Work on El Salvador’s new China-funded national stadium is to begin this September, it has been confirmed.

China’s embassy in the Central American country announced via social media that construction work would begin at the San Salvador site later this year. The process of clearing the location of the 50,000-capacity stadium, including the dismantling of military school facilities owned by the Armed Forces of San Salvador, is already underway.

Lorena Fuentas of the Youth and Sports Commission posted this:

Plans for the stadium were announced at the start of this year by the country’s President, Nayib Bukele, who stated that the Chinese Government’s backing of the project comes as a result of a tour of Asia he conducted in late 2019 seeking out fresh investment for El Salvador. Bukele said the wider partnership with the Chinese Government is set to extend to the development of a new national library, envisioned as one of the best in Latin America, along with other projects.

The new stadium will replace Estadio Cuscatlán in San Salvador as the home of the national football team. The facility opened in July 1976, but is now limited to a capacity of 34,000 due to regulations from world football’s governing body, FIFA.

China has funded or built stadiums in numerous nations across Latin America, Asia and Africa over the last few decades. China spent an estimated $100m to construct Costa Rica’s National Stadium from 2008 to 2011.