On 23 February 2022, the EU Commission published its long-awaited proposal for an EU supply chain law. The European Parliament and the EU Council – including a number of German government representatives – are now discussing the draft law. Together with more than 220 civil society organisations from Europe and the rest of the world, Germanwatch clarified which changes the Commission's proposal needs from the perspective of civil society. Importantly, amending the law accordingly would also fulfil the promise made in the government coalition agreement for an effective EU supply chain law.
A European supply chain act can become a powerful instrument to counterbalance the injustices resulting from our global economic system, strengthen the rights of people in producing countries and curb the environmental and climate crisis. To achieve this, Germanwatch, Initiative Lieferkettengesetz and many other organisations therefore demand, among other things:
- Due diligence obligations to prevent and end human rights and environmental impacts must apply to the entire value chain.
- Comprehensive environmental and climate due diligence must be part of the law.
- The law must prescribe effective civil liability and provide access to justice for affected persons.
- Affected people must be actively involved in all steps of a company's due diligence process.