Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni told CNBC on Wednesday that he respected U.S. President Donald Trump, but didn't agree with his ideas on migration and climate change nor his protectionist stance on trade.
Speaking at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, Gentiloni discussed Trump's much-criticized "America First" rhetoric.
"I totally respect the fact that he was elected with the idea of putting America first, and he is trying to deliver in this direction," Gentiloni said.
"But, we the Europeans, we the Italians, have to stress the fact that respecting and protecting the interest of the U.S. citizens, which is correct, cannot mean that we discuss the framework of the international trade relations, for example, that have been demonstrated to be so useful for growth."
Gentiloni's comments come after it was announced Monday that Trumpapproved tariffs on imported solar cells and certain washing machines, to the consternation of China and other global leaders such as Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who warned the U.S. of its increasingly isolationist and protectionist stance over trade.