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Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN

CorpWatch was part of an international coalition of organizations exposing the poor human rights and environmental records of companies forming partnerships with the UN. CorpWatch was the Secretariat of this coalition, known as the Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN.

UN: Global Compact with Business 'Lacks Teeth' - NGOs
by Gustavo CapdevilaInter Press News Service (IPS)
July 6th, 2007
The U.N.'s Global Compact with international big business "at the moment is so voluntary that it really is a happy-go-lucky club," says Ramesh Singh, chief executive of ActionAid, a non-governmental organisation. The controversy has come to a boiling point because of the Global Compact Leaders' Summit being held in Geneva on Thursday and Friday, at which over 1,000 representatives of multinational companies are taking part, in addition to well-known civil society figures like Irene Khan, the secretary general of AI; Mary Robinson, president of the Ethical Globalisation Initiative; Guy Ryder, general secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation; and Jeremy Hobbs, executive director of Oxfam International.

UN: More Firms Join UN Push To Be Good Corporate Citizens
by Alexandra MacRae Christian Science Monitor
July 28th, 2004

U.N. Alliance for a Corporate-Free U.N.
EarthRights International
January 16th, 2004
We are writing today to call on you to end your agencys participation in the Global Compact. We believe that the Global Compact, though started with good intentions by Secretary General Kofi Annan, is counterproductive. The Global Compact allows the name and reputation of the UN to be abused by corporations whose practices are in contradiction with the values of the UN. Partnerships with these corporations damage the integrity and mission of your agency and of the United Nations.

UN: Proposal for Private Soldiers Gathers Steam
by Stephen FidlerFinancial Times
November 5th, 2003
As the United Nations launches a high-level review to address how it can better keep the peace in the 21st century, a new initiative has emerged that proposes fielding forces of private soldiers to prevent conflicts in Africa and elsewhere from spiralling out of control.

UN: Water Deemed As Public Good, Human Right
by Gustavo CapdevilaInterPress Service
November 27th, 2002
The United Nations Committee on Economic, Cultural and Social Rights issued a statement Wednesday declaring access to water a human right and stating that water is a social and cultural good, not merely an economic commodity.

Tell UNICEF Not to Turn World Children's Day into World McDonald's Day!
International Baby Food Action Network, EarthRights International, CorpWatch
November 20th, 2002
Unicef and McDonald's have agreed ''to team up to raise money on behalf of the world's children.'' This perilous partnership is to be launched on November 20, 2002 -- a day that used to be known in Unicef circles as the anniversary of the 1989 adoption of United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. Unicef now calls November 20th ''McDonald's World Children's Day.''

South Africa: Earth Summit Plan of Action Adopted
Environment News Service
September 4th, 2002
Negotiators for 191 countries attending the World Summit on Sustainable Development have agreed upon a Plan of Action to alleviate poverty and conserve the Earth's natural resources. Summit delegates are expected to adopt the action plan, with a political declaration, at the conclusion of the summit on Wednesday.

Sustainable Development: R.I.P.
by Kenny BrunoCorpWatch
September 4th, 2002
As the Earth Summit closes in Johannesburg, we present this requiem for sustainable development. However, resistance to the big business agenda is alive and well in the streets.

Bayer Responsible in Pesticide Deaths of 24 Children in Peru
Pesticide Action Network Latin America and Red de Accion en Alternativas al uso de Agroqumicos
August 30th, 2002
Following a nine-month investigation, a Peruvian Congressional Subcommittee has issued its final report on the poisoning deaths by the organophosphate pesticide methyl parathion of 24 children in the remote village of Tauccamarca in October 1999. The Subcommittee concluded that there is significant evidence of administrative and criminal responsibility on the part of Ministry of Agriculture, and of criminal responsibility on the part of the agrochemical company Bayer. Headquartered in Germany, Bayer has been a principle Peruvian importer and distributor of both methyl and ethyl parathion. The report recommends that the government and Bayer indemnify the families of the dead children.

South Africa: U.S., Saudis Oppose Summit Plan on Energy
Washington Post
August 28th, 2002
The United States, Saudi Arabia and other wealthy nations reportedly worked today to water down proposals at a U.N. summit to rapidly expand the use of clean, renewable energy technologies.

Bhopal Survivors Protest Dow's Presence at the World Summit on Sustainable Development
International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal
August 28th, 2002
Representatives of the International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal are opposed to the participation of US multinational Dow Chemical Company at the WSSD and condemned the company's attempts to ''greenwash the worst corporate crime in history.'' They also had harsh words for the UN for its failure to provide any support to the victims of the world's worst industrial disaster.

