Rio Tinto is reportedly set to face down a shareholder revolt at the mining giant’s annual general meeting this Thursday after the firm raised it’s chief executive’s pay by 70 per cent.
Danish chief executive, Jakob Stausholm, took home £4.8 million in 2022, up from £2.8 million in 2021.
According to a report in the Mail on Sunday, investors have been urged by the proxy advisory group Pirc to vote against the pay scheme, which sets the CEO’s salary based on the company’s performance.
The group has further called on shareholders to pull support from the FTSE 100 firm’s pay committee chair, Sam Laidlaw, and sustainability chief Megan Clark at the AGM.
Clark, who is up for re-election, has been at the centre of a scandal over Rio Tinto’s combined venture with BHP to build a super-size copper mine on sacred Native American land in Arizona.
A bill banning Rio Tinto from working on the Apache site was introduced by US congressman Raul Grijalva this month.
The proposed mine would be built by Resolution Copper, a company Rio Tinto and BHP jointly own, and contradicts chairman Simon Thompson’s previous pledge that the company would “never again” destroy religious land, after it blew up an Aboriginal site in Western Australia in 2020.
Former CEO Jean Sebastien-Jacques, who was ousted in 2021 by investors when he took home a £7.2 million bonus, was badly tainted by public backlash in response to the 46,000-year-old sacred sites being decimated.
Rio Tinto declined to comment, while Pirc Group were not immediately available to comment.