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World Bank debars Germany’s Fichtner GmbH for Africa misconduct

The World Bank debarred Fichtner GmbH & Co. KG for fifteen months after a former employee took bribes to influence contract awards on a project in Africa.

Stuttgart-based Fichtner has about 1,500 employees worldwide. It provides engineering services for infrastructure projects.

The sanctionable misconduct occurred under the World Bank-financed Southern Africa Power Market Project  (SAPMP) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Privately-held Fichtner entered into a Negotiated Resolution Agreement with the World Bank.

The company didn't "contest the corrupt practice by a former employee, who received improper payments in exchange for influencing a tender process under the SAPMP by significantly narrowing competition." 

The World Bank said Fichtner cooperated with the investigation, acknowledgment the misconduct, and enhanced its compliance program.

Fichtner also took corrective action, "including a thorough internal investigation, and the dismissal of the individual connected with the illegitimate payments," the World Bank said.

Under its Negotiated Resolution Agreement with the World Bank, Fichtner won't be eligible for any World Bank-financed contracts for fifteen months ending September 28, 2018.

The debarment qualifies for cross-debarment by other Multilateral Development Banks under the Agreement of Mutual Recognition of Debarments (pdf) signed in 2010.

In addition to the World Bank, parties to the cross-debarment agreement are the Asian Development Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Inter-American Development Bank, and the African Development Bank.

A list of all World Bank debarred entities and individuals is here.


Richard L. Cassin is the publisher and editor of the FCPA Blog.