UN expert group on business and human rights to visit Azerbaijan

A United Nations group of independent experts will pay its first official visit to Azerbaijan on August 18.

The expert group aims to examine the impact of business activities on human rights in the country, the UN website said.

“As an oil-rich nation which has experienced rapid economic growth and an increased role of private companies in the economy, Azerbaijan faces specific challenges and opportunities in preventing and protecting against business-related human rights abuses,” Puvan Selvanathan, one of the members of the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights who will travel to Azerbaijan said.

The experts will look at current initiatives, opportunities and challenges to implement the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights in Azerbaijan.

The principles, unanimously endorsed by the UN Human Rights Council in 2011, offer clarity and guidance for authorities and companies to prevent and address adverse impacts of business activities on human rights.

The experts will meet with the government authorities and a number of companies, civil society organizations, trade unions and other stakeholders.

Findings from the country visit and recommendations will be included in an official report to be presented to the Human Rights Council in June 2015.