PetroChina Vice Chairman Liao Yongyuan
Liao Yongyuan, vice-chairman of PetroChina, attends a conference in Beijing, 16 May 2013Reuters

Liao Yongyuan, former vice-chairman of China's state-owned oil company PetroChina, is facing prosecution after he was expelled from the Communist Party for crimes including bribery.

Liao, who was the second-highest ranking official at the country's biggest oil and gas producer, has been accused of taking "enormous" bribes and abusing his position to help with job promotions.

"Liao Yongyuan was a senior party official, and seriously violated the party's political rules and the organisation's discipline," the party's Central Commission for Discipline Inspection said in a statement.

The corruption watchdog added that the evidence of his crimes will be handed over to the legal authorities for prosecution.

He worked at the parent company China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) for 30 years, and was appointed vice-chairman of PetroChina in May 2014. He stepped down from his posts as vice chairman and non-executive director at PetroChina in March.

The Chinese government under Xi Jinping has been cracking down on corruption in the country, and has charged a number of high-profile figures from government, military and business spaces. Xi had noted that corruption is a major threat to the very survival of the ruling Communist Party.

Former China security chief Zhou Yongkang was jailed for life last week after being found guilty of a range of crimes, including bribery.