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    Vitol under scrutiny for bribes in Mexico

Summary

The company is suspected of bribing officials at state oil company Pemex.

by: Daniel Graeber

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Complimentary, Natural Gas & LNG News, Americas, Corporate, Political, Ministries, Contracts and tenders, News By Country, Mexico

Vitol under scrutiny for bribes in Mexico

Mexico is looking to renegotiate contracts with Vitol, Reuters report on September 15, after the commodities trader was found to have paid bribes to secure work with state-owned Pemex.

Mexican president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador early this year launched an investigation into kickbacks paid to Pemex. Company CEO Octavio Romero Oropeza, told Reuters that Pemex was combing through various contracts in search of any abnormalities.

"Now we need to question practically everything," he said. "If we can't come to an agreement, we'll stop doing business with Vitol."

Pemex as part of its internal probes ordered its employees to secure any and all documents related to Vitol contracts going back to at least 2015.

Mexico’s president, known commonly as AMLO, turned down a $30mn settlement from Vitol, saying the trader had not been transparent about who received kickbacks or for what.

A separate report from Bloomberg in August revealed that Mexico’s government had already barred Vitol and rival trader Trafigura from doing business in the country because of corrupt practices.

Vitol and Trafigura, two of the world’s biggest commodity traders, are under investigation for corruption and bribery in several jurisdictions across North America.