China's Corruption Watchdog Investigating ICBC Shanghai Chief

By Ryan Gandolfo, June 11, 2019

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Industrial and Commercial Bank of China’s (ICBC) Shanghai branch president Gu Guoming is under investigation by a Communist Party anti-graft watchdog.

Gu is currently being investigated for alleged serious violation of party rules and infringing upon criminal laws in China, according to a statement by ICBC on their official website on June 6.

Considered the world’s largest company, ICBC has now been hit with two scandals in the past two months. South China Morning Post reported that the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) also launched an inquiry into retired Deputy Chief Xie Ming of ICBC’s Chongqing branch in April.

Gu has been considered one of the most powerful figures in Shanghai’s financial sector, and was recognized as a major contributor to Shanghai’s finance community by the Shanghai International Finance Center in December 2018. He has held the title of Shanghai branch president since 2015, previously working as ICBC Shanghai’s deputy chief for 13 years.

Few details have been provided by the CCDI as to the specifics of the latest investigation, although corruption has been a reoccurring theme for the Chinese state-owned bank in recent years.

In 2015, 137 staff at ICBC were disciplined as a result of a nationwide anti-corruption crackdown that saw the removal of 14 people from the Communist Party. Those disciplined were said to have accepted gifts, traveled on the clients’ dime and started their own side businesses, according to Fortune. Two years later, Spain opened an investigation into ICBC’s European unit on allegations of money laundering through the bank’s Madrid branch. Six staff members from Madrid’s branch were jailed as a result of the investigation.

ICBC currently has over USD4 trillion in assets and employs nearly 500,000 people around the world.

READ MORE: This Chinese Company is the Largest in the World

[Cover image via Wikimedia]

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