US President-elect Donald Trump has promised to be a friend to America’s technology companies as the US president-elect hosted a summit of Silicon Valley’s most powerful executives.
But it is a message which flies in the face of many of his campaign promises during the course of which both sides had made no secret of their disdain for each other.
Trump for his part put technology companies and their executives in the firing line, with calls for boycotts and accusations of tax-dodging.
Many leaders in the industry had said they were fearful that Trump would stifle innovation, curb the hiring of computer-savvy immigrants and infringe on consumers’ digital privacy.
Earlier this year 140 tech leaders even signed an open letter warning against Trump’s election.
#The140 “An open letter from technology sector leaders on Donald Trump’s candidacy for President” by
KatieS</a> <a href="https://t.co/PYz7hwbjDS">https://t.co/PYz7hwbjDS</a></p>— Taco Bowl Carlos™ (locotecato) December 14, 2016
But at the summit on Wednesday (Dec 14) Trump struck a positive message at the top of the meeting saying: “I’m here to help you folks do well, and you’re doing well right now.”
“We are going to make fair trade deals. We’re going to make it a lot easier for you to trade across borders.”
“We’re going to be there for you when you’ll call my people, you’ll call me, it doesn’t make any difference. We have no formal chain of command around here,” Trump added.
On leaving the meeting there was no comment from participants on how it had gone.
Those taking part included tech luminaries such as Apple’s Tim Cook and Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg.
Three of Trump’s adult children were also present, fueling further concern about potential conflicts of interests for president-elect who has said he will hand over control of his business empire to his children while he is in the White House.