China set to build two stadiums in Croatia

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China build two stadiums in Croatia Image: MJR Group Ltd.

Chinese firms are set to build two stadiums in Croatian cities of Rijeka and Velika Gorica.

China’s Top International Engineering Corporation (TIEC) has signed two agreements on cooperation with Croatian partners, for the construction of a new football stadium in Rijeka and accompanying facilities, a hotel and business center, and for the use of renewable energy sources.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) regarding the construction project of the future Kantrida Stadium Complex was signed between a representative of the company Stadion Kantrida and a representative of TIEC.

The agreement was one of seven such MoUs for infrastructure projects signed between Croatia and China at the Summit of Central and Eastern European Countries (CEEC) & China held in the Croatian city of Dubrovnik.

“A concrete contract will be signed in one year’s time on the project to build a football stadium in accordance with UEFA standards, a hotel and a business center in Rijeka. Cooperation could be expanded to include the construction of a marina,” the general director of the Kantrida Stadium company, Luka Ivancic, said.

TIEC will assist the other partner, the Eco Consult company, in implementing clean energy technology on the Chinese market, particularly in manufacturing industries that are large energy consumers and emit large quantities of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, Eco Consult director Goran Pavlovic said.

The City of Rijeka, as a co-owner of Croatian football club HNK Rijeka and the owner of the property, has also been involved in conversations with the Chinese partner since the very beginning, the club stated in a media statement on its official website.

Representatives of Stadion Kantrida and HNK Rijeka presented the Kantrida Stadium Complex project to many potential investors. Two Chinese and one German-Swiss corporation have shown the greatest interest, the statement said.

“TIEC was the most concrete and we are pleased to say that the formal legal basis for building the eagerly-anticipated stadium at Kantrida has been set,” it added.

The new stadium will reportedly have a capacity of around 15,000 seats, with the site also including a hotel and shopping center.

Meanwhile, Chinese company Z-Run WellTon has signed a partnership agreement with have announced that they will construct a new football stadium in the Croation city of Velika Gorica, around 17 kilometers south of the capital Zagreb. The new sporting complex will not only include a 30,000 to 35,000 seater stadium but also a complete sports camp.

“The City of Velika Gorica presented investment opportunities in sports infrastructure, which includes a stadium with adjoining facilities…The Chinese delegation visited the plot of land which the stadium would be built on, and as a result, we formally signed the agreement,” the Mayor of Velika Gorica, Drazen Barisic was quoted as saying by The Dubrovnik Times.

According to reports the new stadium, estimated to be worth €150 million, will be similar to the Astana Arena in Kazakhstan. As the local football club, NK Gorica, currently has problems filling an 8,000 seater stadium the business plan for the future still hasn’t been revealed. Clearly the local football team couldn’t make the stadium finically viable by themselves so the stadium would have to attract other major events.

“We know Croatian football fans expect more quality in the local sports infrastructure, especially the stadiums, and we are excited that we can be part of this important project,” commented the Chinese construction company.

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