BC Investment

Wheels of justice turn slowly

The legal processes may be slow but that provides years of opportunity for people devoid of morality and ethics to speculate in stockholdings of the merchants of death.

In the 1990s, the Government of British Columbia began legal action against tobacco manufacturers, seeking recovery of damages and costs arising from wrongful conduct of the tobacco industry, including deceptive promotion of their products. In 2005, the Supreme Court of Canada upheld the right of government to sue the tobacco industry and, almost four years ago, BC partnered with other provinces to “expedite moving these cases to trial.” No hearing dates are scheduled so final resolution of the action is not likely to occur before the 2020s.

One arm of the BC government takes legal action and provides services to smokers trying to stop because, experts know:

Tobacco-related illness is the leading cause of preventable death in British Columbia. Tobacco use causes up to 6,000 deaths in the province each year; killing more people than all other drugs, motor vehicle collisions, murder, suicide and HIV/AIDS combined.

However, while teams of lawyers spend their careers preparing government’s case, another arm of the same government provides financing to the industry that profits by killing and injuring its customers.

Compared to a year earlier, bcIMC has an additional $73 million invested in the world’s tobacco companies. This list is taken from the pension manager’s March 31, 2015 inventory of investments, which was only recently released.

Categories: BC Investment

9 replies »

  1. Are also invested in red meat and processed meats? A whole different set of feces hitting the fan. Also lots of fossil fuel and arms, if I'm not mistaken, highlighting the regressive nature of the investment community, where speculation is the norm and using capital to promote new business and technologies is a side show.


  2. Speaking of slooow…

    We are still waiting for Revenue Canada to rule on the tax implications for the BC Rail 'sale' to CN.

    It's only a BILLION dollars.


  3. Ethical investment of pension funds has been an issue for years. I thought it had been addressed… but I see it hasn't, according to your figures.

    My first comeback, if I were a funds manager, would be “Philip Morris has branched out from cigarette manufacturing” — yet I see their home page proudly states: “We are the largest tobacco company in the United States.”

    Further: “Philip Morris USA agrees with the overwhelming medical and scientific consensus that cigarette smoking is addictive and causes serious diseases in smokers.”



  4. If you accept dead kids in care as just another bad press day and your government deletes government information, to keep it from the public, what is so bad about investing in tobacco. Its all about making money. Who cares how its done. We've the B.C. Lieberals.

    it sure doesn't say much about the voters in B.C. who keep the B.C. Lieberals in office


  5. I thought everyone else had forgotten about that. Are we still indemnifying CN to the tune of whatever that amount is/was at 10% interest, or whatever? I thought Rev. Can. was just waiting for the issue to disappear? Maybe when the 'lease' expires?


  6. I am pleased to say that I didn't buy into their horse-shit, but e.a.f., please advise on how to get them out. There are some three million of us and comparatively few of them. Are there none among us who can offer a solution?


  7. Lawyering is the most common occupation of politicians. No surprise that big winners in any Canadian fight against tobacco companies won't be taxpayers who paid healthcare costs of the dead and dying. It will be the lawyers. Twenty plus years of legal wrangling and actions in all levels off courts to settle matters that have already been litigated in countless jurisdictions? What a waste of public and corporate resources.


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