To Press Releases listVevey,August 28, 2000
As previously announced, Nestlé will, in an act of solidarity, contribute to the settlement negotiated by the Swiss banks in order to resolve all outstanding claims dating from World War II.
The settlement also covers, amongst other issues, the question of forced labor. The Company will make available CHF 25 million toward the total settlement amount of USD 1.25 billion approved by US Judge Edward E. Korman. Nestlé expects this contribution to cover all possible legal claims that might be raised against it both in Switzerland and abroad. It is either certain or it may be assumed that some corporations of the Nestlé Group that were active in countries controlled by the National-Socialist regime employed forced laborers.
In many instances, Nestlé was not the owner of these corporations at that time; where it was, it was often not possible to exercise effective control over these companies. As the legal successor of such corporations, Nestlé nevertheless accepts its moral responsibility to help alleviate human suffering, all the more so since this injustice was committed in the Company's domain.
Moreover, Nestlé companies operating in Germany and Austria will voluntarily and in solidarity with their host countries contribute to the respective national foundations. As a Swiss-based corporation with a broad international presence, Nestlé welcomes the fact that the issue of indemnifying forced laborers now can be resolved definitively. The Company expresses its sympathy to the people concerned and hopes that the means now available can be used without delay and as intended to assist the often aged victims of forced labor.