EURATEX fully appreciates and supports the importance of establishing transparent
and accountable value chains. However, we believe key improvements shall be
introduced for the Directive to deliver on these goals, which as it currently stands
is not the case.
The current draft proposal brings the risk of heavily shifting responsibilities to smaller
players in the supply chain. To avoid this, EU Due Diligence framework must uptake
existing global guidelines, using a risk-based approach, i.e., the UN Guiding
Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGP) and OECD Due Diligence Guidance
for Responsible Supply Chain in the Garment and Footwear Sector (OECD),
scope of which should be formed on proportionate, transparent criteria, relative to
companies’ size and risk.
The different application of due diligence legislation across Europe is a serious risk
because the proposal is a Directive and several proposal’s parts entail significant
room for different interpretation. This endangers the level playing field for EU companies.
Harmonisation efforts should be introduced, like developing EU guidelines,
and clear methodologies on carrying out due diligence, setting out precisely the
scope of relevant legal actions under civil liability, and presenting more precise
To achieve concrete progress in the due diligence practices while avoiding unintended
consequences, several concrete improvements shall further be applied: a
mechanism to support SME’s and avoid disproportionate complexity, namely the
bureaucracy that companies may find themselves requiring to manage, and civil
liability to be limited to Tier 1, which is the level where actions can actually be better
Climate mitigation efforts currently introduced in the draft proposal, go far beyond
the framework of original due diligence. European Due Diligence should focus exclusively
on human rights as protected by the UNGP guidelines.
You may read the full position paper here: