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Re-cap: negotiations over the Zero Draft of a binding treaty on business and human rights

Author: SOMO, Published on: 22 October 2018

During the week of 15-19 October 2018, more than 94 States and 400 civil society organizations...were present for negotiations of the first-ever draft of a binding treaty...While all BRICS countries and many States from the Global South contributed, Western States, including EU and its member states, USA and Australia were either absent or dissociated themselves from the conclusions...

...As negotiations advanced, the risk of corporations capturing law and policy making space...presented itself in this UN process...[T]he International Organisation of Employers (IOE) circulated a document naming specific States and affirming that “major exports of selected treaty proponent countries may be placed at risk from treaty ratification.”...[A] joint statement signed by more than 170 organizations from around the world called for States’ explicit commitment to next steps in the treaty development process...

...This year, the EU was present at the negotiations but, citing a lacking negotiation mandate,  didn’t provide any substantive comment or questions  in response to the Zero Draft of the UN treaty.  Also, EU member states had been advised not to provide statements on the content on their own...The lack of engagement by the EU and its Member States was also apparent outside of the central negotiation room...



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