China’s Evergrande, owing more than $300 billion, ordered to liquidate

A Hong Kong court on Monday ordered Evergrande, the world’s most indebted property developer, to liquidate, a ruling that could further dent foreign investor confidence in China.

Shares of the company and two subsidiaries were suspended on Monday after Justice Linda Chan said “enough is enough,” following months of delays as the firm attempted to come up with a restructuring plan.

It is unclear whether Chinese authorities will recognize the Hong Kong court’s ruling Monday and allow international creditors to seize assets of the company.

Once China’s largest seller of real estate, Evergrande has been trying to avoid formal bankruptcy since 2021, when it defaulted on $330 billion in debt and sent shock waves through global markets.

The company’s travails track the rapidly declining health of China’s property sector, which accounts for about a fifth of growth in the world’s second-largest economy — and China’s prospects in general.

China recorded gross domestic product growth of only 5.2 percent last year — the slowest in three decades, excluding the three pandemic years — and its stock market has been performing particularly badly.

About $6 trillion has been wiped off the value of Chinese and Hong Kong stocks in the past three years, underscoring investors’ fears about China’s economic future.

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