At the end of November, Etica Funds landed in New York, at the UN headquarters for the second Meeting of States Parties to the TPNW.
Between 27 November and 1 December, our member Etica Funds attended the second Meeting of States Parties to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) at the United Nations headquarters in New York. The TPNW is the first international agreement to ban a broad range of activities associated with nuclear weapons, including their possession, use, threatened use, development, testing and stockpiling.
At the first Meeting of States Parties last year, Etica Funds presented an Investor Statement drafted jointly with the NGO International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), the winner of the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize. At this year’s event, Etica Funds and ICAN renewed their commitment to nuclear disarmament through an updated Statement that contains enhanced guidelines for states and a new specific commitment for the signatory financial institutions.
The Investor Statement
By calling for broad support from asset managers and financial institutions, Etica Funds intends the Statement to act as a signal to companies, policymakers and other stakeholders of the basic expectations of investors in relation to the entry into force of the Treaty. The statement
- encourages countries to sign the Treaty,
- urges States Parties to require state-owned enterprises, including central banks and sovereign wealth funds, align with TPNW prohibitions,
- encourages States Parties to extend treaty obligations to non-state actors within their jurisdictions, including private sector financial institutions,
- outlines a commitment for signatory investors not to finance or invest in companies involved in the production of nuclear weapons, prioritising the health of communities, climate and democratic institutions over nuclear weapon industry profits.
More than 110 international financial institutions representing over one trillion dollars in assets under management have already signed the Statement. Among them, Shareholders for Change as well as the SfC members Alternative Bank Schweiz, Bank für Kirche und Caritas eG, Ethius Invest Switzerland, Fondazione Finanza Etica, Forma Futura.
Susi Snyder, Programme Coordinator of ICAN, said: “ICAN welcomes the leadership of Etica Funds in promoting efforts to end nuclear weapons activities. Since the nuclear ban treaty came into effect, companies have started to quit the nuclear weapons business because they are feeling the pressure from the financial sector that is avoiding investment in companies associated with the harmful and morally objectionable production of these weapons of mass destruction”.
The Investor Statement is open to be signed.