2013-08-29 GegenStroemung / CounterCurrent
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The Belo Monte project (planned to be the world's third largest dam) is widely believed to be a national project owned, constructed and financed by Brazilian consortia. More detailed analysis shows however, that roughly 10 % are indirectly owned by foreign - including European - corporations. Given the dam's tremendous environmental and human rights impacts, this case shows once more the lack of effective policies of these corporations to prevent their capital from getting involved in human rights abuses and environmental destruction.
Foreign shareholders include JP Morgan Chase (4.3 %), Iberdrola (3.9 %) and Skagen KT Verdipapirfond, Black Rock, Mitsui, Vanguard Group, Société Générale as well as Allianz with minor participations. While the individual shares may be small, they nonetheless point at the urgent need for implementing dam and human rights policies. And the Belo Monte project, in the eyes of its critiques, marks only the beginning of renewed dam building in the Amazon, with the Brazilian government planning up to 60 large dams.