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Donald Trump claims 'environmentalism is out of control'

This was the first time the CEOs of the ‘Big Three’ car manufacturers had met jointly with a US president since 2011

Andrew Buncombe
New York
,Chris Stevenson
Tuesday 24 January 2017 15:37 GMT
Donald Trump says that 'environmentalism is out of control'

President Donald Trump has claimed that “environmentalism is out of control”.

Mr Trump spent the morning meeting with auto executives as part of a push to bring jobs back to the US. Mr Trump told his guests at the White House that he was looking to ease regulations to help car companies and other businesses wishing to operate in the US.

Among the attendees at the breakfast meeting were Ford chief executive Mark Fields, Fiat Chrysler chairman Sergio Marchionne and General Motors chief executive Mary Barra.

Mr Trump called on car firms to increase production in the United States and boost American employment, adding that he hoped to see new auto plants built in the country.

“We have a very big push on to have auto plants and other plants,” Mr Trump said.

Mr Trump has repeatedly criticised companies for building cars in Mexico and elsewhere and has threatened to impose 35 per cent tariffs on imported vehicles. The President often singled out Ford's Mexico investments for criticism during his election campaign.

The gathering was the first time the CEOs of the big three car makers have met jointly with a US president since a July 2011 session with former president Barack Obama to highlight a deal to raise fuel efficiency standards to 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025.

White House spokesman Sean Spicer said on the eve of the meeting that Mr Trump was looking forward to meeting the CEOs and “hearing their ideas about how we can work together to bring more jobs back to this industry”.

But while US car manufacturers are creating jobs in the country, at the same time they are cutting back on American small car production. On Monday, General Motors ended two shifts of production of small cars in Ohio and Michigan, cutting about 2,000 jobs.

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