French probe investigates Suez and Veolia merger

French probe investigates Suez and Veolia merger

The French investigative agency Parque Nationale Financier (PNF) has launched an investigation into political interference in a massive waste dump. The French media write this on the basis of a judicial source.

At the beginning of this year, French waste giant Veolia bought its counterpart Suez for about 13 billion euros. PNF, the service responsible for fighting financial crime and corruption, is now investigating the potential impact of this acquisition attempt.

One of the main suspects in the case is said to be senior government official Alexis Koehler. He is the Secretary General of the Elysee and therefore holds a high official position in the Presidential Palace. Koehler allegedly pressured the energy company Engie to sell the company’s shares from Suez to Veolia. Engy owns approximately 30 percent of Suez.

Dutch waste processing

Soon after the takeover, several unions had already lodged a complaint about this potential interference from government departments. “We can only be happy that the Palestinian National Front has taken seriously the union’s complaint,” union lawyer Jean-Baptiste Soufron said in Le Monde newspaper.

Prior to the merger, Suez and Veolia were both active in Dutch waste processing. The Dutch branch of Suez was sold as part of the merger to German PreZero, the recycling branch of owner Lidl Group Schwartz.

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