Thursday, January 8, 2009

Disney and Shanghaî complete talks on Shanghaî Disneyland - Park opening scheduled for 2013

In a recent article - posted when everybody was denying that a deal was close between Disney and Shanghaî - i told you that you could count on a Shanghaî Disneyland, well, here we are, not totally signed yet indeed, but almost.

Today, Reuters press agency announced that " The Walt Disney Co has completed talks with the Shanghai government on plans to build a Disneyland theme park in the city and the project will be announced soon, the official Shanghai Securities News reported on Thursday, citing people close to the talks.

Senior Disney executives came to Shanghai last December to discuss details of cooperation with the local government and the two sides achieved a consensus on the project, the newspaper said.

The project, however, has yet to receive approval from China's central government, which will be essential if it is to go ahead.

A spokeswoman for the Shanghai government declined to comment. A Disney representative in Hong Kong could not immediately be reached for comment.

The plan calls for Shanghai Disneyland to open to the public in 2013, the newspaper said, citing an expert involved in the feasibility study for the project.

Disney has engaged in on-again, off-again talks for more than a decade with the Chinese government over plans to build a large theme park and hotel complex in the southern outskirts of Shanghai's Pudong district.

Those talks were stalled by a Shanghai government scandal in 2006 and Disney's need to focus on Hong Kong Disneyland, which opened in 2005 to a string of operational problems and lacklustre attendance.

The Shanghai Securities News also said Shanghai Lujiazui Group and Shanghai Waigaoqiao Group would take part in the construction of the project.

Of course the WDC reacted immediately to this news and Disney spokeswoman Huang Chen told Dow Jones Newswires that "There is no agreement and no deal has been reached" and that Disney "hasn't signed any agreement with the Shanghai government to build a theme park in the city".

Well, may be they've not signed it yet - remember that the project still need China's central government final approval - but it doesn't mean that they don't have an agreement.

Text: copyright Reuters. More also about this great news on the Forbes web site.


Anonymous said...

Wohoo! *Booking tickets to Shanghai 2013*

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