Bank of China

BOC unveils clean-up of audit procedures

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 02 February, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 02 February, 2005, 12:00am

Bank of China, in full damage-control mode after a recent scandal at a local branch, yesterday tabled measures to improve the independence and frequency of internal audits.

China's largest foreign exchange lender would force local branch heads and staff in key positions to take mandatory leave, smoothing the way for internal auditors to assess their performances without interference, while the existing practice of rotating key managers would be expanded, the bank said in a statement yesterday.

BOC will also conduct a sweeping review of compliance and fraud prevention measures of its entire branch network.

The bank will also demand the head of a local branch or sub-branch be on the spot to co-ordinate and supervise investigations of significant frauds.

The statement came amid ongoing probes into the scandal at a BOC sub-branch in northeastern Heilongjiang province in which more than one billion yuan of corporate deposits had been embezzled by officials including the sub-branch chief.

The case attracted widespread media attention when it came to light last month, after last year's financial and corporate governance overhaul designed to improve the bank's internal control.