Overseas Companies: Human Rights

Department for Business and Trade written question – answered at on 24 January 2024.

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Photo of Baroness Ritchie of Downpatrick Baroness Ritchie of Downpatrick Non-affiliated

To ask His Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that corporations domiciled in the UK are (1) legally liable for any human rights violations committed abroad, and (2) meet their obligations to provide effective remedies.

Photo of Lord Offord of Garvel Lord Offord of Garvel The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)

The UK has consistently supported the UN Guiding Principles (UNGPs) on business and human rights. Implementation of the UNGPs supports access to justice and remedy for victims of business-related human rights abuses, wherever these occur. The Government is clear that it expects all UK businesses to respect human rights, in line with the UNGPs, and encourages businesses to voluntarily adopt due diligence approaches accordingly.

The Government also operates the UK's National Contact Point for the OECD Guidelines on Multilateral Enterprises, which engages UK businesses to increase awareness and understanding of these voluntary principles and standards for responsible business conduct.

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