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    German Chancellor Angela Merkel listens as Ivanka Trump speaks during a meeting with President Donald Trump at the White House in Washington, Friday, March 17, 2017

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    Some observers criticized the seating arrangement of a German-US business summit at the White House, which placed Ivanka Trump next to German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrived in Washington on Friday, where she met President Donald Trump for the first time.

    Before a much-talked about joint news conference, the leaders held a private meeting and a roundtable discussion with German and US business leaders. 

    Merkel had invited the CEO's of German companies Siemens and BMW to the meeting in order to impress on Trump the contribution they make to the US economy.

    ​In addition to the German business leaders, the President's daughter Ivanka Trump was also in attendance at the meeting. 

    Ivanka, who was seated next to the German Chancellor, has her own jewelry and fashion business. However, some observers questioned whether her business credentials were sufficient to earn her a place at the meeting.

    Many observers took to social networks to surmise that Chancellor Merkel was asking herself the same question.

    ​​During the roundtable discussion, Joe Kaeser of Siemens and Harald Krueger of BMW sought to impress on Trump the contribution their firms make to the German economy.

    Presenting an "America first" economic policy, Trump has singled out German carmakers and threatened to impose a 35 percent border tax on German vehicles imported to the US market.

    However, the US President, who has promised to reinvigorate US industry and provide more jobs, said he was impressed by what he heard about the vocational training offered by German firms.

    "Germany has been a model for highly successful apprenticeship programs. As a result the youth unemployment rate is much lower than other countries," he said.

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