The Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations (SOMO) is an independent, not-for-profit research and network organisation
working on social, ecological and economic issues related to sustainable
development. Since 1973, the organisation investigates multinational
corporations and the consequences of their activities for people and the
environment around the world. More...
A new report launched today documents the hurdles communities and workers face in obtaining remedy from development banks whose projects cause them harm. The 11 civil society organizations that authored the report, Glass Half Full? The State of Accountability in Development Finance, call on development banks and the governments that run them to strengthen their systems for providing remedy to those harmed by the activities financed by the banks.
Oil giants Shell, Total and Eni have received $3.3 billion in tax breaks in Nigeria in connection with the country’s largest gas extraction project, according to ActionAid and SOMO in a new report on taxation in developing countries. Shell received the largest chunk of the tax breaks, totalling $1.7 billion.
Why does the Dutch Tax Revenue Service want our money so badly, but not Starbucks’s? On 26 January we are going to debate this very issue – tax avoidance and the role of the Netherlands – in the Balie. Ester van Rijswijk will moderate a panel discussion by such experts as John Christensen, Paul Tang, Christiaan Vosen, Anna Gunn and Jan Kleinnijenhuis to outline the problems and the possible solutions.
Wars and conflicts continue to destabilise large parts of the world. In 2014, there were more than 400 political conflicts. This includes 21 full-fledged wars, spread over the entire world, but concentrated in the Middle East, the Maghreb region and Sub-Saharan Africa. Worldwide, 55 million people fled their homes – as refugees or as internally displaced people. The result is that more and more businesses are currently operating in fragile and conflict-affected areas – either because they were already operating in a country when a conflict broke out, or because they arrived in a country that was already engaged in a conflict or during the post-conflict phase because they see opportunities for business. A new SOMO paper focuses on these risks and challenges, and offers recommendations on how to reduce business-related human rights violations in conflict-affected areas.
Conflicts and multinationals both have specific impacts on various kinds of people on the ground. Men, women, boys and girls are all affected in different ways – each with their own distinct vulnerabilities, needs and capacities. A new paper by International Alert and SOMO suggests various lines of inquiry for civil society researchers to assess the activities of multinational corporations (MNCs) through a ‘gender lens’.