Swedish AP2 divests from tobacco and nuclear weapons
Written by Sunniva Kolostyak
The Swedish Second AP-fund (AP2) has sold off its assets in about 60 tobacco companies and companies involved in the maintenance and modernisation of nuclear weapons systems.
The SEK 334.8bn (€31.5bn) fund said in a statement that the sale is the next step in a sustainability programme, as it since its inception has worked on integrating sustainability into its portfolio management.
Furthermore, the programme is enabling the fund to reduce risks and generate improved opportunities for higher returns, and thereby making a positive contribution to the Swedish income pension system and for pensioners.
On 1 January 2019, new investment rules regarding sustainable asset management for all the AP Funds came into effect, stating that the funds have to manage their assets responsibly through investments and ownership.
AP2 said it has analysed the conventions that are aimed at restricting the use, scope or distribution of certain products or businesses over time and found that regulations need to go further, based on the underlying purpose of the international conventions.
By excluding tobacco, AP2 aligns itself with the intention of the convention on tobacco control: “A sharp reduction in tobacco consumption and the harmful effects of tobacco smoke,” AP2 said.
The divestments from companies involved in the maintenance and modernisation of nuclear weapons systems are aligned with the intention of long-term disarmament of nuclear weapons in all countries as expressed in the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
Previously, AP2 has previously divested from those nuclear weapons companies that operate in countries where it is illegal, according to the NPT.