Wednesday, November 9, 2005
The Chinese press has recently had several stories on a company purporting to sell land on the moon. The first story, dated Oct. 20 and from the China Daily, announces the start of operations of the Lunar Embassy (月球大使馆), which sells land for 298 yuan per acre. It adds solemnly, "Meanwhile, not all believe that the trading is legal; and some even regard it as fraud or a joke."
The second story, dated Oct. 27, announces that the Beijing Municipal Administration of Industry and Commerce "is working together with its Chaoyang District Branch, other concerned departments and legal experts to study and collect evidence on whether the company's businesses are legitimate."
The third story, dated Nov. 7, states the result of the investigation:
A Chinese company has had its license suspended after it tried to make money by selling land on the moon.
The Beijing Lunar Village Aeronautics Science and Technology Co. managed to sell large swathes of pristine lunar property before being shut down, the state-owned Xinhua news agency reported on Monday.
It is not known whether the proprietor plans to challenge this administrative decision.