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5 Mär 2018

EarthRights International

Analysis of the Thilawa SEZ Complaints Management Procedure

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Both the process for creating the TCMP and the content therein fall severely short of international good practice. Under the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs), a grievance mechanism should be ‘based on engagement and dialogue.’ The TCMP reflects not just a lack of engagement and dialogue, but an active rejection of both. We are disappointed that the Thilawa SEZ (TSEZ) parties have elected to reject three years’ worth of requests from community members to collaborate on a multi-stakeholder grievance process. Rather, in the face of consistent efforts from the Thilawa community towards meaningful dialogue, the TSEZ parties chose to spend time and money to create a competing complaints procedure... By creating a new, competing mechanism, the stakeholders have not only incurred additional expenses and lost relevant information, but have also caused both confusion and distrust in the community.

...International good practice requires grievance mechanisms to be accessible, predictable, equitable, legitimate, rights-compatible, and transparent. The TCMP meets none of these criteria... Adequate research into good practice was not conducted...[and the TCMP] omits reference to key international good practice indicators and obligations; omits any reference to vulnerable groups; lacks impartiality; and lacks oversight.