South Africa: Bhopal Tragedy Lives on at Earth Summit
by Maria AbrahamReuters
August 27th, 2002
BOMBAY -- An exhibition of black-and-white photographs capturing the suffering of victims of the world's worst industrial accident is set to open in Johannesburg on Tuesday to coincide with the Earth Summit.

New from Food First Books and CorpWatch: Earth
by CorpWatch
August 27th, 2002
An energy company plants trees and donates electric cars to advertise its environmental commitment while polluting the air with coal-fired power plants for three-quarters of its energy. Hypocrisy? No, business as usual for many corporations, according to, the latest from Food First Books and CorpWatch, published to coincide with the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg.

USA: Holcim -- Global Greenwasher
by Lucy KomisarPacific News Service
August 26th, 2002
Along with environmentalists and community activists, big business has descended upon Johannesburg, South Africa, to tout its own "green" growth strategies in the summit on Earth-friendly development. But if the environmental record of one key corporate player is any indication, the overtures are pure "greenwash."

What A Difference A Decade Makes
by Kenny BrunoCorpWatch
August 26th, 2002
Harsh Police Action, a discussion paper pushing a free trade agenda and a diverse People's Forum are all in the spotlight as the Earth Summit opens.

South Africa: Business Role is Greeted with Some Suspicion
by Vanessa HoulderFinancial Times
August 23rd, 2002
Battle lines are being drawn up as delegates gather for the summit. For some governments, it is an opportunity to promote the role of business in sustainable development. But many campaigners have the opposite goal: to stem the tide of corporate influence over social and environmental policy.

Greenwash Academy Awards Announced at Earth Summit
by CorpWatch
August 23rd, 2002
Oil majors Shell, BP and ExxonMobil dominated todays World Summit Greenwash Academy Awards, beating Biotech giants Monsanto, Novartis and Aventis in a glittering award ceremony in Johannesburg. Local South African underdog Sasol edged out Eskom for Best Picture.

South Africa: Working the Web--Johannesburg Summit
by Felicity CarusThe Guardian
August 22nd, 2002
108 heads of state from 172 countries were busy saving the planet at the earth summit Rio. It is difficult to say how the earth summit has improved the environment and helped those most in need. But it is much easier to say that in 1992, the web was a toddler in contrast to the speeding giant of mass communications it now is, giving a voice to all who can get online.

Earth Summit Day of Action on Bhopal!
CorpWatch India
August 22nd, 2002
The U.S. multinational Dow Chemical Company -- the new owner of Union Carbide of Bhopal notoriety -- is in Johannesburg to talk sustainable development. Also, in Johannesburg are representatives and supporters of the victims of Union Carbide's gas disaster in Bhopal. Since July 17, 2002, survivors of the world's worst industrial disaster and their supporters have been on a worldwide relay hunger strike. More than 700 people have fasted till date to protest against Dow-Carbide's refusal to acknowledge the pending liabilities in Bhopal, and against the Indian Government's betrayal of the victims merely to protect the interests of the U.S. multinational.

Oil Majors, Biotech Giants Lead Greenwash Academy Award Nominees
by CorpWatch
August 21st, 2002
On the eve of the 2002 World Summit Greenwash Academy Awards, carbon kingpins Shell, BP and ChevronTexaco, along with leading purveyors of Frankenfoods, Monsanto, Novartis and Aventis are vying for some of the glittering event's most prestigious awards. Local favorites Eskom and Sasol should not be counted out, however, according to insiders from the Academy.

Marching to Johannesburg
by Kenny Bruno and Joshua KarlinerCorpWatch
August 21st, 2002
On the eve of the Johannesburg Earth Summit we look at corporate responsibility vs. accountability. From the new book

USA: Bush Turns His Back on Earth Summit
Environment News Service
August 19th, 2002
Secretary of State Colin Powell will lead the American delegation to the World Summit on Sustainable Development, to be held in Johannesburg, South Africa from August 26 through September 4. President George W. Bush made the announcement late today, giving no explanation as to why he will not be attending the summit to join 106 other world leaders on the speaker's podium.

Corporate 'Greenwash' Academy Awards
groundWork, Friends of the Earth International, CorpWatch et al.
August 19th, 2002
Trans-national corporations perpetrating human rights and environmental abuses will answer for their actions - wherever they are. Politicians that ignore or enable these abuses will be exposed.

USA: Oil Lobby Urges Bush to Keep Climate Change Off the Table at Earth Summit
by Anthony BrowneTimes of London
August 16th, 2002
Conservative lobbyists in the US funded by Esso have urged President Bush to derail the Earth summit in Johannesburg because it is anti-freedom, anti-people, anti-globalization and anti-Western.

