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| 1 minute read

Assessing the human rights impact of doing business in Myanmar.

I found this article from the ETI (Ethical Trading Initiative) very thought-provoking. In this shrinking world of ours, distant countries and far away people are a thing of the past. We are all so interconnected in global trade and supply chain driven economies. So how do we balance the positive and negative impacts we have on these countries relying on their exports that land on our doorstep daily?

In this article from the ETI discussing the increased reports on human rights abuses in Myanmar since the coup d’état, its good to see a joint collaboration from organisations in assessing the risks of sourcing from Myanmar and what should be "industry's" position on this, i.e. do they recommend sourcing or not sourcing from Myanmar?

I feel extremely privileged and lucky that I live in a country where that decision can be made without it impacting my life (albeit a little package possibly not being delivered to my door with a made-in Myanmar sticker on it!). 

But I can't help but wrestle with the idea that without Myanmar being on the list of "Countries ok to source from", those exploited and vulnerable workers will now have even less job security and potentially a lost link to those brands/and retailers who are trying to improve human rights in Myanmar. 

I hope that this group come to the right decision by putting those workers central to that decision-making process.

If you want to hear more about the work Intertek has undertaken in Myanmar, please contact us at

In 2021, ETI regularly convened its members around the deteriorating situation in Myanmar, under military rule. While the presence of responsible business in unstable contexts can offer crucial support, through the provision of decent work, ETI joined others in questioning whether continued presence had the potential to do more harm than good. In the coming weeks, the results of an independent human rights impact assessment will assist ETI and its members in answering this question.


ethical sourcing, responsible sourcing, esf, supply chain assurance, supplychain