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A Letter to the 2024 G7 Leaders

Dear G7 Leaders,

As you prepare for the upcoming 2024 G7 Summit meeting, it is vital that you continue working to address the problem of forced labor within global supply chains.

Following your 2021 G7 Leaders Summit in Carbis Bay, you rightly expressed concern about “the use of all forms of forced labour in global supply chains, including state-sponsored forced labour of vulnerable groups and minorities.” You also noted the importance of working collectively to ensure forced labor is not a part of global supply chains and tasked the G7 Trade Ministers to identify areas for “strengthened cooperation and collective efforts.”

While various G7 members have made some progress, there remains a need for greater harmonization of policies and practices across the entire G7 in combatting forced labor. Recognizing this will not be an easy task, it is necessary in order to make meaningful progress. The highly interconnected nature of global supply chains makes it far easier for bad actors to skirt regulations in one jurisdiction. However, a more systemic regulatory approach across the G7 will force a more systemic change throughout global supply chains.

There are two specific measures that G7 members should prioritize for strengthened cooperation and collective efforts. First, each G7 member should use import bans, controls, and other trade mechanisms to prevent goods made by forced labor from being brought into their borders. Furthermore, goods tainted by forced labor should not be denied entry into one country but still allowed into another. G7 members must coordinate the implementation of these import restrictions to ensure there is no safe harbor for goods made by forced labor.

Second, G7 members should also adopt mandatory human rights and environmental due diligence requirements for companies. Recognizing each G7 member will have different legal frameworks and political realities that will require somewhat different approaches, the goal should be to coordinate standards that create real accountability for companies that do not take reasonable measures to prevent or remedy human rights abuses within their supply chains, including forced labor.

For the 2024 Leaders Communiqué, we encourage specific language committing to further efforts to create greater harmonization on the development and implementation of both of these measures. We also encourage that the G7 Trade Ministers be tasked with creating a standing Forced Labor Working Group dedicated to identifying workable solutions for eradicating forced labor within global supply chains.

We appreciate your consideration of these requests, and we look forward to further engagement with you on this important matter.

Anti-Slavery International
Global Fund to End Modern Slavery
Humanity United Action
Justice & Care
McCain Institute
The Freedom Fund
The Human Trafficking Legal Center
Walk Free

Publish Date
April 3, 2024