Soweto Stories
by Brian AsheEarthLife Africa eThekwini
August 16th, 2002
Some residents of Soweto, a township outside Johannesburg, have expressed anger at being sent bills by Eskom even though they either do not have electricity or their supply has long been cut off. Here's what they say.

Eskom's African Privatisation Footprint 2000-2002
by Brian AsheEarthLife Africa eThekwini
August 16th, 2002
Eskom, through Eskom Enterprises, currently has a presence in almost 30 countries on the continent.

ESKOM: Corporate Powerhouse or Green Company?
by Brian AsheEarthLife Africa eThekwini
August 16th, 2002
South Africa's giant electric company is a major polluter and leads the way in utility privatization. It also wants us to believe that it is a leader in sustainable development.

Shell Games at the Earth Summit
by Kenny Bruno and Joshua KarlinerCorpWatch
August 15th, 2002
In the decade between the Rio and Johannesburg Earth Summit's, Royal Dutch Shell touted green and human rights rhetoric while grossly violating those rights. Excerpted from

UN: Health Activists Ask UNICEF to Dump McDonald's
by Jim LobeOneWorld US
August 1st, 2002
An international coalition of public-health professionals and activists has asked the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) to stop "lending its good name and endorsement to McDonald's" and cancel its participation with the fast-food giant in 'World Children's Day' on November 20.

From Rio to Johannesburg: The Globalization Decade
by Kenny Bruno and Joshua KarlinerCorpWatch and Food First Books
July 24th, 2002
An overview of the political, environmental and economic context in the 10 years between the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio and the upcoming Summit in Johannesburg. Excerpted from the book ''Earth''

Why Bayer's Corporate Image May Need a Face Lift
Coalition Against Bayer Dangers
July 19th, 2002
In Bayer and the Global Compact, Phillipp Mimkes of the Coalition Against Bayer Dangers looks at Bayer's corporate history and why it may be at odds with the Compact, a partnership between the UN and big business. Here, Mimkes offers a few more reasons.

Bayer and the UN Global Compact
by Philipp MimkesCoalition Against Bayer Dangers
July 19th, 2002
Bayer doesn't just make aspirin--it's a major producer of chemicals and drugs with a dubious corporate record. So how did it get into a partnership with the UN? A German activist tells how and why.

USA: Corporate Responsibility vs. Accountability
by Joshua Karliner and Kenny BrunoInternational Herald Tribune
July 10th, 2002
The world has moved backward on environment and development since Rio. Governments surely bear primary responsibility for this failure. However, global corporations are at the root of many of the most intractable problems and have hamstrung governments preparing for Earth Summit II in Johannesburg, South Africa.

World: Business Role Crucial at Global Summit, Leader Says
by Jodie GinsbergReuters
July 5th, 2002
Big business, whose lust for profit is seen as anathema to sustainable development, must contribute to next month's global summit on poverty and the environment, the man leading corporate interests there said.

World: Leaders Won't Commit to Earth Summit
by Dennis BueckertCanadian Press
June 28th, 2002
OTTAWA -- Protecting the planet for future generations just doesn't cut it any more, judging from the guest list for Earth Summit 2, the worldwide environmental pow-wow set for Johannesburg in August. The World Summit on Sustainable Development -- its official name -- is supposed to refocus international attention on the cause of sustainable development -- but it could be a summit in name only.

Canada: Country Poised to Receive G-8 Leaders and the Alternative People's Summit
Environment News Service
June 24th, 2002
CALGARY -- Canada is committed to preserving and protecting the environment during all phases of the G-8 Summit which is set to open in Kananaskis, Alberta on Thursday and Friday, government environmental officials have pledged. A parallel peoples' forum, the Group of Six Billion, says theirs is the gathering that reflects full respect for the environment and human rights.

Another UN is Possible
by Kenny BrunoCorpWatch
June 13th, 2002
Diplomats say the US is putting up roadblocks to the UN Earth Summit. Still, many believe "Another UN is possible."

EarthSummit.Biz Launched
by CorpWatch
June 11th, 2002
San Francisco, London and Johannesberg -- In preparation for the Johannesburg Earth Summit, the Greenwash Academy is proud to announce that nominations are open for the Green Oscars -- the premier awards for corporations acting green.

Girona Declaration
Corporate Europe Observatory (CEO)
May 27th, 2002
At the occassion of the start of PrepCom IV (Bali, 27 May -- 7 June 2002) we herewith send you the Girona Declaration. The Bali event is last preparatory conference before the UN's World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD), Rio+10. The declaration -- signed by over 30 groups from around the world -- is a result of the strategy session ''Rio+10 and Beyond: Strategies Against the Greenwash of Corporate Globalisation'', held March 18-20 2002 in Girona, Spain.

