Members' Research Service By / February 17, 2023

Proposal for a ban on goods made using forced labour [EU Legislation in Progress][Policy podcast]

Forced labour, including forced child labour, is still widespread across the world. The International Labour Organization (ILO) estimates the global number of people in a situation of forced labour at around 27.6 million, including 3.3 million children.

© Ehtisham / Adobe Stock

Written by Anne Altmayer (1st edition).

On 14 September 2022, the European Commission presented a proposal for a regulation to prohibit products made using forced labour, including child labour, on the internal market of European Union (EU). The proposed legislation fits into the context of EU efforts to promote decent work worldwide.

The proposal covers all products made available within the EU market, meaning both products made in the EU for domestic consumption and for export, and imported goods. The provisions of the proposal would apply to products of any type, including their components, regardless of the sector or industry.

Member States would be responsible for the enforcement of the regulation’s provisions. Their national authorities would be empowered to withdraw products made using forced labour from the EU market, following an investigation. Customs authorities would identify and stop products made using forced labour at EU borders.

In Parliament, the file has been referred to the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO). Maria‑Manuel Leitão‑Marques has been appointed as rapporteur.


Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on prohibiting products made with forced labour on the Union market
Committee responsible:Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO)COM(2022) 453 final

Rapporteur:Maria-Manuel Leitão-Marques (S&D, Portugal)2022/0269(COD)
Shadow rapporteurs:Krzysztof Hetman (EPP, Poland)
Svenja Hahn (Renew, Germany)
Anne-Sophie Pelletier (GUE/NGL, France)
Ordinary legislative procedure (COD)
(Parliament and Council on equal footing
– formerly ‘co-decision’)
Next steps expected: Publication of draft report

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  • Great initiative. Inspired by this important and highly important proposal to protect children in general from forced child labour, I would suggest a proposal to create a framework and law to ban import, sale and trade in products or raw materials needed to create them, originating and/or produced in occupied territories, deemed as such by International law. My thought here goes specifically to the occupied Palestinian territories. We see many products labelled as coming from “Israel” while their origigs are from internationally recognised occupied territories ( oranges, dades, etc..)

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