The UK 2013 NAP in the section dedicated to Government expectations of business states that [page 13]:

The UNGPs guide the approach UK companies should take to respect human rights wherever they operate. The key principles of this approach are to:

– … be transparent about policies, activities and impacts, and report on human rights issues and risks as appropriate as part of their annual reports.

The UK 2013 NAP in the section dedicated to Actions taken to support business implementation of the UNGPs states that [page 14]:

To help businesses to fulfil their responsibility to respect human rights we have so far:

(ii) taken steps to ensure that from 1 October a clarification of the Companies Act 2006 means that company directors will include human rights issues, in their annual reports;

The UK 2016 Updated NAP states in the Introduction that [page 3-4]:

“Companies understand the business case for respecting human rights and the benefits this brings. They understand that positive action, supported by due diligence, transparency and reporting can:

– help to protect and enhance a company’s reputation and brand value;

– safeguard and expand their customer base;

– help them attract and retain good staff;

– build and maintain sustainable and effective relationships with employees and external stakeholders;

– reduce risks to operational continuity resulting from conflict inside the company itself or with the local community or other parties;

– reduce the risk of litigation for human rights abuses;

– attract institutional investors, including pension funds, who are increasingly taking ethical , including human rights, factors into account in their investment decisions;

– help companies become partners/investors of choice for other businesses or governments concerned about human rights risks;

– support company ethics and values.

Since the UK’s National Action Plan was published there has been an increased emphasis within the business community on the importance of reporting, benchmarking companies’ social and ethical performance, and corporate transparency. These can be an effective complement to regulation and a tool for protecting and promoting corporate reputation, and providing reassurance to both customers and investors.”

The UK 2016 Updated NAP notes in relation to Government Expectations of Business that [page 14]:

“The Government has supported important industry led initiatives that have gained ground over the last two years, including on reporting, benchmarking performance and practical sector guidance.”

The UK 2016 Updated NAP states in Actions taken to support business implementation of the UNGPs that [page 14-15]:

“To help businesses to fulfil their responsibility to respect human rights the Government has:

(ii) provided guidance to companies on transparency in supply chains and implementing the reporting requirement in the Modern Slavery Act 2015.­supply-chains-a-practical-guide

(v) supported the UNGPs Reporting Framework, the world’s first comprehensive guidance for companies to report on how they respect human rights. “

The UK 2016 Updated NAP refers to non-financial reporting in the section devoted to the Government Commitments [page 16]:

“The Government will continue to encourage UK companies in their work to respect human rights. We will: (…) ii) ensure the provisions of an EU Directive on non-financial disclosure are transposed in the UK to enable greater consistency and comparability of public information on the human rights policies and performance of listed companies in Europe.”

The UK 2016 Updated NAP, while highlighting the UNGPs Reporting Framework + Unilever human rights report, refers to non-financial reporting [page 17]:

“There is increasing demand for greater formal reporting by companies on their human rights performance, including from regulations such as the EU non-financial reporting directive and the UK’s Companies Act and Modern Slavery Act reporting requirements.”