Wilbur Ross sworn in as US secretary of commerce

Pence administered the oath of office to Ross, 79, a day after the US Senate voted to confirm the corporate turnaround expert's nomination, with strong support from Democrats.

By: Reuters | Washington | Published: February 28, 2017 9:55 pm
Wilbur Ross, Wilbur Ross US secretary of commerce, US administration, trump administration, trump cabinet, latest news, latest world news Wilbur Ross testifies before a Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee confirmation hearing on his nomination to be commerce secretary at Capitol Hill in Washington, US, January 18, 2017. (Reuters Photo/Carlos Barria/File Picture)

Billionaire investor Wilbur Ross was sworn in as US commerce secretary on Tuesday after helping shape Republican President Donald Trump’s opposition to multilateral trade deals. Vice President Mike Pence administered the oath of office to Ross, 79, a day after the US Senate voted to confirm the corporate turnaround expert’s nomination, with strong support from Democrats.

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Ross is set to become an influential voice in Trump’s economic team and was expected to start work on renegotiating trade relationships with China and Mexico. While commerce secretaries rarely take the spotlight in Washington, Ross is expected to play an outsize role in pursuing Trump’s campaign pledge to slash U.S. trade deficits and bring manufacturing jobs back to America.

Some Democrats criticized Ross as another billionaire in a Trump Cabinet that says it is focused on the working class and for being a “vulture” investor who has eliminated some jobs. Reuters reported last month that Ross’s companies had shipped some 2,700 jobs overseas since 2004.

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