Siemens To Pay $105 Million For Corruption

MUNICH (AP) -- German industrial conglomerate Siemens AG said Thursday it has agreed to pay euro75 million over 15 years to help bolster international anti-corruption efforts and to refrain from bidding for contracts under World Bank-financed projects until 2011.

The Munich-based company said it agreed to pay the money -- euro5 million ($7 million) annually for 15 years -- to the United Nations and Transparency International as part of an agreement with the Washington-based World Bank, calling it part of its "ongoing efforts to address the consequences of the bribery scandal."

Siemens, which makes products ranging from wind turbines to trams, has been embroiled in a far-reaching corruption scandal and has acknowledged making dubious payments to secure business. An investigation commissioned by Siemens found evidence of violations across the company, and in several countries.

In December, Siemens agreed to pay more than $1 billion in fines in Germany and the U.S. that stemmed from company-wide corruption. At the time, Chief Executive Peter Loescher said that internal policing and investigation, along with an emphasis on integrity had been established.

"The settlement that has just been closed with the World Bank, is again a clear reminder of the past failure of those responsible," said Peter Solmssen, who became the Siemens board's general counsel with oversight for legal and compliance issues.

As art of the agreement, Siemens also said it would voluntarily refrain from bidding on projects financed by the World Bank.

In the past, Siemens has seen annual revenue of approximately euro100 million from such projects.

Also, Siemens said its regional company in Russia could see a four-year debarment from project contracts, but no decision by the World Bank has yet to be made.

The World Bank has asserted that Siemens Russia had paid some $3 million in bribes between 2005 and 2006 on a transportation project it had financed.

Shares of Siemens were down 4.6 percent to euro47.87 in Frankfurt trading, amid a wider decline of the DAX-30, which was down 3.2 percent.

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