Gates Foundation Urged to Keep Philip Morris Out of Nutrition Initiative
May 9th, 2002
BOSTON -- In a letter sent to Bill and Melinda Gates today, the national corporate accountability organization Infact urged the couple to help end Philip Morris's involvement in the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN). Today, the Gates Foundation is announcing the launch of the new alliance, which includes Kraft Foods as well as UN agencies, to increase access to nutrient-fortified foods in developing countries. Kraft is a subsidiary of Philip Morris, the world's largest and most profitable tobacco corporation. The tobacco giant has been exposed for using its Kraft Foods division in efforts to undermine the World Health Organization-initiated Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC), a global treaty. Infact is one of dozens of NGOs around the world working to ensure a strong and enforceable FCTC.

Johannesburg 2002: Summit or Sabotage?
International Media Advocacy Project
April 11th, 2002
UNITED NATIONS -- Leaders of international environment and development NGO coalitions today challenged governments' indecision in failing to protect the political accomplishments of the 1992 Earth Summit. And they attacked several Northern governments for attempting to undermine the carefully-structured consensus of Rio.

MEXICO: UN Summit Protesters Hit the Streets
by Julie WatsonWashington Post
March 19th, 2002
Even as world leaders kicked off discussions on how to alleviate poverty a theme anti-globalization activists have pushed for years a motley crew of corn farmers, masked students and rebel supporters took to the streets denouncing the gathering as more of the same.

CorpWatch Disputes UN Official's February 14 Letter
March 7th, 2002
In a January 29 letter the Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN documented several human rights violations and environmental abuses by companies signed on to the UN's Global Compact. Corporations that join the compact are supposed to voluntarily adhere to a series of human right and environmental principles. Instead of addressing the charges of rights violations, UN officials accused CorpWatch and the Alliance of being ''misinformed.'' In the correspondence, CorpWatch disputes the Global Compact Office's assertions point by point.

The Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN Calls For Response to Human Rights Issues
Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN
March 5th, 2002
The Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN has raised questions about the partnerships between the United Nations and transnational corporations under the Global Compact since it was launched in the summer of 2000. Alliance members feel that the Global Compact Office has skirted the questions raised by numerous human rights and environmental abuses by companies which have signed onto the Compact.

UN: Swedish Businessman Loses Job
by Edith M. LedererAssociated Press
March 1st, 2002
A Swedish businessman, whose multimillion-dollar pension came under fire, has lost his job as a spokesman for a U.N. program promoting ethical business practices

Sweden: Lindahl Forced to Leave UN
by Lennart PehrsonDagens Nyheter (Daily News, Stockholm)
February 27th, 2002
The former chief executive officer of ABB, Goran Lindahl, will not be allowed to continue his prestigious post as special advisor to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan. Lindahl was pressured to resign after a pension scandal at ABB.

CorpWatch Supports Removal of Goran Lindahl from UN Global Compact Post
by CorpWatch
February 27th, 2002
CorpWatch declared its support today for Secretary General Kofi Annan's decision not to renew a UN contract for scandal-ridden Swedish business leader Goran Lindahl. Mr. Lindahl, who was Mr. Annan's special advisor for the UN Global Compact, has been the subject of a pension scandal at Asea Brown and Boveri (ABB), where he was CEO until last year.

UN Response to the Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN
United Nations Global Compact Office
February 21st, 2002
The official UN Global Compact Office's response to the Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN's letter of January 29, 2002 is posted here. It is important to note two salient points: First, the "response" does not address the key issues raised in the international Alliance's letter, but rather changes the subject and focuses on criticizing CorpWatch staff and supposed ''inaccuracies'' in CorpWatch's recent ''Greenwash +10'' report. Second, the letter itself inaccurately portrays the positions and critiques contained in the CorpWatch report, labeling the Alliance's ongoing disagreement with the Global Compact's approach as a ''misunderstanding,'' and the wrong view.

USA: Huge Tremors at Swiss Giant ABB
by Stanley ReedBusiness Week
February 15th, 2002
The latest victim of Enronitis may be ABB, the Zurich-based engineering giant whose founder and former CEO Percy Barnevik was once considered to be the Jack Welch of Europe. Beset by several quarters of disappointing performance, problems seem to be piling up at ABB amid investor fears of unrevealed woes at a company that had prided itself on using U.S.-style multinationalism and savage cost-cutting to become a model European business.

