Chinese politician in Pandora Papers looked to trade US stocks

Apart from Feng Qiya, who set up an offshore company, the investigation named two former leaders of Hong Kong.

Only one Mainland Chinese politician has been named in the Pandora Papers [File: Lam Yik/Bloomberg]

China’s only politician to be named in a sprawling investigation of millions of confidential financial documents known as the Pandora Papers is a female entrepreneur who the report says set up an offshore firm to trade U.S. stocks.

Feng Qiya, a delegate to China’s annual parliamentary pageant, the National People’s Congress, in 2016 set up an offshore company in the British Virgin Islands called Linkhigh Trading Ltd. to make the transactions, according to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.

The company had $2 million in assets and was registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, but is currently inactive, ICIJ said.

Feng, who in 2019 recommended “stricter laws to prevent corruption and white-collar crime involving private companies,” according to the ICIJ, was one of hundreds of politicians, including current and former world leaders, and other high-profile power brokers named in the unprecedented leak of nearly 12 million documents from 14 legal and financial firms.

She did not respond to repeated requests for comment, the group said.

Using offshore accounts in low-tax jurisdictions is legal in most countries and many of the people named in the data release aren’t accused of criminal wrongdoing.

The investigation also named two former leaders of Hong Kong.

Billionaire Tung Chee-hwa and his family have registered nearly 30 offshore companies and Leung Chun-ying was listed as the owner of two BVI companies while serving as Hong Kong’s chief executive, as its leaders are known. Leung was investigated by the city’s anti-corruption agency, but the Justice Department in 2018 dropped the case due to insufficient evidence.

Neither responded to requests for comment from the ICIJ, the group said.

Source: Bloomberg