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General debate on agenda item 5

Item 5: Human rights bodies and mechanisms. Statement by Norway on 03 July, as delivered by First Secretary Sean Lobo.

Check against delivery

 

Mr. President,

 

We thank the Working Group for their report, which takes stock of the normative framework and the emerging practices implementing the UN Guiding Principles. It calls upon states to make greater efforts to use their leverage and deploy their powerful tools in support of their commitments related to the principles. 

 

Despite signs of progress, much more can be done by states to use their influence to protect human rights in the business sector. Policy coherence at regional, national and global levels remain a fundamental challenge. It is encouraging that some companies currently are implementing due diligence as a requirement throughout their business operations. Emerging best practices for corporate human rights due diligence should be further developed and scaled up across all sectors and regions. Governments and companies should work closely with human rights defenders as well as with affected communities and workers, whose voices must be heard and opinions taken into account. As small and medium-sized enterprises play a key role in the global economy, further capacity-building should be directed towards them.

 

Last but not least, respect for human rights must be at the heart of the corporate contribution to the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals. Human rights due diligence must be seen by states as well as companies as a key element towards the implementation of the Guiding Principles and the achievement of the 2030 Agenda.

I thank you.