Glencore to pay £147m over Democratic Republic of Congo corruption claims
Glencore has agreed to pay $180m (£147m) to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to settle “all present and future” lawsuits arising from the large-scale international bribery scandal currently facing the firm.
In a statement, Glencore said the $180m deal acts to settle any existing or future claims relating to the corruption allegations surrounding the firm’s actions in the DRC between 2007 and 2018.
The settlement comes after Glencore paid $1.1bn (£898m) to US and Brazilian authorities and a further £281m to Britain’s Serious Fraud Office (SFO) over claims its staff paid millions in bribes to officials across Africa and South America in a bid to win favorable treatment in oil deals.
Glencore said the $180m payment covers any existing and potential claims arising from activities being investigated by the US Department of Justice (DoJ) and the DRC’s National Finance Intelligence Unit and Ministry of Justice (MoJ).
In May, Glencore admitted paying $27.5m to third-party intermediaries with the intention of gaining a competitive advantage by bribing DRC officials.
Glencore’s settlement comes as the commodity trader faces a potential flurry of lawsuits against it brought forward by those countries in which it paid bribes.
In sentencing remarks at the conclusion of the SFO case against Glencore, Southwark Crown Court judge Peter Fraser said “potential victims are entitled to pursue claims for compensation in the civil courts.”
Justice Fraser had previously blocked the state of Nigeria from claiming a share of any money paid to the SFO after ruling third parties have “no standing” to take a share of fines.
The judge however said that any claims for compensation could “still be advanced” in civil courts, which are “more suited” to such claims.
Glencore is separately facing an investor lawsuit, brought against it by more than a dozen top shareholders, over losses to investors that arose as a result of the misconduct identified in the corruption probes.
In a statement, Glencore chairman Kalidas Madhavpeddi said: “Glencore is a long-standing investor in the DRC and is pleased to have reached this Agreement to address the consequences of its past conduct.”