President of China's Sinopec oil services unit dismissed amid investigation

BEIJING - The president of Sinopec Group's oilfield services unit has been dismissed and is currently under investigation, state media reported on Wednesday.

Xue Wandong, the president of Sinopec Oilfield Services Corp (SOSC), was relieved of his duties by the company's party apparatus, Xinhua said on its Weibo social media account. He is being investigated for reasons that were not specified.

State media reported last month that China's corruption watchdog had launched a series of inspections into state-owned enterprises and government bodies including Sinopec Group, the parent of Sinopec .

Sinopec said in a statement on its Weibo account that it has zero tolerance for behaviour that "violates discipline or the law."

SOSC has been planning a $1.5 billion IPO in Hong Kong, people familiar with the matter said in August.

SOSC entered into a joint venture with US-listed Weatherford International earlier this year, in order to tap into the country's potentially vast shale resources.

China's president, Xi Jinping, who took office in March of last year, has made fighting pervasive corruption a central theme of his administration, warning the problem is so severe it could threaten the party's survival.

The party announced in July that China's former domestic security chief Zhou Yongkang is being investigated for "serious disciplinary violations", the usual euphemism for corruption. He was once the head of state oil giant China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC).