Great news today all! Simply Networking, are carrying a story - which we repeat below - that we are all going to be very happy about!
The Spanish daily newspaper, La Verdad, are today claiming that Alhama has been chosen "by the region" as the location for the Paramount Theme Park in Murcia.
They say that the meeting held on Wednesday evening about which we reported yesterday, was decisive, "as far as this newspaper has been able to ascertain" and they say that there are just minor details to confirm.
They say that the Fuente Alamo option is being left on pending in case problems arise with Alhama, and say that a pre-agreement has been reached with the banks.
The banks have apparently agreed on an option to buy 3.5 million square meters of land on the site of Condado de Alham II, taken by the banks in lieu of payment of debts from the Polaris World development company.( See previous stories for all the details.)
Apparently the deal will be for the land purchase to go through within the space of one year.
"La reunión del miércoles ha sido decisiva para que la sociedad promotora del parque temático Paramount se haya decantado finalmente por los terrenos de Alhama de Murcia para ubicar la futura ciudad del ocio y del cine, según ha podido saber este diario. Los representantes del Gobierno regional avanzaron lo suficiente en ese encuentro de trabajo con los 'bancos de Polaris'. A día de hoy quedan flecos que se esperan cerrar en breve. La opción de Fuente Álamo sólo se pondría de nuevo sobre la mesa si surgen problemas que, de momento, ninguna de las partes prevé. Ayer se hablaba de un preacuerdo aún sin formalizar.
Los negociadores han ultimado una opción de compra a precio tasado de 3,5 millones de metros cuadrados próximos a la urbanización Condado de Alhama, que fueron propiedad de la constructora Polaris World y que han pasado a manos de los bancos y cajas acreedores aglutinados en torno a la empresa Inversiones Resort Mediterráneo (IRM). Se trata de Caja Mediterráneo, Bancaja, Banco de Valencia y Banco Popular."
Now what we have to be careful about is that this is all hearsay, and yesterday both Salvador Marin who heads up the government department handling the negotiations, and Jesus Samper himself both said that secrecy is still of the utmost importance, that nothing is final and they are still considering a number of options.
Both were adamant yesterday that there were still many details to finalise before an announcement would be made.
The rest of the La Verdad article just recycles information which has already been reported many times, so is of little consequence, and it does seem a little indiscreet to be putting out this headline when nothing is final, and its' certainly strange to see this headline on the morning on which Samper is in front of the courts giving evidence in the Murcia corruption case, in which his developments in Murcia are implicated. Mind you, as we've said before, putting out a headline with positive news detracts from the implications of the corruption case, and La Verdad are plump and well fed due to the considerable support they receive from government funded "businesses" the councils and the Cajas, who pay for most of the arts activities in the region, so it's not surprising.
They are the only daily to have this "inside information" and nobody else is reporting anything.
Yesterday Salvador Marin was defensive of Samper, saying that he was just one of a number of people working on the Paramount project and that the outcome of the court hearings today would have little influence on the future of the Paramount project.
It's difficult to see how this is the case, however, when Santa Monica are the major capital shareholder and the Licensees for the Paramount brand marketing.
It's also important to take into consideration that the license period has been granted for one year to enable the project to be pulled together and will only be finalised once the blessing of paramount licensing has been given to the final proposals, hence the period of a one year option to purchase the land which is what La Verdad are claiming has been agreed, albeit "with a few minor details still to resolve."
Samper was keen to stress that nobody from Paramount had been in touch with him reference his implication in the Murcia corruption case, which again, does seem strange as Paramount is keen to maintain a squeaky clean image, but then again, this corruption investigation has been ongoing for more than a year, so it seems unlikely that Paramount would have granted him a licensing agreement without having carried out extensive background checks beforehand.
Anyway, nothing will be official until somebody makes a formal announcement, but again, what is peculiar is the headline announcing that the "region" has selected Alhama, when the region is only supposed to be stumping up a token amount of investment and the project is supposedly being driven by Samper and Santa Monica Investments.
We'll just have to wait for a formal announcement.
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