Edinburgh University ‘won’t invest in weapons firms’

Edinburgh University says it will not invest in arms firms. Picture: Ian Georgeson
Edinburgh University says it will not invest in arms firms. Picture: Ian Georgeson
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Edinburgh University has vowed that it will never invest in weapons manufacturers.

The university says it will not plough funds into firms involved in weapons such as anti-personnel mines, biological weapons, chemical weapons, cluster weapons, depleted uranium ammunition, nuclear weapons and white phosphorous weapons.

The announcement is the latest pledge to be included in the University’s updated Responsible Investment policy and follows the announcement earlier this year of its new policy on investments in relation to fossil fuels.

The university recently divested from three of the world’s biggest coal and tar sands companies – Shell, RioTinto, and BHP Billiton.

The new commitment was agreed by the University’s governing body, the University Court, last night.

Senior Vice-Principal, Professor Charlie Jeffery said: “This is an important phase in our review and demonstrates the University’s commitment to responsible investment.

“As well as our divestment from these major companies and our ongoing commitment to zero investment in manufacturers of controversial weapons, we will continue to examine the positive case for additional investments in low carbon and renewable technologies.”

Urte Macikene, Vice President Services for the Edinburgh University Students’ Association (EUSA) said: “I’m pleased the university is clarifying its stance against investment in controversial weapons.

“There is always more to be done in pursuit of ethical investment, and I look forward to working closely with the university in taking forwards a review of the ethical investment policy as a whole. I hope we will be able to identify further ways to make our investment portfolio more ethical and sustainable.”