Airbus reaches settlement over corruption investigations

Airbus has agreed a settlement with French, British and US authorities following lengthy investigations into allegations of bribery and corruption.

In a statement, the European planemaker said the deal was subject to approval by courts in the three countries.

A statement explained: “Airbus confirms that it has reached agreement in principle with the French Parquet National Financier, the United Kingdom Serious Fraud Office and the United States authorities.

“These agreements are made in the context of investigations into allegations of bribery and corruption as well as compliance with the United States International Traffic in Arms Regulations.

“They remain subject to approval by French and UK courts and US court and regulator.”

The plane manufacturer added that it would be unable to make any further comment on the details of its discussions with the investigating authorities.

The allegations have centred on the use of middlemen in plane sales.

Details have not been revealed, but reports suggest that Airbus – based in Toulouse in south-west France – could pay more than €3 billion in fines.

The Serious Fraud Office opened investigations into Airbus after the firm reported itself in 2016.

The organisation opened its investigation in August of that year into allegations of “fraud, bribery and corruption” in the civil aviation business of Airbus.

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