A Chinese housing developer has signed an agreement to invest and build in Birmingham which could be worth up to £2 billion to the city economy.

City council leader John Clancy has agreed the deal with Guangdong-based developer Country Garden during his week-long trade mission to China.

The Statement of Investment Commitment will see the company explore large-scale investment opportunities in the Greater Birmingham area - with a focus on development surrounding HS2.

It has also agreed to look at developing housing in the city.

Sites under consideration include the Curzon Street Eastside area, the Smithfield development on the old Wholesale Markets site and Icknield Port Loop in Ladywood.

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Coun Clancy (Lab Quinton) said: "The landscape has inevitably changed post-Brexit and Birmingham is already out of the starting blocks.

"That's why I'm here selling our city to many of China's leading investors. This agreement is about bringing good jobs and quality homes to Birmingham.

"Country Garden has a proven track record of building homes at pace and scale.

"They have played a major role over the last 20 years as housebuilders have met the massive demands of China's rapidly expanding economy.

"Bringing this level of investment and experience to Birmingham would be a massive economic boost to the region's businesses, skills base and families. It's about bringing new, big capital spend to the city, quickly.

"This is about building houses, jobs and futures for young Brummies and families across the region.

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"Country Garden understands the demands in Birmingham and is clearly excited at the prospect of investing in our young, growing city."

Before the Far East trip, Coun Clancy said he hoped to secure deals which would help Birmingham achieve its target of building 80,000 new homes over the next 15 years.

Country Garden founder and chairman Yang Guoqiang added: "I have been impressed with Birmingham's ambition and huge potential and I am delighted to announce this investment commitment to support significant housing and infrastructure development in the city.

"We have a proven track record in delivering quality housing at a scale to match Birmingham's ambitions and with major projects coming to the city, including the forthcoming High Speed Two project, these are exciting times for Country Garden and Birmingham."

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Founded in 1992, Country Garden has been listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange since 2007 and is China's fifth largest property developer.

The firm has developed 300 high-end township developments, 54 five-star hotels across the Far East and Australia and built and sold more than 2.5 million properties.

The announcement has been welcomed by Paul Faulkner, chief executive of the Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce, who said: "Post-Brexit, it's more important than ever that our city works with global capital markets to bring in new money from large institutional investors.

"Bringing in £2 billion for housing and other projects will have a much larger economic impact across the region for Birmingham companies and construction supply chain.

"Importantly, it cements a relationship with the all-important China market."