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UN treaty must address corporate capture

Guest content
18 May 2016

At a recent gathering in Brazil, an alliance of campaign groups reaffirmed their call for a binding international instrument to address human rights abuses committed by transnational corporations and other business enterprises. 

Rio de Janeiro

The Treaty Alliance has called on civil society organisations (CSOs) everywhere to take action to combat corporate capture. At the recent treaty Alliance gathering in Brazil they particularly called on CSOs to demand that the forthcoming United Nations (UN) binding treaty contains strong provisions that prohibit the interference of corporations in the process of forming and implementing laws and policies, as well as administering justice, at all national and international levels.

The Treaty Alliance also urged CSOs everywhere to safeguard against any potential for corporate capture of discussion at the national, regional and international level on the pathway to establishing the treaty.

The UN ‘intergovernmental working group on transnational corporations and other business enterprises with respect to human rights’ (IGWG) was established by resolution 26/9 at the 26th Session of the UN Human Rights Council in 2014 with a mandate to “elaborate an international legally binding instrument to regulate, in international human rights law, the activities of transnational corporations and other business enterprises”. The IGWG held their first meeting in Geneva in July 2015.

The Treaty Alliance gathered in Rio de Janeiro to share experiences and struggles of affected communities defending their human rights and the environment from corporate-related abuses, as well as discuss strategies in preparation for the next meeting of the UN IGWG between October 24 to 28, 2016. During the gathering those assembled reaffirmed that corporate capture in the process of forming and implementing regulation and policies strongly undermines human rights and protection of the environment.

The treaty poses a unique opportunity to ensure the UN establishes a powerful new generation of international standards that can effectively regulate transnational and other business enterprises, particularly in relation to our collective struggle to resist, at all levels, any corporate capture of our states and international systems.

The Treaty Alliance also reaffirmed its collective commitment to facilitate the participation of affected people and communities in the IGWG meeting in Geneva in October.

Download the statement here.

For more information on the Treaty Alliance see www.treatymovement.com.

Original source: Treaty Alliance