Anglo-Swiss commodity trading and mining company, Glencore plc, will be reportedly setting aside more than $1.5 billion to cover an array of bribery and market manipulation probes, which it expects to get resolved before the end of this year.
Gary Nagle, CEO of Glencore, stated that amount is according to what Glencore believes to be the best estimate of the settlement amount.
Having earned $21.3 billion in profits last year, Glencore’s highest-ever and double from the previous year, the company will be returning around $4 billion to stakeholders.
Earnings on metal were alone recorded at $12 billion, a 65% rise from the previous year, while its energy unit recorded a quintuple rise to $5.6 billion.
However, over the last four years, Glencore has been under investigation for alleged corruption and money laundering by Brazilian authorities, the UK’s Serious Fraud Office (SFO), and the United States Department of Justice (DOJ).
In 2018, the mining giant revealed that the US DOJ had asked for documents linked to its business in Venezuela, Nigeria, and the Democratic Republic of Congo for its probe into possible money laundering and corruption.
Brazil, also, began an investigation into Glencore and trading groups, Trafigura and Vitol, regarding alleged bribery of employees at Petrobras, a state-controlled oil firm. A year later, UK’s SFO also confirmed its ongoing investigation of suspicions of bribery by the company and its staff.
In early 2020, the Swiss Attorney General also launched a probe into Glencore following a wide-ranging investigation undertaken by law enforcement agencies.
Gary Nagle, who succeeded long-time Glencore boss, Ivan Glasenberg, last year, stated that while he was unhappy with the charge of $1.5 billon, he noted that the company acknowledges its history of misconduct.
Nagle added that Glencore has worked hard in correcting itself, changing its culture, and wants to complete these investigations and move forward.
Glencore remains subject to Swiss and Dutch authorities’ investigations and states that it does not expect any potential resolution in avoiding identical penalties for similar conducts, with the timing of the probe still uncertain.