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President Trump praises Tim Cook's communication skills

Apple CEO Tim Cook and President Donald Trump

Last updated

Apple CEO Tim Cook has been praised by President Donald Trump as a 'great executive,' due to how Cook contacts Trump over major political and business issues directly, a technique that other company leaders do not attempt.

Speaking to reporters outside the White House on Wednesday, Trump made the declaration about Cook, due to the Apple chief calling "whenever there is a problem." The communication is "why he's a great executive" according to Trump, "because he calls me and others don't."

"Others go out and hire very expensive consultants," Trump said according to CNBC. "Tim Cook calls Donald Trump directly."

Cook's most recent engagement with Trump was on August 16, when they met for dinner and discussed a range of topics from business to human rights. Shortly after the discussion, Trump advised Cook had made a "good case" for Apple to avoid paying a new 10% tariff on Chinese electronic imports, which would affect the iPhone, in that it would place pressure on Apple but would not affect its main smartphone rival Samsung.

"The problem was that Samsung, a competitor, his competitor, wouldn't be paying tariffs, and Tim Cook would," Trump advised today. "I gotta help him out short-term, because it's a great American company."

Apple did benefit briefly before the dinner, as on August 13, a US Trade Representative revealed certain products were removed from the latest round of tariffs, with "cell phones, laptop computers," and other hardware not subjected to the tariffs until December 15.

The latest meeting is the most recent in a long line of others between the CEO and the President. One meeting took place on June 13 at the same time as a separate White House event relating to workforce development efforts, though details of what occurred were not revealed.

Another in March famously saw Trump refer to Tim Cook as "Tim Apple," a gaffe that was brushed off by Trump as his attempt to save time. Cook responded by temporarily renaming his Twitter account to the new pseudonym.

Other occasions include one dinner in August 2018, an Oval Office encounter in April over trade and US jobs, and in June 2017 over trimming government waste.

Trump has also made at least one call to Cook, with one January 2018 declaration he called Cook to thank him for Apple's announcement it was investing $350 billion within the United States.