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August 7, 2009

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Nuke kingpin in bidding probe

THE head of China's nuclear power program is under investigation over allegations of severe discipline violations, the online edition of the People's Daily reported yesterday, quoting an unnamed source at the nation's top anti-corruption body.

The probe involves Kang Rixin, 56, general manager and Party secretary of the China National Nuclear Corp, according to

"We are stunned by the news," said a source familiar with Kang's work.

Further details on Kang's case were not disclosed, but the report said he was involved in illegal bids on nuclear power projects.

In addition, Kang misused public funds to speculate in the stock market and suffered huge losses last year, according to the newspaper. Kang is now in custody in Beijing.

The Shanxi native majored in nuclear reactor engineering and graduated from Shanghai Jiao Tong University in 1978.

He engaged in research at the Nuclear Power Institute of China after graduation and moved to the CNNC, becoming head of the group in 2003.

Kang was appointed to the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection of the Communist Party of China in November 2002.

In earlier corruption cases, around 20 senior executives from the state-owned nuclear power industry were disciplined or referred to judicial departments because of bid irregularities. Most were from the China Guangdong Nuclear Power Group, including its former deputy general manager, Shen Rugang.

The China National Nuclear Corp is responsible for civilian and military activities at all levels of the nuclear fuel cycle. The CNNC is in charge of China's nuclear weapons and power production and waste disposal facilities, including research and development.

It was established in 1988 as the successor to the Ministry of Nuclear Industry, which built China's first atomic bomb, hydrogen bomb and nuclear submarine.

The CNNC is a huge national industrial conglomerate, with over 100 subsidiary enterprises and institutions with 280,000 employees.


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