There has been much merited euphoria emanating from a certain Courtroom in Vanersborg this week as Saab finally secured – proposed – new ownership from Youngman and Pang Da but as China has shown this week in dealing with European financial overtures it will be no pushover when it comes to bailouts – of any sort.

Saab told me some 250 people were crammed into the room to hear its application to continue in bankruptcy protection approved, many of whom were obviously the automaker’s hard-pressed suppliers who have shown remarkable restraint in the whole tortuous process.

Both Youngman and Pang Da CEOs – the well-named Mr Pang and Mr Pang – had travelled to Sweden to hear the announcement – they must have been pretty confident – while the company’s equally hard-pressed unions were also there.

The Chinese have committed an initial EUR650m (US$887m) to the project with some fairly modest production targets in mind that could see Saab producing up to 205,000 models in a few years time.

But how far does that EUR650m go? Part of it is EUR50m to help Saab get going again, but Saab still owes its suppliers, the most critical spoke in the wheel, around EUR150m, while it is unclear what will happen to the loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB) that was originally set at EUR400m and guaranteed by the Swedish government.

The EIB also approved a sale of Saab’s property division for SEK255m earlier this summer to a consortium of Swedish real estate investors, led by Hemfosa Fastigheter that is believed to have acquired 50.1%. What the Chinese do here is not yet known – presumably as the new owners they will want to own all the property in which its expensive tool kits and production lines are housed or will the consortium want to hold on to it?

One of Saab’s unions told me that the manufacturer’s monthly wage bill amounted to around US$8.4m and with the Swedish government bailing out the company for the past three months, the administration in Stockholm will be extremely keen to recover its money should Saab exit reorganisation.

Add to that the day-to-day expenses of running even a skeleton company that has barely produced a nut or bolt since April and the bill is clearly of considerable magnitude.

Saab is of course crucially aware of this and rushed out a statement shortly after the creditors meeting in which it outlined plans to axe 500 jobs in a bid to slash costs by US$155m, although whether or not this was a requirement from the Chinese is unclear.

And speaking of the Chinese the joint takeover, which intriguingly is a 60:40 split between Youngman (manufacturer) and Pang Da (distributor) – it will be fascinating to see how that power split works – is still subject to National Development and Reform Commission approval from Beijing although in fairness, some fairly positive noises have emanated from the Chinese capital.

But the Chinese will be no pushover here. Witness the bullish comments recently from the country following the extraordinary horse-trading in Brussels that ensured – at least temporarily – Greece secured its much-vaunted bailout. Well, before any referendum anyway.

China is not a ‘cash cow’ for European prolifragacy and nor will it be a blank cheque for Saab. It’s a fair bet the new Chinese owners will be extremely keen to start production in China pretty rapidly in order to recoup some of their vast outlay.

The other great unknown is former Saab owner General Motors, which has kept its cards very close to its chest. Saab appears to be planning to sell the 9-4X crossover – built on a GM platform by a GM plant in Mexico – beyond North America but will need diesel engines (the model is currently V6 petrol only) for wider acceptance, particularly in Europe.

So what will GM’s future role be with the Chinese? All the US automaker would reveal was a bald statement: “Like other suppliers to Saab, we do not have any information about the proposed transaction,” it said. “Therefore, it’s impossible for us to comment on the situation,” although it’s highly likely they will be keeping a close eye on the Chinese deal.

But at the heart of all the machinations and smoke-filled rooms in Vanersborg lie the suppliers. European automotive supplier association CLEPA pronounced itself “very satisfied” that bankruptcy had been avoided and that it was looking forward to helping Saab start production – as long as the bills are paid.

And complete with a caveat from CLEPA CEO Lars Holmqvist: “As soon as we have found an agreement regarding the overdue payments.” And there’s the rub. Quite possibly with cash-on-delivery.

The Chinese have not just paid a relatively small sum up front – much in the way of a new owner taking over a virtual bankrupt football club, they are assuming a huge amount of debt and bills to settle. And at some point they will want a return.