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Australian Retirement Trust divests Russian holdings

Media release - 3 March 2022

The following statement can be attributed to Australian Retirement Trust’s Chief Investment Officer Ian Patrick:

“Australian Retirement Trust has instructed its investment managers earlier this week to sell any remaining debt and equity investments and not to make any new investments in either Russia or Belarus, which has now entered the conflict alongside Russia. In doing so, investment managers have been instructed to ensure adherence to all legal requirements imposed by Australian law and other relevant sanctions regimes.

In some cases, this may prove challenging, given that some key markets remain closed or difficult to access.

We cannot rule out having some minimal exposure despite the best endeavours of our managers; nor can we rule out the likelihood that some of the companies Australian Retirement Trust invests in may have some exposure to assets in the affected countries. However, we certainly expect those companies to manage their businesses in accordance with all relevant sanctions and applicable laws.

Even so, the portfolios’ exposures were very limited prior to the onset of the crisis. For example, Russian shares accounted for less than 0.2 per cent of the Australian Retirement Trust Super Savings account assets. Our debt exposure was even smaller, at less than 0.1 per cent. 

In Australian Retirement Trust’s QSuper account assets there was no exposure to shares or bonds in Russia and very limited exposure to the surrounding region, and that remains the case.”