Europe’s five largest pension funds have €7.5 billion invested in companies with business activities in and around illegal settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories. This is at odds with United Nations guidelines, clear warnings from 18 European countries, and undermines the two-state solution, experts warn.
Norway’s finance ministry has excluded Shikun & Binui from the Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG), the largest pension fund in Europe, over its construction of illegal Israeli colonies in East Jerusalem. Analysts have described the company as Israel’s largest real estate business.
The Norwegian government has previously divested from Israeli military company Elbit, as well as Africa Israel Investments and Danya Cebus, two other
Norwegian retail chain VITA made public on Friday their decision to stop all sales of products originating from settlements in occupied Palestine. VITA will therefore stop selling products from the cosmetics brand Ahava. VITA has been the main retailer of Ahava products in Norway, and this decision will be a serious blow to the sales of Ahava products in Norway.
The principled decision by VITA not to buy products from Israeli settlements in the West Bank is based on a position of not wanting to contribute to violations of international law.