Sunday 23 September 2018

'Whenever there's a problem you call, we'll solve it - except trade' - Trump in jovial jibe at corporate tax rate

US President Donald Trump during the Speaker's Lunch at Capitol Hill in Washington DC, USA. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo Niall Carson/PA Wire
US President Donald Trump during the Speaker's Lunch at Capitol Hill in Washington DC, USA. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo Niall Carson/PA Wire
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar makes a speech during the Speaker's Lunch at Capitol Hill in Washington DC Niall Carson/PA Wire
US President Donald Trump during the Speaker's Lunch at Capitol Hill in Washington DC, USA. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday March 15, 2018. See PA story IRISH Taoiseach. Niall Carson/PA Wire

Jason O'Brien in Washington DC

US President Donald Trump joked about Ireland's low corporate tax rate being difficult to compete with as the annual Irish blitz of Washington continued on Thursday.

Mr Trump was speaking at the Speaker's Lunch on Capitol Hill following a bilateral meeting with Mr Varadkar.

The pair spoke about trade during the Oval Office and Mr Varadakar said he raised the idea of a new trade deal between the US and the EU which he said the US President seemed open to.

Later at the second of three official engagements the issue of trade was raised again but this time in a more light-hearted manner.

"Whenever there's a problem you call - we'll solve it," Mr Trump said, before adding: "except trade".

"They've got those taxes so low....you're a tough one to compete with with the taxes," the US President said to laughter from the packed room.

Mr Trump also said he hoped to see Mr Varadkar "often".

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