3 Nov 2006

Calls for NZ Super Fund to dump investment in Freeport due to abuses in Papua

12:56 pm on 3 November 2006

The Indonesia Human Rights Committee or IHRC has called on the New Zealand Super Fund to stop investing in US mining giant Freeport McMoRan.

According to the Super Fund's recent Equity Portfolio it had investments worth about 650,000 US dollars in Freeport which runs a massive copper and gold mine in Indonesia's Papua province.

The New Zealand-based IHRC says Freeport has a shocking record of human rights and environmental abuse in Papua and that the New Zealand government shouldn't be investing taxpayer money in such companies.

IHRC's Cameron Walker says that every day Freeport's Grasberg mine dumps as much as 700,000 tonnes of mining waste into local rivers, destroying the environment that indigenous Papuans rely on for survival and displacing people from villages

And he says Freeport has long provided the Indonesian Military, which he accuses of killing hundreds of thousands of innocent Papuans, with large amounts of money for 'security'.

Mr Walker says New Zealand should follow the example of Norway in dumping all Super Fund shares in Freeport.