Insurers sue Agent Orange producer

Issue 

The Netherlands-based Royal Philips Electronics NV, one of nearly 40 chemical majors sued by Vietnamese victims of Agent Orange for supplying the defoliant to the US military, is now also being sued by its insurers. The US made extensive use of Agent Orange during the Vietnam War.

Agent Orange contains dioxin, a notorious carcinogen. In addition, it contributes to horrific deformities in newborns and is also the culprit for a cocktail of health nightmares suffered by 3-4 million Vietnamese — including many third-generation victims.

According to a March 5 AFX wire service report, a group of insurance majors such as Winterthur and Axa has filed a claim for around 1 billion euros against Philips for the company's alleged withholding of vital information over the effects of Agent Orange.

The insurers' damages claim states that they would never have insured the company had they known about the claims filed by Agent Orange victims.