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6 Jan 2023

ILO Office for Japan

Japan: ILO and JICA team up to work closely against human rights violations in business activities

"ILO and JICA sign MOC to promote Business and Human Rights" 6 January 2023


On 6 January 2023, the International Labour Organization (ILO) Office for Japan and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) signed a Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) on business and human rights, the first of its kind for either agency, to work closely against human rights violations in business activities.

To address labour issues, companies must establish schemes to identify and control the risks of forced labour and other human rights abuses throughout their business operations, not just in Japanese headquarters and foreign offices but also in supply chains.

To help achieve this, JICA is currently working on reducing the risks of human rights violations found in foreign labour recruitment and chocolate production processes, together with the members of the Japan Platform for Migrant Workers towards Responsible and Inclusive Society (JP-MIRAI) and the Platform for Sustainable Cocoa in Developing Countries.

The ILO Office for Japan helped formulate the National Action Plan (NAP) for the Japanese government in 2020, as well as playing a key role in developing the Guidelines on Respect for Human Rights in Responsible Supply Chains in 2022. Thus, the ILO is devoted to advancing corporate activities aligned with the MNE Declaration and the ILSs.

With the conclusion of the MOC, the ILO and JICA will join forces for more effective promotion of the Business and Human Rights initiative, sharing expertise and insight. The two agencies will explore this agenda by, for example, mutually providing specialists for training programmes or seminars and conducting joint campaigns to enlist the support of Japanese and international stakeholders. They will also review collaboration plans and progress at annual working-level meetings.