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Trump warns Davos on unfair trade, says US ‘open for business’

  • Published at 01:15 am January 27th, 2018
Trump warns Davos on unfair trade, says US ‘open for business’
US President Donald Trump took his “America First” message to the world’s elite on Friday, telling a summit of business and political leaders that the US would “no longer turn a blind eye” to what he described as unfair trade practices. Trump became the first sitting US President in 18 years to address the annual conclave of the rich and powerful at the Swiss ski resort of Davos, closing the summit with a speech in which he declared his country is “open for business.” “Now is the best time to bring your money, your jobs, your businesses to America,” he said, singling out tax cuts and curbs to regulation as boosting the investment climate. “After years of stagnation, the United States is once again experiencing strong economic growth,” he said. “The world is witnessing the resurgence of a strong and prosperous America.” He said he would always promote “America First,” as he expected other world leaders to do on behalf of their own countries. “America First does not mean America alone. When the United States grows so does the world,” he said. But he swiftly turned to a theme of demanding tougher enforcement of trade rules, accusing unidentified countries of unfair practices, including stealing intellectual property and providing state aid to industry. “We will enforce our trade laws and restore integrity to the trading system. Only by insisting on fair and reciprocal trade can we create a system that works not just for the United States but for all nations,” Trump said. “The United States will no longer turn a blind eye to unfair trade practices,” he said. “We cannot have free and open trade if some countries exploit the system at the expense of others. We support free trade but it needs to be fair and it needs to be reciprocal.” While he has a record of opposing multi-lateral trade agreements involving many countries, he said the United States would consider “mutually beneficial” bilateral trade agreements with other individual states. That could include countries that have signed up to a Trans-Pacific trade agreement from which he has withdrawn, he said, adding that he would also consider negotiating with them collectively if that was in the US interest.
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