Speaking at the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting, the US President stayed on script during his main speech to a room full of the very global elite he railed against during his election.
But during apparently ad-libbed comments afterwards, he said: “It wasn’t until I became a politician that I realised how nasty, how mean, how vicious and how fake the press can be.”
Pointing to the back of the room, he added: “As the cameras start going off.”
A journalist for the Washington Post who was present confirmed it was the press who were making the vocal protest.
Bizarrely, a Fox News host insisted he hadn’t been booed even though it was live-streamed to the entire world.
During his speech Trump warned trading partners Washington would no longer tolerate unfair trade, saying predatory practices were distorting markets.
“The United States will no longer turn a blind eye to unfair trade practices,” Trump told assembled chief executives, bankers and political leaders.
“We cannot have free and open trade if some countries exploit the system at the expense of others,” he added.
The Trump administration’s debut at Davos caused a storm, not least because of comments by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, who said this week the United States benefited from a lower dollar, which would make its exports cheaper, reports Reuters.
Mnuchin’s remarks sent the US currency tumbling and drew sharp rebukes from the European Central Bank and other figures, who view countries talking down their own currencies as a violation of unwritten rules to keep trade balanced.
On Thursday, Trump said he ultimately wants the dollar to be strong, lifting the greenback briefly. US officials sought to dispel any impression of disarray, saying Mnuchin was making an observation about the impact of a lower dollar, not announcing a new policy to drive it down.
“I don’t think there’s any daylight between the President and Secretary Mnuchin,” an administration officials told reporters in Davos. “I think that there were some people who took some comments that the secretary made where he was essentially reciting and explaining in descriptive manner a basic economic principle and took it to represent ... some sort of policy announcement or shift.”