China tightens Communist Party leadership at state firms

Reuters News
Posted: Jun 05, 2015 7:16 AM

BEIJING (Reuters) - Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday called for the strengthening of Communist Party leadership at state-owned enterprises (SOEs), state media said, as the government prepares sweeping reforms to overhaul state industry,

Xi made his remarks at a top-level meeting where documents on SOE reform related to Communist Party building and the prevention of loss of state assets were approved, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.

Premier Li Keqiang, Politburo members and other government officials also attended, Xinhua said.

China's SOE reform aims to raise the competitiveness of government-owned industry by combating corruption, improving transparency, and diversifying SOE ownership by introducing more non-state investors.

The meeting urged the strengthening of internal supervision and audits at SOEs, through the use of party anti-graft inspections and public scrutiny to build an "all-around" system to oversee state assets, Xinhua said.

Communist Party leadership at SOEs also "must be reflected and strengthened", the meeting said, according to Xinhua.

In March, China's state asset supervisor said it would audit SOEs' overseas assets, which are "virtually not audited", in a bid to improve transparency and fight corruption.[ID:nL3N0WK1QW]

China's central government owned 112 conglomerates, which controlled about 35 trillion yuan in assets at the end of 2013, with about 12.5 percent, or more than 4 trillion yuan, held overseas.[ID:nL4N0W51O7]

The Friday meeting also decided to make the southern province of Hainan a pilot for "comprehensive" reforms that will include economic and social development, urban planning and land utilization, Xinhua said without providing details.

(Reporting by Shu Zhang and Matthew Miller; Editing by Nick Macfie)