USA: Global Compact--NGOs, Business Differ Over Initiative's Future
by Joe FiorillUN Wire
January 31st, 2002
As global business and political players gather today in New York for the opening of the World Economic Forum, differences are beginning to emerge among nongovernmental organizations, multinational corporations and the United Nations over the future shape of the U.N. Global Compact and its role in regulating corporate behavior worldwide.

Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN Sends Letter to Kofi Annan Calling for Major Changes to Global Compact
by CorpWatch
January 29th, 2002
Members of the Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN, a grouping of non-governmental groups from around the world, send letter to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan outlining major proposed changes to the Global Compact.

Letter to Kofi Annan Recommending Redesign of Global Compact
Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN
January 29th, 2002
Alliance for Corporate-Free UN writes letter to Kofi Annan about the Global Compact saying that the Compact as currently designed has serious flaws that threaten the integrity and mission of the United Nations, by partnering with multinational corporations.

USA: Promises Fall Short of Performance Says U.N. Head
by Thalif DeenInter Press Service
January 28th, 2002
The international community has fallen short of promises to prevent deterioration of the global environment, U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan said Monday.

CorpWatch Releases New Report on UN and Corporations
by CorpWatch
January 24th, 2002
CorpWatch releases a new report called ''Greenwash + 10 -- The UN's Global Compact, Corporate Accountability and the Johannesburg Earth Summit.'' The report documents corporate influence on the United Nations and calls on the UN to implement measures for accountability.

Greenwash + 10
by Kenny BrunoCorpWatch
January 24th, 2002
This new report documents corporate influence on the United Nations and calls on the UN to take measures for accountability.

Norsk Hydro: Global Compact Violator
by CorpWatch
October 18th, 2001
Today CorpWatch is releasing the sixth in a series of articles written by members of the Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN documenting violations of UN Global Compact Principles by the very companies that have signed onto the controversial UN Compact.

Protestors, Drummers, Greenwashers Greet CEOs at First BASD Meeting in Paris
Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN, et al.
October 11th, 2001
PARIS (October 9) -- At 8:30 this morning local time, activists from France, Belgium, the Netherlands, England, Germany, Denmark, Nigeria and Spain gathered outside the headquarters of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) in Paris to protest against the first meeting of the Business Action for Sustainable Development (BASD) group.

Unilever Violates Global Compact
by CorpWatch
October 7th, 2001
Today CorpWatch is releasing the fifth in a series of articles written by members of the Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN documenting violations of UN Global Compact Principles by the very companies that have signed onto the controversial UN Compact.

Inconsistencies Galore
by Nityanand JayaramanCorpWatch
October 4th, 2001
In the months following the discovery and expose of Unilever's polluting practices in Kodaikanal, many of the responses and statements by the company have been contrary to facts. The time line below outlines a few. (Emphasis is the author's.)

Unilever's Mercury Fever
by Nityanand JayaramanSpecial to CorpWatch
October 4th, 2001
The fifth in our series of articles on Global Compact companies examines Unilever's response when caught dumping toxic mercury waste from a thermometer factory in Southern India earlier this year. The Anglo-Dutch company recently closed the factory. Community members, however, allege that the multinational has downplayed the dangers of mercury and misled the public in an attempt to cover up the truth. Indian journalist Nityanand Jayaraman reports for CorpWatch.

Brooklyn Diary
by Kenny BrunoCorpWatch
September 19th, 2001
CorpWatch is based in San Francisco, but one of our 7 person staff, Kenny Bruno, actually lives and works in New York City. The following are some of his thoughts and impressions on the terrorist attack on his hometown and Washington DC -- attacks that all of us here at CorpWatch vehemently condemn.

UN: One Year Later Global Compact Has Little To Show
by Irwin ArieffReuters
July 27th, 2001
The Global Compact, a U.N. program intended to help businesses become better world citizens, celebrates its first anniversary yesterday with more than 300 corporate partners, up from 44 at its launch.

International Chamber of Commerce: Wrong Partner for United Nations Global
by CorpWatch
July 25th, 2001
Today CorpWatch is releasing the fourth in a series of articles written by members of the Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN documenting violations of UN Global Compact Principles by the very companies that have signed onto the controversial UN Compact.

High Time for UN to Break 'Partnership' with the ICC
Corporate Europe Observatory
July 25th, 2001
The fourth article in our series focuses on the International Chamber of Commerce -- the self-described world business organization -- which has played a key role in shaping the UN Global Compact. Based on its ongoing violation of the Compact's Principles 7 (supporting a precautionary approach to environmental challenges) and 8 (promoting greater environmental responsibility), the Corporate Europe Observatory argues that it's high time for the UN to break its partnership with the ICC.

