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UN Special Representative on Business: Human Rights

Business, Innovation and Skills written question – answered on 9th February 2011.

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Photo of Lisa Nandy Lisa Nandy Labour, Wigan

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what his policy is on the proposals to the UN by the UN Special Representative on business and human rights.

Photo of Henry Bellingham Henry Bellingham The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

I have been asked to reply.

The Government welcome the draft guiding principles developed by Professor Ruggie, the UN Special Representative on business and human rights. We believe they should offer a sure foundation for states and businesses to improve their performance with regard to human rights. The Government will consider in due course the impact of the draft principles on domestic legislation, policy practices for businesses operating in the UK and British businesses operating overseas, and implications for our foreign policy and international relations.

We have worked closely with Professor Ruggie as he refines the principles, following his consultations with businesses, states and civil society organisations. The guiding principles are due for consideration by the UN Human Rights Council in June 2011 and the UK will work to build consensus for their adoption. Further information on Professor Ruggie's work in his capacity as the UN Secretary-General's Special Representative on Business and Human Rights is available at:

http://www.business-humanrights.org/SpecialRepPortal/Home

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