AFI Group and Danya Cebus re-excluded from the Norwegian Government Pension Fund
The Norwegian Department of Finance have again excluded AFI Group and Danya Cebus from the Oil Fund. This case shows how important it is that a decision to exclude a company, or remove a company from the exclusion list, is a result of a thorough process.
-We are content that the companies are excluded from the investment portfolio again, says General Secretary at Norwegian People’s Aid, Liv Tørres.
Africa Israel Investments Ltd (AFI) and its subsidiary Danya Cebus were excluded from the Oil Fund in 2010 when it became known that the companies were involved in building activities in the illegal settlements Modi'in Illit and Maale Adumim in the West Bank.
Last fall both companies were reincluded after they claimed to the Council on Ethics that they had ceased their building activities in the settlements. However, Danya Cebus is still the main entrepreneur in the C-Jerusalem building project in Gilo, an illegal settlement in East Jerusalem.
–It is important that unconditional trust is not lent to company statements in these situations. Decisions need to be based on a thorough process and contact with organizations and stake-holders with first-hand information. says Tørres. Tørres.
Norwegian People’s Aid and the Norwegian Union of Municipal and General Employees (Fagforbundet) have stood together in demanding that AFI and Danya Cebus are excluded from the Oil Fund.
Stein Guldbrandsen from Fagforbundet hopes the attention surrounding AFI and Danya Cebus’ complicity in human rights violations, may have an effect on the Oil Fund’s investments in other companies that have ties to the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories.
–The Oil Fund is still invested in a number of companies that are complicit in violations of human rights and international law, amongst others Heidelberg Cement, Cemex and G4S, says Guldbrandsen.