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Norway excludes Adani Ports from govt pension fund over ethical concerns



Karan Adani, Managing Director of Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Limited

Norges Bank, Norway’s central bank, on Wednesday announced it was excluding three companies from its government pension fund due to ethical considerations. The companies are India’s Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone (APSEZ), United States-based L3Harris Technologies, and China’s Weichai Power.

Adani Ports, part of billionaire Gautam Adani‘s conglomerate, was excluded due to the fund’s concerns about its potential contribution to “serious violations of individuals’ rights in situations of war or conflict”.

“The company has been under observation since March 2022, but that observation now ends given the exclusion decision,” said Norges Bank.

Adani Ports is India’s largest private port operator and an end-to-end logistics provider, with 13 ports and terminals that represent 24 per cent of the country’s port capacity.

Norges Bank’s decision is based on a recommendation from the Council on Ethics of November 21, 2023.

Exclusion of L3Harris and Weichai Power

Weichai Power, a transport equipment manufacturer, was excluded over worries that its activities could support the sale of weapons to states involved in armed conflicts, violating international rules.

Defence contractor L3Harris was excluded from the fund because of its involvement in the development and production of components for nuclear weapons.

Norges Bank’s statement did not disclose the fund’s stake in the three companies.

Norway’s Government Pension Fund Global

The Government Pension Fund Global was established to manage Norway’s oil wealth, providing financial stability and long-term savings for current and future generations. Originating from the discovery of oil in the North Sea in 1969, the fund was created to manage oil revenues responsibly and avoid economic imbalances.

In 1990, legislation was passed to establish the fund, with the first deposits made in 1996. As one of the world’s largest sovereign wealth funds, it exclusively invests abroad to safeguard the Norwegian economy’s future. With holdings in approximately 9,000 companies globally, the fund owns almost 1.5 per cent of all shares in the world’s listed companies.

First Published: May 16 2024 | 12:38 PM IST

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