hello there. welcome to "newsline." it is tuesday, march 15th. i'm catherine kobayashi in tokyo. north korea reports its leader said the government has succeeded in a simulated test of a missile reentering the atmosphere. he said there are plans to soon conduct a nuclear warhead explosion test and test launches of various ballistic missiles. we'll, of course, bring you more details of that story when they come in to us. russian president vladimir putin has ordered a partial withdrawal of his military from syria. diplomatic observe es said it is aimed at emphasizing russian's
contributions with the talks ending on monday. >> translator: i think the task that was put before the ministry of defense and the armed forces is largely complete. therefore, i order the minister of defense from tomorrow to begin the withdrawal of the main part of our military from syria. >> putin has not elaborated on how many troops will leave syria. he said russia will maintain operations at an air base and a naval base in syria. putin also said he hopes his decision will send a good signal to all sides in the syrian civil war. the office of syrian president bashar al assad issued a statement saying he and putin agreed on the troop reduction in a telephone conversation. the statement says that the syrian government, with the cooperation of the russian air force, has succeeded in restoring security in many regions of syria. the presidential office also said that russia promised to continue to support syria in its battle against terrorism. a member of syria's main
opposition group participating in peace talks in switzerland told nhk that the group is skeptical about russia's surprise announcement. the members said the announcement needs to be verified before it can be believed. opposition groups in syria have accused russian air strikes of targeteding opposition forces under the pretext of attacking u.n. designated terrorist groups. at the peace talks in geneva, the fate of president assad continues to dominate the discussions. the envoy for syria met with jaffray who is representing the russian government in the talks. >> we went through various procedural issues that we wanted to clarify, so we're all on the same page. >> the special envoy stressed that he will proceed with negotiations in line with a u.n. security council resolution that calls for a new administrative organization in syria.
however, he reaffirmed the government's position to reject the demand from opposition forces that president bashar al assad step down. >> translator: we reiterate the government's intention to reject interference in internal affairs by outsiders. >> the united states, saudi arabia and other countries support the opposition forces in their demand for assad's departure. the u.n. envoy is scheduled to meet the representative of the opposition forces on tuesday and the government once again on wednesday. the turkish government has launched air strikes one day after a deadly car bombing in the capital ankara. warplanes struck against kurdish militant camps if iraq. the government suspects the militants are behind sunday's attack. the bombing killed 37 people around a bus stop in the city center and wounded dozens. no group has claimed
responsibility. prime minister said an investigation found that the bombing may have been the work of the separatist kurdish workers party, or pkk. the group is opposed to turkey's government and has repeatedly launched terrorist attacks. >> translator: there 11 detentions so far. we're being careful with the information we're sharing right now because there's a murder network, a terrorist network that we're still trying to expose. >> he added that the targets were in northern iraq. the air strikes are likely retaliation for the car bombing the last july, turkey began large-scale military operations against the kurdish militant group. concern is mounting that re tal yar tory acts by the two sides my further escalate. let's take a look at the latest in business news this
week. policy makers at central banks around the world will be deciding their next move. ai, so who's meeting and what's the schedule? >> a lot going on, catherine. here in tokyo, we have policy makers at the bank of japan, they'll be wrapping up their meeting today. later on in the week we'll be hearing from people at the u.s. federal reserve and those at the bank of england. as for the boj, investors aren't expecting a big change to their current negative interest rated policy. still ahead of all these meetings, global investors are trading cautiously. over on wall street, major indices closed rather flat. the dow jones industrial average ended up nearly 0.1% at 17,229. that is the highest cholose sin the end of last year. the tech-heavy nasdaq rose just slightly. let's see how markets here in tokyo are trading this tuesday morning. we're going to go to ramin mellegard who joins us from the tokyo stock exchange.
