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Business

China watchdog probes top executive at carmaker FAW

China's Communist Party's corruption watchdog has said it's launched a probe into a top manager of FAW, one of the biggest auto makers in the country. It said the man severely "violated discipline and the law."

The chairman and party secretary of China's FAW Group, Xu Jianyi, was placed under investigation for severe violations of discipline and the law, the Chinese anti-corruption watchdog confirmed Monday, using a phrase that typically refers to large-scale graft.

No further details were given as to what the man was suspected of having done. The probe formed part of a

wider campaign by Chinese President Xi Jinping

, who launched a much-publicized drive against corruption after he came to power two years ago.

FAW, originally known as First Automotive Works, is China's third-largest carmaker with sales of more than 3 million vehicles in 2014.

More to come

The group and Germany's Volkswagen run a passenger car joint venture that produces Audi vehicles among others. FAW also has cooperation deals with Toyota and General Motors.

Volkswagen said it was aware of the current probe, but declined to comment on the investigation.

Analysts said China had so far failed to implement institutional safeguards against corruption such as an independent judiciary and free media, leaving anti-graft initiatives subject to political influence.

The Chinese leadership for its part has vowed to target both high-level "tigers" and low-ranking "flies," intending to eventually scrutinize all major state-owned companies in the country.

hg/ng (AFP, Reuters, dpa)

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