The world needs to take urgent action to avert another global financial crisis, President Donald Trump said Monday.
“We’re going to do everything possible to save our shell companies,” Trump said during a speech at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) conference in Washington, D.C. “I’m telling you, I think we’re going in the right direction.”
AIPAC is the largest pro-Israel lobby in the U.S. with an annual budget of $25 million and has long been one of the most powerful players in U.N. diplomacy.
It is one of many pro-Israeli lobbying groups that have emerged as powerful advocates for U.K.-based companies and governments as they struggle to meet rising global environmental, health and safety concerns.
“Shell companies are an integral part of the U (U.S.) economy,” Trump told the audience, according to a copy of the speech provided to The Washington Post.
“They are an essential part of our economy, and I believe they should be given the support they need to keep going and grow.”
The president’s speech was a clear shot at the industry, and was in stark contrast to the pro-Shell remarks of U.B.P. leader Nick Clegg, who recently praised “the fact that a lot of people think shell companies are important.”
A statement released by the American Jewish Committee (JAC) on Monday said the speech “demonstrates that Trump is not just a politician, but also a corporate lobbyist.”
“This is not a time for rhetoric, but for action,” JAC said in a statement.
“Our companies and our country need a new global rescue fund, and Trump is clearly leading the way.”
A spokesperson for the Trump administration did not immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment.
Shell companies are major players in a vast range of sectors, including shipping, construction, oil and gas extraction, mining and agriculture.
Shell is a subsidiary of UBS AG and is one the world’s largest oil and natural gas companies.
They are responsible for shipping more than $200 billion in oil and petroleum products to customers around the world.
“A shell company is a business with hundreds of thousands of employees and billions of dollars in revenue,” Trump wrote in his speech.
“The U. S. should be doing everything possible, including cutting off our support to these businesses.”
He also warned that Shell should be taken to court.
“There will be no winners,” he said.
“It will be the American taxpayer who will suffer.”
The speech also was notable for its blunt language.
“If you do not give the companies that are supporting them the money they need, you will be hurting them in the long run,” Trump warned.
“You will have a financial meltdown.”
Trump was speaking to a crowd of more than 1,000 in the cavernous Ballroom at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library.
The audience was mostly young pro-Trump supporters, who were dressed in green and blue, and a number of young pro Jewish activists.
A pro-Semitic anti-Israel activist was onstage during the speech, chanting, “Don’t sell out the Jews.”
Shell executives, including CEO Michael Quinlan, had been invited to speak before, but Trump chose not to invite them.
Quinlan was the keynote speaker at the event.
The American Israel Law Institute, a group that promotes pro-Zionist and pro-Palestinian views, is the second largest lobbying organization for U,S.
corporations, according a 2017 study by the Center for Responsive Politics.
“Today, many of the top corporate executives and CEOs of America’s largest companies have come out against a new international tax on shell companies, which is the most extreme example yet of a corporate tax break for companies and countries that have committed to supporting human rights, democracy and the environment,” the group said in an official statement on Monday.
In an op-ed piece published by the Washington Post, former U.A.E. chief executive Mark Hanna, an outspoken Trump critic, called the tax “a disaster for America’s shell companies and their owners.”
Hanna wrote that Trump was “wrong” to support the tax.
“He is wrong to have a soft spot for shell-company owners, who are not only paying a higher rate on their own taxes but who are also paying an even higher rate to Uncle Sam,” Hanna wrote.
“While Trump’s plan would save the U, S. a lot, he is wrong that it is a ‘win-win.'”
In an interview with CNN, Hanna said he is “disappointed” that Trump has backed away from the tax plan.
“But, in general, I have a big problem with the Trump campaign.
It’s a failure to connect with the American public, it’s a very low-energy campaign,” Hanna said.
In a statement released Monday, Quinlan said Trump’s “pro-shell stance is misguided