ramin, what are you seeing at the open? >> good morning to you, ai. as you said, a lot of focus on central bank policy meetings. analysts expecting the bank of japan to maintain its negative interest rate policy. let's look at the reaction for the nikkei and topix. it's pretty mild, although negative. and that follows on the pretty lackluster closings we saw on wall street that you just covered as well. so the nikkei just down 0.12% of the we'll see how that progresses. yesterday, the nikkei actually rose for a third straight session, ending at its highest level in six weeks. now, at the last policy meeting in january, the b oj, with switzerland and sweden and denmark, this has proven to be a bit of a hard nut to crack for boj policy makers. after the decision in january, share prices of banks fell, and many were afraid banks would suffer most from negative rates. data shows lending didn't
increase as much as the b oshs j had hoped for. now, meanwhile, many investors expect the federal reserve to consider raising rates this year. there are signs of improfit proosmt in the u.s. economy. this ehope scrap knees corporations as the u.s. does remain one of the markets for japanese exporters. that is a focus, what the boj does and the federal reserve does this week. >> ramin, market players are still concerned about crude oil prices. how did those trade overnight? >> exactly. they've been dictating stock moves so far this year, and in new york, the u.s. benchmark crude futures fell more than 3%. the brent was also below $40 a barrel. let's look at currencies. the dollar moved without any clear direction against the yen. the pair has been hovering around the upper 113 yen level as you can see.
against the euro, the u.s. currency gained ground overnight. the analysts priced in at least one interest rate rise before the end of the calendar year. the data in the u.s., the question still remains as to growth prospects in china. the world's second largest economy. yesterday, shanghai composite rose 1.8%. a senior government official indicated the government would continue to see stock prices stable. let's look at some of the markets that are open right now. seoul's kospi in the positive. australia's index down a quarter of a percent. i'll have more in a couple of hours, ai. but a bit of an indifferent start for the nikkei and topix. >> ramin, thanks a lot for that update. countries around the world are trying to fight global warming, and local eths are part of the battle. tokyo city ogss say their initiative has cut the annual
output of carbon dioxide by a quarter over a five-year period. officials in the capital introduced japan's first c02 reduction ordinance in 2010. it required about 1,400 large office buildings and commercial facilities to shrink their carbon footprints. they gave local businesses a series of targets calling for cuts as high as 8% for the five years through march 2015. the officials now say most of them are likely to have achieved their goals, having shaved their combined c02 emissions by about 14 million tons. many of tokyo's business leaders took on emissions reduction as a management objective. they upgraded or cut down on the use of lights and air conditioners. the campaign isn't over. it's hiking the reduction target for the five years to 2020, telling companies to cut their output by up to 17%. more news on the
environmental front. narita airport near tokyo has a new feature for motorists, a hydrogen station for fuel cell cars. the airport operator and a major oil wholesaler set up the station to promote the eco-friendly vehicles, which emit no exhaust gases. the station can fill up a vehicle in three minutes. customers pay about $10 per kilogram. >> translator: we want our customers to know how we are working on efforts for the environment by establishing the station, and promoting the use of vehicles that don't emit fumes. >> narita is japan's second airport to have a commercial hi hydrogen station after kansai. japan's puty industry is eyeing overseas market as domestic demand flattens out. companies are making a strategic push into other parts of asia, where women are eager to try out new japanese makeup and
hairstyling trends. nhk world has the report. >> reporter: most of the customers at this cosmetics promotional event in osaka are foreign tourists. these boxes each contain a set of cosmetics. the cover model looks different. but it's the same face. just a makeup change. the products are popular because it contains everything customers need to adapt the latest japanese style. each kit costs about $85. the kits are being sold overseas this year. >> translator: there's a lot of interest in japanese beauty products abroad. japanese manufacturers are able to make high-quality products, and we want to promote them
overseas so that we can reach new customers. >> reporter: the hair industry is also looking at asian markets. more than 600 foreigners are attending this event in tokyo put on by a cosmetics company. the show caters to people in japan and asia who work in beauty and hair care, including salon owners and stylists. hairdressing demonstrations have helpful styling tips selling company products. >> translator: it covers part of the eye. if you can shape the hair carefully like this, you can create a style that's in fashion this year. >> reporter: the company is selling to eight asian countries and regions. it's also developing new items. this spray can hold a hairstyle in place even in high humidity.
