Eni S.p.A. (Ente Nazionale Idrocarburi (“National Petroleum Agency," "ENI")) is the largest Italian oil and gas company.
The company was founded in 1953 by the Italian government; in the ‘90s of XX century to the beginning of XXI century, it was partially privatized, but the controlling interest remains in the hands of the state.
Daily production of oil and gas is 1.74 million barrels of oil equivalent. Proven reserves are 6.84 billion barrels. The company owns a network of gas stations (branded Agip), energy company ENIpower, and has a refining capacity.
For the willingness to make a deal with anyone, the company was called "devil's advocate" in the media.
ENI has serious interests in Kazakhstan. The company is the operator of the Kashagan oil field in the Caspian Sea (16.81%). Together with BG Group, ENI is a co-operator of the controversial oil and gas condensate field Karachaganak (29.25%).
In addition to the tragic consequences of accidental releases from the Karachaganak Field, ENI is notorious worldwide for its corruption scandals in Italy, Africa, and Kazakhstan, as well as permanent large oil spills in Nigeria and recent victims among the local population there as a result of the explosion of the pipeline.
Brief Chronicle of Problems:
Twenty-five children of Berezovka—poisoned at the end of 2014 from emissions from the Karachaganak Field (Kazakhstan) that is a co-operated by ENI—continue to feel sick. Conditions of many children are still difficult. There are new sick children and several cases of acute ailments among adults. Children had not received adequate treatment for more than a year. Oil companies did not take responsibility for the tragedy.
In July 2015, in the state of Beyelsa (Nigeria), there was an explosion on a pipeline owned by the Nigerian Agip Oil Company (NAOC), ENI unit. As a result, 13 people were killed and several injured. During the year, a major oil spill in the NAOC pipeline system in Nigeria has caused serious damage to the environment in the territory of residence of several communities in the southern part of the Beyelsa state. The company blames the local population for stealing oil.
On November 28, a tragedy occurred in the village of Berezovka near the Karachaganak Field (Kazakhstan); due to accidental releases of poisonous emissions, 25 children were seriously injured; some of them were diagnosed with toxic poisoning of brain when screened abroad. Other children did not have the opportunity to receive an adequate medical examination and treatment. Read more about the KPO activities (group that operates the Karachaganak Field, which has ENI as a co-operator). <?p>
ENI and its partner, Shell, are responsible for 550 oil spills in the Niger Delta, while they had only 10 spills in Europe over the last 45 years.
The executive director of ENI, Paolo Scaroni, was sentenced to three years in prison. He was also forbidden to hold positions in state institutions for five years. The press reported that the sentence is in connection with violations of environmental regulation of the Porto Tolle power plant in northern Italy during the period when Scaroni held the post of head of the Italian company Enel.
International organization Amnesty International has accused the major oil companies—including the daughter of ENI, Agip Oil Company, operating in the Niger Delta—of concealing information about oil spills in the region. According to Amnesty, withholding information about oil spills allows businesses to avoid paying fines and compensations.
Despite the check of the Ministry of Environmental Protection of Kazakhstan, negative expert conclusions, and dangerous amounts of deadly poisonous substances remaining after hydrotest equipment at the Bolashak plant, Agip KCO (ENI unit) merged its toxic water waste into the municipal sewer system of Atyrau, endangering the health and the lives of the inhabitants. It turned out that industrial effluents Karabatan plant contained toxic substances at a concentration exceeding the maximum permissible concentrations of suspended solids by 17 times, mineralization by 13 times, oil products by 34 times, Methanol by 815 times, and hydrogen sulfide by 1366 times.
After the scandal with the drainage, the Atyrau refinery administration required the contractor of Agip KCO to move the poisonous mixture to another location. However, in a new location (another district of the city of Atyrau), waste clogged the drainage with stale oil. As a result, the company began to discard waste outside the city limits, continuing to poison the environment.
According to the Amnesty data, there were 474 oil spills recorded only in one area of Nigeria exploited by Agip Oil Company in 2012. Local residents and observers do not think that investigations into the spills were adequate as they were mostly conducted by employees of the company itself.
The prosecutor's office of the Italian province of Lombardy suspected the new head of energy at company ENI, Claudio Deckaltsi, of "international corruption." Media reported that ENI bribed Nigerian politicians in the amount of $1.1 billion in 2011 to gain control of one of the oil fields.
The Milan prosecutor's office suspected ENI company of giving a large bribe during the conclusion of contracts for the development of large Kashagan oil and gas field in Kazakhstan. According to the newspaper Corriere della Sera, a bribe in the amount of at least $20 million was previously paid by ENI to Kazakhstani politicians, including the president's son, and at the first stage of development of the Kashagan field.
In Italy, the Chief Financial Officer Alessandro Bernini resigned after allegations of corruption in Saipem, a subsidiary of ENI.
In Kazakhstan, Agip KCO company was charged with fraud. According to investigators, during the construction of a refinery in the town of Karabatan in Atyrau region, ENI counted the same expenses for construction and installation works for the sum of $110 million twice. Allegedly, the company planned to reimburse these millions from the future oil and gas production from the Kashagan field. Then the prosecution was discontinued with the wording "for redress."
According to WikiLeaks, US Ambassador Lanier reported that, in Uganda, ENI was charged with bribery while contesting the right to operate the country's oil fields. It was reported that bribes were given to the prime minister of Uganda, Amama Mbabazi.
1992 - 1996
In 1992, the executive director of ENI, Paolo Scaroni, pleaded guilty to bribery. In 1993, he was arrested for one day under the anti-corruption Tandzhentopoli case. In 1996, Scaroni received a real term, one year and four months, but did not serve it. Scaroni also was under investigation on charges of corruption in Algeria, where ENI owns 43% of the oil company Saipem.
For decades, ENI had been a distressed state-owned enterprise mired in corruption scandals. The most difficult moment came in 1993, when the head of the company, Gabriel Cagliari, died in prison, where he was serving a term for bribing Italian political parties.