2 The corporate responsibility to respect human rights [page 14]

“In keeping with the UN Guiding Principles, businesses’ human rights efforts are expected to include the following main points: …

Procedure …

  • Establish an integrated and ongoing process in the company to identify, prevent and manage human rights risks and opportunities, as appropriate to the size, nature and context of the operations, i.e. due diligence”

Annex: Measures taken [page 22-24]

The State as actor

  • “Sweden is carrying out awareness-raising activities on this issue and supports the OECD’s work on how companies are to identify risks in the supply chain and avoid trade in conflict minerals (OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas).”

Action by government agencies

  • “Over and above the projects and sectors covered by the OECD’s ‘Common Approaches’ recommendations, the EKN has requirements and processes in place for conducting due diligence with respect to the environment and human rights in all other business transactions. The EKN also produces country risk analyses for many countries (www.ekn.se). The due diligence and any more in-depth review proceed from the potential seriousness of the impact of a business transaction and depends on the size of the transaction. …
  • The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) has developed forms of cooperation with the private sector with a view to mobilising additional resources for development. CSR is a precondition for cooperation. Based on the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises and the principles of the UN Global Compact, a due diligence tool has been developed for assessing and facilitating dialogue with potential partners on business and human rights. …”

Annex: Measures planned [page 28-29]

How can the State support the business sector?

  • “The Government Offices is considering conducting special due diligence in sectors facing distinct challenges.”

The State as owner

  • “The Government will work to increase knowledge about the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights in state-owned companies and will ensure that these companies, where appropriate, conduct human rights due diligence in order to assess and address any significant risk to human rights.”

Corporate action

  • “The Government’s clear expectation is that companies operating in Sweden or abroad comply with the UN Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights and other relevant guidelines in this area, and review their due diligence and redress mechanisms. Companies operating in markets where human rights challenges are particularly serious should place special emphasis on work in the area.”