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Event at FCCT: Thai companies investing in ASEAN and their human rights obligations

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Thai companies investing in ASEAN and their human rights obligations

10:00-12:00, Friday 1 June 2018

Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand

Free Admission & Food will be served before and after the panel discussion


Thai companies are increasingly investing in neighboring ASEAN countries. While investments have resulted in significant profits for both Thailand and the host countries, they have also triggered adverse environmental and social impacts. These outbound investments often take place without proper mechanisms to ensure compliance with international human rights standards and practices, exposing local communities to violations and abuses.

The National Human Rights Commission of Thailand (NHRCT) has investigated Thai investments in Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia, playing a significant role in shaping the cabinet resolutions on Thai outbound investments (2016, 2017). Both align with the principles articulated in the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. However, a lot more needs to be done to strengthen the application of the resolutions.

On 1 June 2018 from 10:00 – 12:00, the Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA), Community Resource Center (CRC), and Extraterritorial Obligations (ETO) Watch Coalition will co-organise a panel discussion on the human rights implications of Thai outbound investments in ASEAN. Panelists will provide an overview of the main issues surrounding these investments, discussing way forwards to ensure a greater accountability and protection of people’s rights. The event will combined with the presentation of the Thai chapter of FORUM-ASIA’s latest publication, ‘Business and Human Rights: Learnings from Asia’.


  • Tuenjai Deetes, Commissioner of NHRCT,
  • Sor Rattanamanee Polkla, Coordinator of CRC, and
  • Debbie Stothard, Coordinator of the Alternative ASEAN Network on Burma and Secretary General of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH).

Media contacts in Bangkok

  • For more information or if you want to set up an interview with any of the panelists , please contact Marte Hellema, Programme Manager Communication and Media for FORUM-ASIA at [email protected], [email protected] or 0999 46 1108.

About the organisers:

The Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA) is a network of human rights organisations across Asia. FORUM-ASIA works to promote and protect human rights, including the right to development, through collaboration and cooperation among human rights organisations and defenders in Asia and beyond.

The Community Resource Centre Foundation (CRC) is a non-governmental organisation committed to protecting and promoting human rights, community rights and environmental rights. CRC acts as a watchdog on the implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and international laws in Thailand, the Mekong Region, and ASEAN. CRC also conducts public interest law cases and legal advocacy to protect community rights to natural resources and environmental protection inside country and transboundary cases.

The ETO Watch Coalition, works to stop human rights violations, environmental damages and social impacts caused by Thailand’s outbound investments. There are approximately six to eight NGO members in the coalition; International Rivers, Spirits in Educational Movement, EarthRights International, Community Resources Centre Foundation, The Mekong Butterfly, Dawei-Watch Thailand and invited partners and communities networks such as Dawei Development Association, Dawei Pro bono Lawyers Network, and Tarkapaw. The ETO-Watch Coalition has monitored approximately 12 case projects in ASEAN and directly monitors five operative projects, ranging from sugar plantations to coal, dam and SEZ in Southeast Asia.