(Adds details, White House confirmation of meeting, restores Fink reference, adds participants)
By David Shepardson
WASHINGTON, April 10 (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump will meet with about 20 chief executives Tuesday including heads of General Motors Co, International Business Machines Corp and Wal-Mart Stores Inc as he works to gain support for a $1 trillion infrastructure program, tax reform and other administration priorities, a government official briefed on the matter said.
Trump has pledged to unlock $1 trillion in private and public infrastructure investments to fix bridges, improve the electrical grid and broadband internet, modernize airports and potentially rebuild hospitals for veterans. Nearly three months after his inauguration, Trump will again seek the advice and funds of the private sector for his “national rebuilding” program.
White House spokesman Sean Spicer confirmed the meeting and the small group sessions, but did not immediately disclose the CEOs.
Trump also wants to streamline the income tax system, cut federal regulations, reduce corporate income tax and add new taxes to prod companies to keep or move production to the United States.
The chief executives are part of Trump’s “Strategy and Policy Forum” that was created in December and last met with the president on Feb. 3.
The business leaders from a variety of sectors will also meet in small groups with Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and White House budget director Mick Mulvaney, Spicer said. The CEOs will present a report to Trump.
Participants in Ross’ meeting include Wal-Mart CEO Doug McMillon and Indra Nooyi, chief executive officer of PepsiCo Inc . Pruitt’s meeting will include GM CEO Mary Barra and Paul Atkins, CEO of Patomak Global Partners LLC and a Republican former SEC commissioner. Chao’s meeting will include Tesla Inc CEO Elon Musk.
BlackRock CEO Larry Fink, who heads the world’s largest investment management firm, in a letter to shareholders Monday backed calls for private investment to rebuild U.S. infrastructure. The Trump administration plans to unveil as soon as May the $1 trillion infrastructure plan over 10 years.
“Fixing crumbling roads and bridges is not enough. We need to be focused on reshaping our world, not just repairing it,” Fink wrote.
Last week, Trump pitched infrastructure projects to about 50 New York area CEOs. National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn told executives that privatizing air traffic control, which the administration proposed in its budget outline in March, could be a big boost.
Other chief executives taking part Tuesday include consultant EY, Boston Consulting Group, the Cleveland Clinic and Global Infrastructure Partners, an infrastructure investment fund. (Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Andrew Hay and Lisa Shumaker)