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LyondellBasell investigates Kazakhstan payment

LyondellBasell Industries NV, the Netherlands-based petrochemical maker, made this disclosure in its Form 10-Q filed with the SEC on October 26:

We previously identified an agreement related to a former project in Kazakhstan under which a payment was made that raises compliance concerns under the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (the “FCPA”). We have engaged outside counsel to investigate these activities, under the oversight of the Audit Committee of the Supervisory Board, and to evaluate internal controls and compliance policies and procedures. In this respect, we may not have conducted business in compliance with the FCPA and may not have had policies and procedures in place adequate to ensure compliance. We made a voluntary disclosure of these matters to the U.S. Department of Justice and are cooperating fully with that agency. We cannot predict the ultimate outcome of these matters at this time since our investigations are ongoing. Therefore, we cannot reasonably estimate a range of liability for any potential penalty resulting from these matters. Violations of these laws could result in criminal and civil liabilities and other forms of relief that could be material to us.

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