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UK: Comic Relief pulls investments in alcohol firms

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UK charity Comic Relief has said it will stop investing in alcohol companies, following a review of its investments. 

The organisation said yesterday (28 May) that, following an independently-led probe, it will not invest in firms "whose primary business is the manufacture of alcohol products". The review came after BBC's Panorama programme revealed that, between 2007 and 2009, the charity had around GBP300,000 (US$500,000) worth of shares in drinks producers.

The majority of the shares were in Diageo, the BBC reported

It was suggested the investments contradict the charity’s core values. One of Comic Relief’s aims is to “reduce alcohol misuse and minimise alcohol-related harm”. 

The charity said it will also stop investing in tobacco and and arms firms, following the two-month review of its policy. 

Tim Davie, Comic Relief's chair, said: "We now have an investment policy that is firmly in line with the ethos of the charity, at the same time as making sure that the money we raise can go further to change lives both here in the UK and abroad.”

In its 29-year history, Comic Relief has raised around GBP1bn for causes in the UK and abroad. 

Nobody from Diageo was immediately available for comment. 


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