Trump says he will “leave business” to focus on presidency

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Trump says he will “leave business” to focus on presidency

Image caption
Donald Trump previously said his business interests were not in conflict with his new role

President-elect Donald Trump has announced he is leaving “business in total” to focus on presidency and avoid perceived conflicts of interest.

Mr Trump said he would be expanding on his plans at a press conference with his children next month.

He previously dismissed concerns over potential conflicts between his businesses and the presidency.

Meanwhile, former Goldman Sachs executive Steven Mnuchin confirmed he had been picked as treasury secretary.

Mr Mnuchin, who was Trump”s former campaign finance director, also said billionaire investor Wilbur Ross had been chosen for commerce secretary.

Mr Trump and his transition team have yet to confirm the appointments, which were widely rumoured.

Instead, Mr Trump chose to focus on his plans to distance himself from his business in a series of four tweets released over 20 minutes.

Image caption
Children (second left to right, seen here sitting beside Melania) Ivanka, Eric and Donald Jr are already involved in the business

The tweets read: “I will be holding a major news conference in New York City with my children on December 15 to discuss the fact that I will be leaving my great business in total in order to fully focus on running the country in order to MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!

“While I am not mandated to do this under the law, I feel it is visually important, as President, to in no way have a conflict of interest with my various businesses.

“Hence, legal documents are being crafted which take me completely out of business operations. The Presidency is a far more important task!”

There is no legal requirement to liquidate assets but past US presidents have set aside their business dealings. Mr Trump”s rivals have raised repeated concerns this may cause problems in the coming months.

Mr Trump had previously indicated to the New York Times that he was considering separating his two areas of responsibility but was confident he could run both “perfectly”.

His three eldest children already hold roles within the Trump empire.