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Dundee LibDem Finance Convener praises Perth's Support

February 16, 2006 8:00 AM
Man smoking cigarette

Dundee LibDem Finance Convener welcomes Perth's Support on investment decisions

Dundee City Council LibDem Convener of Finance, Cllr Fraser Macpherson, has today strongly welcomed the support of Perth & Kinross Councillors on the issue of ethical investment for local authority pension funds.

Dundee City Councillors have previously expressed their unease at investment in the multi-million pound tobacco industry and the City Council's Superannuation Investment Sub-Committee sought Counsel opinion on the subject. Councillors received legal opinion that, at present, local authority superannuation funds may only take into account financial considerations when making investment decisions.

Speaking today (16th February 2006) on Wave 102 local radio, Cllr Macpherson said, "We, as a sub-committee, have expressed our concern at the current legal position. It rather flies in the face of the Scottish Executive's policy of discouraging smoking and promoting healthy lifestyles.

"As a sub-committee, we resolved to write to both the other constituent authorities in the Tayside Pension Scheme, and also to the other 29 Scottish local authorities, seeking our support for a review of the legal position by Scottish Ministers.

"We received strong cross-party support from Dundee Councillors when the matter was referred to our full Finance Committee and I am very grateful to Perth and Kinross Councillors for putting their weight behind this position."

Cllr Macpherson said that Dundee City Council has sought a Ministerial meeting regarding the issue and is aware of support for its position from other parts of Scotland. He emphasised that the Tayside Superannuation Fund always sought to invest wisely on behalf of all its members and had performed extremely well in recent years.

"However, investing in an ethical manner is a matter we feel strongly about and its good to know councillors in our neighbouring authority in Perth & Kinross are backing our stance," concluded Cllr Macpherson.

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