Skip to main content

tv   Sino Tv Early Evening News  PBS  November 4, 2010 5:00pm-6:00pm PST

6:00 pm
6:01 pm
6:02 pm
thanxpecd, for tax csrom some quarters, includ coalition. but the to thent ha set for itself. >> i am saying simplify the tax system. we're taking steps in that direction, but cutting the budget deficit is the top pr projected increase in revenue will not be enough to avoid the need to take on ne debt, but it will be at a lower rate than before. earlier, we spoke with our correspondentnd asked how the german government plans to use the extra cash. there is some disagreement between the government parties on what to do with the extra moneye free democrats would liko
6:03 pm
see a tax cuts, and that after all was a key election pledge of the government. but chancellor el has said the emphasis should be on balancing the books. she says streamline and simplify the tax system, yes, but broad tax cuts, no. from 2016 onwards, under the constitution, the government will not be allowed to run out new debt,soth e money that they are seeing now is very finances in order. >> simon, thank you. air france has no plans to ground its fou airbus a380's
6:04 pm
after operator was forced to ma a ergcy landing in singapore. they say they are not equipped with rolls royce engines like the one on the qantas airliner. ey have granted their fleet after one of them made an emergency landing -- qa grounded the fetft o of them made an emergency landing. >> shocked passengers are not likely to forget this flight anytime soon. >> i was sitting behind the wing. we felt this loud thud. everybody washa. i said, the pilot did a fantastic job. >> an explosion appeared to have esoythenneasg and damage the wing. eyewitness is in indonesia said eyea aou ise the flight was on its way to sydney and stopped on its weight and singapore. simite after takeoff, the
6:05 pm
engine failed. the pilot had it back to singapore. a passenger filmed the dag wing as qantas began their vestigation into the incident. the carrier said it would ground its fleet of six a380's. >> we will suspend all a380 ta off until we have sufficient information on the flight. we will suspend those a380 services until we are completely satisfied that qantas safety requirements have been met. >>spiast from airbus and rolls royce are on their way to singapore to help in the investigation. singapore airlines has also grounded its a380's, while three other airlines said their super jumbo's would keep flyi that earlier we asked an expert about the engine failure that forced the emergency landing.
6:06 pm
>>we don't know the exact cause. we know that it was an contained an immaterial, which means that br left the engine, penetrating the wing. that is a very serious incident that should not have happened. engine manufacturers are required to prove during testing before the engines are delivered that that does no haen everybody is looking into what has happened. >> how damaging is this for qantas? >> it is very damaging for them. it is also veryamaging for rolls royce, the engine manufacturer. that particular type of engine has had several incidents on the a380 since it entered service three years ago, and in my view, there have been too many incidents. ey'reot related, but there is an issue with the engine that
6:07 pm
urgently has to be addressed. >> thank you. police in greece have carried out a controlled explosion on a parcel bomb in athens. the culpri had put the name of an orthodox archbishop aon the package and also found several more suspicious packages. the latest find comes days after parcel bombs were sent to a number of embassies and european leaders, including german chancellor angela merkel. two alleged members of a great anarchist group have been arrested in connection with the bombs -- two alleged members of a greek anarchist group. riot police used stun grenades and tear gas protesters as scuffles broke out when the police tried to push the firefighters back. greece has implemented a severe austerity measures to deal with the massive debt, including job
6:08 pm
and wage cuts. the german defense minister guttenberg has made an unannounced trip to a combat zone and afghanistan. he visited german troops at the german base, where he wanted to get a firsthand view of the situation. german, american, belgian, and afghan forces have been engaged in heavy fighting with taliban militants in that region for several days, aiming to secure a new outpost close to an area controlled by taliban fighters. steve has news about the ecb. >> the ecb is holding the rates steady. today at the u.s. fed announced plans to buy another six under billion dollars of bonds with newly created money -- to buy $ 600 billion of bonds with new decree at money, it has prompted other action by other central banks. the u.s. dollar is expected to
6:09 pm
