Saturday, November 12, 2016

Donald Trump entrusts the management of his business to his children – The Figaro

This decision raises critical because of the risk of conflicts of interest. The president-elect is also the owner of an economic empire linked to consortiums of foreign countries and debtor of the big banks.

owner of an economic empire of 10 billion dollars (9.1 billion euros) and now president of the United States: by combining these two hats, Donald Trump, 156th fortune in the world, according to the american magazine Forbes ($ 3.7 billion), is subject to conflicts of interest. “This is unprecedented in the history of the United States, notably because we do not know the extent and the nature of its financial relationships,” says to AFP Kathleen Clark, a law professor at the Washington University. This expert in ethical issues is pointing out a fact of particular concern for this man of affairs who funded its expansion with debt. “We don’t know who he owes the money and having the money is a bond of financial the more significant as an investment,” she argues.

During the presidential campaign, the american billionaire had pledged to resort to a “blind trust”, a financial structure independent of the depriving them of all right to look at his group. But the decision, made official on Friday, entrusting the management to his three older children, Donald Junior (age 38), Ivanka (35 years old) and Eric (age 32) has revived the controversy. Especially, that on the same day, one learns that they will be part of his transition team presidential. “This does not meet any of the standards of independence of a “blind trust” if the children run the company,” says,in an interview to the chain of canadian television CBC, Kenneth Gross, a lawyer in Washington and counsel to clients policies as regards transparency and compliance with the law. Ditto on the side of the american press.

as an entrepreneur, the president-elect has made a fortune by building a vast network of hotels and luxury buildings (2.8 billion euros of assets) to the head of the Trump Organization, the holding company that oversees its activities, and endeavor, according to CNN Money, of 22,500 people.

according To public information, this real estate empire is mainly located in the United States but also extends to countries, such as Russia, Turkey or Azerbaijan, where Donald Trump has partnered with real estate developers, which are often linked to local power. “Let this be clear, I have zero financial interest in Russia,” said Donald Trump in July. The gray areas are far from being limited to Russia. According to the Wall Street Journal, the billionaire has received, since 1998, to a $ 2.5 billion loan from Deutsche Bank to finance its economic activities. However, the German bank, blamed the United States for his role in the 2008 financial crisis, will soon impose a very heavy fine, the amount of which is still debated in Washington. Finally, Donald Trump would actually pay $ 950 million dollars (876 million euros) by a consortium of banks comprised of Bank of China and Goldman Sachs to acquire 30% of a building located on 6th Avenue in Manhattan, ac cording to New York Times. And would have another in progress of $ 360 million which was used to finance the Trump International Hotel in Washington, next to the White House.

For the moment, Donald Trump has little spoken of these potential conflicts of interest, first because nobody imagined really sit in the oval Office, but also because the u.s. law is very flexible in the matter. Under the 1978 law on ethics of the government, the president or the vice-chairperson may combine their mandates with economic activities, whereas the obligations incumbent on the members non-elected members of the executive are much more restrictive. The Constitution prohibits certainly at any politician accepting any “emolument” from a foreign power, but this provision does not preclude entering into business with private partners abroad.

(with branches)


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