Donald Trump’s victory in the U.S. presidential race shows that Britain must make globalisation work for “overlooked” communities which have irrevocably been transformed by immigration without the “permission” of British voters, the prime minister is set to say.
In her first speech assessing the impact of Trump’s win, May will say that his triumph proves the need for a “new approach to managing the forces of globalisation” which takes the needs of the working classes into account, The Telegraph has reported.
And she pulls no punches in criticising big businesses which have used globalisation to “game the system” and “work to a different set of rules”, which she will say undermines the “reputation of business as a whole”.
Mrs. May has been urged to do more to work with Trump by her own ministers, coming in for criticism for shunning UK Independence Party interim leader Nigel Farage as a bridge between the two administrations.
Mr. Farage was the first foreign politician to meet with Mr. Trump following the announcement of the presidential results when he flew out to New York this week. By contrast, Mrs. May was the eleventh world leader to talk with Mr. Trump, behind representatives of Egypt and Mexico.
Speaking at the Guildhall in London on Monday evening, May will refer to both Trump’s victory and this summer’s Brexit vote to make the case that “change is in the air”.
The prime minister will say: “We can’t deny – as I know you recognise – that there have been downsides to globalisation in recent years, and that – in our zeal and enthusiasm to promote this agenda as the answer to all our ills – we have on occasion overlooked the impact on those closer to home who see these forces in a different light.
“These people – often those on modest to low incomes living in rich countries like our own – see their jobs being outsourced and wages undercut. They see their communities changing around them and don’t remember giving their permission for that to be the case.”
May will hit out at the big businesses which have ridden on the coat-tails of globalisation to make huge profits by outsourcing jobs to countries with cheaper labour costs, to the detriment of the British working classes.
And she will make the case that, by harnessing the talents of the British people, Britain can “usher in” a new golden age of trade.
“So often over our long history, this country has set the template for others to follow,” the prime minister will say. “We have so often been the pioneer – the outrider – that has acted to usher in a new idea or approach.
“And we have that same opportunity today. To show the world that we can be the strongest global advocate for free markets and free trade because we believe they are the best way to lift people out of poverty… but that we can also do much more to ensure the prosperity they provide is shared by all.
“To demonstrate that we can be the strongest global advocate for the role businesses play in creating jobs, generating wealth and supporting a strong economy and society… but that we can also recognise when a minority of businesses and business figures appear to game the system and work to a different set of rules, the social contract between businesses and their employees fails – and the reputation of business as a whole is quickly undermined.”