IGWG Session 3 – ESCR-Net oral statement on behalf of CAWG

Publish Date: 
Monday, October 23, 2017

Third session of the open-ended intergovernmental working group on the elaboration of a binding treaty on transnational corporations and other business enterprises with respect to human rights.

ESCR-Net oral statement on behalf of the Corporate Accountabiliyy Working Group (CAWG)

Thank you Mr Chair,

I speak on behalf of ESCR-Net’s Corporate Accountability Working Group, made up of over 70 organisations from around the world. We congratulate the chair on his election.

We welcome the release of the draft elements and affirm our continuing support to the intergovernmental working group in its significant and necessary role in developing the proposed treaty, in a way that is reflective of current global conditions and the lived experiences of people around the world. We welcome the recognition of the primacy of human rights as a basis to move forward collectively and constructively, grounded in connection to each other at the local, national and global levels, and within the wider context of ensuring sustainable practices and connection to our natural world.

We support the chair and States and civil society in focusing on ways in which the draft elements can continue to be strengthened during this week and following this session. Some of the key issues that we will be raising this week for further discussion include, firstly, incorporating a gender responsive perspective throughout the corporate accountability framework. Secondly, establishing a clear framework to address the conflict of interest that often exists between corporate profit motivations and human rights and environmental standards and thirdly, the need for positive measures with respect to human rights defenders to not only protect them when they are targeted, but also creating an enabling environment to support their essential work in preventing corporate abuses.

We encourage all states to work constructively this week on the content of the draft elements, to support the chair to be in a position at the conclusion of this session to move forward in developing a draft text of the treaty for further negotiation in 2018.

Thank you.

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