6 Mar 2007

NZ Super Fund continues to engage with Freeport over Papua operations

7:48 pm on 6 March 2007

New Zealand Superannuation Fund says it continues to engage with Freeport McMoran over its operations in Indonesia's Papua province.

The Fund has been gathering information about the US mining company's operations, following concern being raised that its investment with Freeport is at odds with the Super Fund Responsible Invesment policy.

According to the Super Fund's 2006 Equity Portfolio it had investments worth about 650-thousand US dollars in Freeport.

However the Auckland-based Indonesia Human Rights Committee has called on the Super Fund to stop investing taxpayers money in a company with a record of human rights and environmental abuse in Papua.

The Chairman of the Board of the Guardians of New Zealand Superannuation, David May, says they have started to engage with companies identified as having poor practices.

The Fund aims to work with investors like Freeport under the auspices of the UN Principles on Responsible Investment

Mr May says the Fund believes this kind of engagement has the best chance of influencing corporate behaviour.