President Trump congratulated Exxon Mobil Corp. as the company announced plans to create thousands of jobs by spending $20 billion over 10 years on plants along the Gulf Coast.

Exxon’s plan started long before Trump entered the White House, however. It includes investments that began in 2013.

Exxon announced its plan in a news release in which CEO Darren Woods was quoted as saying that such big investments "require a pro-growth approach and a stable regulatory environment and we appreciate the President’s commitment to both."

A few minutes later, the White House issued its own release about Trump congratulating Exxon, which he also tweeted. One paragraph in the White House release is nearly identical to a passage in Exxon’s.

Exxon said it plans 10 expansion projects at refineries and chemical and liquefied natural gas plants around Beaumont and Baytown, Texas and Baton Rouge, Louisiana. It also wants to build a new chemicals plant at a location yet to be determined along the Gulf.

The company said Monday the work would create 12,000 permanent jobs — the energy giant currently has about 71,000 employees — and 35,000 construction jobs.

Woods said the investment plan responds to the rising supply of natural gas. There has been a boom in production created by techniques such as fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, in shale formations like the Permian Basin of Texas and New Mexico.

Woods replaced Rex Tillerson when he left the helm of Exxon Mobil to become Trump’s secretary of State. Tillerson and Trump met Monday shortly before the Exxon and White House press releases were issued.

Trump also tweeted a video in which he again congratulated Exxon for its announcement and explicitly credited his administration with having played a role, saying, "This is something that was done to a large extent because of our policies and the policies of this new administration having to do with regulation and so many other things."

It’s the latest in a string of corporate announcements about jobs and investments that date back to plans companies largely made when Barack Obama was president.

The statement released by the White House quoted Woods as telling a petroleum conference in Houston that private sector investment is "enhanced" by Trump’s support for a "stable regulatory environment."

But the statement also acknowledged that Exxon’s "Growing the Gulf" program involves investments that started in 2013 and are expected to continue through 2022, at least.

Trump has credited his policies for a variety of corporate announcements — by Ford, Fiat-Chrysler, General Motors, Sprint, Intel and more — that reflect decisions made before his presidency.

President Trump returns to the White House after a weekend in Florida. People show support for President Trump near his Mar-a-Lago resort home on Saturday, March 4, in West Palm Beach, Fla.

This article was sourced from http://newsvictoriabc.com