China Closes

New Zealand Golf Magazine - - NEWS -

Au­thor­i­ties have shut down two high-end golf cour­ses at a re­sort in north­east­ern China owned by real-es­tate mil­lion­aire Wang Jian­lin and op­er­ated by Wang's com­pany, Dalian Wanda Group.

Golf has long suf­fered un­der China's rul­ing Com­mu­nist Party, which banned the sport af­ter tak­ing power in 1949, de­scrib­ing it as a "game for mil­lion­aires." It later emerged from the shad­ows in the mid1980s as China's econ­omy opened up to the out­side world, but re­mained at the mercy of pol­i­tics.

These two clo­sures are the lat­est case of the Chi­nese govern­ment crack­down on golf, which has be­come the flag­ship of the anti cor­rup­tion war­fare against which Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping has been wag­ing a mas­sive, high-pro­file cam­paign. They also rep­re­sent a fresh set­back for Wanda, which has found parts of its busi­nesses un­der pres­sure from au­thor­i­ties this year.

The Fu­song County govern­ment or­dered Wanda to stop golf op­er­a­tions at a re­sort in Chang­bais­han last month, ac­cord­ing to a brief no­tice posted on the govern­ment's web­site on Fri­day. It didn't give a rea­son for the clo­sures or say if they're per­ma­nent.

Wanda de­clined to com­ment on the mat­ter. Its web­site says the Chang­bais­han re­sort has two "world-class" golf cour­ses, an 18-hole course de­signed by Jack Nick­laus and a 36-hole course de­signed by Robert Jones.

A new crack­down be­gan in 2004 and in­ten­si­fied un­der Xi. Since 2011, the govern­ment has closed more than 100 golf cour­ses around the coun­try, cit­ing il­le­gal land and wa­ter use ac­cord­ing to state me­dia.

Wanda re­ceived lo­cal govern­ment ap­proval to use the land for the Chang­bais­han golf cour­ses. The lo­cal govern­ment had also agreed to com­pen­sate the com­pany for any losses that might oc­cur in the event of land use dis­putes, the per­son said.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.