There appears to be a growing awareness in Australia as well as some other countries that businesses of all sizes need to look at their supply chains, joint venture partners and even shareholders in the company to ensure they not only fit with the mission statements and values of the organisation but also align with the wider community’s values and aspirations.
Do we put value on profit only or do we value how we gained that profit? Will customers keep supporting your business if your partners have a dubious pedigree or they are involved in activities that go against their expectations and values.
We are seeing shifts in how stakeholders in fossil fuel companies are pushing for climate change initiatives as they see a future with less reliance upon these commodities.
But, there are other issues that both the community and business’ may slowly become aware of like Joint Ventures with businesses controlled by dubious entities such as the Myanmar military – the Tatmadaw.
The Myanmar military obscures its influence through a sophisticated network of holding companies, private companies, shell companies, and crony companies, in some cases denying or obscuring their deep ties to business. Over time, it has expanded to control vast portions of the Myanmar economy, consolidating its grip on the country.
International businesses have flooded the region, and, in some cases, unwittingly partnered with this brutal military dictatorship. In resource-rich regions of Myanmar, there is a pattern of military-driven conflict opening the door for lucrative mega-developments: a terrible cycle of conflict-for-profit.
These military controlled companies use profits to purchase military equipment, fund military operations against ethnic minority groups within the country. It is a complex situation that the elected government can’t control as the military can block any law put toward parliament.
As we look to expand businesses overseas we need to look at who we do business with.
Example of an international organisation, who operates here in Australia, who is aiding the Myanmar military to fund war crimes and potential genocide is Kirin.
The press release below points out the correlation between increased profits by Kirin coincides with a spike in war crimes, civilian displacement, disappearances and torture of citizens of Rakhine and Chin States of Myanmar.
- How do you want your investment or company to operate?
- What is the pedigree of the company you are purchasing product from?
- Are you being ethical in investing or forming JV’s with overseas companies?
- What is your governance like in these situations?
- But overall are you happy to sleep at night knowing your money could be used to fund crimes against humanity
#humanrights #investment #governance #ethics #kirin #warcrimes #dirtylist