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Press release |

A sad day for human rights, the environment and the competitiveness of European businesses

Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive

The European ambassadors rejected today in Coreper the agreement on the Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive. A crushing defeat for the environment and the defence of human rights.

Heidi HAUTALA, Vice-President of the European Parliament, Greens-EFA Shadow rapporteur in the Legal Affairs committee comments:

"This is a sad day for human rights, the environment and the competitiveness of European businesses. No qualified majority was reached in the Council today on the long-prepared Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive. Member States were willing to torpedo the legislation, despite the strong support for the directive from businesses, civil society and consumers.

The FDP party, part of the governing coalition in Germany, succeeded in its sabotage and pulled along several Member States. This process has not been to the credit of the Council. The trilogue agreement from December last year is a balanced compromise. Still, the Council tore the agreement apart at the last minute. For the sake of the credibility and integrity of EU decision making, it is essential that Member States respect the results of the trilogues and do not backtrack on agreements for yet another round of European horse-trading.  

Fall of the directive would lead to a fragmented internal market and a patchwork of national legislation on responsible business conduct. The lack of an EU-level law would be a slap in the face to thousands of companies that already have in place due diligence processes in line with international standards and expect a level playing field.

The Council has two weeks to find a new compromise before the directive can no longer be adopted by the current Parliament. Pushing the directive to the next term would jeopardise the whole legislative project. Political will and leadership at the highest level is now needed to break the deadlock." 


Responsible MEPs

Heidi Hautala
Heidi Hautala
EP Vice-President, Member

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