In a defense of “America First,” Donald Trump has urged companies from across the globe to invest in the US. The president also called for greater cooperation on combating terrorism and pressuring North Korea.
US President Donald Trump on Friday declared his first year in office a major economic success during his speech to delegates of the World Economic Forum in Davos, saying “now is the perfect time to bring your business” to the US.
Trump highlighted the US’ latest tax overhaul and reduction in regulations, which Davos summit chairman Klaus Schwab said contributed to global growth before the president took the stage.
Read more: Davos: New momentum for Europe?
Also taking flak for isolationism at summit
- Trump said that his “America First” policy does not mean isolation. He called for greater cooperation on a range of fields, including energy, trade and security.
- However, Trump warned that the world “cannot have free and open trade if some countries exploit the system.”
- Trump has regularly defended his “America First” policies, suggesting they are compatible with greater international cooperation. He also frequently points to US stock market growth.
- Since Trump assumed office, US allies, including Germany, have warned Washington against pursuing an isolationist policy. Similar warnings have been issued by other speakers at the Swiss business forum.
Vows to continue ‘America First’
During his speech, Trump said:
- While the US has a “cutting-edge economy,” the country’s “immigration system is stuck in the past.” Trump has maintained a tough stance on irregular immigration, vowing to build a wall along the US’ border with Mexico.
- Washington “will not longer turn a blind eye to unfair trade policies.” That statement showed that Trump is not backing down from his desire for US-centric trade policies. However, he also said that “America First does not mean America alone.”
- “The world is experiencing the resurgence of a strong and prosperous America.”
Have other US presidents visited Davos summit: Trump is the second sitting US president to visit the Davos summit. Bill Clinton was the first to do so for the forum’s 30th anniversary in 2000. However, the late Ronald Reagan had participated via video link in the 1980s.
Read more: Globalization: Even Davos gets the blues
What did Trump say about security: Trump claimed that the US-led coalition against the “Islamic State” militant group had “retaken almost 100 percent of the territory once held by these killers in Iraq and Syria.” He called on countries to continue to pressure North Korea to end their nuclear program, while reiterating his call for other countries to contribute their “fair share” towards global defense.
How did the audience react: While his speech received applause and laughter at times, there was a moment when Trump reportedly elicited boos, after saying: “It wasn’t until I became a politician I realized how nasty, how mean, how vicious and how fake the press can be.”
ls/msh (AFP, AP, dpa)