Rio Tinto: Global Compact Violator
by CorpWatch
July 18th, 2001
Today CorpWatch is publishing two articles, as the third installment of our series of articles written by members of the Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN documenting violations of UN Global Compact Principles by the very companies that have signed onto the controversial UN Compact.

Associating with the Wrong Company
by Asia-Pacific Human Rights NetworkHuman Rights Features
July 13th, 2001
The world's largest private mining company, Rio Tinto, has long been criticized for gross human rights violations dating back to its support of apartheid in Southern Africa. Despite its abysmal record, Rio Tinto has recently been accepted, and even courted, by intergovernmental institutions such as the United Nations and the Asia Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions (the Asia Pacific Forum).

Rio Tinto: Global Compact Violator
by Danny KennedyProject Underground
July 13th, 2001
Rio Tinto could be a poster child for corporate malfeasance. The largest mining company in the world, Rio Tinto has headquarters both in Melbourne, Australia and London, England and operations on all continents except Antarctica. For years, Rio Tinto has had a reputation for being responsible for environmental and human rights violations at its mines and smelters.

Nike: Global Compact Violator
by CorpWatch
June 29th, 2001
Today CorpWatch is releases the second in a series of articles written by members of the Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN documenting violations of UN Global Compact Principles by the companies that have signed onto the controversial UN Compact.

List of More Endorsers of Letters to Kofi Annan
June 16th, 2001
Here is a list of more endorsers of correspondence to Kofi Annan blasting the Global Compact corporations.

CorpWatch Releases First in a Series of Exposés on Global Compact Companies
by CorpWatch
June 15th, 2001
Today CorpWatch is releasing the first in a series of articles written by members of the Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN documenting violations of UN Global Compact Principles by the very companies that have signed onto the controversial UN Compact.

UN: Aventis Accused of Breaking Global Compact
by Elizabeth NeufferBoston Globe
June 15th, 2001
Consumer and agricultural watchdog groups yesterday accused a multinational corporation that produces genetically modified foods of failing to uphold a UN code of business conduct to which it had agreed.

Aventis: Global Compact Violator
by Gabriela FloraInstitute for Agriculture and Trade Policy
June 14th, 2001
Since Aventis signed on to the Global Compact in July 2000, their genetically engineered StarLinkTM corn has illegally contaminated the food supply and seed stock. A look at the company's behavior regarding StarLink shows that before, during and after signing the Compact, Aventis violated Global Compact's Principle 7, which is drawn from the Rio Declaration and supports ''a precautionary approach to environmental challenges.''

USA: Corporate Codes Not Enough, Say Critics
by Danielle KnightInter Press Service
June 14th, 2001
Companies worldwide have signed on to voluntary codes of conduct in a bid to mitigate globalization's harmful aspects. Activists and executives agree the firms are falling short but disagree on the reasons and remedies.

NGOs to Monitor Business Group's Plans for Earth Summit II
by CorpWatch
April 18th, 2001
NEW YORK -- CorpWatch warned today that the newly formed Business Action for Sustainable Development (BASD), an industry grouping organized to influence the Earth Summit in 2002 will be scrutinized and monitored by NGOs concerned with excessive corporate influence at the UN.

UN and Corporations Fact Sheet
March 22nd, 2001
Here is a CorpWatch Fact Sheet on the UN and corporations.

Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN Campaign Profile
March 22nd, 2001
For the past two years CorpWatch has led an international coalition of organizations in exposing the flawed human rights and environmental records of companies forming partnerships with the UN. CorpWatch is the Secretariat of this coalition, now known as the Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN.

What is the Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN?
March 22nd, 2001
The Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN is a global network of human rights, environment and development groups working to address undue corporate influence in the United Nations, and to support UN initiatives to hold corporations accountable on issues of human rights, labor rights and the environment.

UN and Corporations Fact Sheet
March 22nd, 2001
UN Secretary General Kofi Annan has encouraged all UN agencies to form partnerships with the private sector. Most UN agencies are actively pursuing these partnerships.

India: Greenpeace Accuses Unilever of Poisoning Tourist Resort
March 7th, 2001
Greenpeace today accused Anglo-Dutch multinational Unilever, owners of Lipton Tea and Dove soap, of double standards and shameful negligence for allowing its Indian subsidiary, Hindustan Lever, to dump several tonnes of highly toxic mercury waste in the densely populated tourist resort of Kodaikanal.

Switzerland: UN Chief Enlists ABB CEO to Boost Global Compact
by Jason Topping ConeForum News Daily
January 29th, 2001
United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan called here on Sunday for more corporations to get serious about environmental protection, human rights and labor standards -- and lobbied them to come on board the UN's Global Compact for corporate responsibility.

