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30 Apr 2008


Bad Business: Why Companies Shouldn't Trade with Abusive Regimes

Is selling police equipment to a notoriously brutal government tantamount to assisting in torture? William Schulz [former executive director of Amnesty International] believes that it can be…Firms sometimes do business directly with repressive regimes or rebel groups and, in effect, fund their practices, according to Schulz…Schulz said that he doesn't believe that businesses must refuse to operate in any nation with a poor human rights record…In making judgments about whether to refuse to operate or invest in a country, Schulz said that firms must consider a variety of factors. The most obvious, besides the directness of the link, is the severity of the abuses. Another is how dependent the country's government is on the sales of a given commodity…[refers to BP, Reebok (part of adidas), Taser International, Unocal]