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UN experts on business and human rights to visit Japan

13 July 2023

GENEVA (13 July 2023) – The UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights will conduct its first official visit to Japan from 24 July to 4 August.

The experts will assess efforts to identify, prevent and address adverse impacts of business operations on human rights and the environment.

The Working Group delegation will comprise Pichamon Yeophantong and Damilola Olawuyi. They will examine the efforts of the Government of Japan and businesses to implement their respective human rights obligations and responsibilities under the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.

“The Working Group approaches this country visit, as with other country visits, with an open mind and a strong desire to gather insights from diverse stakeholders on a wide range of pressing issues,” the experts said.

The experts will meet with various Government ministries and local authorities, civil society actors, human rights defenders, academics, trade unions, and representatives of business enterprises and industry associations. They will travel to Tokyo, and other locations, including Osaka, Aichi, Hokkaido, and Fukushima during their visit.

The experts will hold a press conference on Friday 4 August at 15:00 (local time) at the Japan National Press Club. Access will be strictly limited to journalists and interpretation from/to Japanese and English will be available.

The Working Group will present a report to the Human Rights Council in June 2024.


The Working Group on human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises was established by the UN Human Rights Council in June 2011. Its current members are Mr. Damilola Olawuyi (Chairperson), Mr. Robert McCorquodale (Vice-Chairperson), Ms. Fernanda Hopenhaym, Ms. Pichamon Yeophantong, and Ms. Elżbieta Karska.

The Working Group is part of what is known as the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council. Special Procedures, the largest body of independent experts in the UN Human Rights system, is the general name of the Council’s independent human rights monitoring mechanisms. The Working Group reports to the Human Rights Council and to the UN General Assembly. Special Procedures mandate-holders are independent human rights experts appointed by the Human Rights Council to address either specific country situations or thematic issues in all parts of the world. The experts are not UN staff and are independent from any government or organization. They serve in their individual capacity and do not receive a salary for their work.

The UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, unanimously endorsed by the UN Human Rights Council in 2011 (resolution 17/4), provide the authoritative global standard for action to safeguard human rights in a business context, clarifying what is expected by governments and companies to prevent and address impacts on human rights arising from business activity.

UN Human Rights, country page - Japan

For additional information and media requests please contact the Working Group Secretariat:
In Japan (during the dates of the visit): tel. + 41 76 691 0826; email: Krizel Patolot Malabanan ([email protected]) and

Sonia Cuesta ([email protected])

In Geneva: [email protected]

For media inquiries related to other UN independent experts please contact

Maya Derouaz ([email protected]) or
Dharisha Indraguptha ([email protected]).

Follow news related to the UN’s independent human rights experts on Twitter @UN_SPExperts

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