Opening remarks by Asako Okai on the Enterprise, Human Rights and Battle Affected Areas: In direction of Heightened Motion, as a part of UNDP Improvement Dialogues: Rethinking options to disaster within the Decade of Motion.
Distinguished members, colleagues, and pals,
Heat welcome to all. Please enable me to start by thanking our keynote speaker, Professor Anita Ramasastry of the UN Working Group on Enterprise and Human Rights, in addition to our discussants for becoming a member of us to chart the subsequent steps on the connection between Enterprise, Human Rights and Battle.
Companies can play a big position throughout safety crises and of their aftermath. Whereas they will make constructive contributions and be engines of peace and improvement, they will additionally gas battle.
Latest occasions have reminded us of this. Lethal assaults by violent extremists in Mozambique in March this 12 months within the northern a part of the nation have been linked to the exploitation of pure sources and associated investments.
In Myanmar, additional to the decision of the UN Secretary Common for a reversal of the coup, many involved companies spoke publicly concerning the shrinking of democratic area and reiterated their duty to respect worldwide human rights requirements. It’s crucial that phrases are adopted by concrete actions that assist to guard human rights and return the nation on the trail of democracy.
These embody adopting measures to guard workers from the excesses of the safety forces – a elementary obligation of care – and to make sure that enterprise operations don’t lend legitimacy to those that are violating human rights. These obligations are clearly outlined within the Guiding Ideas on Enterprise and Human Rights.
Companies do have tasks, notably in battle settings. Milton Friedman’s previous adage that the ‘enterprise of enterprise is enterprise’ now not holds.
The framework set out by the UN Working Group on Enterprise and Human Rights calls for us to use a systemic strategy to advertise hyperlinks between enterprise exercise, human rights abuses and battle prevention. However we have now not but successfully captured this throughout the UN system. UNDP thus determined to take the lead on making these connections and to craft a coherent shared agenda.
In early March, UNDP organised its first annual World Prevention in Motion Discussion board, because the opening of this Improvement Dialogue collection on Rethinking Options to Disaster within the Decade of Motion. We introduced collectively coverage makers, practitioners and researchers for a forward-looking dialogue on Prevention and Peacebuilding. This is part of our efforts to articulate UNDP’s Prevention Supply, anchored within the Secretary-Common’s Prevention Agenda and the crucial to realize the SDGs. We’re decided to make ourselves match for offering built-in improvement options to advanced issues based mostly on information, evaluation and proof, and to have the ability to act early at scale with companions within the face of multi-dimensional dangers and conflicts.
Within the session specializing in the position of the personal sector in battle prevention and peacebuilding, many members highlighted the validity of bringing Enterprise & human rights views into motion. The important thing message from the dialogue is as follows:
The personal sector in battle settings must be guided in the direction of constructive motion for peace. We have to be sure that the personal sector makes use of the “do no hurt” strategy and function in a battle delicate method to attenuate their adverse influence. For instance, they need to interact in human rights due diligence – a duty which is heightened throughout conflicts. They need to search out recommendation from actors such because the United Nations to know battle dynamics and take part in efforts to de-escalate disaster conditions. They need to interact with transitional justice processes as soon as hostilities are over, undertake reparations and different measures if referred to as on to point out accountability for his or her actions. They’ll contribute in constructing a peaceable and inclusive society by influencing insurance policies, for instance in opposition to discrimination.”
The Working Group report calls on UNDP, and the broader UN household, to make sure that we don’t work in silos and that we combine consciousness on enterprise, human rights and battle into our peace and safety structure. Via implementation of the Prevention Supply, and constructing on the important thing messages of the Prevention Discussion board, UNDP will strengthen its engagement with the personal sector in addition to with numerous companions to realize this crucial.
Particularly, UNDP, in a robust collaboration with the Working Group and in consultations with companies, intends to develop a toolkit on heightened human rights due diligence, to information companies on the best way to respect human rights and handle dangers in battle settings. The Working Group additionally calls on all stakeholders to work collectively by way of a discussion board for exchanging greatest practices.
The time is ripe for such cooperation. It is just by way of broad collaboration, inside and outdoors our group, that we are able to be certain that all companies play a constructive position in conflicts and guarantee future stability and prosperity for all.
Thanks in your consideration.