Effective between May 1, 2013 and April 30, 2014, the contract between MCSquared (MC2) and the Republic of Ecuador shows extra spending of $3,604,859.08.
According to a document submitted to the US Ministry of Defense by the Ecuadoran Government, “in addition to expenditure on registrable activities, as previously reported, disbursements totaling $3,604,859.08 were made for non-registrable activities. These related to the implementation of a global PR strategy previously established in regions outside the US, including Europe and Central & South America.”
The Ecuadoran Government hired MC2 to counter attacks from Chevron, during the multinational oil company’s infamous environmental lawsuit. At the time, President Rafael Correa justified the fee charged by MC2 to confront “the monstrous power of Chevron: if we have a contract with a company for $6.4 million, they have 100 (million dollars) more, plus access to politicians, media, etc., to destroy the country.”
In 2013, Chevron was sentenced to pay $9.5 billion in compensation for environmental damage inflicted in the Ecuadoran Amazon between 1964 and 1990, when the oil company was operating as Texaco. The multinational denies the allegations and blames the severity of the financial penalty on alleged fraud in Ecuador’s legal system.
Documents initially submitted to the Department of Justice show that MC2 received payments totaling $6.4 million from the Government of Ecuador between May 2013 and May 2014.
“MC2 has designed and implemented a comprehensive global PR strategy to raise awareness of environmental damage caused by Texaco, the predecessor of Chevron Corp, in the northeastern Amazon region of Ecuador.” The documents also note that MC2 visited over 90 contaminated sites; invited celebrities and international personalities to Ecuador to raise awareness of environmental damage; planned events to support these visits (logistics, security, land and air transport, catering); organized press conferences, multimedia production, tourism promotion, etc.