Extraterritorial Obligation (ETO)

Extraterritorial Obligation

Black Sand Mining in Zambales, Philippines – harming the livelihood of the indigenous peoples and the environment © Astrud Lea Beringer

Extraterritorial obligations (ETOs) stand for the human rights obligations of states towards foreign states, intergovernmental organizations (IGOs), or transnational corporations (TNCs) outside of their respective territories.

Natural resources are highly contested in times of globalization due to an increasing global demand for food and scarcity of water and agricultural land.

ETOs are crucial in the campaign to generate an environment for human rights, to counter climate and eco-destruction, to regulate TNCs and to make IGOs accountable.

States need to raise awareness of their human rights obligations beyond the borders of their territories. ETOs have gained high importance in the field of development assistance, trade and investment, and the regulation of transnational corporations.

FIAN Philippines supports FIAN International’s engagement as a member of the ETO Consortium – a network of 80 civil society organizations and academics worldwide (www.etoconsortium.org). Its purpose is to address the gaps in human rights protection within a globalized context due to the neglect of ETOs by states. FIAN International acts as secretary to the ETO consortium. Members of the consortium campaign with states and at the UN level for the application of ETOs in policy fields such as financial regulation, corruption, trade, investment, land grabbing, regulation of TNCs, extractive industries, climate change and eco-destruction, development and accountability of IGOs.