Guangzhou stadium ‘proceeding as normal’ – China Evergrande

Real estate giant China Evergrande Group has said it is committed to completing a new 100,000-capacity stadium in Guangzhou, as it continues to battle a major financial crisis.

The company told the Reuters news agency that work on the project in the southern Chinese city is proceeding “as normal”, despite its cash concerns.

Evergrande has hit the headlines in recent weeks as it seeks to address around $305bn (£226.6bn/€262bn) in debt. The company announced today (Wednesday) that it is selling a near 20% stake in commercial bank Shengjing Bank to a state-owned asset management company for $1.5bn.

Evergrande missed a bond interest payment last week and faced another deadline today for a further bond interest payment of $47.5m. Evergrande broke ground on what it claimed would be the world’s largest professional football stadium in April 2020, with the venue in Guangzhou set to be followed by a further three to five stadia with capacities of between 80,000 and 100,000.

The new stadium will be home to Evergrande’s Chinese Super League (CSL) club, Guangzhou FC, with the company stating it will accommodate up to 100,000 people. Evergrande said it would make a total investment of CNY12bn (£1.38bn/€1.59bn/$1.86bn) in the project, which will include a sports complex, with the cost of the 750 acres of land on which it will sit said to amount to CNY6.8bn alone.

The stadium is located adjacent to Guangzhou South railway station, and is planned to be completed by the end of 2022. With a floor area of around 150,000 square metres, it has taken design inspiration from a blooming lotus flower, a nod to Guangzhou’s status as China’s ‘Flower City’.

“Construction work on the soccer stadium is still proceeding as normal and in an orderly manner,” China Evergrande told Reuters.

Image: Evergrande Group