Question for written answer to the Commission Rule 130 Ramón Jáuregui Atondo (S&D) , Inmaculada Rodríguez-Piñero Fernández (S&D) , Javi López (S&D) , Sergio Gutiérrez Prieto (S&D) , Elena Valenciano (S&D)
Subject: Investigation into infringements of the fundamental rights of workers in Bangladesh
The Sustainability Compact agreed between the EU and the Government of Bangladesh with the intention of protecting labour rights and worker safety is not being implemented with the necessary speed and thoroughness. What is more, the right to freedom of association continues to be breached, as the arrests of trade union leaders and activists show.
Bangladesh is currently a beneficiary of the Everything but Arms initiative under the EU’s new Generalised Scheme of Preferences (GSP), which means its exports to the EU — with the exception of weapons and ammunition — are exempt from duties and tariffs, subject to compliance with international conventions on human and labour rights. The Commission has thus far refused to initiate as part of the GSP an investigation into the violations of workers’ rights in Bangladesh.
However, given the gravity of the situation:
Does the Commission intend to open an investigation with a view to ensuring that the Bangladeshi Government takes swift and meaningful action to remedy the situation?
In the context of the flagship initiative in the garment sector, and as requested by Parliament, does the Commission intend to establish a binding framework on human and labour rights for the sector, in accordance with OECD Due Diligence Guidance?