Norway's Fund Excludes RTL Firms
The sovereign wealth fund of Norway, which is also the world's largest, has excluded Schweitzer-Mauduit International Inc and Huabao International Holdings Ltd from its corporate portfolio due to their involvement with tobacco production.
The Norwegian Government Pension Fund Global divested its interests in both companies because the two companies produce reconstituted tobacco leaf or RTL. In a statement, the two firms were excluded from the US$740 billion portfolio after the Council of Ethics recommended their removal for that specific reason.
It said, "The council underlines that RTL primarily is made from tobacco plant and therefore must be regarded as a tobacco plant. The two companies concerned state in their annual reports and investor presentations that they produce RTL."
The fund considers the ethical rules concerning human rights, some weapons manufacturing, the environmental impact and the use of tobacco when deciding on specific investments. It has already excluded more than fifty firms after the recommendations made by the Ethics Council.