Ivanka Trump‘s company reportedly gained provisional approval for three trademarks from China on the same day she dined with Chinese President Xi Jinping at Mar-a-Lago on April 6, Chinese trademark documents revealed.
According to CNN, her firm has already acquired 16 fully registered trademarks in the country before getting provisional approvals for two other trademarks on February 20 and March 6. The new trademarks are for jewelry, spa services, and bags.
China also recently granted preliminary approvals for 35 Trump-related trademarks for the Trump Organization, covering its mining, construction and hospitality businesses. In a statement to CNN, Abigail Klem, president of Ivanka Trump’s company, claims the awarding of trademarks are simply the “normal course of doing business.”
She explained that filing trademarks is necessary for “regions where trademark infringement is rampant.” Klem also noted the sudden “surge in trademark filings by unrelated third parties trying to capitalize on the name. It is our responsibility to diligently protect our trademark.”
She further noted that the filings of five Ivanka Trump trademarks were done before her father’s election victory, in early 2016.
“Ivanka has had no involvement with trademark applications submitted by the business,” Jamie Gorelick, Ivanka Trump’s lawyer, was quoted as saying. “The federal ethics rules do not require you to recuse from any matter concerning a foreign country just because a business that you have an ownership interest in has a trademark application pending there.”
But although Ivanka Trump did resign from managing her company to take a new role in the White House, she still retained ownership stake in the business. Aside from her brand, she also has a huge stake in the Trump International Hotel in Washington D.C.
Any dealings she makes under her new position which benefits her or her family’s business poses dangerous potential conflicts of interest. Under federal rules, she is now prevented from participating in anything that she has a business interest.