Indian Activists Hold Anti-Corruption March

This is a transcript of top stories presented by China's CCTV Business Channel as produced by CNBC Asia Pacific.

A big hello to our viewers across China, I'm Saijal Patel and you're watching “Asia Market Daily”.

India's government has come under increasing scrutiny, over a series of corruption scandals.

On Sunday, activists plan to hold an anti-corruption march in cities across India, calling for the government to do more to fight the scourge.

But the head of India's largest private bank, ICICI doesn't think the scandals will hurt foreign investor interest in India.

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Chanda Kochhar, CEO, ICICI, Davos: I think this is not an issue we can gloss over. Indeed you know the governance issues have emerged as issues for debate and discussion. But on top of that I would say that what is coming out even more important is the fact the economic factors that is driving Indian growth is continuing to remain very strong. So I think that's the first important positive feel and positive fact because the consumption continues to grow, the companies have better capacity utilization. Sales are growing, revenues are growing, investments are going up. Those factors continue to remain strong. On top of that we have some of these soft factors. I think it is indeed a wake up call to say that we need to manage some of these issues so that we no not allow the growth to dampen.

Geoff Cutmore, CNBC: Your bank, I mean obviously the numbers are moving in the right direction for you, and I was fascinated by the decline in loan loss provisioning here. It would seem with the expansion of deposits and the decline in loan loss provisions you can afford to afford to expand your balance sheet here and take on quite a bit more risk why are you so conservative in this area?

Chanda Kochhar, CEO, ICICI, Davos: No so we have started taking on the growth in the assets even more, if you look at our last quarter's performance, the growth is already annualized rate of more than 15%. So I think there was a certain period in the last 8 or 9 quarters where we wanted to focus on really growing our deposit ratios and bringing down the credit losses provisions. And having done pretty well, we are kind of growing from here.

Geoff Cutmore, CNBC: In a rising interest rate environment in an economy that already has quite strong inflation, there is always concern that some of those borrows are going to start to see some distress. Clearly the trend has been for an improvement in quality. But as we go through 2011 any concern at all that mismanagement of policy could lead to some deterioration towards the latter part of this year. What do you think the trends will reveal?

Chanda Kochhar, CEO, ICICI, Davos: As long as we make that sure both the retail, the SME and the corporate customer leverages to the extent their growth in income can support. I think we should be fine. Clearly that's what we're seeing, there is an increase in borrowing and there is therefore an increase in credit, but it's in line with repayment capacity.

Geoff Cutmore, CNBC: As you've listened to the conversations here, whether there are any external threats that you think you need to be mindful of, or at least the Indian government needs to be mindful of as we go through the rest of this year.

Chanda Kochhar, CEO, ICICI, Davos: The most important factor I would watch is the volatility in commodity prices. I think that is going to have impact on countries and companies alike. And I think that will have a lot of impact on cost factors and several other things for companies in India as well.

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That wraps up the latest “Asia Market Daily”.

I'm Saijal Patel from CNBC Asia.


A big hello to our viewers across China, I'm Saijal Patel and you're watching "Asia Market Daily".

The Indonesian government says headline inflation could go as high as 6.6 percent this year beyond its targets.

Trade minister Mari Pangestu spoke to CNBC's Geoff Cutmore at Davos, about what needs to be done to curb rising prices.

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Mari Pangestu, Indonesian Trade Minister, Davos: Basically in the short-term we think we need to manage what countries do individually in the name of food security. Such as say export restrictions and buying imports in large numbers, we need to manage that so it doesn't have an impact on causing food prices to become even more volatile. That's sort of the short-term agenda. But in the medium term how do we have technology sharing to face climate change for the food production. The call that was made in Aquilla in G8 two years ago for pledges for food aid and food production increases. Another issue which is in the WTO agenda, remove of distorting agriculture exports subsidies and domestic support. I think these are all the issues that we talked about this in 2008 when we had a food crisis in 2008. They haven't been solved, they need to be solved now.

Geoff Cutmore, CNBC, Davos: We come into this event with you having signed a number of trade agreements with India that other great populous economy that we talk so much about for growth opportunities. How would you define Indonesia's position between its Chinese and Indian relationship?

