Trump to Host European Executives in Davos to Tout Deregulation

(Bloomberg) -- President Donald Trump will host European corporate leaders at the Davos economic forum, using the mountainside gathering for the global elite to push an economic agenda many there have spurned. 

Trump will use the Thursday night event to argue that the U.S. is a better place for businesses as a result of the recent tax overhaul and deregulation that’s taken place during his administration, his top economic adviser, Gary Cohn, said Tuesday. Earlier that evening Trump will attend a reception hosted by the World Economic Forum, he said.

“We are competitive with the rest of the world,” Cohn said, citing cuts in the corporate tax rate, which was reduced to 21 percent as part of the December overhaul. “We’re excited about where we’re going.”

The event will be part of a broader push by Trump to make a pitch to CEOs and business leaders to invest and add jobs in the U.S., Cohn said. The administration’s move this week to place new tariffs on solar equipment and washing machines made outside the U.S. was also timed to send a message that Trump is still serious about his desire to punish companies that move overseas.

Trump is traveling Wednesday to the gathering of world leaders, global financiers and chief executive officers. He’s bringing a delegation of several Cabinet members and senior officials, including Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Labor Secretary Wilbur Ross, Energy Secretary Rick Perry and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer.

Trump is the first sitting American president to attend the meeting since Bill Clinton in January 2000. 

The decision for Trump to go to the globalist gathering was a surprising move given the protectionist, populist rhetoric that propelled him into office. Davos is a regular stomping ground for the international financial and foreign policy establishment.

“We’re going to the World Economic Forum to share President Trump’s economic story and tell the world America’s open for business,” Cohn said. “When the United States grows, so does the world.”

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.

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