AMSTERDAM May 28 Dutch oil platform leasing
firm SBM Offshore NV said on Wednesday it was seeking
clarification about its possible exclusion from bidding for
offshore Brazilian contracts with state-run Petroleo Brasileiro
SA, known as Petrobras.
Maria das Graças Foster, Petrobras' chief executive, told
hearings before a Brazilian congressional committee on Tuesday
that the oil company would not seek bids from SBM Offshore while
it was under investigation for alleged bribery in Brazil.
SBM Offshore said in a statement it was in dialogue with
Petrobras regarding participation in the upcoming Tartaruga
Verde and Libra tenders.
The Dutch business said it "has deployed significant
resources on bidding activities to date and as such is seeking
clarification, legal and otherwise, for the potential exclusion
from both tenders."
Brazilian senators are looking into allegations that
Petrobras officials took bribes in exchange for steering
contracts to SBM Offshore, as well as investigating alleged
overpricing in the building of refineries in Brazil.
SBM is the largest leaser of floating oil production
platforms known as FPSOs. Petrobras owns or leases the world's
largest fleet of oil production ships.
SBM said in April an internal investigation found evidence
its agents may have made improper payments to government
officials in Equatorial Guinea and Angola between 2007 and 2011,
but no evidence of such practices in Brazil.
(Reporting by Anthony Deutsch; Editing by Mark Potter)