Jakarta. Indonesian business tycoon Hary Tanoesoedibjo confirmed on Wednesday (16/05) that his company had chosen a subsidiary of a Chinese state-owned construction firm to build a theme park at a luxury resort in West Java, but said he had not signed any loan deal with China for the project.
South China Morning Post reported that Hary's company, MNC Group, had received $500 million in funding from the Chinese government and banks for the theme park, which will be situated next door to planned properties and a golf course developed by the Trump Organization.
The report drew controversy, given the current strains between Washington and Beijing.
Asked whether his company had received Chinese funding, Hary said in a text message "not true" and stated that MNC had only appointed the Metallurgical Corporation of China (MCC) as a contractor.
In a separate text message, M. Budi Rustanto, vice president director at subsidiary MNC Land, said the company had appointed MCC as a contractor and denied any loan deal.
MNC Land, the unit responsible for developing the 3,000 hectare project in West Java, signed a framework construction agreement with MCC in June 2016 to build a theme park.
The Trump Organization struck a deal in 2015 to manage a luxury resort complex and villas, as well as a golf course at the site. The project also includes other hotels, residential areas and retail centers, as well as a national park.
Hary previously said his company planned to invest $500 million in the theme park alone.
MCC did not respond to calls seeking comments on Wednesday.
On May 10, MCC said in a statement on its website, which has since been deleted, that its subsidiary had three days earlier signed a deal to join the theme park project.
The Trump Organization has also signed an agreement with MNC Land to manage a 110-hectare resort in Bali.
As a business partner of Trump, Hary has previously said that he believed his relationship with the US president could help ties between nations.
Hary unsuccessfully ran for vice president in the 2014 election and subsequently founded his own political party, which will contest Indonesia's general election next year.