No surprise, Shanghai authorities reacted yesterday at all the articles announcing a Shanghai Disneyland cost "bigger than the Shanghai World Expo". They've released a statement saying that "the total investment amount remains undecided" because "they're still studying the project"... and it might be the truth. More about this official statement below:
SHANGHAI, Jan. 8 (Xinhua) -- Shanghai authorities are still studying the Disneyland project and the total investment amount remains undecided, a government statement said Saturday.
Shanghai has established committees for it but we are still in the research and policy-making stage, said Jiang Xujie, an official in charge of the city's construction work, in the statement posted on the municipal government's website.
The investment will be properly arranged and the amount will be made public after officially approved, said Chen Qiwei, spokesman of the city government.
Chen said Shanghai Shendi Group Co. Ltd., a state-owned company that signed the deal with Walt Disney Co. for the theme park November last year, will set up a joint venture with Disney.
The construction timetable is being examined by Chinese authorities and will be made public as soon as it's signed off, he said.
Disney and the Chinese authorities have been negotiating on and off for more than a decade over the project, and the last round of negotiations took months.
The project is expected to cover a relatively small 4 square kilometers in the heart of a planned "international tourism resort" that covers 20 square kilometers in Shanghai's Pudong New District.
Earlier reports said the first-phase construction will cost 25 billion yuan (3.6 billion U.S. dollars).