In May 2010, the world’s largest mining company, BHP-Billiton, was accused of bribing the Cambodian government four years earlier, by shelling out US$3.5 million which never appeared on government books – and didn’t result in any benefit to the country’s citizens. The payments were said to have been made in pursuit of a bauxite mining concession on 100,000 hectares of land in Mondolkiri province, for which the company paid an additional US$ 1 million in 2006. These charges have recently re-surfaced with Cambodian prime minister, Hun Sen, being named as a beneficiary of the alleged corruption. One Cambodian politician has described such illicit deals as “tea money”. Such a payment (if it occurred) is technically “small beer” for a company worth many billions of dollars. And BHP Billiton withdrew from the country in 2009. Nonetheless it’s a highly serious matter, being regarded as such, at least by officials in Australia and the USA.