Meeting at the White House’s Roosevelt Room this morning with 10 senior American business executives, lawmakers and the press, President Donald Trump repeated his campaign pledge to roll back corporate rules, arguing that they have “gotten out of control.”
Trump told the business leaders he would cut regulations “by 75%, maybe more.”
“We’re going to be cutting regulation massively,” Trump said, but also promised the new rules would be “just as protective of the people.”
He also warned that that he would impose a “substantial border tax” on companies that move manufacturing out of the U.S., while promising unspecified advantages to companies that manufacture domestically.
“So essentially I’m talking about no tax,” Trump further clarified, discussing his pitch to retain U.S. workers.
“Because if you stay here, there’s no tax. Somebody said, ‘Oh, Trump is going to tax.’ There is no tax, none whatsoever. And I just want to tell you: All you have to do is stay, don’t leave… Don’t leave, don’t fire your people in the United States. We have the greatest people, and many other countries have the great people. We all have great people, okay? This isn’t that kind of a competition. Everybody has great people, but if we’re going to fire people and build a product outside (the U.S. without an import tax)… not gonna happen.”
Some of the executives present at the meeting, which was open to the press, included Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk, Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank, Lockheed Martin CEO Marilyn Hewson, and Mario Longhi, CEO and Chairman of U.S. Steel Corp.
Foxconn To Build in US?
This comes after it was reported by the New York Times Sunday evening that Foxconn, the world’s largest contract electronics maker, is considering setting up a display-making plant in the U.S. in an investment that would exceed $7 billion, the company’s chairman and chief executive, Terry Gou, said.
The plans come after President Trump pledged to put “America first” in his inauguration speech on Friday, prompting Mr. Gou to warn about the rise of protectionism and a trend for politics to underpin economic development.
Gou said that Foxconn, based in Taiwan, had been considering such a move for years. But the issue came up when a Foxconn business partner, Masayoshi Son, talked to Gou before a December meeting that Son had with then-president-elect Trump at Trump Tower in New York. Son is the head of SoftBank Group, based in Japan. Son pledged $50 billion of investment in the U.S. at the aforementioned meeting.