continue to get weaker, prompting policymakers to consider fresh steps to prevent their currencies from appreciating too uncompetitive lehigh valleys. the ecb has decided to hold its interest rates steady and indicated it will not be following the fed in easing, propelling the road to a new nine-month highs against the dollar -- propelling the of euro to new nine-month highs against the dollar. >> jean claude trichet is not following the u.s. fed's example. >> based on monetary policy, the governing council views the current key ecb interest rates as appropriate. we therefore decided to leave them unchanged. >> the u.s. is relying on a defense strategy to bolster its economy. federal chairman ben bernanke is going to pump an additional $600
6:10 pm
billion into the system by buying up treasury bonds. european minister is concerned about the policy. >> the head of the federal reserve made these decisions. he is being nicknamed helicopter ben, because he once referred to the theory of dropping money from a helicopter into the economy. that is not the way i see things. >> many european economists and u.s. economists are critical of the measures, saying that it could lead to a new speculative bubble and large currency fluctuations. german shares rallied as investors reacted enthusiastically to the stimulus package, sending the dax index to its highest level in more than two years. our correspondence sent this summary from frankfurt. >> the u.s. federal reserve is promising a liquidity, and this keeps the market goingt. ithe dax went up to its highest
6:11 pm
level in 2.5 years and is now on a level before the lehman brothers crisis. on the other side of the balance sheets, german companies are still very convincing, reporting results that have been far above expectations. for the first three, investors took some profit out of the share price. >> we are staying with a closer look at thursday's number. the dax finished nearly 1.8% higher. the euro stocks 50 index finished better, finishing at 2884. across the at what the, the dow jones closed nearly 2% higher. the currency market, the euro making gains against the u.s. dollar, trading at $1.4209.
6:12 pm
ireland has announced plans to push through spending cuts and tax cuts -- and tax hikes, in a bid to tame its debt crisis. they want to cut their budget deficit to below 9.5% of gdp. this year, dublin is expecting its deficit to soar to 32%, mainly due to the cost of the banking sector bailout. finance ministers are set to unveil a four-year plan to cut the deficit below 3% of gdp by the year 2014. germany's banking sector took a beating during the financial crisis. the state owned banks were hit especially hard. the federal government stepped in with billions to keep the banks afloat during the crisis and since then there has been talk about merging the banks to make them stronger. thursday, merger talks between two key banks in germany collapsed.
6:13 pm
>> west lb is under pressure to find a new partner. the european banks as they may have to do a merger deal by next year or be sold. at the german government has been increasing pressure on the country's banks, viewing the financial crisis. berlin had to bail them out with billions after risky deals pushed them to the brink of collapse. germany's nine banks are owned by state and regional savings banks. it employs over 46,000 people. now they have suspended merger talks,, the economic advantages it did not outweigh the challenges -- sang the economic advantages did not outweigh the challenges. general motors is celebrating a strong comeback from its bankruptcy and belau. according to third quarter results, they expect third quarter net income around $2 billion, putting it in strong shape to refloat shares on the
6:14 pm
stock exchange at the end of the month. gm said robust sales in china have fuelled their strong performance. last year, the u.s. government funded a gm bailout with $50 billion of u.s. taxpayer money. it still owes the government about $40 billion and expecting to raise about $13.6 billion with its planned ipo. that is the business update. it germany's jewish community has ordained its first female community in 75 years. she became a rabbi at a ceremony in berlin today. berlin has germany's largest jewish community, made up of recent immigrants from eastern europe. >> this woman growth in ukraine at the time of the soviet union, where religion was taboo. her parents took her to the
6:15 pm
synagogue for the first time when she was 13. >> on the one hand, it was the first time and gained access to the language and religion. on the other hand, it was something natural. i knew i belonged there. >> eight years ago, she came to germany to be trained as a rabbi. she studied at a college in berlin. she is the first woman to be ordained as a rabbi in germany since 1935. >> it is important me that jews in germany develop a positive i did in a, not something related to persecution and the holocaust but a positive identity. >> she will become a rabbi for jewish communities in lower saxony. as in many other places in germany, the jewish community there is primarily composed of immigrants from the former soviet union.
