SDP Appoints Independent Experts to Further Strengthen its Human Rights Compliance
KUALA LUMPUR, 10 November 2020 – Sime Darby Plantation Berhad (SDP) has appointed PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and an independent international NGO specialising in migrant worker rights to support efforts to further strengthen its human rights commitments and compliance.
( i ) Appointment of PwC
Following a petition submitted by Liberty Shared (LS) to the US Customs and Border Protection (US CBP) in April 2020, SDP had sought more details and information on the allegations in the petition. PwC was appointed on 19 October 2020 to support SDP in our efforts to establish effective platforms and channels of communication to address any concerns or issues surrounding our operations in Malaysia.
SDP commits to swiftly take any and all corrective measures required, should there be evidence of any wrongdoing or breach of SDP’s comprehensive policies and procedures that are already in place. SDP will also work with independent external experts to design the necessary intervention programmes to enhance compliance with its existing human rights commitments.
To achieve the best results and our shared objectives, SDP hopes to continue working with LS to develop and implement programmes that will enhance the rights of our workers on the ground more effectively.
( ii ) Appointment of an independent international specialist on migrant worker rights
SDP has been working on improving our migrant worker recruitment processes since 2015, and we have implemented several measures that have served to progressively enhance the rights and circumstances of our foreign workforce. Due to COVID-19 restrictions that have been in place in Malaysia since the first quarter of 2020, we have been unable to recruit new migrant workers.
Thus, we have taken the opportunity during this period to appoint the international NGO specialising in migrant worker rights on 1 October 2020 to assist SDP in the following:
- assessing current recruitment processes, especially in our migrant worker source countries, and identifying areas for improvement;
- developing better recruitment processes that can be deployed once we are able to resume recruitment; and
- proposing other corrective measures that can be implemented by SDP to further strengthen recruitment procedures to enhance our migrant workers’ right