Norway's KLP fund divests from 16 cos with West Bank links

Norway's largest pension fund has said it has sold holdings worth $32 million in companies including Motorola and Alstom.

Norway's largest pension fund KLP announced today that it is divesting from 16 companies, which it says are connected to Israeli settlements in the occupied territories. KLP's announcement is being greeted by the BDS movement as a major achievement.

KLP said that it had sold its holdings in the companies, which operate in the technology, construction and banking sectors and that it would no longer invest in them. KLP's holdings in these companies amounted to 275 million Norwegian Kroner ($32 million).

Among the companies from which KLP is withdrawing its investments is Motorola, which KLP says assists in surveillance systems that protect Jewish settlements and borders; Bank Leumi, Bank Hapoalim and other Israeli banks, Bezeq, Cellcom, Partner and other telecoms, which according to KLP operating in the Jewish settlements. Also being divested are companies engaged in construction including French company Alstom as well as Electra, Ashtrom Group, and energy companies Delek Group and Energix.

"In KLP's assessment, there is an unacceptable risk that the excluded companies are contributing to the abuse of human rights in situations of war and conflict through their links with the Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank," the fund said.

Two months ago, the Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund, the world's largest investment fund, which invests the state's take from its oil and gas sales, said that it would stop investing in Shapir Engineering and Industry Ltd. and Mivne Group, both engaged in urban planning and real estate, which were accused of having links to settlement activities.

Published by Globes, Israel business news - - on July 5, 2021

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