Shell close to settling bribery case

Shell has almost reached a settlement with the United States in a bribery case in Nigeria. It is expected that the Dutch-British oil company will receive a 30 million dollar fine. Shell is being accused of the large-scale bribery of Nigerian officials to speed equipment through customs and to secure contracts. The payments were made through the logistics group Panalpina.

Panalpina is expected to pay 85 million dollar in charges to settle charges it violated the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Many companies, including Panalpina, claim that corruption is part of doing business in countries like Nigeria. Shell is planning to leave Nigeria and sell the countries’ four major oil fields. Environmentalists believe the intended departure is bad news for the Nigerian population. Although the multinational is seen as the ‘enemy’ by activists, it is easier for them to negotiate with Shell than with the corrupt Nigerian government. However, if Shell decides to leave environmentalists demand that Shell cleans up the pollution resulting from the oil business.