China vows to act on skimming

CHINA trade minister Wu Yi has pledged to clamp down on officials stationed abroad who skim off commissions on trade deals.

Government authorities are ''looking into the problem of commissions, which are skimmed off by those foreign economic and trade staff stationed abroad in places like Hong Kong'', said Ms Wu.

The revelation comes in an interview with Handelsblatt correspondent Peter Seidlitz, which is published in full on Page 7 of today's Sunday Money.

''Be sure: We will take effective measures to solve this,'' Ms Wu said.

Her comments came in reply to a question on corrupt officials working for state-owned trade corporations who deposit ''commissions'' in personal bank accounts in Hong Kong and Switzerland.

Asked about state-owned corporations using political and personal connections to do business through the back door, Ms Wu said the separation of government and business was the principle being pursued.

''We are now only in charge for formulating macro policies and guidelines. We are not to interfere in business operations and management anymore,'' she added.