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[PDF] Re: The EU Proposal on Conflict Minerals Due Diligence

Author: John Ruggie, Chair of Shift, former UN Special Representative on business & human rights, Published on: 4 March 2014

The Guiding Principles...make clear that those companies “whose operations or operating contexts pose risks of severe human rights impacts should report formally on how they address them”. Where minerals or metals mined in conflict situations through forced labor, child labor and similarly abusive practices may be part of a company’s value chain, this naturally becomes a relevant issue for formal reporting...My concern is therefore that the legislative proposal before the Commission may view such reporting as merely optional...a move to make reporting entirely optional risks leaving the most responsible companies exposed while those least attentive to their human rights responsibilities continue their current practices undeterred. It is surely through requiring the same reporting standards across companies that the Commission can help drive improvements where they are most needed and advance corporate respect for human rights in practice. I respectfully hope the Commission will take this into account in its deliberation.

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