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The Rohingya crisis: key roles for business

Author: Golda Benjamin & Bobbie Sta. Maria, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, Published on: 3 October 2017

Half a million Rohingya refugees have fled Rakhine State in Myanmar in the last five weeks, leading to immense humanitarian challenges... in Bangladesh. [W]e have received... queries from members of the business community on their perceived role in this crisis. There have been a number of analyses on how the issue links to business, investments, and the economy...The final report of the Advisory Commission on Rakhine State led by...Kofi Annan included recommendations to prevent violence, maintain peace, and offer a sense of hope... Part of it mentions the resentment created by investments that often exclude local communities...Business...will next need to be mindful of potential future trafficking and hyper-exploitation from the camps, especially if current calls for safe repatriation of refugees are ignored... Leading...companies are already reflecting on their future role to help refugees, and contribute to resolving the conflict. [They] are looking at: supply chain approaches they can take to reduce marginalization and conflict, and their collective influence on government’s policy and practice. We highlight further their responsibility to ensure...their investments and supply chains in both Myanmar and Bangladesh prevent further marginalization and abuse of ethnic minorities, especially the Rohingya... [Refers to Leber Jeweler, Telenor, Unilever].

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Related companies: Leber Jeweler Telenor Unilever