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Beijing, April 6 – Chinas banks and insurers have become the latest focus of a sweeping anti-corruption crackdown that is ensnaring top officials and risks rattling the already fragile nerves of investors and entrepreneurs, the media reported.
The Communist Party’s top anti-graft agency, the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI), has investigated more than a dozen senior executives at the country’s most important financial institutions so far this year, CNN reported.
Three big names at the very top of China’s financial system have been probed or charged, according to the CCDI, including Li Xiaopeng, the former chairman of China Everbright Group — one of the country’s oldest and largest state-owned financial conglomerates.
Li is suspected of “serious violations of law and discipline” and is under investigation, the Commission said on Wednesday in a brief statement.
Everbright said in a statement that it “fully supports” the party’s decision and will “fully cooperate” with the investigation into Li, who chaired the bank for four years until he resigned in March 2022, CNN reported.
On March 31, authorities opened a similar probe into Liu Liange, former chairman of state-owned Bank of China, the country’s fourth largest lender.
Liu resigned last month citing “work adjustments”, according to a filing by the bank.
In January, Wang Bin, who headed state-owned China Life Insurance from 2018 to early 2022, was charged by national prosecutors with taking bribes and hiding overseas savings. He was first probed by the CCDI in January 2022, CNN reported.
Analysts say the dragnet may have also implicated Bao Fan, a star investment banker and noted name in the tech sector, who went missing in February.