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Rating Action:

Moody's continues to review COLI's ratings for possible upgrade

03 Nov 2009

Approximately US$300 million of debt securities affected

Hong Kong, November 03, 2009 -- Moody's Investors Service says today it will continue to review for possible upgrade the Baa3 issuer and senior unsecured debt ratings of China Overseas Land and Investment Ltd ("COLI").

This rating action follows the company's acquisitions of 4 parcels of land for a total consideration of RMB10.8 billion.

"While the scale of the individual investments is not material relative to COLI's operation, the aggregate amount represents around 13% of COLI's total assets as of June 2009," says Kaven Tsang, a Moody's AVP/Analyst.

"COLI has been picking up the pace of its land acquisitions since it restarted replenishing its land bank in August 2009. Including these new acquisitions, COLI has already committed to acquire around RMB18.8 billion of land, with an attributable gross floor area ("GFA") of approximately 8.4 million sqm," adds Tsang, also Moody's lead analyst for COLI.

"Nevertheless, we expect that COLI will have sufficient internal reserves -- including estimated cash holdings of about HK$20 billion (or around RMB17.6 billion) as of October 2009 and strong sales proceeds -- to fund all of its land acquisitions," adds Tsang.

Moody's also notes that payments for these 4 land pieces would be made by installments in the next 1-2 years, thereby mitigating the amount of cash outlay upfront, and the impact on liquidity profile.

Additionally, COLI's ratings remain supported by its proven execution capacity as demonstrated by its strong level of pre-sales, totaling HK$38.5 billion (around RMB33.9 billion), or a year-on-year increase of 85% during January to September 2009, relatively solid financial profile as well as prudent financial management over the past down cycle.

In its review, Moody's will continue to assess COLI's future business and land acquisition strategies, including the proposed acquisition of Shell Electric Mfg (Holdings) Co Ltd, as it expands further in the next two years. It will also assess whether the company can maintain its financial discipline as well as its financial and liquidity profiles to the extent that they can support a Baa2 rating.

Moody's last rating action with regard to COLI occurred on September 30, 2009, when Moody's continued to review the company's Baa3 issuer and senior unsecured ratings for possible upgrade.

The principal methodology used in rating COLI was Moody's 'Global Rating Methodology on Homebuilding Industry,' published in March 2009, and available on www.moodys.com in the Rating Methodologies sub-directory under the Research & Ratings tab.

Other methodologies and factors that may have been considered in the process of rating this issuer can also be found in the Rating Methodologies sub-directory on Moody's website.

China Overseas Land & Investment Ltd ("COLI"), listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, is a subsidiary of China State Construction Engineering Corporation (unrated) and is one of the largest property developers in China. It currently has an attributable land bank of 28.5 million sqm in GFA in 22 cities in China, Hong Kong and Macau, and which can support 4-5 years of development.

Hong Kong
Kaven Tsang
Asst Vice President - Analyst
Corporate Finance Group
Moody's Asia Pacific Ltd.
JOURNALISTS: (852) 2916-1150
SUBSCRIBERS: (852) 3551-3077

Hong Kong
Gary Lau
Senior Vice President
Corporate Finance Group
Moody's Asia Pacific Ltd.
JOURNALISTS: (852) 2916-1150
SUBSCRIBERS: (852) 3551-3077

Moody's continues to review COLI's ratings for possible upgrade
No Related Data.
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