BP, Mex­ico reach set­tle­ment on oil spill: Watch­dog

The Gulf Today - - AMERICAS -

MEX­ICO CITY: Bri­tish Pe­tro­leum struck a deal with the Mex­i­can gov­ern­ment to pay a vastly re­duced fine for en­vi­ron­men­tal dam­age caused by the 2010 Deep­wa­ter Hori­zon oil spill, a watch­dog group al­leged on Fri­day.

Ac­cord­ing to PODER, a cor­po­rate trans­parency group, BP se­cretly ne­go­ti­ated to pay Mex­ico $25.5 mil­lion — a frac­tion what it paid in the United States — even as it in­vested hun­dreds of mil­lions in Pres­i­dent En­rique Pena Ni­eto’s prized project, the re­open­ing of the Mex­i­can en­ergy sec­tor to FOR­EIGN irms.

“The Mex­i­can gov­ern­ment al­ways pre­ferred to reach an out-of-court set­tle­ment with the com­pany, ig­nor­ing THE In­ter­ests of THE ish­ing Com­mu­ni­ties that were af­fected,” said PODER, a Mex­ico City- and New York-based or­ga­ni­za­tion that car­ried out a two-year in­ves­ti­ga­tion of the se­cret ne­go­ti­a­tions to­gether with US news site Buz­zfeed.

The Deep­wa­ter Hori­zon drilling rig ex­ploded in the Gulf of Mex­ico on April 20, 2010, spilling 793 mil­lion liters of oil.

The disas­ter coated huge stretches of coast­line in black tides in both the United States and Mex­ico, and lethally cov­ered tens of thou­sands of an­i­mals in oily muck.

In the United States, the Bri­tish irm HAS PAID out more than $60 Bil­lion in dam­ages.

But in Mex­ico it struck a deal to pay less than one-half of one per­cent of that ig­ure, Even As It si­mul­ta­ne­ously be­came a key player in the mas­sive en­ergy pri­va­ti­za­tion launched by Pena Ni­eto in 2013, ac­cord­ing to the re­port.

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