comments. He did also, however, Jim, say in that very same statement that the government - the military - would not be using force to try to rescue these girls, that jeopardizing their lives, putting them in even greater danger quite simply would not be worth it. Which in turn also leads to the question of if not use of force - and it is very understandable that it would be a very tricky if not impossible military operation - what else is there? Some sort of negotiation with Boko Haram. And at that stage, who do you negotiate with? This is an organization that has various different levels of leaderships.
The wide speculation is that these girls have been broken down into smaller groups which means they could negotiate with one group to secure the release perhaps of those girls but then face challenges when trying to secure the release from the others. So, at this stage, not a lot more concrete information, that kind of credible evidence that the parents of the children are so desperate to hear that of course the entire nation and the world at this stage really wants to see put forward. But a statement at this stage that perhaps the Nigerian authorities might be a little bit closer to locating where those missing schoolgirls are, Jim.
CLANCY: Yes, there's a lot of questions because from the very start, people have known that they were either in Borno State or there was speculation early on they had been taken across the borders into Chad or Cameroon. All of those questions have arised, I'm just wondering how much further along that makes the military? If on one hand they're not going to negotiate and if - and number two, -- they're not going to try to rescue them by force, there's not a lot of other options that are out there.
DAMON: No, there are really not, Jim, but there's also a lot of information that isn't out there. This is not necessarily a government that has been very forthcoming when it comes to gathering information. Tonight, for example, when this news first arose, we tried to reach out to numerous spokespeople for the Ministry of Defense, the Ministries of Information, various other sources and we quite simply have not been able to reach them.
It has been widely speculated that the girls are somewhere in the northeastern portion of the country. There were those various reports that you mentioned there that perhaps they've been broken into smaller groups, moved into Cameroon, moved into neighboring Chad. A lot of speculation that they could be in the Sambisa Forest - this massive, sprawling territory that really is Boko Haram's den.
A few days ago, we were in the capital of Borno State Maiduguri speaking to some sources there within the military who were basically telling us that they did not dare venture close to the forest which begged the question of what kind of military operation is actually taking place. A lot of other speculation that they could've been moved perhaps into the Lake Chad area. We do know at this stage that the U.S. is also running its own surveillance operations into various areas of interest. So still, Jim, the kind of situation where you have these desperate parents, this nation on edge waiting, hoping for information but very little concrete coming out at this stage, Jim.
CLANCY: Well, a whole movement of "Bring Back Our Girls" is waiting and watching tonight and wondering where this is going to lead and, like us, they're going to have to wait some more to find out the answers. Arwa Damon, it's great to have you there on this story in the Nigerian capital Abuja. Thank you.
All right, well we were talking earlier and I'm joined now by Tom Sater about travel and about, you know, taking a virtual vacation -
TOM SATER, METEOROLOGIST FOR CNN INTERNATIONAL: Yes.
CLANCY: -- but not everybody has that luxury - especially for business.
SATER: No, but you may want to travel by drone - you won't lose your luggage, you won't sit on the tarmac as many travelers will do. So, we're going to start in Europe, Jim. Let's take a look at the satellite picture. Notice during the heat of the day, mainly in Eastern Europe, this infrared satellite image shows the blossoming of thunderstorms. Now, yes, they're losing of course that daytime heating, but they're still rumbling. We've got an interesting situation setting up where rain did cool down Munich today, Warsaw was cooled down, London currently at 12, Vienna 17. But you don't have to go far even at this hour to see temperatures that are more like daytime highs. On the edge of this bubble of warmth is where this area of low pressure is pushing the power, it's pushing the moisture into the heat and this is where we're starting to really start to see things fire up, even at this hour. Mother Nature's making a lot of racket just north of Salisbury, in toward Frankfort and it makes its way up toward Amsterdam.
So from the Netherlands to Austria, we've gotten not only a risk of a threat for thunderstorms, but a rare level two that also extends from Croatia down into areas of Northern Greece. The last place we want this is Croatia Bosnia Herzegovina because they're still trying to clean up. They don't need the more - more rainfall as the waters - floodwaters - are slow to recede.
So Frankfurt. Here is the chance where maybe some of your travelers could see a slight delay. The thunderstorms are going to continue in Amsterdam as well. When we look at the other places of interest - Vienna, you're going to be looking at temperatures probably getting pretty close to the 30-degree mark. Look at some of these numbers. Extraordinary - Bucharest 29, it should be a 24, Belgrade where you've reached a crest on the Sava River, you're still in a flood stage for a week but you're dealing with the heat and there's the risk as far as possible disease and epidemic. Kiev, you hit 30, 29 yesterday, Minsk 30 degrees, Moscow as well.
So as you look at your Tuesday across Europe, Rome 20, 24 in Vienna. The heat continues to scorch areas to the east.
In the U.S., we've got a couple of areas of concern. Tornado watches now across the lone star state of Texas, we've got a severe thunderstorm watch in the northeast. But New York, Washington, D.C. all look fine. We had two water rescues in Austin, Texas a little bit earlier so this is the threat in the U.S. where we have the possibility of severe weather. It's really just across Texas, but we will find it in the areas of the Midwest. If you were expecting someone to maybe arrive or expecting someone that you believe will be landing in the U.S., it's Kansas City, it's Chicago, it's Detroit. So here are the numbers for Tuesday - 28 Chicago, Kansas City. The warmth in Atlanta - oh, gee - in Washington, D.C. a warm 31 degrees.
CLANCY: All right. Tom Sater, thank you much as always there from the Weather Center giving us a look at the map. Meantime, outside the Brazil football team's hotel, the crowds were chanting, the vuvuzelas were blaring, but this is no World Cup victory parade. We're going to tell you what song they were seeing next.
CLANCY: All right. We've got a little more than two weeks to go before the World Cup begins in Brazil. The home team has reported for duty in Rio. Unfortunately, the players didn't quite get a hero's welcome.
CLANCY: This was the scene at the Brazil team's hotel. It was a protest from teachers - they're furious that money's being used for the World Cup Tournament rather their schools. They've been out in the streets before, they'll be out again. And that's "Quest Means Business." I'm Jim Clancy at CNN Center in for Richard who's on assignment. Thank you for being with us.