Mandate of the Working Group on the issue of human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises

Consultation | 16 May | Geneva

In its 2019 annual report to the General Assembly (October 2019), the Working Group on Business and Human Rights will look at how national action plans and other such frameworks on business and human rights can help address recurrent gaps and challenges in policy coherence at the national level.

The report of the Working Group will look at lessons learned from national efforts to align actions of different ministries and policy areas to promote responsible business conduct in line with the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs). It will identify experiences and lessons learned from mechanisms to facilitate inter-ministerial coordination of action, such as inter-ministerial/multi-stakeholder working groups on business and human rights.

The Working Group has previously developed guidance for States elaborating national action plans to advance implementation of the UNGPs. 1 This guidance reiterates the UNGPs’ emphasis on strengthened policy coherence as a key measure for governments to translate the State duty to protect against business-related human rights impacts into practice. The forthcoming report seeks to elaborate on what some of these practical steps may be. In doing so, it will also look at how frameworks to facilitate coordination and alignment of efforts to implement the Sustainable Development Goals can help foster policy coherence in the implementation of the UNGPs.

In the process of preparing the report, the Working Group will consult with all relevant stakeholders via written inputs. The Working Group will also convene a consultation meeting, open to all relevant stakeholders, on 16 May 2019, 15:00-17:00, at the Palais des Nations, Geneva, Switzerland. It will build on discussions held during the 2018 Forum on Business and Human Rights. Further details will be issued in due course.

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