6:16 pm
>> i have the linguistic tools to reach people and key medicate jewish religious content in a more understandable way -- and communicate jewish religious content any more understandable way. >> she says that her new congregation likes to sing, and she is pleased about that because as a former music student she enjoys carrying a tune. the world's oldest person has died at the grand old age of 114 years. she celebrated her birthday earlier this year with champagne. she died of the french caribbean island. she was born on st. barts and 1896. she lived most of her life as a nun in a convent before returning home. th title of the world's oldest person now goes to the 114-year- old american, who lives in texas. i will be right back in one
6:17 pm
minute, looking at 60 years of protecting human rights in europe. stay with us for that.
6:18 pm
welcome back. europe's convention on human rights turns 60 on november 4, what is marked not only by congratulations but also criticism, including from christian denominations that it is promoting a secular agenda. they point to a ruling a year ago by the court of human rights that demanded italy remove crucifixes from public schoolrooms. since then, there has been a new focus on the convention and court, which interprets the rights and freedoms as laid down in that document six decades ago.
6:19 pm
here is more on the court and its 47 judges, one from each of the signatory nations. >> human rights are guaranteed in europe, where legal protection is basic values. everybody is equal before the law. european states are often those in the dark. this is where legal decisions are handed down. the european court of human rights in the french city of strasbourg. the judges here are among the busiest in europe. at the dock is constantly full -- the docket is constantly full. some cases question the freedom of press. the princess of monaco feels that the newspapers are infringing on hurt human rights by publishing photos of her. this publishing house argues the media needs more freedom when it comes to celebrities. some ask what that has to do with human rights.
6:20 pm
>> society has changed. the court of justice reflects that. it is shown in prominent cases like this, dealing with freedom of the press. >> these are the fathers of the european charter of human rights. the basis for the council of the european court of human rights. world war i ii had ended five years -- world war ii had ended five years earlier. at the founding fathers wanted a unified area of human rights. >> we cannot and that anything less than the union of europe as a whole. >> that vision was impossible in the divided europe and it took decades before the iron curtain fell. once communism and it, those ideas found fresh life. it -- once communismended, those
6:21 pm
ideas found fresh life. >> they were just 23 member states. now there are 47. all former parts of the soviet union and warsaw pact are now members and have subscribed to these basic values. >> membership has consequences. of the 10 countries with the most willing to chance -- of the most rulings against them, nine are in the east. in september, strasbourg ruled a gay pride demonstration could no longer be banned. such bands constitute discrimination and are not just . after russia comes turkey. this summer they ruled they were culpable for the murder of a trellis. security officials had not given him sufficient protection -- had not given a journalist
6:22 pm
sufficient protection. >> they look at all different countries, from greece to 11 on to russia to turkey, -- from greece to 11 not to russia, turkey, which helps member states have aggressive approaches on human rights. >> that includes western europe. the court recently ruled against germany because of this man, an employee of the catholic church. he was separated from his wife and was fired for violating church law. the court in strasbourg ruled the church had interfered too much in the man's personal rights and he must be kept on as an employee. turkey will take over the chair of the council of europe's parliamentary assembly next week, one week after the e.u. releases its report. turkey is a signatory to the convention and has been a council of europe members since
6:23 pm
1939, but they're also a leading offender. many of the violations are tied with its legal system but it is russia that has the worst record. with many of its violations tied to the battle with islamic separatists in the volatile republics of the caucasus. >> this person is on his way to meet a client who lives in a small village. he has worked as a human rights lawyer of the last seven years. >> i often travel to the scene and interview witnesses or make sketches. that really helps bring a successful case before the european court of human rights. >> this man is expecting the lawyer. he recounts the events of the
6:24 pm
year ago, when masked gunmen stormed his house in the middle of the night. they forced him and his wife up against the wall, pushing weapons into their backs. he says he has no doubt that the men were russian special forces. they pulled his oldest son at of bed, tied him up, and took him away. there has been no trace of him since. >> if my son has broken the law, they should put him on trial. but they come here in the morning, firing guns, and take him away like common bandits. >> they are desperate. inquiries of the police and public prosecutor's office have proved fruitless. their son has disappeared. with the lawyer's help, they have taken the case before the european court of human rights. they think this is their only
6:25 pm
chance to find their son. >> security authorities are obliged to investigate these incidents. what happens in practice shows they are not capable of investigating objectively. that is why people turn to the court of human rights, in the hope that it will get justice. -- and hope they will get justice. >> disappearance this are common in the northern caucasus, where russia is fighting against islamic extremists. they think civilian casualties are inevitable, a necessary evil, but he says reports of kidnappings by security forces are exaggerated. >> with these alleged kidnappings, it happens that families find the person at work or late in the evening. then they find out they have gone underground to fight alongside the rebels. >> he has heard the other side of the story.
