WATCH: Top EB-5 experts discuss future of the program

Industry insiders talk immigration and Trump at The Real Deal's Shanghai event

TRD New York /
Nov.November 29, 2016 03:50 PM

As experts pondered the future of EB-5 during The Real Deal’s second annual U.S. Real Estate Showcase and Forum in Shanghai, the conversation naturally turned to President-elect Donald Trump. Will his tough stance on immigration affect the controversial visa program’s future?

Former New York Gov. George Pataki said the program would have a powerful friend in Trump.

“There’s a lot of misunderstanding on that,” Pataki told TRD managing web editor Hiten Samtani, who moderated the event’s “EB-5 and U.S. Immigration” panel. “Donald Trump won for a lot of reasons — one was his very strong stance against illegal immigration. And often, in the media and in the public, the distinction between legal and illegal immigration gets lost.”

In his keynote address, U.S. Ambassador Charles Gargano offered a similar message.

“President-elect Trump has been very outspoken about some types of immigration — but primarily he’s talking about illegal immigration,” Gargano said. “I would postulate President-elect Trump is going to be a very strong supporter of the EB-5 program.”

Also present on the panel were Nicholas Mastroianni II, founder and CEO of the U.S. Immigration Fund; Scott Alper, president of Witkoff; Connor Chen, founder of EB5Sir; and Yuan Shaozhong, director of QWOS.

To see clips of Pataki and Gargano’s respective keynote speeches, as well as the full panel, watch the video above.

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