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Iceland Rejects Chinese Businessman's $200M Resort Bid

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Published on Nov 28, 2011

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Multimillionaire Chinese entrepreneur Huang Nubo has accused Western nations of hypocrisy... after the government of Iceland rejected his bid to buy more than a hundred square miles of the country's land for an eco resort. Iceland's interior ministry said on Friday there was no precedent for such a large area of land to be placed under foreign control.

The government of Iceland has refused a bid by wealthy Chinese developer Huang Nubo to buy 120 square miles of land for a resort, because his plans deviated too far from foreign ownership laws.

Huang, who's chairman of the Zhongkun Investment Group, wanted to build a $200 million eco-friendly resort on the large piece of land on the country's north shore—taking about a third of a percent of the country's land mass.

But Iceland's Ministry of the Interior named laws that protect the country's sovereignty and keep its resources for Icelanders themselves. It said the directors of the purchasing company would need to be Icelandic citizens or permanent residents, and 80 percent of its shares should be held by Icelanders.

According to the Ministry, it was "impossible to ignore" the scale of the land Huang wished to purchase and said there was "no precedent for such a large area of Icelandic land to have been placed under foreign control."

Huang accused Western countries of having double standards by encouraging the opening of the Chinese market while closing doors to Chinese investments. He said Chinese companies were unjustly accused of having military connections or touching on national security.

Huang's purchase would have been worth 1-billion Icelandic kronur or about 8.8-million US dollars. He had hoped the resort would attract 10,000 guests a year and generate new jobs.

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