Posts Tagged ‘foreign’

June 2012

The FCO’s human rights work in 2011

The FCO’s human rights work in 2011

Written evidence from Hermitage Capital Management

May 2012

Specifically addressing the cross-Government strategy on business and human rights, expected to be published later in 2012, and how it should define the relationship between the FCO’s human rights work and the promotion of UK economic and commercial interests in UK foreign policy.

Short summary:

· British businesses should be able to invest in all countries knowing that they are fully supported by the UK government should they experience business and human rights problems.

· At present there is an apparent conflict between the British government’s promotion of business and its professed support for human rights. Based on our experience, the desire to promote British business takes precedence at the expense of any serious practical promotion of human rights. While this may appear to be the rational strategy at a time of economic recession, upholding human rights actually protects British businesses operating abroad as the Hermitage Capital case demonstrates.

There are a number of measures which the British government could take which would give it the leverage to protect international commerce and at the same time promote human rights:

· The British government should impose visa bans and asset freezes on all individuals involved in human rights abuses and high level corruption affecting British businesses.

· It should conspicuously publish a list ‘naming and shaming’ those individuals banned from entering the UK based on their involvement in such activities.

· UK businesses should be warned against investing in countries with dubious human rights records and with a history of economic aggression – such as Russia – in the same way that the FCO offers travel warnings to British tourists.

Read More →

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google Buzz
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Tumblr
  • StumbleUpon
  • FriendFeed
  • NewsVine
  • Digg