Trump to meet with business leaders on infrastructure

© Reuters. United States President Donald Trump arrives aboard Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland

By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Donald Trump plans to meet with a group of infrastructure business leaders at the White House on Wednesday, a person briefed on the meeting said.

During his presidential campaign, Trump said he would push for a trillion-dollar infrastructure program to rebuild roads, bridges, airports and other public works projects.

The luncheon gathering is scheduled to include real estate, management consulting, private equity and other business leaders, along with at least one environmental group, a person briefed on the matter said.

Last month, Trump touted the plan in a speech to Congress.

“The time has come for a new program of national reconstruction,” Trump said.

“To launch our national reconstruction, I will ask Congress to pass legislation that produces a $ 1 trillion investment in US infrastructure, financed with public and private capital, creating millions of new jobs.”

The American Society of Civil Engineers rated US infrastructure at D + and estimated that the country needs to invest $ 3.6 trillion by 2020.

US Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao told Fox News last month that the infrastructure needs are so great that the federal government cannot bear all the costs.

“Public-private partnerships are a very important part of a new way to finance our roads and bridges that are in poor condition and are very dangerous,” said Chao.

In January, Trump signed an executive order aimed at expediting environmental reviews and approvals for all infrastructure projects, especially high-priority projects “like upgrading the US electrical grid and telecommunications systems, and repairing and upgrading. port facilities, airports, pipelines, bridges and roads “.

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