UNDP promotes responsible, human rights-based business practices for long-term competitiveness in global markets

February 16, 2023

          16 February 2023, Bishkek – UNDP has developed a three-step guidance service to companies for better understanding the human rights impacts associated with their operations and establish appropriate due diligence processes in Japan and 17 countries, including Kyrgyzstan. The global initiative is funded by the Government of Japan in support of the implementation of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs).

A second round of comprehensive training has been conducted by the Business and Human Rights Academy (B+HR Academy), a UNDP initiative that provides tailor-made Human Rights Due Diligence trainings and one-on-one advisory sessions for companies. The training, which has been informed by the human rights Country Context Assessment Study conducted in the Kyrgyz Republic in November 2022 as tailored to the needs of Japanese companies and their suppliers, has successfully ended on 27th of January 2023.

 Louise Chamberlain, UNDP Resident Representative noted that: “UNDP designed the B+HR Academy to support the growing interest by businesses to undertake human rights due diligence, contribute to more responsible global supply chains, and stay competitive in the global market. With support of the Government of Japan we are implementing the B+HR Academy for Japanese companies, their affiliates, suppliers and partners in 18 countries in Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Central Asia, and Latin America and the Caribbean, including the Kyrgyz Republic.”

In Kyrgyzstan, representatives of more than 50 local businesses have already completed the training of the B+HR Academy during 2022-23 and some are already developing Human Rights policies for their companies, to enhance their ability to remain competitive in the local and global market while respecting due diligence processes and pursuing the well-being of society .

“Enterprises can affect the human rights of their employees and contract workers, their customers, workers in their supply chains, communities around their operations and end users of their products or service. In this context, the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights should also guide the development of policies in Kyrgyzstan, including National Action Plans, as they define concrete, actionable steps for governments and companies to meet their respective duties and responsibilities to prevent human rights abuses in company operations and provide remedies if such abuses take place”, pointed Nurbek Sabirov, LLM, BHR Academy trainer.

Dr. Olena Uvarova, international expert, leader of the International Lab on Business and Human Rights at Yaroslav Mudryi National Law University (Kharkiv, Ukraine) also stressed that it is important for businesses to know the expectations of investors, to be prepared for global changes in regulation, and to understand the emerging demand from consumers for responsible behavior. “In today's society, such knowledge gives great competitive advantage. But it's not even about competition. It's about doing the right thing. Our training is about doing the right thing”.

To learn more about the Global Project “Promoting Responsible Business Conduct in Global Supply Chains” and the B+HR Academy please follow the link: B+HR Academy | United Nations Development Programme (undp.org)

Link to photo album from training: https://flic.kr/s/aHBqjApKT9


Media Contacts: Nurzhan Alymkanova, Communication Specialist UNDP, nurzhan.alymkanova@undp.org