Was there an agreement between Goldman Sachs and the Malaysian government for higher compensation?


Aliran released this media statement yesterday:

In Tommy Thomas’ autobiography My Story: Justice in the Wilderness, the former attorney general said he was “confident of recovering” from Goldman Sachs the huge losses the Malaysian government suffered from three 1MDB bond issues.

Thomas put forward a figure of over $9.6bn (about RM43bn) as the loss of principal and interest, before deduction of monetary benefits from the bonds (pp 315, 317).

However, when Mahiaddin Yasin and his team took over the government through the back door, his administration reportedly ‘settled’ for a measly $2.5bn (RM11bn) plus a $1.4bn undertaking for assets recoverable. That comes up to about $3.9bn (about RM17bn). This is vastly lower than Thomas’ figure.

Aliran urges the Anwar Ibrahim-led government to look up the previous administrations’ records.

Did Goldman Sachs agree to a much higher figure with the Malaysian government before Mahiaddin’s settlement?

If so, was there an agreement signed between the government and Goldman Sachs for this higher sum?

If there is such an agreement in existence which was not revealed to the public, we urge Anwar’s government to make the agreement public.

Rather than investigate certain issues in the entire book to placate certain quarters, Aliran believes it would be more productive for the Malaysian government to focus its attention on the chapter on Goldman Sachs (pp 301-323).

In fact, the entire settlement between Goldman Sachs and Mahiaddin’s negotiating team should be the subject of a thorough forensic audit.

Aliran executive committee
18 March 2023

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