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Goldman Sachs is offering 'peanuts' to compensate for 1MDB, says Malaysian prime minister

Key Points
  • Investment bank Goldman Sachs has offered to compensate 1 billion ringgit ($241.73 million) to Malaysia for its involvement with 1MDB, but Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad says that's "not adequate."
  • Malaysian Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng told CNBC in January that his country is seeking $7.5 billion from Goldman and called on the bank to "have a heart."
  • Goldman's CEO David Solomon has apologized to the Malaysian people, but the bank also says it was lied to in the deals it facilitated for 1MDB.
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Goldman Sachs' 1MDB compensation offer is 'not adequate': Malaysia's Mahathir

Goldman Sachs has offered 1 billion ringgit ($241.73 million) to compensate Malaysia for its role in a multi-billion dollar financial scandal involving a Malaysian state fund — but the prime minister of the Southeast Asian country described that amount as "peanuts."

The U.S. financial giant helped state firm 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) to raise $6.5 billion in 2012 and 2013, and collected higher-than-typical fees of $600 million for the deals. Around $4.5 billion was later found missing from the fund, of which millions of dollars allegedly ended up in the personal bank account of Najib Razak, Malaysia's former prime minister.

"What Goldman Sachs has offered is not adequate," Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad told CNBC's Tanvir Gill on Saturday in Bangkok, Thailand where he's attending a summit for the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

Mahathir said Malaysia's finance ministry will decide on an appropriate amount of compensation to demand from Goldman, and said the 1 billion Malaysian ringgit — which amounts to around $250 million — "is peanuts."

VIDEO5:4405:44
What happened to Malaysia's 1MDB money?

Goldman declined to comment when contacted by CNBC for this story.

The bank has come under scrutiny in multiple jurisdictions for its involvement with 1MDB. U.S. prosecutors charged two former bankers from the company, while Malaysia filed criminal charges against the financial firm.

Malaysian Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng told CNBC in January that his country is seeking $7.5 billion from Goldman and called on the bank to "have a heart."

Goldman Sachs Chief Executive David Solomon had apologized to the Malaysian people, but the bank also said it was lied to in the deals it facilitated for 1MDB.