Sunday, December 2, 2012

The Chinese Babus invest abroad

Xi Jinping, the new Chinese Communist Party's boss will have several tough challenges to tackle in the years to come, but the most serious is perhaps  corruption of Party cadres. 
On November 15, after his election at the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party, the future President (and Chairman of the powerful Central Military Commission) spoke about the Party's challenges: “We are a political Party that serves the people wholeheartedly. …Our Party faces many severe challenges and there are also many pressing problems within the Party that need to be resolved, particularly problems such as corruption and bribe taking by some Party members and cadres, being out of touch with the people, and placing undue emphasis on formality and bureaucratic red tape. We must make a strenuous effort to resolve them. The whole Party must stay on full alert.”
This was a rare admission.
A few weeks ago, a Chinese airline was called back to Beijing after 8 hours in the air; its destination was New York. Nobody knows why, but the Internet rumour mills started flying high: an official of the Politburo had fled China was one of reasons. 

According to the official version, a Boeing 747 (Flight CA98) returned to Beijing Capital International Airport eight hours after it had left for John F. Kennedy Airport: "The flight returned to Beijing for the sake of passenger safety as it received a threatening message," the airline wrote on its Weibo microblog shortly after landing.
The pilot told passengers the plane had received a threatening message and all passengers needed to go through inspections. One passenger said: "I have never seen so many police officers waiting at the runway".
Whatever is the truth, rumours could not be contained.
A few days earlier, the Chinese press had given some information about officials fleeing the country.China Economic Weekly, the domestic economic magazine under The People’s Daily published an article on Communist Party's officials fleeing China with large amounts of money. 
The article cited statistics released last year by China’s Academy of Social Science. Between 16,000 to 18,000 Party officials have fled the country since the mid 1990s, taking away with them 800 billion yuan with them. 
A Report of the People’s Bank of China suggested that dishonest officials had clandestinely taken $124 billion of illegally obtained money out of the country between 1995 and 2008. It is more or less the same figure as above.
Between August 3 and 5, 2003, a day before the coming into force of the United Nations Convention against Corruption and the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime in China, Chinese customs authorities captured over 60 officials trying to exit China (one of them carrying 600,000 Euros). 
The two UN conventions became effective in China on September 29, 2003. Within 24 hours, starting on the night of September 30, 2003, 51 Party officials were arrested at airports while trying to flee China. 
Again according to Chinascope, on November 27, 2012, published an article on China’s Third Wave of Mass Emigration.
The Chinese site explained that the first emigration wave, in the early 1980s, was for studying overseas and earning higher degrees.
The second wave, in the 1990s, was emigration of professionals. 
China is now witnessing a third wave. mentioned: "In recent years, most emigrants have been the newly rich Chinese, who use investments to migrate to other countries. Some of them are entrepreneurs whose purpose is to protect their wealth. Others are CCP officials who escaped from China with huge amounts of public funds. In addition, the family members of many business owners and CCP officials live overseas."
According to the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, today “about 45 million Chinese live in different countries around the world.”
The article stated, “When those with money leave, they can only take their wealth with them. However, the damage when officials emigrate is much greater. They not only take away their wealth, but also rob and poison this country.”

The Epoch Times now affirms that 1,100 Chinese babus recently defected abroad (mostly in the United States), investing their newly amassed-wealth in the West.
Here also, India with its few hundreds Swiss bank accounts is no match to China.

Over 1,100 Chinese Officials Celebrate Holidays By Defecting Abroad
The Epoch Times
Wang Liang
November 29, 2012
When given the chance, officials of the People’s Republic of China continue to rush for the exits. During an eight-day period from Sept. 30 to Oct. 7 when two holidays were celebrated, over 1,100 public servants who traveled abroad did not return, according to a statement issued on Oct. 15 by the Party’s Central Commission for Discipline Inspection and the Central Organization Department.
The celebrations of National Day—the anniversary of the founding of the PRC—and the Moon Festival—the traditional holiday during which Chinese families reunite—were the occasions for officials fleeing.
According to the announcement, 714 of the non-returning apparatchiks have been officially listed as “missing.” Missing is another word for defected and means these officials either did not return after their holiday breaks or could not be reached.
These holidays were right before the 18th National Party Congress. The PRC is estimated to have over 1 million “naked officials”—individuals who park their bank accounts and families overseas in expectation of eventually joining them. In order to create the illusion of a “harmonious and stable” country, Chinese authorities had adopted strict measures to prevent officials from defecting.
According to Hong Kong-based Chengming Magazine, on Sept. 22 China’s State Council established a temporary Command Group Against Public Servants Fleeing with then-Vice Premier Li Keqiang (Li has since been named premier) as the chief official in command.
The group drafted four orders to be carried out by all organizations: 1) Have good control over every staff member’s situation and plans; 2) check regulations and disciplinary measures for the latest updates and to close all loopholes; 3) review and proofread the identifications of persons in custody to prevent counterfeit identification documents and multiple copies; 4) be aware of those persons who are, or will be, under investigation or are on the internal list, and restrict their activities if necessary.
The command group increased personnel to guard key seaports, airports, and borders. It also dispatched over 8,000 special police to these places before Sept. 28. At the same time, over 350 of the latest instruments for the detection of counterfeit passports were installed in these airports and seaports.

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