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Last Updated: Thursday, 12 January 2006, 16:51 GMT
Trump 'in talks' over development
Donald Trump
Mr Trump already owns four golf courses in America
Property tycoon Donald Trump is understood to be in talks over the creation of a major leisure development in Scotland.

The American billionaire is keen to expand his business into Europe.

It is thought discussions are taking place between Mr Trump's aides and officials at Aberdeenshire Council.

Mr Trump's mother was born in the Western Isles and he has already expressed an interest in developing a links golf course in Scotland.

The 59-year-old already owns four golf courses in the United States and his golfing advisers have reportedly visited Scotland.

We are under negotiations and cannot give out any specific details whatsoever
Ashley Cooper
Trump Golf Properties

During a meeting with First Minister Jack McConnell at Trump Towers in New York in October last year, he said: "It's possible we will go to Scotland and do something."

Ashley Cooper, managing partner of Trump Golf Properties, confirmed they were looking at a new project in Europe and that they were expecting to make an announcement in the next month.

"We are looking at a project in Europe right now," he told The Press and Journal newspaper.

"However, we are under negotiations and cannot give out any specific details whatsoever.

"Full details will be given if and when negotiations close."

He added that they were looking to make an announcement in four to five weeks, but that releasing details before then might "damage" current discussions.

Scottish roots

An Aberdeenshire Council spokesman remained tight-lipped, saying the council could not discuss individual proposals, but would "certainly give consideration to any plans lodged by Mr Trump".

Mr Trump's current golf courses include Briarcliff Manor in New York .

In the US his celebrity status has been elevated following the success of his reality television show, The Apprentice, and its "you're fired" catchphrase.

During his North American tour last year the first minster said Mr Trump was clearly very committed to his Scottish roots and that he had accepted an invitation to visit Scotland in 2006.

"We had a very interesting discussion about some options he has for investments in Europe that he would like to fulfil in Scotland," Mr McConnell said at the time.

"He knows that we are ambitious and want to be recognised internationally."

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