SWITZERLAND: UN Chief Warns Business
by Orla RyanBBC News Online
January 28th, 2001
United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan has called on business to work harder on environmental and social issues.

Groups in Porto Alegre Want Global Compact Put on Ice
by CorpWatch
January 28th, 2001
PORTO ALEGRE -- With UN Secretary General Kofi Annan preparing to renew his call for a 'Global Compact' between the UN and big business at the World Economic Forum in Davos, a global alliance of human rights and environmental organizations is calling for a suspension of this messy entaglement between the UN and big business.

The Global Compact: What It Is -- and Isn't
UN Global Compact Office
January 17th, 2001
United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan first proposed the Global Compact in an address to the World Economic Forum on 31 January 1999. He challenged world business leaders to help build the social and environmental pillars required to sustain the new global economy and make globalization work for all the world's people.

UN-Business Partnerships: Whose Agenda Counts?
by Peter UttingUnited Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD)
December 8th, 2000
This paper, ''Partnerships for Development or Privatization of the Multilateral System?'' was presented at a seminar organised by the North-South Coalition in Oslo, Norway.

UN: G-77 Calls for Rules of Engagement for Corporate Partnerships
Panafrican News Agency
September 16th, 2000
In the second year of UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan's policy of UN engagement with the private sector, the Group of 77 Friday called for appropriate rules to guide such an engagement.

UN: Protests at the Millennium Summit
by Jacki LydenNational Public Radio
September 9th, 2000
Improving health care and education, and ending poverty were some of the resolutions world leaders agreed upon at the United Nations Millennium Summit this week in New York. Participants also pledged to strengthen the UN's role in preventing international conflict.

UN: Don't Bother Looking to the World Body for Help
by Naomi KleinToronto Globe & Mail
September 6th, 2000
This meeting is hosted by the United Nations, which, by its mandate, places human and ecological needs ahead of the voracious demands of the market. Imperfect as the UN system may be, it is generally viewed by critics of globalization as a ray of moral hope on the international stage.

USA: Alternative Summit Meetings Examine Globalization
by Grant McCoolReuters
September 5th, 2000
Activists, businessmen and government leaders met on Tuesday in the shadow of the U.N. Millennium Summit, agonizing over the future of economic globalization following the disruption of the WTO in Seattle and how to narrow the widening gap between rich and poor.

UN: Globalization Tops Agenda for World Leaders at Millenium Summit
by Barbara CrossetteNew York Times
September 3rd, 2000
The stormy battle over globalization that brought protests to the streets of Seattle and Washington moves this week to the heart of the world's only truly global organization, the United Nations.

Tangled Up In Blue
by Kenny Bruno and Joshua KarlinerCorpWatch
September 1st, 2000
This report argues that corporate influence at the UN is already too great, and that new partnerships are leading down a slippery slope toward the partial privatization and commercialization of the UN system itself.

Partial List of UN - Corporate Partnerships
September 1st, 2000
Here is a list of some of the partnerships between the United Nations and corporations.

Other Partnerships
September 1st, 2000
Partnership programs are proliferating in the UN system, often before guidelines can be put in place, and before the implications of the partnerships are understood.

The Global Compact Corporate Partners
September 1st, 2000
Here is a partial list of some of the 50 Global Compact partners with the most egregious human rights and environmental records.

UN: Making Peace with Power
by George MonbiotThe Guardian
August 31st, 2000
The United Nations Centre on Transnational Corporations, which tried to help weak nations to protect themselves from predatory companies, had recommended that businesses should be internationally regulated. The UN refused to circulate its suggestions.

Globalization Debate Comes to NY, Opponents Hold Teach-In
by CorpWatch
August 16th, 2000
NEW YORK -- Motivated by a growing concern that the United Nations is in danger of becoming an engine for corporate globalization, leading opponents of globalization will hold a Teach-In in New York coinciding with the United Nation's Millennium Summit.

The United Nations Sits in Suspicious Company
by Joshua Karliner and Kenny BrunoInternational Herald Tribune
August 10th, 2000
At the UN meeting, the leaders of corporations well known for running sweatshops, engendering environmental disaster and colluding in human rights violations sat at the table with Mr. Annan. They agreed to adhere to and publicly promote the Global Compact's nine core principles of universally accepted labor, environmental and human rights values.

U.N. Signs Up with Big Business to Promote Values
by Richard RothCNN
July 27th, 2000
The corporations, which were welcomed to U.N. Headquarters Wednesday by Secretary-General Kofi Annan, are paying big money to be able to say they are supporting the missions of the U.N.

UN: Annan Says Only Open Markets Can Ease World Poverty
July 26th, 2000
Open markets offer the only realistic hope for lifting billions of people in developing countries out of poverty while maintaining prosperity in the industrial world, U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan said Wednesday.