6:26 pm
he meets like this person, whose brother was abducted in public seven years ago. >> the court of human rights has handed down a ruling which decrease the family members are to receive compensation of 70,000 euros. that also calls for russia to find and punish those responsible. >> the lawyer says the state usually pays the plaintiff, but those responsible are rarely found. that is often the most important thing for family members. but he is convinced it was still right to go to court for his brother and all the others who disappear in the northern caucasus. >> there is no point in giving up hope. you have to go this route because it is important, and never give up hope. >> kidnappings, torture, and
6:27 pm
executions surround this man. he tries not to let his clients emotions affect them. he just wants to do the best job that he can for them. >> that is all for our in-depth. thank you so much for joining us. captioned by the national captioning institute
6:28 pm
6:29 pm
6:30 pm
♪ - hi, this is bob scully, and welcome to another edition of the world show: entrepreneurs: the dobson series. the sawmill and lumber industry is a tough business indeed. in the '70s,
6:31 pm
there was such a company of great size in the northwestern part of quebec province in the forest, and it had been built by a man who himself was quite a tough and solid entrepreneur. but one day, he fell out of the sky--he died in a plane crash. his family was devastated. he had six children, the youngest, 12, the eldest, 29. she was a controller in the company and accountant. stood five feet tall. the family got together. they could have sold, they could have closed, they could have done any number of things, but the kids and the mother turned to her and said, "okay, you run it, now that dad is gone". her name is guylaine saucier, and she took that company and made a huge success of it, and then became canada's foremost expert on governance, authoring beyond compliance, a report that changed the face of business across canada. she now sits on canadian and worldwide boards. here she is. guylaine saucier, you are widely
6:32 pm
recognized as canada's foremost expert on governance. that's me saying that. you don't have to say it. and we're going to get into that in a few minutes, because it concerns entrepreneurs more and more, especially when their company grows. but your own story as an entrepreneur is fascinating because years ago you didn't think you'd be doing that, running a huge company, a family company. something tragic happened. let's go back to that. - ah, yes, it was a few years ago. in '75 in fact. and my father died in an accident--an airplane accident--and i was 29, and i became ceo of the company, which at the time was kind of unusual because we were in the forestry sector. so i became the only woman--and i think up to now still the only woman-- running a lumber company. - and these are big, beefy guys, and unions, and all that, and i think your father had made you a controller? you were an accountant by profession? - yes, i'm an accountant.
6:33 pm
- but you had four or five brothers? - i had three brothers and two sisters. yep. - and you all got together, and how did it happen that they turned to you and said, "okay, sis, you do it"? - uh, kind of. i was the oldest of the family, and i was the only one who already was working within the company, and my three brothers were younger. and, finally, i remember my mother saying, "is that a problem for a woman to be president of the company?" - [bob]: hmm. - and my baby brother, who was 12 at the time, he just kind of winked at me and said, "do it". and this is how i became president. - and when you walked in, i mean, these factories, these are very noisy, turning wood into lumber, right. so you hear the noise of these buzz saws and so on, and, like i say, you've got these big, beefy guys. on the first morning, how did you announce it? how were you treated? - the first day that i went into
6:34 pm
one of the sawmills... we didn't have any union, but you always have an informal leader. - [bob]: mm-hmm. - so this guy--i'm five feet tall and this guy was well above six feet--he just looked at me and he said, "so, you're the new boss?" and i said, "yes". and he said, "so, when are we going to have our next raise?" i said, "you know, when you install a new machine, it's taking a little time for the new machine to run properly. maybe it's the same thing for a new boss". and he looked at me and laughed, and he said, "we'll give you a few months". and they did. - and were there any troubles? was there any kind of friction,
6:35 pm
any kind of strike or anything? because in that sector they have that. - no, we were probably the only one non-unionized, and i remember a little later that one of the union leaders said to me, "the only way to unionize your people is for you to go and ask them to get unionized". and i said, "just don't count on that". - so they were happy, and it's the kind of company that didn't need a union, basically, or... - we tried very hard to keep a good communication with all of our employees. i used to meet all of them, and at the end we had a little bit more than a thousand. i used to meet all of them in small groups to discuss the economy, the lumber sector... and i have to say that, at the end, they were preparing themselves for these meetings, reading economic newspapers, all of that. - what board members are
