This information is derived from the State Department's Office of Investment Affairs' Investment Climate Statement. Any questions on the ICS
Last Published: 10/23/2017

The business community is increasingly aware and engaged in responsible business conduct (RBC) activities with multinational firms leading the way. While many firms in Bangladesh fall short on RBC activities and instead often focus on philanthropic giving, some of the leading local conglomerates have begun to incorporate increasingly rigorous environmental and safety standards in their workplaces. U.S. companies present in Bangladesh maintain diverse RBC activities. Consumers in Bangladesh are generally less aware of RBC, and consumers and shareholders exert little pressure on companies to engage in RBC activities.

While many international firms are aware of OECD guidelines and international best practices in RBC, many local firms have limited familiarity with international standards. Two RBC NGOs are currently active that work with the private sector, Bangladesh Bank and the United Nations: 1) CSR Bangladesh, http://www.csrbangladesh.org/aboutus.php; and 2) CSR Centre Bangladesh, http://www.csrcentre-bd.org. Along with the Bangladesh Enterprise Institute (BEI), the CSR Centre is the joint focal point for United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) and its principles in Bangladesh. The UN Global Compact is the world’s largest corporate citizenship and sustainability initiative. The Centre is a member of a regional RBC platform called the South Asian Network on Sustainability and Responsibility (SANSAR). Currently, SANSAR has five member countries including Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Nepal, and Pakistan.

While several NGOs have proposed National Corporate Social Responsibility Guidelines, the Government of Bangladesh has yet to adopt any national standards for RBC. As a result, the government encourages enterprises to follow generally accepted RBC principles and does not mandate any specific guidelines.

Bangladesh has natural resources, but it has not joined the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI). The country does not adhere to the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights.

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Bangladesh Economic Development and Investment