Shanghai World Financial Centre ready to join world’s tallest skyscrapers after appointment of main contractor.

The China State Construction Engineering Corporation and the Shanghai Construction group have been awarded bids worth 3.9 billion yuan (£260 million) as main contractors for what purports to be the world’s tallest building, the Shangai World Financial Centre according to the Oriental Morning Post.

Six months after Taipei 101 in Taiwan was named as the world’s tallest building, China is claiming that its new tower will be even higher. The US-based Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat measured the Taiwanese skyscraper from the level of the footpath of the main entrance to the top of its 508m pinnacle, rather than to its 455m roof. In contrast, the roof of the 101-storey Shanghai building will reach 492m, without any spire.

Construction work on the Shanghai WFC was suspended in 1998 after the Asian financial crisis led to a huge drop in demand for prestigious office space. Building recommenced at the beginning of 2003, and is scheduled for completion in 2007.

The tower’s design tapers at its peak, and will have an enormous hole through its middle. As well as offices, it will contain a hotel, exhibition centre, shops and an observation deck.