EU’s CSDDD Implementation Stalls
Plenary room in the European Council bulding in Brussels, Belgium. © Alexandros Michailidis

EU’s CSDDD Implementation Stalls

By Simon Johns - Mar 15, 2024

MEPs from Italy, Austria and Germany signalled they would block a crucial vote on the Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive, believing it would place too great a burden on SMEs.

The vote was postponed last week that would have enacted the new CSDDD. Half of MEPs opposed the directive, media reported. The vote was scheduled for March 8, having been postponed in February. It was rescheduled because the necessary majority not being there for it to pass.

Ahead of another vote on Friday, diplomats from Belgium and technical staff at the European Commission added text to assuage fears that SMEs would be negatively impacted by the law, Euractiv reported.

“CSDDD could be a very good standard but if it is perceived to be so burdensome on introduction, something needs to be scaled back,” said Claire O’Neill, the co-chair at the global imperatives advisory board of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, to sustainability website Edie.

The EU Presidency had reworded the Directive to ensure that it only applies to businesses with 1,000 or more staff plus annual turnovers above €300 million.

Many of Europe’s lubricant companies will likely be affected by this directive.

Once in law, the CSDDD will mandate requirements for businesses of a certain size to be responsible for their supply chains’ human rights and environmental standards. Germany enacted a similar, albeit less stringent, law last year.

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