Overseas investors have been pecking at the Evergrande empire for well over a year. They have so far come away with very little. The Chinese company, which is the world’s most indebted property developer, with some $300bn in liabilities, defaulted in late 2021 and has been fending off creditors ever since. When the firm delayed a restructuring plan last year, a group of bondholders demanded that Hui Ka Yan, Evergrande’s chairman, put up $2bn of his own cash—a demand which went precisely nowhere. The billionaire, Evergrande and many other failing property companies have so far done well to continue to keep their assets out of foreign clutches.