President Donald Trump will attend the annual meeting of world financial elite in Davos, Switzerland, a celebration of globalization and free trade that runs counter to the "America First" populism he champions.
An annual meeting of the wealthy global elite - some of whom have been quite critical of Trump - Davos seems a unusual venue for a president who has criticized free trade agreements and the effects of globalization on USA industries. Yet a White House statement indicated Trump would not hesitate to bring his nationalist message to the assemblage of globalists.
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Administration spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Trump was eager to attend the meeting of world leaders and business execs.
In a separate statement, Klaus Schwab, the founder of the forum, said Trump would offer a "direct perspective" on the U.S.'s priorities and that the president would be accompanied by key Cabinet ministers and USA lawmakers. He withdrew the USA from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a trade agreement between Pacific Rim countries, and pulled out of the Paris climate accord, a commitment to reduce carbon emissions. Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama never made the trip, but sent top aides on their behalf.
The Global Economic Forum was founded in 1971 by Klaus Schwab, a business professor at the University of Geneva.