Baoding Tianwei pledges to make July payment

Debt-saddled Chinese electrical equipment and solar cell maker Baoding Tianwei Baobian Electric will make a payment on bonds due in July, despite fears over its ability to meet its financial obligations, according to a Bloomberg report on Friday.

The newswire referred to a statement by Baoding Tianwei to the Shanghai Stock Exchange in which it pledged to make July 11 payments due on its 5.75% 2018 notes.

Speculation is mounting Baoding Tianwei, which had trading in its shares suspended last week after successive annual losses, will follow solar manufacturer Chaori Solar by defaulting on payments owed to investors for bonds issued in China.

The Bloomberg article cites concerns raised by China’s third largest brokerage Guotai Junan about Baoding Tianwei’s indebtedness.

$534 million of short term bank loans

The broker says the company, which makes electrical transformers, has at least CNY26.8 billion (US$4.3 billion) of notes and loans due to mature up to the end of 2018 with short term borrowings of CNY3.88 billion – including bank loans of CNY3.3 billion – at the end of last year, a point when Baoding Tianwei’s balance sheet showed cash and cash equivalents of only CNY1.59 billion.

The troubles assailing Chaori Solar, as it attempts to meet its debt obligations, were also highlighted by Bloomberg which reported the company will sell off a 60% stake in an alternative energy company in an auction on Saturday and Sunday organised by the Tong Xiang People’s Court of Zhejiang Province and which will be run through the Taobao.com online shopping website.

Bloomberg reports the bidding for the shareholding will start at CNY22 million.

The report adds the holders of Chaori’s unpaid notes are set to meet next Wednesday.