By Don Reisinger
December 11, 2018

Donald Trump’s trade policy and desire to use tariffs to accomplish his goals could ultimately prove to be a problem for global health, Microsoft co-founder and philanthropist Bill Gates said recently.

Speaking to Axios in an interview published on Tuesday, Gates said that he hopes the U.S. can restore better trade relations with Europe and China and that the Trump administration stops spending so much time focusing on “short-term things, you know, relative to tariffs.” Ultimately, Gates believes that the U.S. needs to focus on “long-term problems which, in my view, includes these global health things and stopping pandemics.”

Gates, along with his wife Melinda, are two of the world’s preeminent philanthropists. They often spend time and money on a variety of health-related issues and trying to eradicate diseases that kill people around the globe.

One of those efforts centers on eradicating malaria by 2040. However, in order to achieve that, Gates needs to work with China. He fears that the strained relations between the U.S. and China could ultimately make that effort more difficult.

“We’re going to the Chinese and saying, ‘Hey, join in this effort.’ And obviously, if U.S.-China relationships are not going well, that means our chance at succeeding in getting China to participate in these global efforts makes it less than we would have otherwise,” Gates told Axios.

Earlier this month, Donald Trump tweeted that his talks with China are “going well.” He added that the U.S. and China should be able to reach an accord on trade within the next 90 days.

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