Source: European Parliament
Conditions at US detention centres for migrants are abominable. There is a chronic shortage of space and inadequate hygiene and comfort. Of the 52 000 migrants detained, 71% are being held at centres run by private prison companies. This is earning billions for the two companies that hold the majority of the contracts: the GEO Group and CoreCivic.
BNP Paribas, whose largest shareholder is the Belgian State, has engaged in intensive business transactions with the GEO Group for years. Last month the company extended the term of a credit line for the GEO Group, although the dire situation and the human rights violations at the detention centres were becoming increasingly apparent. Nevertheless, in its internal human rights charter, BNP Paribas promises to avoid ‘direct and indirect contributions to human rights violations’.
1. Is the Commission aware of this situation and if so, will it seek clarification from BNP Paribas and/or encourage it to break its links with the GEO Group?
2. According to the proposal for a regulation on disclosures relating to sustainable investments (2018/0179(COD)), large companies have to develop policies to reduce the economic, social and governance risks associated with their investments. Should BNP Paribas change its policy once this legislation enters into force and if so, how?
3. What further legislative action will the Commission take to increase the due diligence carried out by undertakings?