and these hair dyes are offered in varieties that cater to tastes in different countries. the firm has set its sights on market share in indonesia. it invited more than 40 people from the country to attend a showcase for the first time. indonesia has a population of about 250 million. about 90% of muslims. but many indonesian women do not cover their hair. in the country, it's considered a promising market. indonesian business brings people to a beauty school in tokyo. they hone their skills for setting hairstyles. >> translator: it would be nice if there were a place in our country where beauticians could learn the basics in more detail. >> translator: the level of hairstyling tuition is advanced
compared to what we have at home. >> reporter: the company hopes to improve in indonesia's beauty industry and develop its market there. >> we grow now about five, six years in double digits in the asian market, opening new markets to come. so i think they have a really good momentum to make hair more beautiful in asia. >> reporter: japan's beauty industry is promoting aggressively. the products are proving popular throughout asia. that's the latest in business. china's state-run news agency is working to direct a
mistake. on sunday xinhua published an article that referred to xi jinping not as the top leader of the country, but the last leader. about one hour later the agency published a corrected version of the article. a hong kong based human rights group said two editors and one reporter have been suspended. china's leadership has been tightening control over the media. xi made a tour and reportedly said that media spear vupervise the government must be for the party. it was depicted as a major blunder, but wasn't covered in the media of mainland china. experts say overcapacity in heavy industries is putting a serious drag on china's economy. the cement sector illustrates the problem. chinese firms can produce more than 4 billion tons of cement annually, but sold only half that amount last year. leaders in the main production areas are trying to make
changes. but as nhk world's reporter tells us, it hasn't been easy. >> reporter: they have nicknamed this area cement culture. the deposit of limestone is a key ingredient of cement once fueled the area's growth. but now the factories' workers are struggling as china's economy slows. coentigreements with 35 firms and shut them down. they cut local capacity about i by 40%. raw materials have been left behind. thousands of workers have left. the local economy has taken a
hit. a shop keeper and other businesses have lost business. >> translator: our sales last year were worth what we would make in a month in past years. >> translator: we need other types of factories and industries to help solve the unemployment problem. >> reporter: china is saddled with too many cement producers. so prices keep falling, forcing companies out of business. this company went bankrupt last year. people say the firm shut its doors without paying employees their full salary. >> translator: the salary was 10,000 yuan, but we received only 1,000. that's not enough to live on. >> reporter: state-run enterprises are also under
pressure. the second largest cemented producer is trying to upset a 10% drop in sales. it's now looking overseas for new sources of income. they said it's time to invest the investment inside the country. myanmar, laos, cambodia and russia. they are pinning their hopes on china's plans to build a new plant. they have a proposed network and use the demand for cement from asia to europe. the firm also makes machinery for cement plants. it's focusing on finding international customers. >> translator: we will spread our operations across the world. that's the only way to minimize the adverse effects of the domestic slowdown.
>> reporter: leaders in beijing have said millions of workers will lose their jobs as the country loses a range of industries. t the government will help people out of work. meanwhile, they will implement painful measures. in 2001, the taliban shot the world with an act of cultural destruction. they blew up giant buddhist statues in afghanistan chgt the loss of the centuries-old monument was condemned globally. a group of tokyo researchers is trying to replicate stom of what was destroyed. here's the report. >> reporter: a team from the
tokyo university of the earth is creating a replica of one of the giant buddhas. around him are goddesses with greek style rings. the bird-like figure is an indian deity. the fresco is a 1,400-year-old vision. it draws on the variety of different cultures. team leaders said they're keeping the light of recreating this is more important. >> translator: long ago people in the region mixed everything together extremely well. they respected each other's dignity. that's why i think the meaning in these images is so powerful. >> reporter: the team is using data recorded to recreate the ceiling surface so they can
exhibit the fresco as it actually had appeared. the proprietary process combines the technology with traditional japanese painting. the team has used photographs shot on site in the 1970s by ky. 150 pictures have been scanned and fitted together. images taken from a range show the lines to be captured. the images are imprinted on japanese washi paper which has been textured to match the ancient surface. next, color is added by hand. when that is finished, the paper will be fit into place. the latest technology can't solve everything. matching a specific shade of blue proves a major challenge. the ancients used a gemstone
native to afghanistan. the stone comes in many hues. they combed the university books in an effort to match the color. thanks to the late president, relics were stored here until it was safe to return them. he studies the fragment and mixes colors over and over, searching for a match. midway through the project, a visitor arrives. he's a former director of the kabul museum in afghanistan. he risked his life protecteding the cultural assets of his homeland against extremists. >> translator: the professionalism of this japanese team is outstanding. i am deeply grateful for them for creating this replica.
