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United Nations Speech: President Trump Puts America First On The World Stage

United Nations speech Trump
Image from usembassy.gov

President Trump Delivers Patriotic United Nations Speech

President Trump addressed the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday, September 25, 2018, confirming that the United States offers the world’s biggest economy, a skilled workforce, innovative culture, and deep and broad capital markets. President Trump also acknowledged each nation needs to make itself great again and choose its own form of patriotism.

He emphasized America’s past generosity, without reciprocity. America has been taken advantage of in multiple sectors without benefit to America. We will no longer support a global agenda. The United States will not tell you how to live, or work or worship, we only ask that you honor our sovereignty in return.

To affirm America’s fairness agenda, President Trump signed a revised free-trade pact on Monday with South Korea, escalated a trade fairness agenda with China by imposing an additional 10% taxes on 200 billion in Chinese exports, and expects to explore penalties of $267 billion more on Chinese products. Fairness is the theme of our trade negotiations. The Chinese economy was growing exponentially due to our technology, our intellectual property, and forcing U.S. companies into joint ventures with their companies and reaping profit, technology, and intellectual property from America, its people, and its companies.

Fair Trade For All

Fairness will make all countries stronger, safer, and more secure. In this vein, President Trump pointed out that Germany’s complete dependence on Russian oil with its proposed gas pipeline known as Nord Stream 2 will only make Russia stronger. He questioned how NATO can be effective if Germany is paying Russia billions of dollars for gas and energy. Furthermore, all countries will need to start bearing a larger share of the burden of NATO without undermining its purpose. To paraphrase President Trump, we are all a beautiful cluster of nations with our own strengths, religions, natural resources, and industries and we need to support, strengthen, and secure those nations.

Yet, foreign direct investment (FDI) has been on a downslide since 1999 when the U.S. share of foreign direct investment was at 39%. Why the downslide? The United States also offers foreign investors high tax rates and unnecessarily burdensome regulations.

In 2013, the House of Representatives passed The Global Investment in American Jobs Act (HR 2052) in an effort to determine appropriate methods to stimulate FDI. It was intended to direct the Commerce Department to conduct an interagency review of federal policies to identify ways to improve the U.S. capacity to attract FDI. After a proper review, reforms were supposed to be enacted to remove investment deterrents and help reverse the downward trend of the past decade which would increase economic growth and result in higher living standards going forward. As far as we can determine nothing significant has been done to implement this very important policy!

Meanwhile, emerging markets have continued to become more alluring investment destinations, offering rapid economic growth, improved labor skills, a more educated workforce, greater business transparency, and improved political stability in emerging market economies have made those locations more alluring investment destinations. In contrast, the United States has increased its regulations, has incongruous and inconsistent policies, and has an uncertain business and political climate which reduces America’s appeal.

Generally, companies which seek to build or buy production facilities, research centers, and biotechnology laboratories consider a multitude of factors, including access to skilled workers and essential material inputs; ease of customs procedures; the reliability of transportation infrastructure; legal and business efficiency; ease of regulatory compliance and favorable taxes; to name a few.

In 2013 Congress already determined that the ability of the U.S. to attract FDI is a top national priority. In 2018, Congress should adopt the following tax reforms in accordance with the policy considerations of HR 2052.

Charley Christiansen / Journalist
Charley Christiansen is an international tax attorney, speaker at international tax seminars, technical writer and continuing legal education presenter.
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