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2 Mar 2021

American Apparel & Footwear Association,
ETI Sweden,
Ethical Trading Initiative,
Ethical Trade Norway,
Fair Labor Association,
Fair Wear Foundation,
Initiative for Compliance and Sustainability,
Social Accountability International

Myanmar: EU & US buyers urge businesses to undertake enhanced human rights due diligence to identify possible dealings Myanmar military companies

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"Response of EU and US garment, footwear, and accessories goods buyers to the crisis in Myanmar", 2 March 2021


This coup creates uncertainty that has already begun to impact factory and cargo operations. Given the disruptions on the ground and the potential for further international sanctions, the coup may prompt a re-evaluation of Myanmar as a stable sourcing partner.

...We therefore urge our member companies and all businesses sourcing from Myanmar to exercise enhanced due diligence and supply chain monitoring to ensure respect for workers’ fundamental rights of opinion and expression, whatever they are, as well as freedom of association and peaceful assembly. ...

We urge brands, and their suppliers, to immediately undertake enhanced human rights due diligence and responsible purchasing practices to identify whether they are doing business, directly or indirectly, with companies that are known to be owned or controlled by the military services of Myanmar, and take steps to sever these business ties, while making best efforts to protect workers that may be impacted. ...

... Companies should strive to honour all existing commitments made to factories (in terms of both payments and orders that are already in production), ensure workers are paid for the work they do, and extend lenient contract terms on delivery dates if needed, especially as production and export are likely to be negatively affected due to varying factors.

... [W]e urge suppliers to maintain an active dialogue with the elected worker representatives and trade unions in resolving differences and addressing the current crisis. Employers should refrain from imposing disciplinary actions against workers for their participation in the peaceful demonstrations or concerning any absences due to the current situation (such as the inability to access transportation from home to work)