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Paper takes stock of EU progress on business & human rights since 2011

Author: European Commission, Published on: 29 May 2019

"Corporate Social Responsibility, Responsible Business Conduct, and Business & Human Rights - Overview of Progress", March 2019

[C]ompanies [are expected to] understand their positive and negative impacts on society and the environment, and prevent, manage and mitigate any negative impacts that they may cause, including in their global supply chains...

Public authorities, including the EU, have an important role to support and encourage companies in their efforts to conduct their business responsibly.

This can be facilitated by: (i) helping firms across the industry or in individual sectors to work together on best solutions, (ii) providing incentives for the uptake of Corporate Social Responsibility or Responsible Business Conduct, including by setting benchmarks and other requirements, (iii) raising awareness and (iv) providing necessary training. When necessary and appropriate, adopting legislation represents another option...

[T]he Commission has done much to promote Corporate Social Responsibility or Responsible Business Conduct, and to implement the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs), through a smart mix of voluntary and mandatory actions. This work has also formed part of the Commission’s recent wider work on supporting implementation of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development...

This paper [...] provides an overview of progress in implementation that has been made on Corporate Social Responsibility or Responsible Business Conduct and Business and Human Rights by the Commission and European External Action Service (EEAS) since [...] 2011.

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