Mari Pangestu, Indonesian Trade Minister, Davos: Well let's say we are very happy to be in a good neighborhood which is the emerging Asia. And a lot of the growth that we've had in our trade has been with East Asia including China, India, Korea and the other Asean countries. And that's really that's cushioned the impact from the global crisis. So I think entering into agreements with these countries are just natural. Even if we didn't have these agreements the trade would still be high. So these agreements are fostering a greater and more broader way of cooperating. It's not just on trade; eventually it will be on issues on the monetary barriers we face between each other. But at the same time it doesn't mean it will become a closed regional block. We are an open and we talk about open regionalism, and we still prioritize WTO.

Geoff Cutmore, CNBC, Davos: The strength of the Rupiah is not helping your cause as trade minister in a sense. Hot FDI flows appear to have rebounded. That's another challenge for the government to manage here. I wonder if you can just talk about how you steer a path through these pressures.

Mari Pangestu, Indonesian Trade Minister, Davos: In relative terms, we were not so affected and our exports continued to increase. Our export growth last year were 40%. But having said that I think the issue of current account imbalances and how to manage, prevent currencies being used for protectionism reasons that is an issue obviously that we're concerned about and that is an issue that's in the G20 agenda. It should be handled and managed and talked about multilaterally not bilaterally or unilaterally.

Geoff Cutmore, CNBC, Davos: What would be in your mind the best road to go down here? We've seen a variety of responses to this issue including profits tax, foreign direct investment capital, we've also seen obviously a tightening of reserve requirements within domestic banking systems. But of course that risks stifling some of the growth in a small to medium enterprise area. So intellectually how are you inclined to think that the best way of addressing these hot inflows is?

Mari Pangestu, Indonesian Trade Minister, Davos: Fundamentally those steps of putting profit tax on short term flows or making sure you can't take the money out until it's stayed in the country for a few months or one year and so on. These are just smoothing the flow. But fundamentally it has to be about the fundamental macro situation in each of your countries. We'd like to see more the capital flows going towards the real sector. Because we want to be increasing capacity for production because that's another going to be another issue for inflation if you have greater demand than supply.

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That wraps up the latest “Asia Market Daily”.

I'm Saijal Patel from CNBC Asia.


A big hello to our viewers across China, I'm Saijal Patel and you're watching “Asia Market Daily”.

A group of nine girls from South Korea is taking the Asian pop scene by storm.

Known by many of their native Koreans as SNSD or as Girl's Generation to growing legions of fans.

SBS-CNBC's Rhie Young Lim reports.

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These stunning leggy girls you are watching behind me of course are Girls Generation! And they're writing a new chapter, not just for K-pop but for the entire global music industry.

From You-tube, CD shops to tour packages, South Korean girl groups and boy groups alike, are plastering the scenes all the way from Southeast Asia, Japan and China to even the United States.

(SOT) Soo-young, Girls Generation Member:

"We have European song-writers, American choreographers and Korean producers which allows us to make albums that make it big globally"

(SOT) Tiffany, Girls Generation Member:

"The strength in Girls generation would be cause there's 9 girls of course… and we practice together for a very long time, we have good chemistry and strong team work, I have to say that is the firm foundation of the group and not to mention really really supporting passionate fans all around the world."

The first Korean Wave syndrome back in 2002 was built on Asian auntie's craze over soap drams like Winter Sonata. But this time around, it has become much younger and bouncier. The spotlight - mostly on young dance groups. And experts are saying the K-pop syndrome was possible thanks to new SNS's and platforms like Twitter and Youtube. And such new platforms are having management firms to rake in profits from various pockets.

(SOT) Young-min Kim, CEO, S.M. Entertainment, Seoul:

"Previously, the music industry relied mostly on album sales. Now we have management, concert sales, fan club sales, merchandising and other contributions that gives us a much wider portfolio"

And Intel recently handpicked Girls Generation as their model to represent the whole of Asia. It's the first time this IT giant has ever used celebrity-marketing, except for once when they had Mariah Carey to promote their products

(SOT) HS Lee, President, Intel Korea , Seoul:

"We figured the best way to appeal Intel brand was to use Girls Generation that has a strong visual image just as we want our core microprocessors to"

But experts say risks always remain because this is strictly a people's business.

(SOT) Kim Chang-kwean, Analyst, Daewoo Securities, Seoul :

"SM Entertainment's 2010 operating profit rose 140% on year, but note there are always risks. Karra, another hot icon girl group, is now on the verge of a break-up due to disharmony between the team members and the management company…there could also be scandals."

Language may be the other barrier to overcome. But the virtual world such as the Internet may just as well blur those boundaries as it helps the fans' hearts to beat together.

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That wraps up the latest “Asia Market Daily”.

I'm Saijal Patel from CNBC Asia.

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