Disney could start building its planned theme park in Shanghai as early as November, a year after Chinese authorities gave the green light for the project, a report said Tuesday.
“Talks on the Disney project are in the final stages and the construction is expected to start as early as November,” the China Business News reported, citing an unnamed source.
The park would be Disney’s fourth outside the United States and its third in Asia, after Paris, Tokyo and Hong Kong – the last to open in 2005.
All major construction in Shanghai has been suspended until after the World Expo ends on October 31 as part of efforts to improve the city’s air quality during the six-month event.
The Shanghai government announced its long-awaited approval for the project in November last year after authorities in Beijing approved Disney’s application.
Neither side disclosed any figures or gave a timeframe for the project, but previous reports have said the US entertainment giant will invest 3.6 billion dollars in the 10-square-kilometre (four-square-mile) park.
When asked about the report, Disney said it looked forward to being able to announce a final deal and a timeline for opening in the future.
“Final discussions between Disney and the Shanghai government are not yet complete, and detailed negotiations to produce a final deal will continue for a number of months,” a Hong Kong-based Disney spokeswoman told AFP in an email.