Maersk Supply Service denies corruption allegations

Copenhagen: Maersk Supply Service has denied any connection to a corruption scandal in Brazil.

A former director of Petrobras has claimed that over a number of years he received money from a Maersk agent in Brazil,  Danish news publication DR reports.

The publication reported that the former director at Petrobras, Paulo Roberto Costa, told police that for years he had disclosed confidential information for money to help Maersk Supply Service beat its competition.

“Costa has admitted that he received money from giving confidential information to Maersk. Maersk has thus had a competitive advantage on Petrobras’ need to rent ships,” police commissioner Erika Mialik Marena said.

Danish police is helping Brazilian authorities with the investigation.

“I can confirm that we have established a good contact with Brazilian police on the matter. We are in a phase where the importance of close cooperation between the Brazilian and Danish police, and we have a close dialogue on what information needed to promote progress, “says Morten Niels Jakobsen, head of the Serious Fraud Office, to DR News.

Maersk said it has investigated the matter, and stresses that it has not found evidence of any wrongdoing:

Maersk Supply Service has worked for the Brazilian oil company for more than thirty years. Petrobras chartered ships four Maersk ships in 2014 for $300m.

The Petrobras corruption scandal has been ongoing for months, involving billions of dollars, and has snared many high profile companies and people.


Hans Thaulow

Hans Henrik Thaulow is an Oslo-based journalist who has been covering the shipping industry for the last 15 years. As well as some work for the Informa Group, Hans was the China correspondent for TradeWinds. He also contributes to Maritime CEO magazine. Hans’ shipping background extends to working as a shipbroker trainee with Simpson, Spence & Young in Hong Kong.


  1. Great story. These collaborations exist in the entire chain of the shipping industry, including the freight forwarding sector. However, many individuals in positions of purchasing or making vendor selections are the guilty ones. They demand payment in exchange of contracts and work. When you report the illegal requests to the ethics departments of large corporations, the deny your “allegations” and brush off the claims. It happened to my company with a large public company in Houston.

  2. Maersk have enjoyed a very very strong position with Petrobras for almost thirty years. Many, perhaps most, offshore boat companies have concluded, down the decades, that they could not hope to displace Maersk in bidding to Petrobras.

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