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Parliamentary question - E-001162/2023(ASW)Parliamentary question

Answer given by Executive Vice-President Dombrovskis on behalf of the European Commission

Promoting a zero-tolerance policy on child labour and the eradication of forced labour are priorities of EU human rights policy[1]. The Commission advances the implementation of global standards on child labour and forced labour at international level through various measures and policies outlined in the Commission’s Communication on Decent Work Worldwide[2].

Those include, for example, engagement with partner countries under trade instruments[3], development cooperation measures[4], dedicated guidance for companies and initiatives on supply chain sustainability such as the EU Comprehensive Strategy on the Rights of the Child[5], which promotes EU supply chains free of child labour, and the proposal for a directive on Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence[6], which proposes mandatory human rights due diligence for companies.

The Commission’s proposal for a regulation on Forced Labour[7] aims to further contribute to promoting the implementation of international standards at global level by introducing a prohibition to place on the EU market products made with forced labour, including forced child labour.

Under the Commission’s proposal, national competent authorities would investigate specific products and impose bans on those found in breach of the prohibition, and the Commission would support the implementation by setting up support tools such as a network of competent authorities, implementation guidelines and a public database of forced labour risks in specific geographic areas or with respect to specific products.

Under the proposed system, Member States’ c ustoms authorities would identify and stop banned products at EU borders based on the decisions of the competent authorities and information from the economic operators.

Last updated: 5 June 2023
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