6:36 pm
supposed to do. - what board members are supposed to do. and in fact we always kept a dialogue with them. and if there were issues, they were at ease to talk about them, and we kind of just solved them. - and did you have--this is one of the toughest things for any entrepreneur--sometimes to lay off people? that's a toughy. did that come up? - uh, as you may remember, the lumber industry is a very cyclical one, so yes we did. and it's much more difficult even because we were in most of these places the only employer in town. - [bob]: hmm. - so when you do lay off people, the town is closing. so we were in fact delaying as much as
6:37 pm
possible, because we knew that there was a real social impact within a town, but at the end, sometimes we had to, and we did. - and how did you do it? did you get them all in a meeting? what was your technique to do it? - i was just kind of, you know, meeting with them, saying, "guys, the price of lumber is down. we don't have a choice if we want to survive on a long- term basis. we will try to make that as short as possible, but this is it". and we had that relationship that i could talk to them like this. - and were you true to your word? because of course with unions they have a backlist, they have a seniority list where they know they're going to come back when production comes back. you didn't have to honour that, not having a union. did you? - yes, we did. we did. you know, you have to realize we were in
6:38 pm
northwestern quebec. most of our employees were coming from eastern quebec, in fact. they were travelling... ...every ten days to come-- because we had three shifts-- every ten days to the sawmills, going back home after their ten days. so they were doing that because they liked working with our company. we built a tremendous loyalty, so you have to be very, very careful not to jeopardize that relationship. - indeed. and it worked for you. - it worked. they had that loyalty to my father before, and i ran the company for 15 years, so... the same thing was transferred to me.
6:39 pm
- and, as i recall, you also grew by acquisition. - yeah. - and i imagine again: five feet tall, 29 years old, in this world of men, you meet another owner to buy him out. did they push you around? what was the story there? - oh, yes, they pushed me around. you just have to stand up, that's all. no, from time to time it was difficult, especially when we were in a very tough, competitive environment like selling wood chips. i remember one day the forestry minister asked all the lumber producers to meet in quebec city because there was a crisis in the pulp and paper sector, and this crisis has an impact on the sale of our wood chips, so we were really competing with each other.
6:40 pm
i remember wearing a red dress that day. nobody saw me. i... just at that time, i was successful. there was one chip contract left, and i got it. people were so mad at me, nobody saw me that day. i had lunch by myself... - oh, nobody talked to you. - nobody. "oh, you were there? we didn't even see you." [bob laughs] so, yes, those were tough times. your competitors, they were nice to you, but at the same time, when we were talking business, they were as tough as nails, and i just had to stand up by myself. - and did you have showdowns with the bank? often in a
6:41 pm
cyclical industry, you need financing. you're not self- financed--not purely self- financed--and of course as an accountant you knew all the numbers, but still, you can have a bank that wants to pull the plug. all kinds of stuff like that. did you go through that? - yes. yes. in fact, it was a difficult time when the lumber price went down. remember end of the '70s, the beginning of the '80s, there was this inflation rate with-- - oh, yeah, stagflation, sure. - and interest rates were very high. yes, and i did something that, you know, with hindsight, was really totally bold. i asked to see the president of a bank. - now, this is not some small, local bank. this is one of the big five, i guess? - it was... yeah. and i went to see him, and i explained to him
6:42 pm
what i was trying to achieve. and probably because nobody else did that before, i don't know, but he said, "you know, we'll trust you". - because the manager might have stiffed you. the local manager would have said, "the hell with it", but the president of course had sway over it. but how did you get that idea to pick up the phone and do that? - you know, everybody was saying to me, "you'll have problems with the bank", and i said, "i need to do something", and i was speaking to the manager, and i could foresee that i was going to have problems, so i just said, you know, i need to do something else. i need to talk to somebody else, and... ...everybody was saying to me, "the president won't see you". [bob chuckles] and i called, and he saw me.
