Trump's son-in-law poised to resign as CEO of real estate firm

Mr Kushner and his wife Ivanka in the lobby of Trump Tower. He is said to be considering a position in his father-in-law's White House administration, but experts say that such an appointment would draw legal challenges over potential violation of a
Mr Kushner and his wife Ivanka in the lobby of Trump Tower. He is said to be considering a position in his father-in-law's White House administration, but experts say that such an appointment would draw legal challenges over potential violation of a federal anti-nepotism law.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

WASHINGTON • Mr Jared Kushner, son-in-law of US President-elect Donald Trump, is preparing to resign as chief executive from his real estate development company, his lawyer said in a statement.

The move is designed to reduce conflict-of-interest concerns as Mr Kushner, 35, ponders a position in the White House.

Though plans are not yet final, the statement on Saturday said that Mr Kushner "is committed to complying with federal ethics laws".

He would also "divest substantial assets" and "recuse from particular matters that would have a direct and predictable effect on his remaining financial interests".

Mr Kushner's planned move was first reported by The New York Times in a story exploring his pursuit of a joint venture with a Chinese financial group to redevelop a Manhattan property.

Mr Kushner has run his family's multibillion-dollar real estate empire over the last decade, after his father pleaded guilty to corruption-related charges.

During Mr Trump's campaign, he played a key role as a confidant and gatekeeper. Mr Kushner, whose family has donated to pro-Israel causes, also played a role as a Middle East policy adviser. He does not yet have a formal position in the Trump administration but could ultimately take on an advisory role.

The real estate holdings represent just one in a tangle of ethical challenges confronting the President-elect, who has more than 100 companies with business in at least 18 countries.

Mr Kushner's own company has focused primarily on development in New York and New Jersey, but it has often relied on foreign investment, and its earnings could be influenced by Trump administration trade and foreign relations policy.

If Mr Kushner takes on a White House role, it would also raise questions about whether the move violates a federal anti-nepotism law. Though there is some debate about whether the law applies to those hired in the West Wing, many experts say a Kushner appointment would draw legal challenges.

Mr Kushner and his wife Ivanka Trump have prepared for the move to Washington by buying a six-bedroom home just blocks from where the Obamas will be living after they leave the White House.

WASHINGTON POST

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 09, 2017, with the headline 'Trump's son-in-law poised to resign as CEO of real estate firm'. Print Edition | Subscribe