China to audit social security funds
Updated: 2006-12-13 16:41
The Chinese government will launch an audit campaign to examine pension funds
under provincial and city supervision following the Shanghai pension fund
scandal that involved millions of misused dollars.
The campaign is
designed to ensure that no other large-scale government pension fund is
misappropriated, said Li Jinhua, auditor-general of the National Audit Office
The campaign is to cover all major cities and provinces, expanding
beyond a campaign in August that involved social security funds of 29 provincial
regions and five major cities.
In September, Shanghai municipality
revealed that more than 3 billion yuan (US$370 million) had been misappropriated
from its pension fund, which covers a population of 12 million people, and
invested in highway construction and property deals.
By law, pension
funds can only be invested as bank deposits or in national bonds or securities.
The NAO revealed in November after the August audit that its
investigators uncovered 7.1 billion yuan, or US$900 million, in pension funds
misused in overseas investments, construction projects and unauthorized lending.
But social security funds at county level are not included in next
year's auditing plan, leading to worries that more problems are yet to be
Most of social security funds are operated by cities and
counties and only a few by provinces, said Li Shaoguang, a researcher with the
public administration college of the Beijing-based Renmin University.
suggested that social security funds should be submitted to operation by
financial institutions entrusted by governments, instead of governments
|Most Commented/Read Stories in 48 Hours