New Allegations of Corruption in the Libyan Oil Industry

By John Lee.

An investigation by Fairfax Media -- publisher of The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald newspapers -- and The Huffington Post, claims that Monaco-based Unaoil has been involved in widespread bribery and corruption in the oil industry, including in Iraq, Iran and Libya.

Following examination of tens of thousands of emails, the report says that Unaoil channelled huge bribes to government officials on behalf of its clients to help win billions of dollars worth of government contracts.

In Libya, the report claims that in 2007 Unaoil agreed to secretly pay Mustafa Zarti -- a close friend of Colonel Gaddafi's son Saif al-Islam, and a board member of the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA) -- millions of dollars in return for getting him to use his influence to advantage Unaoil's partners and clients, including Malaysian firm Ranhill, Spanish company Tecnicas Reunidas, several Korean conglomerates and Canadian company Canuck Completions.

Family owned and controlled, Unaoil was founded by the Iranian-born Ata Ahsani, who left Tehran at the time of the Islamic revolution. The company "strenuously [denies] any wrongdoing and consider[s] the allegations to be baseless and entirely false."

The original story can be read in more detail here.

(Source: The Age)

(Corruption image via Shutterstock)

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