Chinese athletes headed for this December's Asian Games in Bangkok will undergo stringent drug testing to avoid a repeat of the scandal that rocked the World Swimming Championships in Perth in January. Leading Chinese sports official Wei Jizhong made this statement while passing through Hong Kong yesterday to lend his support for September's World Grand Prix women's volleyball tournament, which will be held in the SAR. Wei, vice-president of the Chinese Olympic Committee, said China did not want another 'embarrassing' incident like in Perth when four Chinese swimmers were banned from all competitions for two years for using steroid-masking agents. A fifth swimmer and her coach were also banned from the Perth championships for trying to smuggle human growth hormones into Australia. 'In general, we have doping controls for every international competition, not just for the Asian Games. The national associations have set up an anti-doping laboratory and are eager to test their athletes. We don't want [a drugs scandal] to happen again,' said Wei. 'That's why it is important for our athletes to be tested thoroughly before they go to Bangkok.' Wei hinted that the Chinese Olympic Committee was trying hard to improve its image after it was tarnished by the Perth scandal. 'We have random drug testing on our athletes, just like other countries, and this started last year,' he said. 'All our international athletes must inform their national bodies as to where they are training or competing in case they need to be tested. We are intensifying our efforts to educate the athletes. However, China is not the only country that has drug cases. It's a worldwide problem.' Wei said doping was evident in other sports like track and field and cycling where the sport's premier event, the Tour de France, was hit by revelations of doping this year. Six teams withdrew from the race and one, Festina, were kicked out after the team director admitted there was an organised doping scheme at work in the team. 'The problem has become so serious that the IOC [International Olympic Committee] has convened an urgent executive board meeting in Lausanne to discuss what is happening at the moment,' said Wei. Meanwhile, Wei said the Volleyball Association of Hong Kong, China, should not worry about the finances needed to cover the cost of September's World Grand Prix. Local volleyball officials said staging the four-team tournament would cost around $1.1 million. 'They have nothing to worry about. They will get income from two sources: from the International Volleyball Federation [US$50,000] and money generated from gate receipts for the two days of competition. I know the event will be successful because China are competing in it and they have a very large following in Hong Kong,' he said.