The Tobacco-Free Finance Pledge (TFPP) is an initiative led by Tobacco Free Portfolios (TFP), a global NGO that fights for a tobacco free world by bringing investors to eliminate all of their tobacco assets across the globe. The pledge calls out to all leaders from the private and public authorities, as well as NGOs and international institutions, to join the fight against tobacco.
Today in New York, the event gathers ministers, such as Agnès Buzin, French Minister for Health. As a founding signatory of the pledge, AXA’s Chairman Denis Duverne will take the stand at the UN to explain why AXA decided to go tobacco-free.
Divesting from tobacco was a natural move for AXA as a responsible insurer. Indeed, tobacco products are a major threat to public health: today, they kill 6 million people per year, a figure that is expected to rise to 8 million by 2030, mostly in developing countries. Furthermore, tobacco is a net cost to society and there is no safe level of exposure. This is why we started our tobacco free journey with Dr.Bronwyn King, an Australian oncologist who has dedicated her life and work to fight against tobacco and founder of Tobacco-Free Portfolio. It all started in 2016, AXA being among the first companies from the insurance and financial sector to follow Bronwyn’s lead. We decided to divest our tobacco industry assets, valued at approximately 1.8 billion euros.
As a health insurer, we see every day the impact of smoking on people’s health and wellbeing. At AXA, we want to help people to live in good health and contribute positively to society. In 2016 we were the first global insurer and investor to cease investing in and insuring tobacco, with the strong conviction that only a collective action can bring about change. This is why I am very proud to see today the strength of this collective Pledge.
Today, the pledge is launched with over 100 Founding Signatories and Supporters. They include financial institutions from around the world collectively representing trillions of dollars of capital, including assets under management of over USD 6.2 trillion, corporate loan books of over USD 1.8 trillion and insurance premiums of USD 179 billion.
By co-sponsoring and signing this pledge, we continue to lead by example. We want to encourage other companies and institutions to join the movement and go for a tobacco-free future.
About the Tobacco Free Finance Pledge
The Tobacco Free Finance Pledge is an initiative founded by Tobacco Free Portfolios and developed in collaboration with UNEP FI, PSI, PRI, AXA, BNP Paribas, Natixis and AMP Capital.
Currently, The Pledge has 60 Founding Signatories and 28 Supporters. They represent USD $6.07 trillion.