Social & human rights

Social & human rights South Asia & ASEAN

Commission offers to reinstate Sri Lanka GSP+ status conditional on further human rights scrutiny

The European Commission has proposed on 11 January to grant Sri Lanka the Generalised Scheme of Preferences Plus (GSP +) status, the benefits of which had been temporarily withdrawn from the country in 2010. This exclusion followed an investigation’s findings that had flagged serious flaws in Sri Lanka’s implementation of three UN human rights …

Social & human rights South Asia & ASEAN

GSP Plus – Philippines, Pakistan and Sri Lanka under EU scrutiny

The EU will examine three countries under its GSP Plus scheme in early December: the Philippines, Pakisan and Sri Lanka.   The Philippines have come into the crosshairs of those concerned about recently elected  president Duterte’s human rights track record. Duterte’s ordering of extra-judicial killings in a bloody crack-down on drugs-related crime has raised …

Social & human rights

Conflict minerals sourcing due diligence to become mandatory by 2021

The Council, the Commission and the European Parliament have reached a ‘political’ agreement on the shape of a long-awaited EU regulation aiming at eliminating minerals such as gold, tantalum and tungsten from war torn-regions (for example in Central Africa) from European companies’ supply chains.   In 2014, the Parliament sent back to …

CETA Energy & Environment Social & human rights

CETA: draft declaration hints at “effectively enforceable” labour and environment provisions in early revision

The German Social-Democrats were promised a declaration by trade commissioner Malmström and trade minister Freeland ahead of a coming Council meeting that aims to give the green light to the signature and ratification of CETA later this month. They are getting it. And it does not quite satisfy the demands made by Bernd …

Agriculture Social & human rights Turkey & Med

CJEU: Advocate General slams 2015 Morocco trade agreement ruling

The EU Council has increased its chances to win an appeal against a ruling by the General Court in December 2015 that invalidated a 2012 EU trade agreement with Morocco because it purportedly did not take into account human rights considerations in the territory of Western Sahara.   The Advocate General’s opinion released today …

Social & human rights South Asia & ASEAN

Rana Plaza: EU calls on Bangladesh to work harder on worker rights

In a joint statement on the third anniversary of the Rana Plaza accident in Bangladesh leaving more than thousand garment factory workers, dead, Commissioners Malmström, Thyssen and Mimica, state that there has been progress in enforcement of union rights and improvements of labour standards in the country but more needs …

Get ready for the coming EU ‘conflict minerals’ regulation
EU trade politics Social & human rights

Get ready for the coming EU ‘conflict minerals’ regulation

The ‘conflict minerals’ regulation under preparation in the EU will likely go beyond the United States’ equivalent rules under the 2010 Dodd Frank Act. Hundreds of thousands of companies could end up being required to report on their sourcing of tin, tantalum, and tungsten. Better for them to get ready now, writes James Appleyard. …