Press release | Date: 2014-12-18 | Ministry of Finance| No: 57/2014
Today, the Ministry of Finance has issued new guidelines for observation and exclusion from the Fund. Some amendments have also been made in the mandate given to Norges Bank on the management of the Fund. The changes come into effect 1 January 2015.
- The changes in the governing documents are a result of a long-term effort to strengthen the work on responsible investment management in the Fund. Emphasis is put on facilitating better interaction between active ownership and the exclusion mechanism, says Minister of Finance Siv Jensen.
The Norwegian Parliament, Stortinget, has said that, from 1 January 2015, Norges Bank shall be the decision-making authority in matters concerning observation and exclusion of companies from the Fund, instead of the Ministry of Finance. The Council on Ethics will, accordingly, give its advices to Norges Bank. The Council on Ethics shall be appointed by the Ministry of Finance after receiving recommendations from Norges Bank.
The ethical criteria for which companies the Fund may not be invested in are unchanged and these criteria will continue to be determined by political authorities.
The Ministry of Finance has appointed the following members to the Council on Ethics, where the appointments are in accordance with the recommendations received from Norges Bank:
- Johan H. Andresen (Chair until 31 May 2019)
- Hans Christian Bugge (Vice Chair until 31 May 2017)
- Cecilie Hellestveit (Member until 31 May 2019)
- Arthur Sletteberg (Member until 31 May 2017)
- Guro Slettemark (Member until 31 May 2017)
- I would like to thank the current Council on Ethics for their important efforts and wish the new Council good luck in their work. The composition of the new Council ensures that the Council on Ethics will continue to have the appropriate and broad expertise to carry out their assignment in a good way, says Minister of Finance Siv Jensen.
The changes are a result of a process that has been ongoing since January 2013. The Strategy Council’s report from November 2013 gave several advices on how to strengthen the work on responsible investments. After a public consultation process, the Ministry presented its proposal in the annual Report to the Storting on the management of the Fund in April this year. The changes presented here follows up on the Storting’s deliberations of this annual Report.