Liu Case May Have Connections To Ding Shumiao Investigation

Local press reports are starting to peel back the case surrounding Liu Zhijun, the railways minister under investigation for apparent corruption. Caijing has reported that he is being accused of taking a more than 10 million yuan ($1.5 million) bribe to help a Shanxi company win a high-speed rail contract worth several hundred million yuan. Liu has already been sacked from his more senior post as Party secretary within the ministry.

Joining some dots, which may or not be connected, takes us back to reports in January of investigations into the business dealings of a prominent, wealthy and politically well connected Shanxi businesswoman and philanthropist, Ding Shumiao (also known as Ding Yuxin). Ding’s Broad Union business empire encompasses coal, coal shipping, railway investment, equipment and track building, station advertising and hotels. Its environmental protection equipment subsidiary, Shanxi Jinhande, won bids in 2008 to supply noise barriers along several high-speed rail lines worth a reported 836 million yuan between them. The following year Ding won a 2.3 billion yuan contract to build a coal freight line in Shanxi. Shanxi Jinhande recently changed its name to CREC Taikete Environmental Engineering, the latest move in a corporate reshuffling of Broad Union that has been underway for several years.

It is not clear what triggered the investigation into Ding’s dealings. Our experience is that there is usually a political agenda somewhere in the background when someone so prominent is involved. Liu, if it is shown there is a connection, may have been collateral damage, so to speak, and pretty extensive damage at that. The railways ministry has been a fiefdom unto itself, however. There are many among the reformers and anti-corruption campaigners in the Party who would jump on an opportunity to rein it in.

China is spending 700 billion yuan a year on building out the world’s largest high-speed rail network. That is, almost by definition, a honeypot sweet for the skimming. Whether prosecutors eventually find dots to connect between Liu and Ding, it seems a racing certainty that there will be many dots that will connect somewhere. They will be looked for. Events in Egypt have sharpened the appreciation in Beijing of the corrosion corruption can inflict on public trust in government.

Advertisements

5 Comments

Filed under Politics & Society, Transport

5 responses to “Liu Case May Have Connections To Ding Shumiao Investigation

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention Liu Case May Have Connections To Ding Shumiao Investigation | China Bystander -- Topsy.com

  2. Almost every villain in every Chinese drama is a corrupt official. You’ve got to hand it to those (bad) guys: for thousands of years they’ve been taking bribes, getting caught, and getting executed. But they just keep coming! For a review of corruption in China today, see http://inpraiseofchina.blogspot.com/2010/11/corruption-china-and-usa.html

  3. Pingback: China’s High-Speed Rail Corruption Investigation Reportedly Broadens | China Bystander

  4. Pingback: The 3% Skim Off China’s 2 Trillion Yuan High-Speed Rail Network | China Bystander

  5. Pingback: Train Crash Puts ‘China Model’ Under Scrutiny; Intellectual Scavenging + Corruption « Not The Mainstream News

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s