30/04/2015 - 12:02

Sandfire drops ‘social harm’ case

30/04/2015 - 12:02

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Sandfire Resources has dropped Federal Court proceedings against the research body at the centre of the Australian National University’s controversial divestment action late last year, following an admission the researchers failed to meet their own standards.

Sandfire drops ‘social harm’ case
Sandfire Resources managing director Karl Simich

Sandfire Resources has dropped Federal Court proceedings against the research body at the centre of the Australian National University’s controversial divestment action late last year, following an admission the researchers failed to meet their own standards.

Sandfire initially criticised ANU’s decision in October 2014 to divest from seven companies, including Sandfire, in particular over statements the companies the university divested from caused “social harm”.

The copper producer said the ANU’s decision to divest of Sandfire because it allegedly did not meet environmental, social and governance standards was based on information provided by the Centre for Australian Ethical Research that had errors and deficiencies.

CAER announced today that it had not met its stated standards to adequately provide Sandfire with the research it then provided ANU, meaning Sandfire was not able to access the information or provide further information for analysis.

Sandfire has claimed CAER’s substandard, incomplete and out-of-date research provided to ANU, without checking it with Sandfire first, caused it damage.

In a statement released today, Sandfire said it was now satisfied a fair profile of the company could be appropriately assessed, and as such it was cancelling its Federal Court proceedings against CAER.

Managing director Karl Simich said he felt compelled to strongly defend Sandfire’s environmental, social and governance standards and he was pleased CAER’s significant shortcomings had been publically acknowledged.

“As I said at the outset, having the public record corrected is an important matter of principle for us,” he said in a statement.

“Sandfire respects the right of any organisation to buy and sell shares as it sees fit, however we expect these decisions be informed by up-to-date and accurate information.”

 

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