by Staff Writers
Oslo (AFP) Feb 4, 2016
Norway's huge sovereign wealth fund, the world's biggest, announced on Thursday it had sold out of 73 companies last year because their social or environmental policies could hurt profitability.
The Norwegian state pension fund's annual report relating to "responsible investment" did not give the names of companies, but it indicated that most were coal or energy companies using coal, as well as those involved in mining, producing cement and heavy construction.
"We want to measure the risk in our investments," said the head of the fund, Yngve Slyngstad, in a statement.
"We expect companies to communicate the impact of their activities on the environment and the factors that could affect their long-term profitability," he said.
The fund is currently worth around $794 billion (734 billion euros), equivalent to around six annual budgets or more than 137,000 euros for each of the country's 5.2 million inhabitants.
Fueled from Norway's huge oil and gas revenues, the fund is intended to pay for future generations in the welfare-state after the country's wells run dry.
Over the past four years, the fund has divested from 187 companies. Those decisions were made for financial reasons, which increasingly take into account social and environmental activities by the company and their impact on profit.
The fund can also exclude companies for purely ethical reasons when they are seen to be in serious violation of human rights, or are producers of nuclear weapons or tobacco.
Among those excluded have been some of the world's biggest corporations such as Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Rio Tinto, Philip Morris and British American Tobacco.
The fund invests in a total of more than 9,000 companies and is considered a trailblazer in applying ethical considerations to investments.
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|