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Created before Nov 2016
Last update: 2020-11-17 00:00:00 BankTrack
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|Sector||Pulp, Paper and Paperboard Mills|
The Navigator Company, S.A. is a public limited company, with registered offices at Península da Mitrena, Freguesia do Sado, Setúbal. The Navigator Company S.A. is issued in Euronext Lisbon, being a part of its stock index, PSI 20. It is listed as NVG. The company has a controlling shareholder, Semapa, who owns 69,4% of its share capital.
About Navigator Company
Formerly know as The Portucel Soporcel Group the Navigator Company is a Portuguese pulp and paper company, which originally resulted from the 2001 merger of the firms Portucel and Soporcel. Portucel is Europe's largest producer of bleached eucalyptus kraft pulp. It is also one of the five largest European producers of uncoated wood-free paper. The Navigator Company has a production capacity of 1.6 million tonnes of paper and 1.4 million tonnes of pulp yearly, with 1,380 squared kilometres of forest. The company uses eucalyptus as the prime raw material for the production of pulp and fine printing and writing paper. In 2016 the company had a turnover of EUR 1.577 billion.
Why this profile?
The Navigator Company, formerly Portucel, operates the Portucel pulp mill in Mozambique. Investors should not support this project until Portucel has developed satisfactory measures to protect forests and biodiversity, to assure the integrity of water table and hydrological conditions, to implement Free Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) and fully respect customary land rights, address social conflicts, implement full transparency and pursue stakeholder engagement.
Social and human rights impacts
Some of the social impacts related to plantations have been identified in the Environmental Impact Assessment report released by Impacto. The main issues raised by communities were as follows:
- Land that is critical for food security and traditional life has been taken from local communities. (The Oakland Institute).
- Consultation meetings between the company and the local communities have not been held in traditional language. As a result the majority of the people was unable to understand most of the meetings. In different cases, possible impacts have not been properly outlined. In some cases, temporary jobs were promised in exchange for land, in others land has been acquired without compensation. Some people have been relocated to fields far away from roads and basic services, such as medical care. Other people have had to rent land at their own expense
- In this environment, already marked by water stress, the expansion of eucalyptus plantations will inevitably affect the surrounding areas bringing a severe decline to local agriculture, and threatening food security
- The Environmental Impact Assessment report for the Zambezia forestry project states that "communities reported elevated concern with regard to their perception of lack of land for the project implementation, occupation of lands without consent and due compensation, lack of clarity in relation to the project and the lack of transparent communication mechanisms between the company and the communities." It identifies the following socio-economic impacts: conflicts in the process of access to land, loss of agricultural areas, risk of malnourishment and malnutrition and loss of ecosystem services for communities. It also lists mitigation measures
- A local chief has forbidden community leaders to voice their concerns regarding the project, while pressure to accept the project has been reported. In some cases, temporary jobs have been promised in exchange of land, in other land has been acquired without compensation. People have been relocated to other fields far away from roads and basic services such as medical care. Others had to rent land at their own expense (Justica Ambiental).
The description of impacts on this page is sourced from the report A Land Grab for Pulp. For more information about these impacts read this report here.
The consultations held with local communities did not comply with international standard of FPIC (Free Prior and Informed Consent) as laid down in the UN Declaration of Indigenous Rights. Community members told Justiça Ámbiental that only one meeting was held, at which none of them had been informed about the project, and in which potential social and environmental impacts of the project were not discussed. In other cases, communities confirmed that there had been a meeting with the company, but the majority (80%) reported that they did not understand most of the meeting, because of the language used.
Portucel should adopt a specific policy on security. Any security company that is contracted should not be implicated in past abuses. Human rights education and a strict non-violence policies should be part of core trainings. For expressions of concerns a grievance mechanism should be in place, about the security arrangements and for reporting any abuses in a confidential way, so as to ensure the security of affected people.
Environmental and climate impacts
The plantation is expected to have adverse impacts such as pollution, soil erosion, loss of biodiversity, increased risks of forest fires, modification of the aesthetic value of the landscape. It will further impact remaining forest ecosystems of miombo woodlands, and possibly fragments of afromontane and eastern African coastal forests. Both the pulp mill and plantations will be located close to the Deforestation Fronts as outlined by WWF. Landscapes will not be protected and natural forests will be converted including 114,000 ha of densely wooded 'sensitive areas' (only 10% of the area will be set-aside, mostly located in areas unsuitable for plantations). Furthermore, the conversion into plantations will displace traditional forest uses, creating more pressure on the remaining fragments of natural forests.
Roads, forest tracks and fire breaks, that come along with the project, will also impact the natural forests. To establish the Zambezia plantations, 1,200 km of forest tracks will be opened, as well as 280 km of perimeter firebreaks of 6 meters in width.
Portucel Soporcel becomes The Navigator Company
Portuguese paper manufacturer Portucel Soporcel has changed its name to The Navigator Company. (source: The Office Times).
The Navigator Company is controlled by Semapa (Portugal), which holds 69% of its shares. The remaining shares of the group are held by a group of institutional shareholders, including Banco Português de Investimento, Commerzbank, Santander, JPMorgan Chase and the Norwegian Government Pension Fund (Thomson EIKON database, viewed in October 2016). The company is also financed by bondholders and bank loans.