Start für Disneyland in Hongkong nicht nur rosig

Mickey Mouse will China erobern, aber es gibt nicht nur Jubel:
Disney's new Hong Kong theme park opened yesterday to both fanfare and a chorus of criticism. High hopes are riding on the park - and not just for Walt Disney, an American icon whose presence in communist China has lagged behind rivals despite its household name. The company is exporting a piece of the Magic Kingdom to China's doorstep in a bold bid to gain a bigger foothold in the vast Chinese market. And analysts say Hong Kong Disneyland will also give a much-needed boost to the city's economy. Disney has faced criticism over claims of dangerous sweatshop conditions at factories in China that make Disney toys and concern that the park's nightly fireworks display will worsen Hong Kong's air pollution. A blanket of thick smog, mainly from factories in southern China, choked much of the territory for a second day yesterday as Chinese Vice-President Zeng Qinghong opened the park. Some visitors at rehearsals have complained of waiting for hours for rides and food and said that the park is too small (at 125ha it is less than half the size of the original Disneyland in California). A group of activists put a large stuffed Mickey Mouse in a cage at the entrance to the Hong Kong Disneyland on Sunday in a symbolic protest against labour exploitation. The park cost US$1.8 billion ($2.57 billion) to build, with another US$2 billion spent to reclaim land for the project and build roads and other public services. Having been forced to remove shark's fin soup from its menu by outraged environmentalists, Disneyland's management is still struggling to counter the bad press generated by a disastrous rehearsal day on September 4 that saw 29,000 visitors queuing for hours for rides and unable to find space in the park's restaurants.


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