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Bank of New York Mellon sues to liquidate Sino Ocean for US$400 million debt and interest

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Bank of New York Mellon sues to liquidate Sino Ocean for US$400 million debt and interest

The Bank of New York Mellon has sued in Hong Kong to liquidate the Beijing developer Sino-Ocean Group, becoming the latest in a string of cases in the city’s courts to push for financial restructuring in China’s debt-laden property industry.

The developer is the guarantor of a 3.25-per cent note due in 2026 issued by its unit Sino-Ocean Land Treasure IV Limited, and is liable for US$400 million in debt and accrued interest. Sino-Ocean received a petition from the bank’s London branch, the developer said in a stock exchange filing.

Sino-Ocean said it will “oppose the petition vigorously” and work closely with its financial and legal advisers to put together a plan to repay its creditors.

“The company is now at an advanced stage of discussion with the co-ordination committee of lenders of the existing syndicated loans of the group and expects that an agreement on the principal terms of the holistic debt management arrangement will be reached in due course,” it said.

An undated photo of Sino-Ocean Group’s building in Beijing. Photo: Weibo

Sino-Ocean is joining a growing list of Chinese property developers facing liquidation lawsuits, after a nationwide deleveraging campaign begun in late 2020, sending home sales plunging and causing severe liquidity issues for these home builders.

The pace of litigation picked up after China Evergrande Group was ordered by a Hong Kong court to wind down in January over unpaid debt. Four Chinese developers were similarly sued this week in the city for their defaults and unpaid debt.

Kaisa Group Holdings received a seven-week reprieve on Monday when the court adjourned its liquidation hearing to August 12. Shimao Group Holding had its day of reckoning adjourned until July 31, where a suit brought by the China Construction Bank (Asia) to retrieve HK$1.58 billion (US$202 million) will be heard.

Country Garden also received a liquidation petition from Ever Credit Limited, a unit of Hong Kong-listed Kingboard Holdings, in February, and faces a court hearing on July 29.

Meanwhile, Country Garden said in a Friday filing that it had received a resumption notice from the Hong Kong stock exchange on June 24 requiring the developer to publish all outstanding financial results and comply with relevant listing rules. The company’s shares were suspended from trading on April 2 after it delayed the publication of its annual results for 2023.

In the first five months of this year, the Foshan, Guangdong-based developer recorded 21.65 billion yuan (US$2.98 billion) in cumulative contracted sales attributable to shareholders. In March, the Post reported that Country Garden’s home sales had plummeted 85 per cent in February year-on-year to 3.72 billion yuan, marking the steepest decline in at least five years.

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Author : earthnews

Publish date : 2024-06-28 04:51:27

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