President-elect Donald Trump said Wednesday that he had said no to a $2 billion deal from luxury property developer Damac Properties to avoid any conflicts of interest.
"I turned it down," Trump told journalists in his first press conference for six months on Wednesday. Trump added that as president of the United States he did not have to reject the deal but had preferred to turn it down.
Niall McLoughlin, senior vice-president at Damac Properties, told CNBC via email: "Damac can confirm that the discussions took place as stated in the media briefing but the proposals were declined. These proposals were for a variety of different property deals."
Trump said Damac's Chairman, Hussain Sajwani, is a "very amazing man". Both have struck several deals over the past years. According to the Washington Post, Trump's firm has received "millions of dollars in recent years" from such agreements.
These deals included the construction of a golf course – the Trump International Golf Club Dubai - a 7,205-yard, par 71 course which is due to be completed this year.
According to NBC News, Sajwani said in early January that he would like to strengthen his business relationship with Donald Trump. At the time he mentioned that he had ties with Trump's children.
"All his three children are very much involved, and I think under their leadership we will have no issue in expanding and growing and maintaining our business relation," Sajwani said, according to the report.
Trump has decided to hand his business empire to his adult children and said that he would not conduct any deals during his presidency.
Sajwani, who denied being involved in any political issues, added in the report in early January that the election of Trump should boost his business.
"Naturally, I think we will benefit from the strength of the brand going forward," he said.