Disney Plans $3.5B Shanghai Park
$3.59B park could offer 50,000 jobs
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jan 10, 2009 9:07 AM CST
Disney executive VP and managing director Bill Ernest dresses in a traditional Chinese jacket to celebrate the Lunar New Year with Mickey and Minnie Mouse in Hong Kong Disneyland, Feb. 7., 2008.   (AP Photo/Lo Sai Hung)
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(Newser) – Economic struggles around the globe aren’t stopping Disney’s plans to build a $3.59 billion theme park in China, the Wall Street Journal reports. After years of wrangling, the entertainment firm and Shanghai officials agreed this week to send a proposal to the Chinese government for what would be the biggest-ever foreign investment in the nation. The struggling economy could actually help its prospects because the park would create 50,000 jobs.

But as yet, “no deal has been signed, no project has been approved,” said a Disney parks VP. It could take a year for China to sign off on the project; building could finish by 2014. The “first phase” of the park would cover over half a square mile with a theme park, hotels, and shopping. Disney’s Hong Kong park has struggled, and its domestic parks have seen a dropoff in attendance amid the downturn.