Trump hails Brexit vote as a 'great thing'

Mr Donald Trump, who landed in Scotland last Friday, admitted that he had not known until recently what Brexit even was. Nevertheless, the billionaire said the vote would be good for business at his golf course in Scotland.
Mr Donald Trump, who landed in Scotland last Friday, admitted that he had not known until recently what Brexit even was. Nevertheless, the billionaire said the vote would be good for business at his golf course in Scotland.PHOTO: REUTERS

AYRSHIRE (Scotland) • Mr Donald Trump, who didn't know what Brexit was until recently, has proclaimed the momentous departure "a great thing" and the subsequent decline of the British pound good for local companies - including his own Turnberry golf course.

Touching down in Scotland last Friday morning to visit his luxury resort and golf course, Mr Trump, who before the vote had suggested that Britain leave the European Union (EU), proclaimed: "I said this was going to happen, and I think that it's a great thing. Basically, they took back their country."

And amid global jitters over Britain's divorce from the EU, the US presidential hopeful reacted with celebration and self-interest, predicting that it would benefit his business.

However, he was derided on Twitter after he tweeted, "Just arrived in Scotland. Place is going wild over the vote. They took their country back, just like we will take America back. No games!" Scotland had overwhelmingly voted to remain in the EU in the referendum.

Early this month, the billionaire did not even know what Brexit referred to and, as recently as last Wednesday, he said that his opinion on the referendum was insignificant because he had not been following the issue closely.

'RECLAIMING BRITAIN'

I said this was going to happen, and I think that it's a great thing. Basically, they took back their country.

'' MR DONALD TRUMP, making a slip over the results of the Brexit vote.

But last Friday, Mr Trump said he saw "a big parallel" between the vote in Britain and the broader populist, anti-establishment sentiment that helped fuel his rise to the status of presumptive Republican US presidential nominee. "People are angry, all over the world, people, they're angry. They're angry over borders, they're angry over people coming into the country and taking over, nobody even knows who they are. They're angry about many, many things," he said.

Meanwhile, cable network HBO has said its hit TV series Game Of Thrones will not suffer due to Britain's decision to leave the EU.

It was feared that the result of the referendum could discourage Hollywood studios and cable networks from filming shows and movies in Britain, in part because the country would no longer have access to European subsidies.

But HBO confirmed that while the series received support from the EU's European Regional Development Fund in its early years, the fund has provided no support for the show's past few seasons.

The series, now in its sixth season, has a budget of US$10 million (S$13.5 million) per episode.

NEW YORK TIMES, REUTERS

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on June 26, 2016, with the headline 'Trump hails Brexit vote as a 'great thing''. Print Edition | Subscribe