Donald Trump and Saudi Arabia, an enduring relationship

Monday, July 1st, the sons of former U.S. President Donald Trump, Eric and Donald Jr. Trump, announced a new real estate project. The two businessmen have reportedly set their sights on the city of Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, to build a Trump Tower, modeled after its New York counterpart.


To carry out this project, the Trump Organization has signed an agreement with the real estate developer Dar Global, the international subsidiary of the Saudi company Dar al-Arkan.


According to The New York Times, the partnership is presented as a “branding” operation, based on the exploitation of the “Trump” brand and similar to those the company has conducted over the past decade. Ultimately, the Trump Tower Jeddah will target “the Saudi luxury market and international investors“, according to a statement released by Dar Global.


The Conquest of the Middle East

After moving into the White House in 2017, Donald Trump entrusted the management of his real estate empire to some of his offspring while retaining his shares in the company. Having presumably inherited their father’s business acumen, Eric Trump and Donald Jr. Trump are working to develop the company internationally.


Donald Trump and his sons at the LIV Golf tournament © Getty Images


We are thrilled to expand our footprint in the Middle East and bring the Trump luxury standard to the region through our longstanding relationship with Dar Global,” said Eric Trump, Executive Vice President of the Trump Organization. “This collaboration embodies our shared vision of creating landmark projects synonymous with luxury, quality, and sophistication.


This longstanding partnership with Dar Global has thus given rise to another major project initiated by the American company. A few days before the announcement of the new Jeddah tower, the two entities had unveiled plans for a Trump International hotel complex in Oman. Scheduled for December 2028, this five-star complex will include a nightclub, a golf course, and a members-only club. The work will amount to $500 million, and while the Trump Organization does not own the hotel, Dar al-Arkan will still use the Trump name and logo under license.


A Lucrative Friendship

The ties between the Trump name and Gulf regimes, though not recent, seem to be intensifying.


Throughout the tenure of the 45th President of the United States, it was highlighted that Saudi authorities had significantly contributed to his enrichment. The payment for numerous hotel suites in establishments owned by Donald Trump was thus issued by Saudi Arabia.


In total, Joe Biden’s opponent reportedly earned at least $9.6 million from Middle Eastern countries during his presidency, according to data from the association Citizens for Responsibility & Ethics in Washington (CREW).


A close and lucrative relationship that still seems to have a bright future ahead. In 2022, the investment company led by Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump’s husband, reportedly received $2 billion from the Saudi royal fund.


And as no friendship can be one-sided, Donald Trump last April hosted a LIV Golf tournament, a league financed by the Saudis, on one of his golf courses near Miami.


Concerns on the Eve of Elections

With the upcoming U.S. elections, this multitude of services rendered and joint projects raises eyebrows among more than a few Democrats. The issue of conflicts of interest had already been raised during Donald Trump’s tenure and persists as he runs again for the White House.


The new Trump Organization projects in the Middle East have not gone unnoticed. “The Trump Organization’s pursuit of business projects abroad raises serious national security, corruption, and constitutional issues,” said Donald K. Sherman, Senior Vice President and Chief Counsel of CREW, to the American channel CNN.


This is particularly true for their development in Saudi Arabia, whose government has a long history of seeking influence over Donald Trump,” he added. “If Trump were to return to the presidency, he would likely violate the foreign emoluments clause of the Constitution, as he did multiple times during his first term.


One significant unknown remains: the outcome of the U.S. elections on November 5th…

Read also: Anant Ambani and Radhika Merchant’s Pre-Wedding: One Luxurious Party After Another


Featured Photo: © Press

Passionate about art in all its forms, Charline Point is a young journalist driven by fierce curiosity and a keen appetite for culture. After several years in press relations, Charline decided to take up a career in journalism. Her favorite subjects are travel, gastronomy, cinema and fashion.


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