President Trump set off on his first international trip as president on Friday. His first stop was Riyadh, where he negotiated deals that he says will lead to more jobs and “tremendous investments” in the US.
Trump agreed to a massive defense cooperation deal with the Saudis that includes combat ships, tanks, missile defense, cybersecurity technology, and radar and communications. The Saudis will receive $110 billion immediately, and up to $350 billion over the next decade.
The deal “shows the United States’ commitment to Saudi Arabia and other Gulf partners and expands economic opportunities,” reports Fox News.
Oil and gas giant Saudi Aramco signed 16 agreements with 11 US companies. Combined, these deals are worth about $50 billion.
“I can’t imagine another business day that’s been as good for the United States or for the kingdom,” said US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, who accompanied Trump to Riyadh.
Other US firms to sign agreements with the Saudis include:
• Nabros Industries Ltd.
• Honeywell International Inc.
• Exxon Mobil Corp.
• Lockheed Martin
• General Electric
These deals come as the Trump Administration promises to improve relations with Saudi Arabia that were strained under the previous administration.
The President also signed a memorandum with the Gulf Cooperation Council that White House adviser Dina Powell calls the “farthest reaching commitment” to not financing organizations with links to terrorism.
On Sunday, he will deliver a speech to more than 50 Arab and Muslim leaders. The speech with focus on fighting the Islamic State and other terrorist groups.
President Trump “certainly has the vision and, we believe, strength to bring about Middle East peace,” said Saudi Foreign Minister Abdel al Jubeir.
The President’s next stop in his overseas tour will be Israel, followed by a meeting with Pope Francis in Vatican City, a conference with NATO allies in Brussels, and a meeting with the Group of Seven in Sicily.
“White House officials hope the trip gives Trump the opportunity to recalibrate after one of the most difficult stretches of his young presidency,” reports Fox News.