The EU Commission wants to ban products made from forced labor. This applies to China, among other things. Brussels is taking action against “modern slavery”.
The EU Commission wants to ban products made from forced labor. The ban is intended to “affect domestic, imported and exported products,” according to a proposed regulation published on Wednesday. Among other things, the EU is targeting China: Western states and human rights organizations accuse the People’s Republic of exploiting the Muslim Uyghur minority.
EU Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis said Brussels was taking the draft law against “modern slavery”. The planned ban also targets products made from child labor.
Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced the proposal about a year ago. At the time, she emphasized: “Human rights cannot be bought – there is no money in the world.” According to her agency, almost 28 million people worldwide are forced to work through threats or violence.
China is not mentioned by name in the draft law. However, experts estimate that more than a million people are being held in prisons and labor camps in the Chinese province of Xinjiang. In the region, which is mainly inhabited by Muslims, there are many factories for textile production, among other things. According to experts and human rights organizations, they also supply international companies.
The chairman of the Trade Committee in the European Parliament, Bernd Lange (SPD), welcomed the fact that the EU Commission had included demands from the people’s representatives. “The question of circumvention options must certainly still be examined,” emphasized Lange. The draft is now going to the EU Parliament and the member states for consultation.