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International Documents on Corporate Responsibility

Edited by Stephen Tully

International Documents on Corporate Responsibility includes the principal international, regional and national instruments drafted by intergovernmental organisations or states as well as codes of conduct formulated by industry associations, trade unions and non-governmental organisations. The coverage includes the fields of human rights, international criminal and environmental law, labour standards, international trade, armed conflict, sustainable development, corruption, consumer protection and corporate governance. Each document is accompanied by a brief explanatory commentary outlining the historical origins of the instrument, the principal actors involved, controversial negotiation issues, applicable implementation procedure, and identifies further reference material.
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Chapter 123: UNCTAD: The Set of Multilaterally Agreed Equitable Principles and Rules for the Control of Restrictive Business Practices, 2000


Commentary: UNGA Resolutions 33/153 (1978) & 34/447 (1979) convened a UN Conference on Restrictive Business Practices under UNCTAD auspices during 1979 and 1980. The Conference adopted a set of multilaterally agreed equitable principles (Resolution of 22 April 1980, 7th plenary meeting) which were subsequently approved through UNGA Resolution 35/63 (1980). See further, UN Doc UNCTAD/RBP/CONF/10/Rev.2 (2000). In addition to the provisions of the Restrictive Business Practices Code extracted below, Section F contemplates intergovernmental collaboration, information exchange and consultation through UNCTAD or the UNCTC and arranging seminars for exchanging views ‘among persons in the public and private sectors’. Four UN Conferences to Review All Aspects of the Set of Principles have since taken place (1985, 1990, 1995 and 2000). The Fourth Review reaffirmed their continuing validity, recommended the ‘UN Set of Principles and Rules on Competition’ as an appropriate subtitle and called for further implementation: see UNCTAD Doc TD/RBP/CONF.5/15 (2000) and the Fourth Conference Report, TD/RBP/CONF.5/16 (2000). See also, UNCTAD (2000), ‘An Assessment of the Operation of the Set’ TD/RBP/CONF.5/3; UNCTAD (1999), ‘A Preliminary Assessment since the Third Review Conference’, TD/B/COM.2/CLP/13; UNCTAD (1998), ‘Continued Work on the Elaboration of a Model Law or Laws on Restrictive Business Practices’, TD/B/RBP/81/Rev.5; UNCTAD (1996), ‘Competition Policy and Restrictive Business Practices’ TD/B/RBP/INF.36; UNCTAD (1997), ‘Transnational Corporations, Market Structure and Competition Policy’, UN Doc UNCTAD/ITE/IIT/5; See also, OECD (1995), ‘Council Recommendation concerning co-operation between member countries on anticompetitive practices affecting international trade’, OECD Doc C(95)130/FINAL. For bilateral initiatives, see, for example, US–EC (1998)...

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