6:43 pm
- and it worked, too. - and it worked. - and what happened... ...finally--because you've had quite a career. you've been chair of a number of corporations, and you're still on a lot of boards internationally and nationally... you left all that at some point, and people are probably curious to know, did you sell out? did you... - one day, in fact, a pulp and paper company came to see me and said, "we would like to buy your company". i was the biggest totally independent sawmiller in canada, and with sawmills came timber supply, so it was very important... i knew that one day... - pulp and paper could just integrate it. - yes. and i kind of... i said, "it's not for sale". and they said, "yeah, but we would like to make you an
6:44 pm
offer". and, finally, another company learned about that through the government, i think, and we went to an auction. - which isn't bad. makes your price go up. - and at the end, i remember my family was totally supportive of me. i said, "listen, we have these two offers. what do you want to do?" and one of my brother said, "you know, this company has been your baby all the time. it is for you to decide". - ah. by then, the 12-year-old who winked at you was 27 years old, and he didn't want to take over? none of them? - no, i think that everyone did their own things. and when we had that offer, i knew, even with hindsight, this offer would
6:45 pm
have been totally stupid to refuse, but this is another story. - mm-hmm. yeah, because the price went... - yeah. we didn't know at the time. and my answer to them was that, you know, this offer... i cannot offer you the same return on your capital in managing the company that this offer is giving you. so, probably, we should sell, but if we do sell, we'll do that this way, because i don't want to get emotional about that. - ah. "this way" meaning what? we leave? - we leave, and, you know, it had been my life for 15 years. - even more if you count your father, who started it. - yeah. and so, you know, to leave a company like this, it is emotional. you leave your team,
6:46 pm
you leave people with whom you worked. you went through tough times, good times... no, it was a difficult decision for me. so i said, "no, we will do it quickly". - so you wouldn't get cold feet, because we often hear about closings that go awry. the entrepreneur is sitting there, about to sign, and oh, no, can't sign. you didn't have any of that. you went through with it. - yeah. yeah. - and did you ever go back? you were in the same... you were up there in the northwest in the same town. did you walk by every morning and see it? - no, no. i moved completely to montreal and never went back. - hmm. - i'm not like that. i don't like to go back. - you might have to shed a tear if you do. - yeah. yeah. - but anyway, you went on to great things, so we want to get to governance, because you are the author, along with a number of heavyweights, of beyond compliance, which really--this
6:47 pm
was in 2001--has had enormous influence throughout the canadian corporate world, and we've been doing that as the americans have been doing it too. the preoccupation with governance, we think it came from scandals and so on--enron and things like that--but i wonder, because 2001 is before... just after the dot-com bubble burst... why has governance become so important, in your view? - i assume that... ...beyond the fact that, yes, scandals and all of these kinds of things brought many roles for us to govern companies, i think that, at the same time, board members realized that we can be a little more than rubber stamps. we can bring value to the company that we govern.
6:48 pm
and i think that all of this happened at the same time, and we tried to find ways to bring values, to bring our own expertise, because when you choose your board properly, there is a tremendous amount of expertise around the table, and expertise in different fields. - but the funny thing, the paradox, is--i've had many people explain this to me, who sit on these worldwide boards, as you do: yes, the expertise is there, but it's such a sedate, nice meeting. you know, it's usually in a nice city, and there's nice meals, and everybody's in a good mood. the expertise doesn't flow into the company. the managers give the reports. nobody has time to read them. and so the expertise is cut off from the company. see what i'm saying? there's kind of a disconnect. now you're smiling, because you don't... you don't...
