In anticipation of the Future Fund’s appearance at estimates, the ACTU joined with an alliance of aid and human rights groups to write to the chair of the Future Fund, Peter Costello, to express their alarm at the revelations that the Future Fund holds almost $158 million in 14 publicly owned companies with links to Myanmar’s military, including an arms manufacturer that has sold fighter jets and other weapons to the junta.

“Any Future Fund investments in companies supplying arms to, or in partnership with, the Myanmar military are fuelling the very human rights abuses that are causing the dire humanitarian situation in Myanmar necessitating the provision of humanitarian and development aid to mitigate the impacts of those abuses,” the group said.

“It undermines the Australian government’s support for a return to peace and democracy in Myanmar, its own humanitarian and development support and its support for ASEAN’s five-point consensus and an end to the violence unleashed by the military.”