NEW YORK (AFP) - French industrial giant Alstom has agreed to pay US$700 million (S$911 million) to settle US corruption charges related to bribes in Indonesia and other countries, a person familiar with the matter said Tuesday.
The settlement, to be announced next week, comes as US conglomerate General Electric prepares to complete a deal to buy key Alstom assets.
The US Department of Justice (DOJ) has accused Alstom under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) of bribing officials in Indonesia to win a US$118 million energy contract in the early 2000s.
Alstom partnered with Japanese firm Marubeni, which has also been mired in the investigation.
Two Alstom offices in Indonesia were searched in July 2012 in the investigation.
At least four French Alstom officials have been indicted in relation to the case.
The impending Alstom settlement is bigger than a US$450 million agreement between the DOJ and Siemens in 2008 to settle FCPA charges the German company bribed officials in several countries.
The case focuses on the role of Alstom's US subsidiary in Connecticut, where some of the officials allegedly involved in the bribes worked.
The settlement would remove a hurdle to GE's deal to buy most of Alstom's energy assets for €12.4 billion (S$20.2 billion).
Alstom shareholders are scheduled to vote on Dec 19 on the GE deal.