LONDON: Donald Trump on Friday hailed Britain’s vote to exit the EU as a “great thing” shortly after arriving in Scotland on a business trip, his first foreign visit since becoming the presumptive Republican US presidential nominee.
“I think it’s a great thing that happened, an amazing vote, very historic. We’re very happy,” the 70-year-old Republican leader said as he arrived at Trump Turnberry for the reopening of a refurbished Open venue golf resort.
Trump had added his name to the Ayrshire hotel and golf course after buying the resort for an undisclosed fee in 2014.
According to reports, he invested USD 300 million.
“People are angry. All over the world they’re angry. We’re doing very well in the US and essentially the same thing has happened in the US. They are angry over borders, they are angry over people coming into the country,” he said when asked why people voted for Brexit.
The American billionaire emerged from helicopter wearing one of his own Make America Great Again hats, alongside daughter Ivanka and son Eric. They were greeted by bagpipe players in a traditional Scottish welcome.
Trump’s business links with Scotland began a decade ago as he promised to create a legacy to his mother Mary MacLeod, who was born in Stornoway in the Outer Hebrides.
He owns more than a dozen golf resorts in the US and opened his first in the UK, at the Menie estate in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, in 2012 after controversy surrounding planning, environmental issues and clashes with local people who refused to move.
He had announced his visit for the official re-opening of Turnberry earlier this month.
Ralph Porciani, Trump Turnberry manager, said: “We have always known that the newly-renovated Trump Turnberry would be among the finest hotels anywhere in the world. The Trump Organization has spared no expense – it is a genuine masterpiece.
“Guests can expect an opulent and very private experience at Trump Turnberry, which is hidden away in a richly historic landscape with breathtaking views. No request will be too great and no detail too small.”
Trump, who is the likely Republican candidate in US presidential election in November after seeing off a host of rivals in the primaries, has had a controversial campaign trail exchange with UK leaders.
His proposal to ban Muslims from entering the US drew the ire of British Prime Minister David Cameron, who has called the idea “stupid, divisive and wrong”.
London mayor Sadiq Khan had also rebuffed Trump’s offer to make an exception for him to be able to travel to the US.
“I don’t withdraw in any way what I said about the policy of not letting Muslims in to America. I do think that is wrong and divisive,” Cameron had reiterated after Trump insisted he take back his initial views.–PTI