Controversial sectors

In 2008 Intesa Sanpaolo contributed, as a minority position, in the financing granted by a consortium of international banks to the Indian company Vedanta Resources, one of the largest mining companies listed on the London Stock Exchange. In September 2009, the Bank, together with other financial institutions that provided credit to the Indian company, was invited to attend a meeting in London organised by a large delegation of Non-Governmental Organisations and some members of the community of the Indian region of Orissa, where Vedanta carries out mining activities. During this meeting, the NGOs reported alleged breaches of regional Indian environmental laws and breaches of the rights of the local population to live in their territories of origin. Intesa Sanpaolo, while participating with a minority stake in the financing and therefore being in a position of lesser power to require the company to take measures to mitigate the social and environmental impacts, addressed its serious concerns regarding the alleged breaches to the principles expressed Vedanta/Sterlitein Intesa Sanpaolo’s Code of Ethics to Vedanta, through the leader Bank.
Vedanta, in an official communication addressed to us, decided to respond to objections raised against the company by providing a detailed analysis of events and circumstances which, according to the company, confirm the correctness of its actions, especially given the results of an extensive analysis on the environmental impacts of their operations conducted at the company’s request by an independent company specialist in the field. At the time of printing of this Social Report, Intesa Sanpaolo has already achieved an initial, important result, namely to engage Vedanta in discussion regarding the accusations brought against it by the NGOs. Furthermore, Intesa Sanpaolo has effectively and proactively asked the company to informally shoulder the obligations of managing the environmental and social impacts arising from the interaction with all its stakeholders. Despite these encouraging results, Intesa Sanpaolo remains concerned on this issue due to the number and the seriousness of the allegations against Vedanta and, according to the principles of its Code of Ethics, continues to closely monitor the developments on the matter.