Halliburton Iran report fell short--NY City official
December 15, 2003
NEW YORK, Dec 15 (Reuters) - New York City Comptroller William Thompson, manager of the city's police and fire department pension funds, on Monday criticized Halliburton Co. for failing to report the "reputational" risks inherent in its operations in Iran.###
Thomson, a watchdog elected official who reviews the city's finances, also said he submitted a renewed shareholder proposal again calling on the company to review those operations.
"If we are trying to eradicate terrorism, we must ensure that companies in our portfolio are not using off-shore subsidiaries to legally evade United States sanctions against terrorist-sponsoring states," said Thompson in a statement.
Thompson on Feb. 10 announced he would submit shareholder proposals to General Electric Co., Halliburton and oil company ConocoPhillips, urging them to exit operations in countries linked to terrorism by the U.S. State Department, such as Iran and Syria.
Under an agreement reached with the comptroller in March, Halliburton promised to review its operations in Iran and submit a report on the reputational and financial risks from doing business there. Thompson at the time withdrew a shareholder proposal urging the company to conduct the review.
Halliburton in February 2000 opened an office in Iran through a Cayman Islands unit, Halliburton Products and Services Ltd. Currently the U.S. government imposes sanctions on Iran that bars U.S. companies from doing business there.
Thompson noted the company submitted an Iran report to the city's pension funds on Oct. 21, but it did not address their concerns about reputational risks from the Iran activities and the potential impact on Halliburton's stock price.
The police and fire pension Funds have about $31.4 million invested in Halliburton. In total the city's five pension funds invested more than $149 million.
A Halliburton spokeswoman was not immediately available for comment.