Research complied by Sudan Divestment UK has revealed a significant number of companies listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) with close links to the Government of Sudan.
Despite widespread attention and condemnation of Khartoum's role in the conflict in Darfur, in which at least 400,000 people are believed to have been killed in a bloody conflict stretching back to 2003, the UK continues to have a close financial involvement with Khartoum.
Hamish Falconer, Director of Sudan Divestment UK (SDUK), has condemned the failure of these British-traded companies to adopt a more responsible approach in Sudan. He said: "Its time to be serious about Darfur. A state which continues to flout international law and international condemnation to commit atrocities on its own people should not be benefiting from UK investment. Companies with close links to Khartoum and its ability to wage genocide, must ensure that they are part of the movement for peace in Darfur, rather than serving as insulation for Khartoum against the will of the international community."
Foreign investment from many of the companies named by Sudan Divestment UK has contributed substantially to Sudan's revenue from oil production. World Bank figures and reports from within Sudan indicate that in recent years as much as 60% of this oil revenue has been funnelled into military expenditure, arming militias and maintaining and expanding the air force which has been used to deadly effect in Darfur.
Many British investors, particularly those whose money is invested in tracker funds, are unaware of which specific companies their funds have invested in. Now that those companies which are helping to fund the genocide have been identified, SDUK believes that investors at all levels have a greater ability to make informed investment choices which reflect the real risks involved with close involvement with Sudan, a state increasingly being treated as a pariah by the international community.
Companies targeted by Sudan Divestment UK listed on the London Stock Exchange include Petrochina, Sinopec Corporation, Reliance Industries, Petrofac Alstom and Weir Group.