1. New law or regulation
(1) On July 16, 2014, the General Office of the Communist Party of China (“CPC”) Central Committee and the State Council jointly issued the Guiding Opinions on Comprehensively Promoting the Reform of Official Vehicles System and the Reform Scheme of the Official Vehicles System in Central and State Organs (collectively, the “Directives”) to restrict the use of official cars by government officials. According to the Directives, officials below the vice-ministerial level will not be provided with cars or drivers any more, and general official cars will be canceled except for special purpose vehicles and emergency vehicles. Instead, the central government will provide transportation subsidies to public servants at different levels ranging from RMB 500 (USD 81) to RMB 1300 (USD 210) per month. This reform at the level of the central and state organs is expected to be completed by the end of 2014 and then implemented with respect to local governments and state-owned enterprises (“SOEs”).
(2) On July 27, 2014, the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (“CCDI”) of the CPC, the Organization Department of the CPC Committee, the State Commission Office of Public Sectors Reform, the Ministry of Supervision (“MOS”), the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, the National Audit Office and the National Development and Reform Commission jointly issued the Rules for Implementation of the Stipulations in Respect of the Auditing of Economic Liabilities of Leading Government and Party Cadres and Leaders of State Owned Enterprises (the “Implementation Rules”), which took effect the same day. The Implementation Rules aim to further refine and improve the procedures of auditing officials and leaders of SOEs. According to the Implementation Rules, the audit will constitute the principal evaluation for such leaders, and each leader holding a key position will be audited at least once during her/his term of office.
Local level (Beijing & Shanghai): No developments.
Communist Party Rules: No developments.
2. Upcoming law or regulation
3. Government Action
(1) On July 2, 2014, Wang Yingfu (“Wang”), the former Director and Party Secretary of the Administration of Work Safety of Hainan Province, was sentenced by the Intermediate People’s Court of Haikou City to 12 years in prison for taking bribes.
During his term from 2005 to 2013, Wang allegedly accepted bribes totaling RMB 2.05 million (USD 332,260). In return, he abused his positions in Yangpu Economic Development Zone and Administration of Work Safety of Hainan Province to seek illegal benefits in the form of construction bidding, project contracts, and job promotion. Wang said he planned to appeal the judgment.
(2) On July 3, 2014, Yang Lin (“Yang”), the former Chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference of Jiuquan, Gansu Province, was sentenced by the Intermediate People’s Court of Lanzhou, Gansu Province to life in prison with all personal property confiscated.
Yang was charged with taking advantage of his position from 1997 to 2013 to seek illegal benefits for 33 individuals. Reportedly, Yang solicited and accepted bribes exceeding RMB 13.5 million (USD 2.18 million), including RMB 9.41 million (USD 1.52 million), USD 13,000, EUR 2,000 (USD 2,673), plus an apartment in Lanzhou, an off-road vehicle, 2 gold bars, etc. Yang was given a relatively light sentence due to his confession.
(3) On July 17, 2014, Ren Gongli (“Ren”), the former Deputy Investigator of the Nantong Land Resources Bureau and former Chief of Nantong Land Market Service Centre of Jiangsu Province was sentenced by the Intermediate People’s Court of Nantong City to 7 years’ imprisonment for accepting bribes, with personal property valued at RMB 400,000 (USD 64,831) confiscated.
Ren was found guilty of taking bribes on 22 occasions from several real estate developers and individuals. These bribes aggregated to RMB 1.24 million (USD 200,977). In exchange, Ren helped the bribe givers obtain illegal gains in auctions and bidding for land use right, the issuance of land use rights certificates and governmental construction projects.
(4) On July 17, 2014, Wang Suyi (“Wang”), a former Member of the Standing Committee of CPC and the former Minister of the United Front Work Department of Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region Committee, was sentenced to life in prison for accepting bribes by the No. 1 Intermediate People’s Court of Beijing, with his all personal property confiscated.
Wang was found guilty of taking bribes from nine entities and individuals totaling more than RMB 10.73 million (USD 1.73 million) during his term in office from 2005 to 2013, and of seeking illegal benefits for the bribe givers through enterprise operations and job promotions. Wang was one of the 37 provincial and ministerial-level officials removed since the 18th National Congress of CPC.
(5) On July 18, 2014, Wang Jianbin (“Wang”), the former Chairman of Shenzhen Kehuitong Investment Holding Co., Ltd., Shenzhen Shennan Petroleum (Group) Co., Ltd. and Shenzhen Guangju Energy Co., Ltd., was sentenced to 15 years in prison for taking bribes by the Intermediate People’s Court of Shenzhen City with personal property of RMB 100,000 (USD 1,620) confiscated. The above three companies are all SOEs.
Wang was accused of accepting bribes between 2010 and 2012 amounting to HKD 300,000 (USD 38,707) from a man surnamed Lin who was the chairman of a catering company, and accepting bribes totaling RMB 3 million (USD 486,235) and HKD 5 million (USD 645,121) from a man surnamed Chen (“Chen”), who was the chairman of an energy company. In return, Wang helped Lin to lease certain real estate owned by Shenzhen Shennan Petroleum (Group) Co., Ltd., and provided Chen with assistance in subscribing to a capital increase by a Shenzhen gas company. Wang claimed that the money taken from Chen were “gifts”, not “bribes” and said he would appeal the decision.
(6) The official website of CCDI of the CPC and the MOS published a report on July 29, 2014 that CCDI has decided to launch an investigation of Zhou Yongkang (“Zhou”), a former member of the Standing Committee of Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and former Secretary of the Committee of Political Science and Law under the CPC Central Committee and, until recently, one of the most powerful men in the country. Zhou is accused of severe violation of discipline. More details are expected over the coming months.
(1) On July 31, 2014, the CCDI was reported to have dispatched 13 teams to conduct inspections in the provinces of Guangxi, Qinghai, Xizang, Zhejiang, Hebai, Shanxi, Heilongjiang, Sichuan and Jiangsu, Shanghai Municipality, as well as General Administration of Sport of China, Chinese Academy of Sciences and China FAW Group Corporation, which will constitute the second round of inspections by CCDI this year and the fourth round of inspections since the 18th National Congress of CPC. The first three rounds have found evidence of large numbers of violation of both laws and disciplinary rules.
5. China-related FCPA Action