UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights

Rethinking Corporate Accountability

Despite the increasing popularity of MSIs, it is clear that self-regulation through this governance model is not the answer to driving corporate accountability for matters of public concern such as human rights protection. In a report released in July 2020 by MSI Integrity, a non-profit originally dedicated to understanding the human rights impact and value of MSIs, it was found that MSIs are not effective tools for holding corporations accountable for abuses, protecting rights holders against human rights violations, or providing survivors and victims’ with access to remedy. The report showed that we need to rethink the role of MSIs and the presence of an MSI in an industry should not be a substitute for public regulation.

Symposium Introduction - Global Value Chains, Trade and Development

This online symposium is the outcome of a workshop on ‘GVCs, Trade and Development’ hosted by the Kent Law School and IEL collective in July 2020 and supported by the British Academy (Grant no. MD19\190020). The workshop engaged with the policy research literature produced by the World Trade Organisation and World Bank since 2013, in particular their Global Value Chain Development (GVCD) reports of 2017 and 2019.

Prudent Debt Management and Lessons from the Mozambique Constitutional Council

August 5, 2020

About eight years ago, the government of Mozambique formed two companies, Proindicus and the Mozambique Asset Management. These two companies entered into loan agreements, valued at approximately $2.2 billion, with creditors including Credit Suisse and VBT Bank. Even though these debts were obligations of the state, some of these debts were hidden from the Mozambique parliament and public. Their existence was exposed in 2016 and precipitated a debt crisis in the country.

Introduction: Sovereign Debt Under Domestic and Foreign Law: Lessons from the Mozambique Constitutional Council Decision of May 8, 2020

On May 8, 2020, the Mozambique Constitutional Council decided that non-concessional loans totaling 622 million USD borrowed from two London-based banks – Credit Suisse and Russian VTB - was illegal, null and void. The Mozambican borrowers were three State Owned Enterprises that at the time did not been formally constituted. The basis of the Constitutional Council’s decision was that this loan was obtained without approval of Parliament. Further, the Council held that amount was in excess of the borrowing limit permissible under the Constitution and laws of Mozambique.

La Debida Diligencia en el régimen de Empresas y derechos y sus implicancias en los mecanismos de reparación

The purpose of this post is to examine the concept of due diligence.  By building on a notion common to the fields of corporate law and human rights law, due diligence became a bridge for the business and human rights (BHR). In order to meet with the expectations from victims of corporate abuses, a BHR due diligence must develop its proper concept, particularly in the field of reparations and access to remedies.

African Union and public–private partnership: The potential and limitations of corporate social responsibility in context

The question of a regulatory framework for this type of CSR at the African Union level is paramount. Such regulatory frameworks could be meta-regulatory in nature and thus embrace a mix of soft law and hard law rules with incentives. This need for policy and regulation is recognised in the African Union Agenda 2063 framework document both in order to effectively finance development objectives and to enable full exploitation of the partnership capabilities in the interest of Africa. The African Union has also pursued this set goal for agribusiness as a result of the Malabo declaration on accelerated agricultural growth commitments

Human Rights and Agricultural Land Investment Contracts – Part Two

I recommend that ALIC put forward that investment in land should be subject to a comprehensive human rights impact assessment and that all on-going effects, responsibilities, and duties be continuously monitored. The task would then be to spell out what a comprehensive human rights report should comprise.

Human Rights and Agricultural Land Investment Contracts – Part One

By bringing forward this interlegal sensibility, ALIC invites the investor to think of their own best interest in broad term and to take the time to understand already-existing, pluralist socio-legal expectations and practices. It also implicitly reminds the investor to take the time to build a relationship with local communities that is buttressed by an iterative understanding of fairness (a core tenet of commercial law). Without such a relationship and appropriate due diligence, ALIC in effect recommends to the investor and the local community to not pursue the deal – no one benefits from a land transaction that is only made possible by disrupting local people’s lives or dislocating them from their homeland.

Introduction: Symposium on UNIDROIT/FAO/IFAD Draft Legal Guide on Agricultural Land Investment Contracts (ALIC)

Welcome to the Symposium on the Zero Draft of the UNIDROIT/FAO/IFAD Legal Guide on Agricultural Land Investment Contracts (ALIC) (hereinafter Legal Guide or Zero Draft). The Legal Guide, is being developed by a UNIDROIT Working Group in collaboration with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

Why central banks need to take human rights more seriously

This analysis demonstrates three key points. First, it is becoming untenable for central banks to avoid incorporating their human rights impacts into their decision-making and operations. Second, a human rights approach offers central banks a new tool for understanding the true costs and benefits of their operations. Third, central banks can meet their human rights responsibilities without compromising the independence they need to meet their monetary and financial responsibilities.