"Iran Business Responsibility" launches website

Business & Human Rights Resource Centre is working with International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran on the "Iran Business Responsibility" (IBR) project.

Visit the project website launched in June 2017, and explore the articles below for insights on the new investments in Iran.

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31 March 2018

First OECD complaint filed against a European company for its activities in Iran

Author: Gerald Pachoud, Bourse & Bazaar

... On 13 September 2017, three civil society organisations filed a complaint with the Italian Government against Italtel Group S.p.A, a major Italian telecom company regarding its business activities in Iran. The complainants argue that the technologies and services offered by Italtel to its Iranian partner, the Telecommunications Company of Iran (TCI), breach multiple provisions of the OECD Guidelines by contributing to internet censorship and other rights violations in Iran and help the Iranian authorities, including the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, to suppress political dissent and civil liberties in the country and in cyberspace. The complainants are asking the Italian government whether the company’s actions are consistent with the Guidelines and more importantly are calling for an immediate moratorium on current negotiations and business engagements between Italtel and TCI until the alleged breaches to the Guidelines are addressed... The Guidelines provide non-binding principles for responsible business conduct in areas such as employment and industrial relations, human rights, environment, information disclosure, combating bribery, consumer interests, human rights, science and technology, competition and taxation. Their impact has been felt the most extensively in the areas of human rights and labour relations... 


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21 June 2017

New intl. initiative urges companies investing in Iran to go beyond sanctions compliance, manage risk to workers & environment

Author: Iran Business Responsibility project

Companies Investing in Iran Urged to Manage Risks Beyond Sanctions - New Initiative Launched to Foster Responsible Business in Iran, 21 Jun 2017

...[The] Iran Business Responsibility (IBR) project was launched today.  With billions of dollars’ worth of foreign investment under consideration now that international sanctions have been eased, the new non-profit initiative is aimed at encouraging and guiding companies investing in Iran to implement responsible business standards that will avoid harm to people and the environment... 

Andrea Saldarriaga, Co-Director of the project [said] “...[The] challenges [that companies investing in Iran] will face go well beyond sanctions. Sanctions checks alone will not prepare companies for a death rate from workplace injuries in Iran that is eight times the international average, or severe air pollution and water scarcity that threaten health and business operations”...

IBR offers Online Resources that include informational briefings, videos, case studies and business updates, and a Collaborative Engagement programme...

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21 June 2017

Occupational health & safety in Iran - new briefing for foreign investors

Author: Iran Business Responsibility project

Briefing #3: Occupational health & safety in Iran

Companies entering Iran will find a challenging occupational health and safety (OHS) environment, in which workplace accidents and deaths significantly exceed international and developing country averages. These challenges can be addressed by implementing responsible OHS practices and by putting in place systems to help ensure business partners in Iran do the same... Fatal accidents in Iran occur primarily in the construction industry...and, secondly, in the mining sector...

Why are OHS standards lacking in Iran?...

OHS is further undermined by the lack of insurance for many Iranian workers...

What companies can do...

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20 June 2017

Total Pledges $1 Billion Investment in Iran Gas Field

Author: Wall Street Journal, Sarah Kent

France’s Total SA said Tuesday it would push forward with a $1 billion investment this summer in a giant Iranian gas field, the first commitment by a Western company to put real money into the Islamic Republic’s re-emerging energy industry.

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10 June 2017

Boeing’s Sale of Up to 60 Commercial Jets to Iran Takes Next Step

Author: Wall Street Journal, Robert Wall

Boeing said Saturday it had moved a step closer to completing a contentious jetliner sale to an Iranian airline, though the U.S. government still needs to give the green light before planes could be delivered.

Boeing said it had signed a final purchase agreement with Iran Aseman Airlines for up to 60 737 Max single-aisle planes, its newest model. The two parties earlier this year announced a memorandum of agreement for the transaction that could be valued at up to $6 billion at list price, though buyers typically get discounts.

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7 June 2017

US Senate Works on New Iran Sanctions, Possible Russia Sanctions

Author: Voice of America

The U.S. Senate has moved forward on a bill that would impose new sanctions on Iran.  The bill advanced on a procedural vote Wednesday. It now will be available for amendments before a final Senate vote.


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2 June 2017

Tested on all fronts, Iran's Rouhani may struggle on reforms

Author: Reuters, Parisa Hafezi and Jonathan Saul

Growing strains with the United States and political infighting at home threaten Iranian President Hassan Rouhani's plans to expand social freedoms, create jobs and draw in foreign investment, officials and analysts say.

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30 May 2017

Economic reform is top of Hassan Rouhani’s agenda

Author: Financial Times, Naysan Rafati

Having secured a comfortable re-election victory, Iran’s president Hassan Rouhani will almost certainly make the Iranian economy a priority. If the nuclear agreement reached with six major world powers in 2015 was the prize achievement of his first term as president, the challenge of the next four years is to convert the lifting of international sanctions into jobs, investment and growth. Since the nuclear deal came into effect, Iran has raised its oil exports and lowered inflation. But one of the laments from Tehran is the reluctance of foreign banks to follow international oil companies, aircraft makers and car manufacturers, which have begun to dip their toes in Iranian waters.

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28 May 2017

As Iran and U.S. Leaders Trade Barbs, Big Deals Proceed

Author: New York Times, Thomas Erdbrink

President Trump, who has never made a secret of his hostility toward Irancalled recently for a grand regional strategy among Sunni nations to isolate the country. But Tehran received that threat with surprising equanimity because, in practice, the Trump administration has shown a willingness to do business with the country.

On the surface, it looked as if there was a lot of bad news recently for the Islamic Republic. At the recent Arab-American summit meeting in Saudi Arabia, Mr. Trump was the guest of the Saudi king, Salman bin Abdulaziz al Saud, a sworn enemy of Iran, and the countries signed a record-breaking $110 billion arms deal.

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23 May 2017

Rouhani Seeks France’s Help to Encourage Foreign Investment in Iran

Author: Middle East Institute

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has urged the new government in France to play a more active role in the implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (J.C.P.O.A.), the nuclear agreement that Tehran signed with Washington and five other world powers in 2015. According to the Iranian media, Rouhani praised the French government’s “influential” role in making the nuclear accord possible almost two years ago, whereas he criticized certain other signatories of the deal for not honoring their commitments. “We expect France and the European Union to play a more active role in the implementation of the agreement,” he reportedly told the French President Emmanuel Macron in a telephone conversation today. Rouhani, who just won a second term in Iran’s presidential elections on Friday, also called for boosting bilateral economic and trade ties between Tehran and Paris, and sought France’s help to remove existing obstacles that hinder European companies and banks from doing business with and invest in Iran.