Many European countries already have laws requiring corporations to observe human rights and international environmental standards also in their operations abroad. The European Union too plans to pass a law on corporate social responsibility. This will soon make Switzerland the only country in Europe without corporate social responsibility.
What it is about
Recent years have witnessed a clear trend towards the binding implementation of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. Many European countries already have legislation requiring corporations to respect human rights and international environmental standards also in their business dealings in other countries. At the EU level, the legislative process is now under way to introduce an EU-wide corporate social responsibility law.
It is expected to take effect in the spring of 2024. With its minimal and ineffective counterproposal to the Responsible Business Initiative, Switzerland is lagging ever further behind. Swiss civil society is therefore maintaining the pressure on the Government and Parliament to bring in Swiss legislation that is aligned with the EU standard as soon as possible.