Investors urge Chevron to refrain from doing business with abusive govts. amid persecution of Rohingya in Myanmar

We invited Chevron to respond to the shareholder resolution and press release; its response is below.

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Article
19 October 2017

Shareholder activists set to speak with Chevron regarding Rohingya situation

Author: Ross Kerber & Ernest Scheyder, Reuters

Shareholder activists will speak with Chevron Corp next week to request the energy giant use its influence with the government of Myanmar to press for a resolution of ethnic violence that has led to a refugee crisis...Azzad Asset Management [plan] to discuss a letter they sent that...asked the company to consider cutting ties with “governments complicit in genocide". Chevron...does business in Myanmar through a subsidiary, Unocal Myanmar Offshore Co Ltd. It has projects that include a minority interest in natural gas production and a pipeline... Chevron...said “Chevron conducts our business in a responsible manner, respecting the law and universal human rights to benefit the communities where we work, including Myanmar”...confirming that the company would speak to the investors. More than 536,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled Myanmar since Aug. 25, when coordinated Rohingya insurgent attacks sparked a ferocious military response...Azzad...was “growing increasingly concerned over the lack of a constructive response from Chevron” on its requests since the letter was sent, in August. In addition to Azzad, an Islamic finance firm, the other lead filer... the Ursuline Sisters of Tildonk...International Campaign for the Rohingya...planned to send similar letters to other companies doing business in Myanmar, signed by shareholders in those companies.

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Company response
10 January 2017

Chevron response

Author: Chevron

Chevron plans to respond to all shareholder resolutions through our normal Proxy process. The Proxy will be published in the next month. Meanwhile, Chevron’s Myanmar State Department report is the most recent source of information covering our social performance work in Myanmar for our offshore block for which seismic exploration was conducted in 2015. 

Article
16 December 2016

Investors Target Chevron for Doing Business in Burma

Author: Robert Kropp, SocialFunds.com (USA)

...[The current Myanmar Government has continued] the previous regime's practice of violence and other forms of repression against the Muslim Rohingya minority, whose people are not recognised as citizens and are denied voting rights... [The] recently formed International Campaign for the Rohingya (ICR) [has launched a]...No Business With Genocide campaign...to “put effective pressure on corporations in key sectors – principally oil, gas, timber, mining and banking – to stop supporting regimes complicit in genocide and crimes against humanity.” [The Campaign's executive director Simon] Billenness helped arrange the first shareowner resolution addressing the plight of the Rohingya people, which was co-filed by Azzad Asset Management and the Ursuline Sisters of Tildonk. The resolution requests that Chevron “halt its relationship with the government of Burma (Myanmar) until that country ends the state-sanctioned violence against its Rohingya minority.” The resolution will be voted on by shareowners at Chevron's Annual General Meeting in May, 2017. 

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Article
12 December 2016

First shareholder resolution on Rohingya presses Chevron on business ties to Burma government

Author: Azzad Asset Management, International Campaign for the Rohingya, Ursuline Sisters of Tildonk (USA)

Resolution asks oil giant to halt business with regimes engaged in genocide or crimes against humanity.

A socially responsible investment firm and a Roman Catholic international religious congregation announced today that they have filed the first shareholder resolution focused on the persecuted Burmese Rohingya minority, calling on...Chevron Corporation to evaluate a policy of not doing business with governments that are believed to be engaged in genocide or crimes against humanity. Filed by Azzad Asset Management and the Ursuline Sisters of Tildonk, U.S. Province, the proposed resolution urges the oil giant to halt its relationship with the government of Burma (Myanmar) until that country ends the state-sanctioned violence against its Rohingya minority. It is the first time a shareholder resolution focused on the Rohingya has been submitted to a U.S. corporation.  The proposal...is expected to be voted on by stockholders at the Chevron annual meeting in May 2017.... Through its subsidiary Unocal Myanmar Offshore Co., Ltd., Chevron entered into a production sharing contract (PSC) with the state-owned Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE) in 2015 to explore for oil and gas in the Rakhine Basin [where many Rohingya live]...

Azzad CEO Bashar Qasem said: "As a socially responsible asset manager, we seek social as well as financial returns on our clients' investments. By conducting business with a government that is accused of committing grave human rights abuses, Chevron has assumed significant legal, moral, reputational, and political liabilities stemming from Burma's repression and violence against the Rohingya people."..

Simon Billenness, executive director of the International Campaign for the Rohingya, stated: "Corporations such as Chevron that choose to do business with the Burmese government run the risk of supporting a regime that, through its repression and violence against the Rohingya, engages in ethnic cleansing and possibly even genocide. History will not be kind to corporations complicit in such crimes against humanity."

 

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