2019 UN South Asia Forum on Business and Human Rights

Date: 14-15 March 2019
Location: The Claridges Hotel. 12 Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Road, New Delhi - 110011, India
Enquiries: harpreet.kaur@undp.org and victoria.demello@undp.org
Concept note: English
Registration: Now closed
Programme:  Forum Programme now available

About the Forum

Building on the annual UN Forum on Business and Human Rights and other regional Forums, the UN Working group on Business and Human Rights (UNWG) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) are organizing the inaugural UN South Asia Forum on Business and Human Rights on 14-15 March 2019 in New Delhi, India. The UN South Asia Forum is aimed at raising awareness about business and human rights issues in South Asia and facilitating implementation of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs), including through National Action Plans.

The two-day event will bring together various stakeholders from South Asia and beyond to focus on the following objectives:  

  • To assess the key challenges, opportunities and progress made in South Asia in implementing the UNGPs;
  • To facilitate multi-stakeholder dialogue to promote implementation of the UNGPs, including through the development of National Action Plans;
  • To encourage peer-learning amongst States and businesses in South Asia, facilitating regional exchange of good practices;
  • To build synergies in implementing the UNGPs and accomplishing sustainable development goals (SDGs);
  • To explore ways to strengthen judicial and non-judicial mechanisms to provide effective remedies to affected individuals and communities; and
  • To discuss the role of National Human Rights Institutions to address business-related human rights abuses at both national and regional levels.

Participation

Representatives of Governments, business, industry associations, civil society organisations, trade unions, indigenous peoples, affected individuals, international and regional bodies, national human rights institutions (NHRIs), lawyers, and academia will participate in the UN South Asia Forum.

Key Issues

The UN South Asia Forum on Business and Human Rights will provide a multi-stakeholder platform to facilitate discussions on issues such as the following:

  • Challenges and opportunities in UNGPs’ implementation in South Asia
  • National Action Plans to implement the UNGPs: potential pathways in South Asia
  • Comparative experiences from other regions of Asia
  • Connecting UNGPs with SDGs
  • Strengthening compliance with labour rights and standards
  • Health and safety at workplace: building on what works
  • Supply chains and export processing zones
  • Human rights due diligence, including environmental impact assessment
  • Sector specific human rights impacts (e.g., extractive, manufacturing, agriculture, textile, electronic, technology, ship-breaking etc.)
  • Gendered impacts of businesses and their operations
  • Role of CSOs, human rights defenders and trade unions in promoting business respect for human rights
  • Judicial and non-judicial mechanisms available in the region to access to remedy in context of business relate human rights impacts
  • Role of NHRIs in addressing business-related human rights impacts

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