6:49 pm
- i wouldn't have asked what you just said, robert. no, i think that board members, first of all, are working hard, are reading... - their bibles. - their bibles. - okay, that's good. - and i think that, yes, we still have nice lunches, but, um... people are very active. i'm not saying interfering with management, which is different. but very active, questioning, challenging, discussing what is brought on the table. more and more in today's environment, and especially with going through the end of a financial crisis... - yeah, of course. - you could see boards questioning about risks; not only risks today, but emerging
6:50 pm
risks. so we... i don't see what you define as a sedated board... - no, and i have one example of what you're saying--a very strong board--is of course the hewlett packard crisis with carly fiorina. she sat in this chair, and we talked about it, and she didn't like it one bit when they pushed her out, but it can happen. have you see this, where a board slowly loses confidence, for whatever reason, justified or not, in their ceo? i assume you've been witness to some of those fights? - yes. it's... this is probably one of the most difficult times around the board table, because you know where it's going. at what pace should it go? because you have to ensure that you don't hurt the company in the meantime. when you already have a good succession plan in place,
6:51 pm
it might be easier. that's not always the case. so it's... - do you favour giving the ceo a chance to explain himself or herself? in other words, a charitable approach? or a surgical approach, cutting the head off the minute something's wrong? - i think... none of them. sorry. what i do favour is that year after year the board as a whole has a real discussion with its ceo, so that won't come as a surprise, neither for the ceo nor for the board. you know, if we say to a ceo, "you know, you could improve on this", and the ceo doesn't improve, you might say it a second time, but... at the end... - you're not going to say it four times. - no. but i think that for me it is very, very important to have a continuous dialogue with the ceo on his or her performance, so
6:52 pm
that we can adjust--even our succession plan. we can adjust our remuneration... - mm-hmm. sure. - ...according to that performance. - and when a company is widely held, the board of course is supremely important because it represents all of these shareholders, and management can have a lot of sway over a widely held company. but when there are dominant shareholders--maybe majority, or just big blocks, big institutional blocks--in your report, you say those people should not be considered among the independent directors, because they're major shareholders. but others will say, well, a major shareholder is your best guarantee that the company will perform. what do you think? - you know, sometimes you just kind of... you nuance your position? - yes. - probably. no, a major shareholder should get involved, really, in taking these kinds of decisions--i think that if he
6:53 pm
stays as a shareholder. if he is part of management, this is something else. but if he stays at the shareholder level, i do say, in fact, it is important, because the new ceo, if he or she doesn't get along, for whatever reason, with the significant shareholder, it doesn't have the same value, it doesn't have the same strategic view. it won't last long. - probably not, but there are also these rules with the shareholders when they're institutionals, like the teacher's pension fund, or whatever, where they say, "we don't even want to be on the board, because we don't want to be insiders", and there are legal reasons... but what you're saying is that's not realistic; they should get involved.
6:54 pm
- in fact, yes, because they do get involved anyway. [bob chuckles] but they do it behind the scenes, and i do prefer that the discussion be around the board table. - and one thing that astounded me when i read the report--and the other day i met you in an airport, and you had the same position, and it still astounds me: you prefer a non-executive chairman, but it would seem to me that a three day a week executive chairman will get to know more about the company and is harder to fool than a non- executive chairman who just flies in. no? - first of all, a non-executive chairman doesn't just fly in. he has to be there on a regular basis and understand the company. but, as i told you, at the same time, you really have to have a difference between the overseen and the overseer.
6:55 pm
i cannot see somebody being part of both. - and if the chairman makes decisions, he can no longer judge those decisions, is what you're saying. - yeah, how can you... if you do have a strategy plan, and you do put in place processes to implement that strategy plan, how can you be judge of it? - mm-hmm. it's true. - judge of its implementation? - but you have to be pretty good, if you're non-executive, not to be fooled by management. you know, not to be snowed in by the presentation. you really have to work hard. - you're not alone. you have a board with you. and as a board, if the board is well-chosen, you should have around the table the expertise to oversee properly the management. - well, guylaine saucier, i can see why the bank president said
6:56 pm
yes to you. you are very convincing in your soft-spoken way, so, thank you so much, and long life. - thank you, robert. - guylaine saucier was our guest this week on entrepreneurs: the dobson series of the world show, and that's our program for this week. i'm bob scully. thanks. closed captioning by sette inc.
6:57 pm
6:58 pm
6:59 pm