Bill Gates: Trump’s ‘America First’ message hurts US influence in Africa

Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates says President Trump’s “America First” message has the potential to cause long-term damage to the United States’s influence in Africa. 
“There is a danger that if you think ‘America First’ too much [more] than the long-term benefit of African stability and good will in Africa, in absolute or even relative to competitors like China, you tend to devalue that,” Gates told Bloomberg News.
While the U.S. is diverting their attention away from African countries, other nations such as China, are expanding their influence across the continent, Gates added. 
{mosads}Gates said Trump should focus on assisting countries with health crises, rather than pulling away.
“That’s that area where I’ve chosen to take the wealth that was created through Microsoft,” Gates said from the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. “I understand that money can be very well spent. I’m in there saying let’s keep up the good work.” 
Trump is leaving for Davos on Wednesday night. White House adviser Kellyanne Conway said Tuesday that Trump will be advancing his “America First” agenda in his Davos speech. 
Gates, the second-richest person in the world, has spent more than $12 billion in the region to combat malaria and tuberculosis through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. He is gearing up to spend $83.6 million in Central America with the Carlos Slim Foundation and the Inter-American Development Bank, according to Bloomberg. 
Gates has been critical of Trump’s policies in the past, saying he was “disappointed” after Trump neglected to fund vaccinations in his first budget proposal after the pair discussed it in September.
The release of Trump’s second budget proposal has been delayed following the government shutdown, the White House announced Wednesday
Gates has also criticized Trump’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program last year, which provides protections against deportation to immigrants brought illegally to the country as children. 
Trump is expected to address the forum for global elites Friday, making him the first president to formally attend since Bill Clinton went in 2000. 
Tags Bill Clinton Donald Trump Kellyanne Conway

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