Financially troubled real estate group China Evergrande Group must focus on phasing out unfinished real estate projects. Furthermore, the conglomerate must work on repaying individual investors.
So say financial regulators in Beijing who have given the real estate group a comprehensive set of instructions. It also states that Evergrande must avoid defaulting on payments in the short term. In a meeting with Evergrande representatives, regulators also said the company must proactively communicate with bondholders to avoid default.
The threat of bankruptcy of Evergrande, which is weighed down by a debt load of 260 billion euros, is keeping investors worldwide under the spell. Growing concerns about the group are driving a sell-off in Asian markets, highlighting how the crisis is spreading to other assets.
Investors are bracing for a crucial payment deadline on Thursday. The company has to pay 83.5 million dollars (more than 71 million euros) in interest on a 2 billion dollar bond. The next payment deadline is a week later.
Failure to do so could trigger the most significant debt restructuring in China’s history. It would also be the worst blow to date in a market that has tempted international asset managers with lucrative returns. This happened at a time when global bond yields were at an all-time low.
According to the American business newspaper The Wall Street Journal, authorities in China have asked local governments to prepare for the possible collapse of Evergrande.
For example, they would have been instructed to find out what the financial consequences are and to enter into discussions with local project developers. This would suggest that Beijing has no intention of bailing out the company at all costs, despite the economic and social turmoil that bankruptcy would cause.