Pension fund chiefs have attacked the Government over its ethical investment policy, claiming its may encourage animal rights extremists to attack pension fund managers.
The National Association of Pension Funds sparked the row by claiming the Government was creating a climate for potential extremism by forcing pension funds to reveal the extent to which social, environmental or ethical considerations are taken into account when investing.
NAPF director general Ann Robinson accused the Government of giving encouragement to animal rights activists such as those who attacked fund manager Phillips & Drew recently.
Phillips & Drew revealed it has received “unpleasant pressure” from activists which have included bomb and death threats.
It also admitted that it had dumped an 11 per cent holding in a research company Huntingdon Life Sciences which has been accused of cruelty to animals, following protests from activists.
The association believes the regulations could become the catalyst for further extremists opposed to investing in anything from oil companies to tobacco firms.
NAPF press officer Sheila Longley says: “We have warned the Government that some activity may take place and just hope the Phillips & Drew situation is an isolated case.
“There is no way we want to discourage our members from signing up to the Government regulations and we will make sure they are carried out. But we will be keeping an eye on extremists activities and hope this is the last of it.”