Chang Xiaobing, who was recently named CEO of state-owned telecoms giant China Telecom, is the latest Chinese executive to go “missing” amid a nationwide crackdown on corruption led by the government.
Beijing-based independent magazine Caijing reports on Sunday that Xiaobing is “lost” and uncontactable via mobile phone. The report says he has been “taken away because of serious disciplinary review” and features a picture claiming to show his office has been sealed.
A separate article from the Thomson Reuters Trust reports that China’s Central Commission for Discipline Inspection says in a statement on its website that Xiaobing is “suspected of serious violation of discipline.”
Chinese President Xi Jinping is leading a wide-ranging crackdown on “graft” and corruption in all areas of Chinese life. As part of that, many top Chinese executives have been going “missing” — taken away swiftly and unexpectedly by authorities to answer questions.
The most high-profile to date has been Guo Guangchang, the Chinese investment billionaire known as “China’s Warren Buffett”. His investment group, Fosun, owns Club Med and Cirque du Soleil among others.
Xiaobing was named CEO and chairman of China Telecom in September, joining from rival China Unicom. Caijing reports that the investigation is believed to relate to Xiaobing’s time at China Unicom.
China Telecom is the biggest fixed-line phone provider and the third-biggest mobile provider in China.