Peru demands to approve asset sales from Odebrecht scandal
President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski has announced a series of measures as a result of the widening corruption scandal
Any company found guilty of involvement in the
Odebrecht bribery scandal in Peru will have to seek government
approval to sell any of its assets in the country, President
Pedro Pablo Kuczynski said.
Speaking in a nationally televised address,
Kuczynski laid out a series of steps his government has taken
in the wake of Odebrecht's admission that it paid more than
$800m in bribes across Latin America including $29m in
The corruption scandal has reverberated throughout
the region and ensnared some current and former government
officials in a several countries, including
President Alejandro Toledo.
Funds from any government approved asset sale will
first be used to ensure that any fines are fully paid,
Kuczynski said on Sunday night.
He also said any company operating in Peru that
has either been found guilty or admitted to corruption charges
will not be allowed to transfer money out the country if it has
not fully paid workers and any government fines.
"The seriousness of the situation," he said,
referring to the
Odebrecht scandal, "means we have to take firm action."
Among other steps, the president said he has
issued a legislative decree prohibiting any company convicted
of graft from winning a bid for a government contract. He also
announced plans to triple the amount of funding for the
attorney general’s office to investigate
Kuczynski added the government has collected a
$262m guarantee from Odebrecht after it terminated
contract with a consortium it led to build and operate the
$6.5bn Gasoducto Sur Peruano (GSP) natural gas pipeline.
"We’ll keep this money to maintain the project
while we seek a new contract," he said.
Peruvian authorities are seeking arrest of Toledo,
who was president from 2001 to 2006. He is accused of receiving
some $20m in bribes from Odebrecht in exchange for awarding the
company a major highway contract when he was in office. Toledo,
who is a visiting scholar at Stanford University, has denied
any wrongdoing but has refused to return to Peru after a
Peruvian judge issued an international warrant for his
In a call on Sunday with President Donald Trump,
Kuczynski asked the US leader to deport Toledo, according to
Peru state news agency Andina. The White House
confirmed the conversation between the two leaders but did not
publicly comment on the Peruvian president’s