White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki confirmed during a press briefing Friday that the president’s son continues to own a 10 percent stake in the Bohai Harvest RST (Shanghai) Equity Investment Fund Management Co. (BHR Partners) – despite President Biden’s October pledge that his family would be free of foreign dealings.
“He has been working to unwind his investment but I would certainly point you — he’s a private citizen — I would point you to him or his lawyers on the outside on any update,” Psaki said in answer to a question regarding his continued stake.
Hunter Biden’s legal team did not respond to a request for comment.
The younger Biden’s relations with the Ukrainian energy company, Burisma Holdings, and his financial investments with the equity company funded by the Bank of China, have landed his father in some hot water during his 2020 presidential race.
“No one in my family will have an office in the White House, will sit in on meetings as if they are a cabinet member, will, in fact, have any business relationship with anyone that relates to a foreign corporation or a foreign country,” Joe Biden said in the lead up to the election.
Hunter Biden stepped down from the board of BHR Partners after his father received increased scrutiny during his presidential bid and has emphasized that his involvement with the company started after Joe Biden was no longer vice president under the Obama administration.
“Hunter neither played a role in the formation or licensure of the company, nor owned any equity in it while his father was Vice President,” his attorney, George Mesires, said in a 2019 statement. “He served only as a member of its board of directors, which he joined based on his interest in seeking ways to bring Chinese capital to international markets.”
“It was an unpaid position,” he added.
Hunter Biden invested $420,000 in October 2017 and attained a 10 percent equity position in BHR Partners.
“Under a Biden Administration, Hunter will readily comply with any and all guidelines or standards a President Biden may issue to address purported conflicts of interest, or the appearance of such conflicts, including any restrictions related to overseas business interests,” Mesires added. “In any event, Hunter will agree not to serve on boards of, or work on behalf of, foreign owned companies.”
A source close with Hunter Biden confirmed for Fox News late last year that he intends to offload his investment in the Chinese equity company, but the president’s son has not given any indication as to when he will remove his stake.
Peter Hasson and Yael Halon contributed to this report.