Trump to Davos: 'America is open for business'

 

  • President Donald Trump gave his big speech Friday to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
  • He brought an "America first"-themed message to the world elites gathered in Davos.
  • He told the crowd that the US was "open for business."


President Donald Trump on Friday took his "America first" speech to the crowd of global elites at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, where he proclaimed a newly reinvigorated US while taking veiled shots at China.

As expected, Trump touted strong US economic growth, highlighted by 2.4 million jobs and $7 trillion in new wealth in the stock market during the first year of his presidency. He credited his tax cuts as being the "most significant and historic tax reform in history" while pitching the US as the ideal place for business and investment.

"Now is the perfect time to bring your business, your jobs, and your investments to the US," Trump said.

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Trump administration takes Davos by storm
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Trump administration takes Davos by storm
U.S. President Donald Trump arrives at the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 26, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
(L-R) U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, National Security advisor Herbert Raymond McMaster, Senior Advisor Jared Kushner and assistant for economic policy Gary Cohn attend U.S. President Donald Trump's and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's meeting during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 25, 2018 REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump waves as he arrives for the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 25, 2018. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse
U.S. President Donald Trump arrives for the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 25, 2018. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse
U.S. President Donald Trump pose for photos as he arrives at the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 26, 2018. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse
U.S. President Donald Trump meets with Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 25, 2018 REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump shake hands with Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 25, 2018 REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 25, 2018 REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump speaks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 25, 2018 REUTERS/Carlos Barria
Hands of the U.S. President Donald Trump are seen as he meets with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 25, 2018 REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump gestures during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 26, 2018. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse
U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the WEF, during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 26, 2018. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse
U.S. President Donald Trump gestures as he talks with Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the WEF, during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 26, 2018. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse
U.S. President Donald Trump and Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the WEF, look on during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 26, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
US President Donald Trump watches a band leaving the stage after a ceremony and before delivering his speech during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting on January 26, 2018 in Davos, eastern Switzerland. / AFP PHOTO / Fabrice COFFRINI (Photo credit should read FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images)
U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is seen during a meeting of U.S. President Donald Trump and President Alain Berset of Switzerland, as they attend the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 26, 2018. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse
U.S. President Donald Trump attends the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 26, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump looks on as he meets President Paul Kagame of Rwanda (unseen) during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 26, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Barria TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
U.S. President Donald Trump meets President Alain Berset of Switzerland during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 26, 2018. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse
U.S. President Donald Trump meets President Paul Kagame of Rwanda during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 26, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump arrives at the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 26, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (C) looks on as President Donald Trump dinners with business men and CEO's during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 25, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump attends a dinner with business men and CEO's during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 25, 2018. Siemens CEO's Joe Kaeser (2nd-L) looks on. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump speaks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 25, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
Attendees takes pictures of U.S. President Donald Trump during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 25, 2018. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse
A television screen displays U.S. President Donald Trump delivering a speech during a special address on the closing day of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, on Friday, Jan. 26, 2018. World leaders, influential executives, bankers and policy makers attend the 48th annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos from Jan. 23 - 26. Photographer: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg via Getty Images
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But Trump also took aim at globalization and free trade, favored by the ultra-wealthy Davos crowd but a frequent target of Trump's criticism domestically.

"I will always put America first, just like the leaders of other countries should put their country first also," said Trump. "We cannot have free and open trade if some countries exploit the system at the expense of others."

Trump gave "intellectual property theft" as a barrier to fair trade, which his administration and many others have accused China of.

Trump also called on all countries to shut out North Korea for its nuclear ambitions and Iran for its support of terrorist groups abroad. Trump touted "historic" military spending and the need for the US's allies to meet their defense spending obligations, a reference to NATO alliance, in which only five of 29 countries now meet their required 2% of GDP spending on defense.

Trump brought up the almost-complete destruction of ISIS' territory in Iraq and Syria but stressed the need for the US to "consolidate our gains."

In the end, Trump called on the attendees of Davos to "use our power our resources our voices not just for ourselves, but for our people" and invited the crowd to bring their business to the US and "to become part of this future we’re building together."

"America," he said, "is open for business."

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