Keppel ‘strongly denies’ report alleging approval of bribery by top execs

Singapore’s Keppel Corp has staunchly defended allegations from a media report that its senior management backed the payment of bribes to win contracts in Brazil.

Keppel Corp, in a statement released on Wednesday, said it refers to a Bloomberg article citing allegations made by Zwi Skornicki, a former third-party commercial representative for Keppel in Brazil.

Skornicki had told a court that five top Keppel executives, including Keppel Offshore & Marine ceo Chow Yew Yuen, authorised him to bribe public officials in exchange for Petrobras contracts that could exceed $1bn.

Skornicki then paid bribes to win work for Keppel with Sete Brasil, which has filed for bankruptcy protection in April.

“Keppel strongly denies the allegations reportedly made that Keppel executives authorised Skornicki to pay bribes on its behalf,” Keppel Corp said.

“None of the individuals named in the (Bloomberg) article, including the current ceo of Keppel Offshore & Marine Chow Yew Yuen, have ever authorised Skornicki to make any payments as bribes,” it said.

Keppel Corp has repeatedly refuted bribery allegations related to its contracts with Petrobras and an ongoing Operation Car Wash graft probe launched by the Federal Police of Brazil.

Posted 04 August 2016

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Lee Hong Liang

Asia Correspondent