The oil giant BP has been temporarily suspended from new US government contracts because of its responsibility over the Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf of Mexico two years ago.
Earlier this month the company pleaded guilty to criminal misconduct and agreed to pay a record criminal fine and penalties totalling nearly 3.5 billion euros.
The US Environmental Protection Agency says BP showed a “lack of business integrity” over its handling of the worst offshore oil spill in US history.
It is thought the move could push the oil firm to settle a civil case brought by the US government and individual states.
BP strongly denies accusations of gross negligence, arguing it has spent more than 10 billion euros responding to the spill and has invested heavily in the US.
The company will need to prove it meets federal business standards before being awarded new contracts in the future.