MAC/20: Mines and Communities

Investors barrack Rio Tinto bosses at their annual AGM

Published by MAC on 2003-04-18


Investors barrack Rio Tinto bosses at their annual AGM

The following reports on last week's annual general meeting of Rio Tinto come from the London Guardian and various Australian publications (April 18th & 19th). Although questions and statements about the company's operations in Indonesia, West Papua, Turkey, Bougainville, Jabiluka and elsewhere collectively dominated the meeting -as has been the case for the past two decades - these were barely mentioned in the press.

A brief report in the Daily Telegraph did, however, quote Robert Wilson's comment at the start of the meeting that, while he had "enormously enjoyed" his eight year reign as chair of the world's second biggest mining company, the job had "its plusses and minuses". He added: "I've never been quite sure on which side of the ledger to put these annual general meetings", reflecting the fact that Rio Tinto has suffered more shareholder and community criticism, and for a longer period of time, than any other public company.

Partizans, which coordinated much of the protest at last week's Rio Tinto AGM in London also celebrates its twenty-fifth anniversary this year, making it the longest-existing shareholder and community campaign group anywhere.

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