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Business

Graft Accusations Made Against Chinese Insurance Regulator

Xiang Junbo is accused of accepting "huge amounts of money"

People pass by an electronic stock board of a securities firm in Tokyo, photo: AP/Sherry Zheng
3 weeks ago

BEIJING – A corruption case against China’s former insurance regulator, the highest-ranking figure in Chinese finance to be snared in a marathon anti-graft crackdown, has been handed over to prosecutors, the country’s anti-corruption agency says.

Xiang Junbo is accused of accepting “huge amounts of money” in bribes and other offenses, the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) said in a weekend statement. It said he was expelled from the ruling Communist Party, where he had been a member of the 376-member Central Committee.

Officials and managers at many state companies have been snared in the anti-corruption drive launched by President Xi Jinping after he took power in 2013.

Xiang, 60, is a former chairman of state-owned Agricultural Bank of China Ltd., one of the country’s top four commercial lenders, and a former central bank official. He was secretary of the China Insurance Regulatory Commission’s party committee.

 

The insurance industry has been hit by complaints insurers are engaged in reckless speculation in stocks and real estate. One life insurer has been banned from trading stocks, the chairman of another was barred from the industry and others are under investigation.

Regulators have said one of their goals this year is to fortify supervision of securities and insurance to reduce financial risks.

The CCDI gave no details of the case against Xiang but cited a wide range of offenses including “abuse of approval and supervision,” a possible reference to overlooking misconduct by insurers.

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