UN: Multinationals Sign Pact on Rights and Environment
by Joseph KahnNew York Times
July 26th, 2000
Some 50 multinationals joined 12 labor associations and watchdog groups to sign a ''global compact'' that commits them to support human rights, eliminate child labor, allow free trade unions and refrain from polluting the environment wherever they do business.

List of Corporations and Organizations Supporting the Global Compact
UN Headquarters
July 26th, 2000
Here is a list of corporations, organizations and business associations supporting the Global Compact.

Letters to Kofi Annan Blasting the Global Compact Corporations
July 25th, 2000
Here is a collection of correspondence to Kofi Annan blasting the Global Compact corporations.

Coalition Says Global Compact Threatens UN Mission and Integrity
by CorpWatch
July 25th, 2000
An international coalition of human rights and environmental groups denounced a new UN-corporate collaboration as ''threatening the mission and integrity of the United Nations.''

UN: NGOs to Voice Concerns at Development Summit
Agence France Presse
June 22nd, 2000
GENEVA -- Nearly 100 Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO) are gathering here to make their concerns and criticisms heard ahead of a United Nations summit starting Monday to assess global social development.

Activists Help End Flawed UN/Corporate Partnership
by CorpWatch
June 14th, 2000
SAN FRANCISCO and NEW YORK -- CorpWatch has learned that after a year long campaign by environmentalists, human rights groups, labor unions and other non-governmental organizations a leading UN agency abandoned its perilous partnership with a group of transnational corporations whose tarnished human rights, environmental and development records threatened to rub off on the world body.

The United Nations and Globalization
by Martin KhorThird World Network
May 22nd, 2000
This speech was given by Martin Khor, Director of the Third World Network at the opening plenary of the Millenium Forum in late May 2000. The Millenium Forum was a gathering of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) designed to generate input for the Millenium Assembly -- a UN-sponsored meeting of world leaders slated for early September 2000.

Groups Expose More United Nations Affiliations with Corporate Predators
by CorpWatch
September 23rd, 1999
SAN FRANCISCO -- Non-governmental organizations have sent a letter to UN High Commissioner for Refugees Sadako Ogata and UNICEF Executive Director Carol Bellamy calling for their resignation from the Business Humanitarian Forum (BHF).

A Perilous Partnership
by Joshua Karliner, John Cavanagh, Phyllis Bennis and Ward MorehouseCorpWatch, IPS and CIPA
March 16th, 1999
In a sharp detour from its mission of serving the world's poor, a key UN agency, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), has solicited funds from global corporations with tarnished records on human rights, labor and the environment. A Perilous Partnership takes a hard look at this new initiative to build corporate partnerships in the United Nations.

Correspondence between International Human Rights, Environment and Development Organizations and the UNDP
CorpWatch, et al.
March 12th, 1999
Here is an index of correspondence from March to August 1999 between international human rights, environment and development organizations and the Unitd Nations Development Programme's Administrator.

Key United Nations Agency Solicits Funds From Corporations
by CorpWatch
March 12th, 1999
NEW YORK -- In a sharp detour from its mission of serving the world's poor, a key UN agency, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), has solicited funds from global corporations with tarnished records on human rights, labor and the environment.

List of Corporations Participating in the GSDF Project
United Nations Development Programme
February 1st, 1999
Here is a list of corporations participating in the GSDF project as of February 1999.

A UNDP Interoffice Memorandum on the Global Sustainable Development Facility
United Nations Development Programme
July 21st, 1998
Here is a leaked interoffice UNDP memo that addresses the Global Sustainable Development Facility (GSDF) Project.

The Global Sustainable Development Facility
United Nations Development Programme
June 15th, 1998
Here is a leaked document describing the proposed Global Sustainable Development Facility.

A Memorandum from the UNDP Administrator, Gus Speth
United Nations Development Programme
June 15th, 1998
Here is a leaked memo from UNDP Administrator, Gus Speth to Regional Bureaux Directors regarding the development of the Global Sustainable Development Facility project.

Citizens Compact
January 28th, 1998
We propose a compact between the UN and civil society, regarding the UN's relationship with the private sector. With this compact, we pledge our active support for a strengthening of the United Nations, financially and politically. Adherence to these nine principles will safeguard the image, mission and credibility of the United Nations as it deals with the private sector.

World Business Council on Sustainable Development
June 1st, 1997
In honor of the United Nations General Assembly Special Session to mark the fifth anniversary of the Rio Earth Summit, this month's Greenwash Award goes to the World Business Council on Sustainable Development (WBCSD).