Annan, the UN secretary-general, will call on world business leaders today to
help "build an inclusive and sustainable globalisation process" in
what is being billed as a "historic" event for the corporate
responsibility movement, The Guardian reports.
event marks the latest effort on the UN’s part to engage the private sector. In
July 2000, the secretary-general made a similar plea to companies to become
"good corporate citizens". Only 50 large companies responded at the
companies have been invited to sign a voluntary commitment to uphold a set of
nine core principles. The so-called ‘Global Compact’ draws on UN conventions on
the environment and human rights, together with International Labour
Organisation standards for workers’ rights.
Power, senior adviser to the Global Compact, told the Guardian, "The
corporate social responsibility (CSR) movement was largely a northern
initiative, but the Global Compact has sparked a CSR movement within the
nine Global Compact principles:
1: Businesses should support and respect the protection of internationally
proclaimed human rights
2: make sure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses.
3: Businesses should uphold the freedom of association and the effective
recognition of the right to collective bargaining
4: the elimination of all forms of forced and compulsory labour
5: the effective abolition of child labour
6: the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation.
7: Businesses should support a precautionary approach to environmental
8: undertake initiatives to promote greater environmental responsibility
9: encourage the development and diffusion of environmentally friendly