Workshop on Human Rights and Transnational Corporation: Paving the way for a legally binding instrument, 11-12 March 2014


The workshop was co-organized by the Permanent Missions of Ecuador and South Africa to the United Nations in Geneva during the week of the 25th Ordinary Session of the Human Rights Council.

The workshop aimed at contributing to clarifying the ways in which a legally binding instrument on business and human rights would provide a framework for enhanced State action to protect rights and prevent the occurrence of human rights abuses. It also aimed at discussing the difficulties faced by developing countries when trying to hold TNCs accountable of gross human rights abuses potentially amounting to international crimes, as well as the gaps under the current soft law framework.

In this regard, the discussion tackled the extraterritorial duties of states, obstacles that victims of human rights violations face when trying to access justice and adequate remedies, including national, regional and international courts and non-judicial mechanisms.

The workshop was very well attended by Member States from various regions, as well as civil society organizations with extensive experience in the human rights law field and working with individuals and communities impacted by human rights violations.

Download the final report

Panelists and statements



Moderator: Ambassador Luis Gallegos, Permanent Representative of Ecuador to the United Nations   Statement Moderator: Ambassador Abdul Samad Minty, Permanent Representative of the Republic of South Africa           Statement
Speakers: Speakers:
Mr. Martin Khor, South Centre   Summary of statement Mr. Errol Mendes, Director of the Human Rights Research and Education Center at the University of Ottawa      Statement
Mr. Brent Wilton, International Organization of Employers  Statement Mr. Michael Addo, Working Group on Business and Human Rights  Statement
Mr.  John Knox, Special Rapporteur on Environment and Human Rights   Statement Mr. Surya Deva, Professor at the School of Law of City University of Hong Kong    Statement
Ms. Janelle Diller, International Labour Organization Mr. Marcos Orellana, Center for International Environmental Law
Mr. Carlos López, International Commission of Jurists     Statement Mr. Cephas Lumina, independent expert on foreign debt and human rights    Statement
Mr. Alfred de Zayas, Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order    Statement


Statements were also made by delegations and NGOs (including CETIM and FIAN International) from the floor.


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