Arab Gulf

The Financial Ties that Bind the Arab Gulf Monarchies and the United States

In July 2021, former President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and advisor Jared Kushner obtained a $2 billion investment for his newly formed private equity firm, Affinity Partners, from Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund. Notably, the deal was approved despite opposition from the Saudi fund’s investment screening panel. According to the minutes of the panel, objections to the investment plan included a major fee that “seems excessive,” the “inexperience of the Affinity Fund management” and a due diligence determination that the firm’s operations were “unsatisfactory in all aspects.” The panel was overruled, however, by the sovereign wealth fund’s board, controlled by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the de facto ruler of Saudi Arabia.


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