>> reporter: it's his hope that the completed fresco can help inspire peace in afghanistan. it will be open to public in tokyo in april. incredible work there. time now for a check of the weather. people in some eastern mediterranean countries are dealing with heavy rain, adding to the challenges for refugees already living under dire conditions there. meteorologist robert speta has the latest. >> yes. exactly. that's been one of the big issues out here. you have thousands of people in these temporary communities just set up along the border between greece and macedonia. then you get the rainfall on top of that, and it really makes for rough conditions. the latest storm conditions pulling off to the east. it's a slow-moving system. actually impacting parts of there and then moving into greece. now into western locations of turkey, into the past 24 hours. in fact, in athens, you've seen about 66 millimeters of total
precipitation. it definitely has a significant impact on the people out here. a video coming out of one of the border communities, about 12,000 people are staying in these muddy fields, hoping that on march 17th, in fact, the eu summit could reopen the balkan migration route. these images, in these unsanitary conditions. food and drink and water provided by agencies are not enough to keep up with the demand. people are forced to wait in long lines in the rain. also in the cold. overnight temperatures are reaching down near the freezing point in some of these areas as well. so definitely very troublesome case for a lot of people out here. if we take a look at the extended forecast, in fact, it doesn't improve too much. especially back toward the east. if we look toward istanbul, you have continued precipitation through wednesday. at least in some of the border communities, though, by wednesday, you are looking at clearing conditions as far as the precipitation.
but temperatures still remaining on the chilly side, especially into the overnight hours out here. partly cloudy skies there actually expecting a high of around 10. if we talk about the severe weather threat, i want to mention that back towards the west we have just basically back-to-back storm systems setting up out here. into eastern areas of spain, you are looking at another area of precipitation. but some colder air spilling in from the north. you get the interaction, and seeing that threat of large hail, and even damaging wind gusts coming out of the next storm. especially in spain moving over towards italy. you can see where the heaviest precipitation is going to be lying. northern europe, decent conditions out there. london a high with 11, partly cloudy skies. similar conditions there for you. berlin, a little bit colder but you're still looking at the sun peeking through here on your tuesday. let's move over towards northeastern asia. talk about a storm system that pulled through japan here on your monday. now pulling off towards the northeast. sunny skies setting in behind
it. good news, in one location in okinawa, over 100 millimeters of precipitation from the storm. high pressure just settling in. that's going to make for much fairer conditions. we are going to be seeing some snow possibly in parts of the area, setting up the sea-effect snow effect. this whole high is going to drift to the east. with it, maybe bringing haze for those of you in northeastern china. behind it we have the wrap-around southerly winds. hong kong with a high of 17. take a look at this. taipei, pushing near the 30-degree mark. definitely spring-like weather coming in for you. tokyo, similar conditions. 13. sunny skies here on your tuesday. but take a look at thursday. partly cloudy skies. a high of 20 out there for you. i'll leave you now with your extended outlook.
>> "euromaxx highlights," and here is your host. >> hi everyone, and welcome to our "highlights" show, bringing you the best picks of the week. here's a look at what we've got in store. little helpers -- social robots are finding their way into our lives. seaside resort -- brighton has a lot offer, even in the wintertime. cherished tradition -- a swiss carpenter rebuilds the original davos sleds. science and technology are changing the way we interact with one another. and soon, it's predicted that we'll all have our own robots. at least that's the hope of one french company which is developing a socially capable robot to help with important jobs around the house. so,'