Statement on Scope: TNCs and Other Business Enterprises – Definition and Legal Nature in International Law

13 July 2015

The Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom joins the statement of the Treaty Alliance and would like to further develop some points.

We affirm our support for a strong instrument that has a wide scope and covers all kinds of business enterprises. All companies, domestic or transnational may violate human rights and should be covered by this instrument.

Special attention should be given to transnational companies. Whereas one single country may be successful in preventing human rights violations by domestic enterprises, the same task cannot be successful for transnational companies unless international agreements such as the one foreseen are elaborated.

Thus, we imagine a more extensive part of this instrument would be applicable to transnational companies, in particular the issues of legal and judicial jurisdiction will be particularly aimed at transnational companies.

WILPF calls member States not to tolerate any exceptions in the nature of enterprises covered by this instrument. Whereas we are aware that other instruments or initiatives for instruments exist for companies of specific natures or markets, those companies should not be excluded from this treaty and specific instruments should apply as lex specialis.