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11 Apr 2022

Norway: National Contact Point to consider OECD complaint against Aker BP & Aker ASA over Lundin Energy merger

In March 2022, a group of over twenty organisations, including Swedwatch, Amnesty International Sweden and Norway, Act Church of Sweden and PAX, submitted a letter to Norwegian oil exploration and development company Aker BP, and its holding company Aker ASA, urging them to alter the terms of the acquisition of Lundin Energy. The letter cites potential liabilities arising from Lundin Energy's alleged links to human rights violations that took place in what was then Sudan between 1997 and 2003, including forced displacements of communities and war crimes. The signatory organisations therefore claim that the terms of the acquisition do not comply with international human rights standards, and that this might potentially impact the right to remedy of victims.

Business & Human Rights Resource Centre invited Aker BP and Aker ASA to comment on the allegations. Aker BP responded. Aker ASA referred us to the statement provided by Aker BP, and said it had the same view on this case and stands behind Aker BP's statement.

The statement is available below.

In May 2021, a group of South Sudanese and European civil society organizations filed a complaint with the Norwegian National Contact Point for allegedly failing to comply with the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. On 27 February 2023, the National Contact point admitted the complaint. It will now invite the parties for a dialogue and mediation process to resolve whether the two companies conducted adequate human rights due diligence in connection with the merger. The companies' response to the complaint is available here.

Company Responses

Aker BP View Response