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Ex-chairman of Huachen, parent of BMW’s China partner, under investigation -graft watchdog

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BEIJING, Dec 4 (Reuters)The former chairman of Huachen Automotive Group Holdings, parent of BMW AG’s BMWG.DE joint venture partner Brilliance China 1114.HK, is under investigation for suspected violation of discipline, China’s graft watchdog said on Friday.

A Chinese court has accepted an application from a creditor of Huachen seeking the restructuring of the state-owned company, which defaulted on 6.5 billion yuan ($987.48 million) in debt obligations.

Qi Yumin, formerly vice mayor of the port city of Dalian, was Huachen’s chairman between 2005 and 2019. Sources told Reuters that Qi made several strategic mis-steps including approving an unsuccessful MPV (multi-purpose vehicle) project even as consultants warned against it.

Huachen did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Its sitting chairman is Yan Bingzhe, a former vice mayor of Shenyang city.

(Reporting by Yilei Sun, Lusha Zhang and Brenda Goh; Editing by Susan Fenton and David Evans)

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