Thursday 3 September 2009

Norway: divest in Israel, invest in Turkmenistan

While it is unethical to invest in Israeli compay Elbit Systems, it is ethical for State-owned Norwegian oil company StatoilHydro to invest in Turkmenistan (Norway suspects Israel unethical, invests in Turkmenistan) Nigeria, Angola and Azerbaijan. And feel good about it.

Source: article in TJP

Norway's finance minister on Thursday announced that the Israeli company Elbit Systems Ltd. has been dropped from the Nordic country's pension fund due to ethical concerns.

A major optics and electronics manufacturer,the company supplies surveillance equipment used to monitor the security barrier between Israel and the West Bank.

"We do not wish to fund companies that so directly contribute to violations of international humanitarian law," said Finance Minister Kristin Halvorsen [see below]. She said the shares were sold secretly ahead of the announcement.

Halvorsen said the security barrier has unacceptably restricted the movements of Palestinians on the West Bank, so that an investment in any company involved in the project causes "unacceptable risk of contribution to particularly serious violations of fundamental ethical norms." [...]

Since 2004, a national Council of Ethics has routinely reviewed investments by the fund, and periodically recommends dropping some shares based on a range of ethical issues, including human rights, labor rights, environmental issues and production of nuclear weapons and cluster bombs.

- Norwegian Minister of Finance marches with thugs
- Kristin Halvorsen and the demonstration on January 8th
- Minister of Finance sticks to her guns
- Norway: Israel is unethical but investments in Turkmenistan are fine
- Behind the Humanitarian Mask: Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Iceland

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