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Unions file complaint against Italian brands remaining in Myanmar

17 July, 2023Italian NGO Italia-Birmana Insieme, who works with banned Myanmar trade union IWFM and CTUM, have filed a complaint with the OECD’s NCP in Italy against a number of garment brands, including Love Moschino and OVS, who still produce in Myanmar despite continuing violations of workers’ rights.

Since the military coup in February 2021 trade unions have been outlawed and union activists are hounded. Workers’ rights are violated, and it is impossible to conduct due diligence in the country.
Acting on this, CGIL, CISL, UIL and Italia-Birmania Insieme, who all support the call for comprehensive economic sanctions and a responsible exit from Myanmar, will follow closely the complaint filed at the Italian National Contact Point (NCP). The NCPs have a responsibility to help resolve complaints of alleged breaches of the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises.
Says Khaing Zar, president of IndustriALL affiliate IWFM:

“Fundamental rights at work have been violated since the beginning of the coup and we are taking action to counter the lack of cooperation of the brands who insist on remaining in Myanmar. Many brands are hiding behind support from the European Union through the MADE in Myanmar programme, in effect whitewashing from the EU providing space to fake trade unions and a fake social dialogue.”

IndustriALL’s 3rd Congress in September 2021 adopted a resolution in support of democracy in Myanmar, calling for comprehensive economic sanctions.

“The NCP complaint filed by our Italian affiliates is one of many pathways we use following the Congress resolution,”

says IndustriALL general secretary Atle Høie.

“In other countries and against other brands we use different mechanisms to get the same results. There is no freedom of association and operating in Myanmar lines the pockets of the military junta.”