Disney one-step closer to Shanghai theme park

Tonight the Disney Parks blog posted the following press release:

THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY REACHES ANOTHER MAJOR MILESTONE ON SHANGHAI THEME PARK PROJECT

BURBANK, Calif. – November 3, 2009 – The Walt Disney Company today announced that the Project Application Report (PAR) for a Disney theme park in the Pudong district of Shanghai has received approval from the relevant authorities of the central government of China.

“China is one of the most dynamic, exciting and important countries in the world, and this approval marks a very significant milestone for The Walt Disney Company in mainland China,” said Robert A. Iger, president and CEO of The Walt Disney Company.

The PAR approval will enable Disney and its Shanghai partners to move forward toward a final agreement to build and operate the park and begin preliminary development work. Upon completion of the final agreement, the project’s initial phase would include a Magic Kingdom-style theme park with characteristics tailored to the Shanghai region and other amenities consistent with Disney’s destination resorts worldwide.

That’s definitely a good sign if you think the company’s foray into the China mainland is the right direction. Also interesting to me is that this is the first time they’ve mentioned the development would include a Magic Kingdom-style theme park. I had heard this would be something completely new. I wonder if that was part of the negotiations.

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