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Mexico government bans business with Brazilian Odebrecht

Mexico City, Mexico — On Monday, the government of Mexico said that it had decided not to do business with Brazilian construction company Odebrecht, who have been found guilty of being involved in a large international corruption scheme.

The company, who was found to be the center of one of the largest international corruption scandals in Latin America, has been barred from participating in any contracts with the Mexican government. The government stressed that it has barred Odebrecht from contracts for four years, automatically not approving any government agencies to do business with the Brazilian company.

Odebrecht may not participate “in contracting procedures or enter into any contract” with entities of the federal public administration, productive enterprises of the State or its subsidiaries or with state governments when using federal resources, indicated a provision of the Ministry of Public Administration published in the official journal.

“The contracts awarded and those that are currently formalized with the aforementioned infringer (Odebrecht), will not be included in the application of this Circular,” the official document adds.

To date, the Odebrecht corruption scandal has only involved in Mexico the former director of state oil company Pemex, Emilio Lozoya, who would have received at least $10 million USD in bribes to favor the company in public work tenders, according to the company.

Lozoya, who directed Pemex between 2012 and 2016, is also accused of having received money for the campaign of current Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, in which he served as international coordinator.

The Mexican attorney general’s office is currently investigating Lozoya, who has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

The confessions of senior Odebrecht executives have served to prosecute and even jail former presidents and senior officials in countries such as Brazil, Peru and Colombia.

The Brazilian construction company has been found guilty of paying $3.3 billion in bribes to companies in at least 12 countries.

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