Thomas Chan Kui-Yuen
Hong Kong, 20 March 2012. An executive director at Hong Kong-listed blue chip company, Sun Hung Kai Properties Ltd., has been arrested in connection with a bribery investigation, the company said. The company was known for its good corporate governance.
Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) arrested Thomas Chan Kui-Yuen, one of seven executive directors of Sun Hung Kai, on grounds of alleged bribery. Sun Hung Kai has set up a committee of three directors to handle ICAC investigations.
Chan became an executive director in 1987 and was responsible for land acquisitions and project planning at the company, according to the annual report filed by the company. He was paid HK$11 million ($1.4 million) in the financial year ended June 2011, the report said.
Hong Kong’s biggest developer by market value, Sun Hung Kai, was co-founded by Kwok Tak Seng and billionaire Lee Shau-kee in 1963 and was listed on the Hong Kong stock exchange in 1972. As at December 2011, The Group has a land bank in Hong Kong of 46.7 million square feet in terms of attributable gross floor area, consisting of 27.9 million square feet of completed investment properties and 18.8 million square feet of properties under development. The Group also owns over 26 million square feet (site area) of farmland in the New Territories, primarily along rail lines. The majority of this is in the process of land use conversion.
Walter Kwok took over the management of the company as Chairman in 1990 after the death of his father, Kwok Tak Seng. He was ousted in 2008 after a dispute with his two brothers. Following this, his brothers, Thomas and Raymond Kwok, took control of the company as joint chairmen.
In 2008, Walter Kwok made a court filing alleging that Sun Hung Kai purchased land in Hong Kong’s New Territories from a seller at a much higher price than another vendor who had approached Chan previously. Chan had introduced the second seller, according to the filing. Walter Kwok said in his filing that his brothers, both vice chairmen at the time, disagreed with his attempts to investigate the circumstances surrounding the purchase. He also alleged that when he questioned whether there was any impropriety in awarding of construction contracts and other corporate governance matters, his brothers opposed him.
Mr Chan devoted his time and made his contributions to many public projects. He serves on the China Sub-committee of the Real Estate Developers Association of Hong Kong, and is an Executive Director of SUNeVision Holdings Ltd. He is a member of the Land and Building Advisory Committee’s Land Sub-committee, and the Hong Kong Trade Development Council’s China Trade Advisory Committee. Between 2004 and 2006, the Government appointed him to the Estate Agents Authority. He also holds membership of the Hong Kong Institute of Directors and the Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce. He is also a member of the Bauhinia Foundation Research Centre’s Health Care Study Group, and a member of the University of Hong Kong’s MBA Advisory Board. He has served on The Open University of Hong Kong (OUHK) Council since 2002.