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funds sell $200million in PetroChina shares over Sudan


The largest mutual fund manager in the US has become the latest organization to sell holdings in PetroChina over the the firm’s presence in Sudan, where human rights abuses have drawn world attention.

Funds managed by American Funds have sold almost all of their $190million (£123m, €140m) shares in the company, which has been accused of collusion with the government in Sudan, where a genocide has killed around 300,000 people in the Darfur region.

The move follows the total divestment by the US teachers’ pension fund TIAA-CREF, which sold $60million-worth of shares in a number of oil companies operating in Sudan, including PetroChina.

It follows a shareholder meeting last year in which the campaign group Investors Against Genocide asked American Funds to withdraw from genocide-related investments.

Eric Cohen, chairperson of Investors Against Genocide said he ‘trust[ed] that, going forward, American Funds will promptly apply their human rights policy to avoid other cases of investments that substantially contribute to genocide’.

The group is also urging investors to divest from three other oil firms: Sinopec (China), ONGC (India), and Petronas (Malaysia).

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