TIAA-CREF: Tell Chevron - No Business With Genocide

Thasunda Brown Duckett, President and Chief Executive Officer, TIAA-CREF

TIAA-CREF: Tell Chevron - No Business With Genocide

On May 25th, 2022, Chevron will hold its annual shareholder meeting. That day will mark close of voting by Chevron's shareholders on a resolution that highlights the oil company's funding of the Myanmar military and urges it to adopt a policy of not doing business with governments complicit in genocide and/or crimes against humanity.

As a major institutional investor, TIAA-CREF will have the opportunity to vote its shares in Chevron in favor of this resolution. But in 2018, TIAA-CREF actually voted against the same resolution pressing Chevron to shun governments engaged in genocide. Let's make sure that in 2022, TIAA-CREF takes a stand to oppose corporate support for genocidal regimes.

TIAA-CREF has a proud history of creating a sustainable retirement system for teachers and others in academic, government, medical, cultural and other nonprofit fields. It has a strong tradition of incorporating its members values in their investment choices. It is entirely in its practice of social responsibility for TIAA-CREF to take the position that Chevron should not do business with governments complicit in genocide and other mass atrocities.

More importantly, the shareholders introducing the resolution are publicly calling on Chevron not to recognize the military as the government of Myanmar. In a filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the shareholders powerfully urge Chevron to divert into escrow any upcoming payments intended for the Myanmar government instead of giving the money to the military junta.

In its filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the resolution filers state:

The Yadana gas project is governed by contracts between TotalEnergies, Chevron, PTTEP, and the government of Myanmar (through MOGE, itself a government department). Although the military junta has seized control of MOGE’s accounts, it has not been recognized as the legitimate government of Myanmar by the international community and is therefore not a legitimate counterparty to these contracts. It faces competing claims from the National Unity Government – composed of democratically elected leaders of Myanmar – to be the legitimate government and party to the Yadana contracts. The Myanmar government is the legitimate party to the gas contracts. In continuing payments to junta-controlled accounts, Chevron is electing to treat the junta both as a party to their contracts and as the legitimate government.

... Chevron should utilize the international arbitration clauses in its contracts to ... proactively commence arbitration proceedings, requesting that a tribunal decide whether they should treat the military junta, the National Unity Government, or neither as its contractual counterparty. While arbitration proceedings are pending, Chevron should require the gas buyer, PTT, to divert all revenue payments away from the junta into a trust account to be held for the benefit of the government of Myanmar (requesting the tribunal to issue an interim order to this effect).

Click here to read the entire shareholders' proxy memo filing at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Chevron is the largest US investor in Myanmar (Burma) and is in partnership with the Myanmar military junta on an offshore gas field project. On March 21st, 2022, the U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced that the U.S. Administration had formally determined that violence committed against the Rohingya ethnic minority by Myanmar's military amounts to genocide and crimes against humanity.

Corporations, such as Chevron, must stop supporting governments engaged in genocide and/or crimes against humanity. Investors, such as TIAA-CREF, must use their power as shareholders to ensure that none of the corporations, in which they own stock, are complicit in genocide.

For more information:

Check out - and follow - the Facebook page of our key ally in Myanmar, the Blood Money Campaign

Click here to read the shareholder resolution filers proxy memorandum filing at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

"Open letter: Chevron's business operations in Myanmar," 23 March 2021

"How Oil and Gas Majors Bankroll the Myanmar Military Regime," Justice For Myanmar, 8 February 2021

"Total Impact: The Human Rights, Environmental, and Financial Impacts of Total and Chevron’s Yadana Gas Project in Military Ruled Burma (Myanmar)," EarthRights International, September 2009

Learn about TIAA-CREF commitment to its values on its website

To: Thasunda Brown Duckett, President and Chief Executive Officer, TIAA-CREF
From: Alyson Chadwick

I am writing to ask that TIAA-CREF use its power as a shareholder of Chevron to press the company to stop supporting governments engaged in genocide and/or crimes against humanity.

Specifically, I ask TIAA-CREF at Chevron AGM on May 25th, 2022, to vote its shares in favor of item #8, the resolution on on business with conflict-complicit governments.

As a major institutional investor, TIAA-CREF has the power to vote its shares in Chevron in favor of this resolution. But in 2018, TIAA-CREF actually voted against the same resolution pressing Chevron to shun governments engaged in genocide. Please make sure that this year, TIAA-CREF takes a stand to oppose corporate support for genocidal regimes.

TIAA-CREF has a proud history of creating a sustainable retirement system for teachers and others in academic, government, medical, cultural and other nonprofit fields. It has a strong tradition of incorporating its members values in their investment choices. It is entirely in its practice of social responsibility for TIAA-CREF to take the position that Chevron should not do business with governments complicit in genocide and other mass atrocities.

Chevron is the largest US investor in Myanmar (Burma) and is in partnership with the Myanmar military junta on an offshore gas field project. On March 21st, 2022, the U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced that the U.S. Administration had formally determined that violence committed against the Rohingya ethnic minority by Myanmar's military amounts to genocide and crimes against humanity.

Corporations, such as Chevron, must stop supporting governments engaged in genocide and/or crimes against humanity. TIAA-CREF must use its power as a shareholder to ensure that none of the corporations, in which its owns stock, are complicit in genocide.

Please write me back and tell me how TIAA-CREF voted on this resolution to help end corporate support for genocide in Myanmar and throughout the world.