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Fraud exposed in Beijing-Shanghai high-speed railway

21 March 2012
A report released by China’s National Audit Office showed more evidence of fraud, waste, mismanagement and irregular procurement totalling billions of yuan connected to the Beijing-Shanghai high-speed railway that opened in June 2011.

Auditors found the Ministry of Railways shortened the period for bidders to get preliminary review application documents to 13 hours from the standard five days, and cut the period for bidders to submit applications to less than 24 hours from the standard seven days.

Irregularities were also found in the way companies bought materials, breaching bidding rules stating that the most economic combination of suppliers should be selected.

In addition, the auditors found evidence of wrongdoing by local governments.

Most of the problems identified have been corrected, according to a senior audit official quoted by China Daily, adding that the railway sector will remain its focus in the future.

The crackdown on corruption in the railways sector led to investigations of more than 10 railway officials last year. One of them was Liu Zhijun, former railway minister, who was removed from his post in early 2011 for “serious disciplinary violations”.

     
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