Ashton’s service suspected of favoritism

Published on 23 May 2012 at 11:16

According to Rue89, the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) is about to investigate the “conditions under which the EU signed a major services contract for work in Libya with a British company which has not been authorised to work in the country” by Libya’s National Transitional Council.

The affair, which has already been reported by EUobserver, concerns the British firm G4S-UK, which, contrary to expectations, won a 10 million euro contract with the European External action Service to protect EU staff and premises in Libya. Rue89 remarks that the deal raised eyebrows because, unlike its competitors in the call for tenders, the Hungarian firm Argus and the British Canadian Garda World, G4S-UK “had no track record of protecting European delegations”.

The French news website argues that the affair highlights a problem of conflict of interest in the EEAS, which is managed by Britain’s Catherine Ashton —

Some [...] suspect Great Britain of misusing its influence in the EEAS to favour the main private military companies in the UK.

Receive the best of European journalism straight to your inbox every Thursday

Was this article useful? If so we are delighted! It is freely available because we believe that the right to free and independent information is essential for democracy. But this right is not guaranteed forever, and independence comes at a cost. We need your support in order to continue publishing independent, multilingual news for all Europeans. Discover our membership offers and their exclusive benefits and become a member of our community now!

Are you a news organisation, a business, an association or a foundation? Check out our bespoke editorial and translation services.

Support independent European journalism

European democracy needs independent media. Join our community!

On the same topic