Human rights violations in the emerging markets are the focus of two new reports launched today by global risks analyst, Maplecroft. According to Maplecroft’s Human Rights Risk Index, which ranks 196 countries, Pakistan (4), Bangladesh (13), India (14), Russia (15), Iran (16), China (17), Nigeria (18) and Philippines (21) are all rated “extreme risk.” In India, 21% less land is under cultivation in August 2009, than during the same period in August 2008. Due to poor food security, 1 billion people remain under nourished in the world, yet 1.6 billion are overweight. Maple croft is funded by GE Foundation.
The BRICS and N – 11 (Next – 11) represent the world’s fastest growing economies. They are home to over 60% of the global population, own significant natural resources, provide cheaper labour and are increasingly the site of numerous outsourced supply chains and distribution networks. About 70% of the Fortune 500 global companies procure from these economies. These countries are also home to a large portion of the world’s poor, with tens of millions living on less than a dollar a day, lacking access to clean water and educational resources and vulnerable to exploitation in terms of working conditions and remuneration.
65% of business bribery cases in China involve foreign investors and international trade. China rated extreme risk for working conditions, child labour, health & safety, collective bargaining and forced labour
Concentrating on the implications for business, the Human Rights Risk Reports for the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) and N – 11 countries, (Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, South Korea, Turkey and Viet Nam) offer in depth analysis of human rights risks for companies with global footprints.
Whilst the emerging markets have strong legislation, there is rarely sufficient regulatory and enforcement activity and inspectorates are often corrupt and ineffective. This leads to frequent incidents of human rights violations. It puts the pressure on responsible business to be proactive and take the initiative to ensure human rights are respected and labour standards are protected.
The reports support organisations in their efforts to minimise the risks of complicity with states or suppliers that operate irresponsibly, without principles or policies. They have been designed for risk managers, general counsel, ethical supply chain teams and sustainability departments and will be an invaluable aid in impact assessment, investment decision-making and supplier risk screening. The sector and site specific analysis provides tailored information highly relevant to different businesses.
The Human Rights Risk Reports for the BRICS and N – 11 include a series of country briefings containing Maplecroft’s human rights risk indices, which provide comparable country and regional risk scores across 30 human rights categories. They also cover the key areas of human security, labour rights, civil and political rights and access to remedy. These are supplemented by sub-national maps charting violation incidents and detailed analysis of the different human rights risks and dilemmas business face. In addition, the reports offer listings of recent key events and human rights infringements, stakeholder viewpoints and analysis of the effectiveness of state actors in protecting human rights in these countries.
United Kingdom (IBwire- August 26, 2009)