ALGIERS, March 8 Algeria expects its
investigation into allegations of corruption involving state
energy company Sonatrach and Italy's Eni to progress
rapidly once it receives responses to requests for assistance
from overseas authorities.
Algiers public proscutor Belkacem Zeghmati launched the
probe last month after Milan prosecutors said they were
investigating Eni head Paolo Scaroni over alleged bribes paid to
win contracts in Algeria for Saipem, in which Eni
holds a 43 percent stake.
A statement from Zeghmati late on Thursday said that the
magistrate handling the case in Algeria has requested assistance
from judicial authorities in Italy, Switzerland and the United
Arab Emirates to help to gather evidence.
"The examining magistrate has requested approval from
Italian judicial authorities to travel to Milan and meet his
Italian colleagues in charge of the case," Zeghmati said, adding
that he then expects the investigation to move at "a rapid
(Reporting By Hamid Ould Ahmed; Editing by David Goodman)