The QBE Board has today confirmed at its AGM that despite information provided on protecting World Heritage in voting advice to shareholders in March, the company has no World Heritage policy, nor has any plans to implement such a policy.
It comes as a resolution requiring the company to develop a world heritage policy was voted on by shareholders. QBE’s peak body, the Insurance Council of Australia, continues to tirelessly advocate for the approval of raising the Warragamba Dam wall which would destroy 65 kilometres of wild rivers and streams within the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area.
In their voting advice circulated to shareholders in March, the QBE Board said: “QBE is supportive of the guide… [Protecting our World Heritage, Insuring a Sustainable Future]” that was written by the United Nations Environment Program Finance Initiative, UNESCO and the World Wildlife Fund. The voting advice can be found here.
Harry Burkitt, from the Colong Foundation’s GIVE A DAM campaign and a QBE shareholder said: “Any reasonable reading of the board’s March voting advice would have shareholders believe QBE already has a World Heritage policy or is actively implementing one.
“Under questioning from shareholders today, the Chairman of the Board confirmed QBE did not in fact have any commitments or policies on World Heritage, nor has any timeframe for implementing such commitments.
“Meanwhile QBE’s peak body, the Insurance Council of Australia, continues to publicly advocate on QBE’s behalf for the destruction of the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area and its ancient Aboriginal culture.
“The pressure on the Insurance Council of Australia and its members, like QBE, will grow as the threat to the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area increases.”