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Maryland drops Shell holdings over Iran ties


By Doug Halonen December 17, 2009, 2:58 PM ET

Maryland State Retirement and Pension System, Baltimore, divested more than 1 million shares of common stock valued at over $38.3 million and $3.5 million in bonds of Royal Dutch Shell and its affiliates because the company does business in Iran, the $31.8 billion system announced today.

The action is the result of a state law enacted last year that requires the system to consider divesting investments in companies that do business in Iran or Sudan and have no plans to cut those operations.

“The board of trustees of the retirement system has taken action to comply with state law,” Nancy K. Kopp, Maryland state treasurer and chairman of the system’s board, said in a news release. “In accordance with the statute, the board of trustees will continue to monitor and evaluate all remaining investments in companies doing business in Iran and Sudan.”

Kirsten Smart, a Royal Dutch Shell spokeswoman, declined comment.

Contact Doug Halonen at [email protected]

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