Yara comes clean on fishy Libyan payments / News / The Foreigner

Yara comes clean on fishy Libyan payments. Norwegian agricultural chemicals giant, Yara International ASA, has come clean about a series of payments it made to Libyan officials while it was attempting to forge a joint venture with companies there three years ago. According to Yara’s head of investor relations Torgeir Kvidal, the company’s management got wind of a payment demanded by a third party and stopped it in 2008, but decided not to report it to the police. It has now reversed that decision, reporting the incident along with a series of other payments to Libyan parties to The Norwegian National Authority for Investigation and Prosecution of Economic and Environmental Crime (Økokrim).

yaralibya, benteslaatten, torgeirkvidal, oekokrim



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Yara comes clean on fishy Libyan payments

Published on Monday, 18th April, 2011 at 13:29 under the news category, by Ramona Tancau.
Last Updated on 18th April 2011 at 13:44.

Norwegian agricultural chemicals giant, Yara International ASA, has come clean about a series of payments it made to Libyan officials while it was attempting to forge a joint venture with companies there three years ago.

Yara logo (illustration photo)
Yara logo (illustration photo)
Photo: Yara International ASA


According to Yara’s head of investor relations Torgeir Kvidal, the company’s management got wind of a payment demanded by a third party and stopped it in 2008, but decided not to report it to the police.

It has now reversed that decision, reporting the incident along with a series of other payments to Libyan parties to The Norwegian National Authority for Investigation and Prosecution of Economic and Environmental Crime (Økokrim).

“The management then decided that we will not initiate any major investigation and was warned not to do so,” Mr. Kvidal told Aftenposten. 

The agriculture fertilizers company now says it fears that the 2008 payments were against Yara’s ethical rules of conduct, Yara Communications Director Bente Slaatten told DN.

Yara justifies this sudden change of heart as a policy decision to investigate all the company’s joint ventures, following some issues abroad.

“In connection with the situation in Libya, we have had to shut down a plant. It has created little media attention. Totally unrelated to this, we have also had some attention relating to a partner for one of our joint ventures in Australia. Based on this, we decided to take a general review of the circumstances around our joint ventures,” Mr. Kvidal said.  

The company has hired the famous lawyer and examiner Jan Fougner to represent it. Mr. Fougner advised Yara’s leaders to report this payment to Norwegian authorities.

The head of corruption team in the Norwegian National Authority for Investigation and Prosecution of Economic and Environmental Crime chief public prosecutor Marianne Djupesland confirmed they were contacted by Yara regarding this potential corruption case.

“We have received some information from the company. The information we will consider, and decide whether there is reason to look into this matter. But it's not something we have taken a position on," she told NTB on Wednesday.

Yara President and CEO Jørgen Ole Haslestad told NRK that the investigation has no connection with the war in Libya and that it would have taken place either way.

“We made the decision to initiate an investigation three weeks ago.The ball would have rolled regardless of what now takes place in Libya,” Mr Haslestad explained.



Published on Monday, 18th April, 2011 at 13:29 under the news category, by Ramona Tancau.
Last updated on 18th April 2011 at 13:44.

This post has the following tags: yaralibya, benteslaatten, torgeirkvidal, oekokrim.





  
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