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Blog: Lack of legal advocacy & poor legal framework contribute to weak corporate accountability in Germany

"Corporate human rights abuses and access to justice in Germany – why so little tort-litigation?", 4 July 2016

Germany is one of the world’s largest and most interconnected economies: it accounts for hundreds of billions of dollars in international trade and foreign direct investment and its companies control thousands of foreign affiliates operating abroad. Yet, in contrast to other large-scale economies, the trend towards transnational tort litigation has largely bypassed German courts thus far...Is this because German companies act more responsibly than their foreign competitors when operating abroad? Recent scandals such as Dieselgate, but also the statistical evidence that we have on corporate human rights abuses suggest otherwise. In fact, Germany is among the countries hosting the largest numbers of companies accused of such abuses. So why then is there so little tort litigation... [and] what can the German government do to increase access to compensation for persons affected by the overseas activities of German companies?...