REPORT: Controversial weapons - A Framework for European institutional investors
In 2010 Ethix SRI Advisors conducted a major consultation exercise with European institutional investors—in total some 40 investors were involved in the process―and other stakeholders, including leading civil society groups and policy makers. The aims were to (a) develop a common understanding of what constitutes corporate involvement in anti-personnel mines and cluster munitions, and (b) assess whether it is possible to develop a criteria-driven approach to identifying companies involved in controversial weapons.
Based on this consultation, Ethix prepared the report Defining controversial weapons for European institutional investors. The report presents criteria that could be used by investors to assess whether or not a company is involved in controversial weapons, and made a series of proposals on how investors could respond proactively and constructively to controversial weapons legislation in countries such as Belgium and Luxemburg.
The report was presented at an event hosted by the Belgian Asset Managers Association (BEAMA) in May 2011. One of the central conclusions from the BEAMA event was the importance of European investors working together to develop a standardized approach across Europe to the assessment of corporate involvement in controversial weapons.
Ethix will take this research forward in three ways:
- Ethix will integrate the findings into its controversial weapons research, enabling clients to invest in line with the criteria developed.
- Ethix will engage with institutional investors and policy makers across Europe to encourage them to support the framework developed.
- Ethix will engage with companies in the arms sector to ensure that they are aware of the framework and that they understand investors’ concerns about this most important of issues.
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