- Evergrande said on Friday there was “no guarantee” it would have enough funds to meet debt repayments.
- The 8 p.m. announcement triggered a coordinated response from various Chinese authorities.
- Guangdong province government said it would — at Evergrande’s request — send a working group to the company.
Chinese authorities have moved in swiftly to address Evergrande’s troubles after the embattled real-estate giant warned it might not be able to repay its debts.
This comes after Evergrande said in an announcement on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange there was “no guarantee” it would have enough funds to meet debt repayments.
“In light of the current liquidity status of the Group, there is no guarantee that the Group will have sufficient funds to continue to perform its financial obligations,” Evergrande said in its announcement, adding that creditors may demand accelerated repayment if it does not.
The filing — made at 8 p.m. Hong Kong time on Friday — triggered what appears to be coordinated responses from the People’s Bank of China, the country’s Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission, and its Securities Regulatory Commission on the same day.
China’s Guangdong province also summoned Hui Ka Yan, the chairman of China Evergrande Group, the local government said on Friday.
In its statement, the provincial government said it would — at Evergrande’s request — send a working group to the company to oversee risk management, strengthen internal controls, and maintain normal operations. The move is to “resolve risks, protect the interests of all parties, and maintain social stability,” the local government added.
The Chinese real-estate industry continues to be rocked by Evergrande’s debt crisis as the embattled real-estate giant struggles to pay off its $300 billion debt pile. Investors are worried over whether the fallout could spill over and hit global markets.
Chinese millenials, too, are grappling with an existential crisis over home ownership due to concerns over whether Evergrande will be able to deliver apartments buyers have paid for.
The country’s banking and insurance regulator said in its Friday statement it would boost support for guaranteed rental housing. The securities regulator said any spillover from Evergrande’s fallout was “controllable” and that it would continue to support funding for property developers.
The People’s Bank of China acknowledged in its statement that the Guangdong government is now in charge, explicitly saying it supports the move to send in a working group.
“The PBOC is making it clear this is the problem of the Guangdong government. The central government is watching, but if someone takes the heat for people losing money, it will first be the Guangdong government. This is not that problematic,” said Travis Lundy of Quiddity Advisors in a note published on the Smartkarma platform.
“This is going the way of every major government restructuring takeover of a heavily over-indebted conglomerate in the past few years,” added Lundy in his note.
High-profile corporate meltdowns in the last few years that have taken similar paths include Anbang Insurance, Baoshang Bank, and HNA Group.
In its filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange on Friday, Evergrande said it had received a demand from creditors to pay about $260 million. It already missed paying $82.5 million in coupons due on November 6 and has a 30-day grace period— that’s till the end of today — to pay up before it officially defaults.
Evergrande shares on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange are down 12% on Monday — an 11-year low.
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