On Tuesday 14th September, the European Commission published its proposal for a regulation prohibiting products made with forced labour on the Union market. This is a critical step towards the Commission’s commitment to promote decent work, from February this year.
The PRI welcomes this proposal, particularly where consideration is made towards harmonising rules across all Member States and the establishment of a Union Network Against Forced Labour Products to avoid fragmentation of the internal market. For investors, this regulation in the first instance will help in the identification of forced labour risks across their portfolio companies. This should be complemented by individual and collective investor efforts to address forced labour risks contributing to a comprehensive approach towards the eradication of forced labour across value chains.
In this statement PRI also highlights several points which co-legislators should consider as they work to finalise this regulation, to ensure that it does effectively safeguard workers across global supply chains.