Washington: The US government banned BP Plc from new federal contracts on Wednesday over its "lack of business integrity" in the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, a move that could imperil the British energy giant's US footing. The suspension, announced by the US Environmental Protection Agency, comes on the heels of BP's November 15 agreement with the US government to plead guilty to criminal misconduct in the Gulf of Mexico disaster, the worst offshore oil spill in US history. BP agreed to pay $4.5 billion in penalties, including a record $1.256 billion criminal fine.
BP and its affiliates are barred from new federal contracts until they demonstrate they can meet federal business standards, the EPA said. The suspension is "standard practice" and BP's existing US government contracts are not affected, it said. The EPA action could complicate BP's plans to grow its production in the Gulf of Mexico, and came just hours before a government auction of offshore Gulf tracts. The company may also struggle to remain the largest fuel supplier to the US military, the largest single buyer of oil in the world.
The EPA's suspension of contracts could push BP to settle civil litigation brought by the US government and states from the spill. An EPA official said government-wide suspensions generally do not exceed 18 months, but can continue longer if there are ongoing legal cases. In a statement, BP said it has been in "regular dialogue" with the EPA, and that the agency has informed
07:29 AM, Nov 29, 2012
Washington: BP Plc will pay $4.5 billion in penalties and plead guilty to felony misconduct in the Deepwater Horizon disaster, which caused the worst US offshore oil spill ever. The settlement includes a $1.256 billion criminal fine, the largest such levy in US history, the oil company said on Thursday. US Attorney General Eric Holder called the deal a "critical step forward" but was adamant that it did not end...
02:21 AM, Nov 16, 2012