Entertainments: Human Rights

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 26th March 2021.

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Photo of Shabana Mahmood Shabana Mahmood Labour, Birmingham, Ladywood

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department plans to take to protect the entertainment sector from human rights abuses committed in the Xinjiang province of China against Uighur people.

Photo of Caroline Dinenage Caroline Dinenage Minister of State

The UK remains gravely concerned about the human rights situation in Xinjiang.

As a consequence the Foreign Secretary announced a series of measures to build on our response to the human rights situation in Xinjiang on 12 January. These new measures help ensure UK businesses and the public sector are not complicit in human rights violations in Xinjiang. They also show China that there is a reputational and economic cost to its policies in Xinjiang.

The measures include; o Strengthening the Overseas Business Risk (OBR) guidance to make clearer the risks to UK businesses investing in, or with supply chains in Xinjiang. o A review of export controls as they apply to the situation in Xinjiang to ensure we are doing all we can to prevent the export of goods that may contribute to human rights violations in Xinjiang. o The introduction of financial penalties for organisations who fail to comply with the Modern Slavery Act. o Increasing support for UK public bodies to use public procurement rules to exclude suppliers where there is sufficient evidence of human rights violations from their supply chains

These build on the UK’s existing measures to respond to Xinjiang, including research funded by the UK to help build the evidence base, and guidance to help UK businesses conduct due diligence to ensure supply chains are free of forced labour. The UK was the first country to require companies by law to report on modern slavery in their supply chains. We will continue our international leadership to hold China to account.

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