CBC March 28, 2019

Quebec engineering firm warned it would move abroad within a year, cut workforce in Canada to 3,500

OTTAWA — Newly obtained documents show SNC-Lavalin warned federal prosecutors last fall about a possible plan to split the company in two, move its offices to the United States and eliminate its Canadian workforce if it didn’t get a deal to avoid criminal prosecution.

The documents, a collection of slides described as a confidential presentation prepared for the federal government, were obtained by The Canadian Press.

They describe “Plan B” — what Montreal-based SNC might have to do if it couldn’t convince the government to grant a so-called remediation agreement to avoid criminal proceedings in a fraud and corruption case related to projects in Libya.

Under that plan, SNC would move its Montreal headquarters and corporate offices in Ontario and Quebec to the U.S. within a year, cutting its workforce to just 3,500 from 8,717, before eventually winding up its Canadian operations.

The details appear to contradict public statements by chief executive officer Neil Bruce, who has denied that the company ever threatened to move its headquarters.

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