Swiss regulation of commodity trade long overdue

Several global commodity traders that call Switzerland home have been repeatedly accused of violating human rights and environmental standards. Andreas Missbach of the NGO Public Eye believes the Responsible Business Initiative is necessary for reining them in. Five years after releasing its background report on commodities, the Swiss government published a reassessment of the situation at the end of November – “The Swiss commodities sector: current situation and outlook”. Despite numerous scandals involving commodity firms in Geneva and Zug, the Federal Council has once again missed the opportunity to adopt effective measures against corruption and ward off other risks. Yet again, it seems to be content with asking the Swiss multinational commodity trading and mining company Glencore and its pals “to act with integrity and responsibility”. In 2013, at least the Federal Council’s message was clear. It talked about “serious challenges regarding human rights and ...
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