NGOs call on 26 banks to divest from APRIL

EoF News / 19 December 2014

EoF News (PEKANBARU) – Two environmental groups sent letters to 26 banks in several countries as attempt “to express their concerns regarding the pulp and paper companies Asia Pacific Resources Limited (APRIL), Toba Pulp Lestari (TPL) and their sister companies under the conglomerate Royal Golden Eagle Group (RGE), due to their involvement in large scale deforestation and social conflicts.

The Environmental Paper Network and Banktrack have sent the letters to the banks asking assurance from them “that they are not currently investing in any of these companies, and that they will not do so until the RGE group ends its illegal and unsustainable environmental and social practices and achieves a performance consistent with the EPN Performance Milestones,” the organizations said.

“Research has demonstrated that these companies are involved in illegalities under Indonesian law, under Chinese banking regulations and under international norms,” the groups said. In fact, APRIL does not even respect its own Sustainable Forest Management Policy, which it adopted on January 28th, 2014. In the past six years, banks have invested at least USD 1.5 billion dollar in APRIL alone. Read the full letter here:

The list of banks that have played a significant role in financing APRIL, and which therefore have received a letter as follows:

ABN Amro - The Netherlands Agricultural Bank of China - China Barclays - United Kingdom BNP Paribas - France Bank of America - United States of America Bank of China - China China CITIC Bank - China China Construction Bank - China China Development Bank - China China Merchants Bank - China Citi Bank - United States of America Credit Suisse - Switzerland Deutsche Bank - Germany Goldman Sachs - United States of America HSBC - United Kingdom Industrial and Commercial Bank China - China JP Morgan Chase - United States of America Mizuho - Japan Morgan Stanley - United States of America MUFG - Japan Ping An Bank - China RBS - United Kingdom Santander - Spain Sumitomo - Japan Wells Fargo - United States of America Wing Lung Bank - Hong Kong