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26 Jul 2016

Will Fitzgibbon, Intl. Consortium of Investigative Journalists

"Secret Offshore Deals Deprive Africa of Billions in Natural Resource Dollars" - analysis of Panama Papers

"Secret Offshore Deals Deprive Africa of Billions in Natural Resource Dollars", 25 July 2016

Twelve of the 17 shell companies linked to [Farid Bedjaoui, who is accused of facilitating bribes to help Saipem (part of Eni) secure Algerian oil & gas contracts] were created by Mossack Fonseca, the Panama-based law firm that is at the center of the Panama Papers scandal,...the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and other media partners has found.  Italian investigators described one of those companies, Minkle Consultants S.A., as a “crossroads of illicit financial flows” that channeled millions of dollars from subcontractors to an array of recipients... In all, ICIJ’s review identified 37 companies within the Panama Papers that have been named in court actions or government investigations involving natural resources in Africa.

Saipem, the Italian energy company, told ICIJ it is “fully cooperating” with prosecutors and it has “implemented significant managerial and administrative restructuring measures.”...

“Every dollar siphoned through dirty deals and corruption to offshore tax havens makes the livelihood and survival of the average African more precarious,” [Nigeria’s current president, Muhammadu Buhari] said in a speech delivered at an anti-corruption summit...

[also refers to AngloGold Ashanti, Sonatrach, Rayan Asset Management, Collingdale Consultants, Dan Gertler]