EU Council Decision 2018/747/EU deals with N-(1-amino-3,3-dimethyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-(cyclohexylmethyl)-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (ADB-CHMINACA).
EU Council Decision 2018/748/EU deals with 1-(4-cyanobutyl)-N-(2-phenylpropan-2-yl)-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (CUMYL-4CN-BINACA).
ADB-CHMINACA and CUMYL-4CN-BINACA are synthetic cannabinoids with similar effects to those of THC, which is responsible for the major psychoactive effects of cannabis, but they have additional life-threatening toxicity. The Decisions follow a risk assessment report on each of the new psychoactive substances and require control measures to be put into effect across the EU, as provided for under their national legislation, in compliance with their obligations under the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances, and by 23rd May 2019.
Norton Rose Fulbright on 21st May published a briefing which says in its introduction that, according to the International Labour Organisation (ILO), at any given time an estimated 40.3 million people globally are in modern slavery, which includes 24.9 million in forced labour. The global shipping industry has been identified as being particularly susceptible to the risk of modern slavery given seafarers are often from nations with human rights, labour rights and corruption challenges. The fragmentation of regulatory oversight among flag states, and practical limitations on effective enforcement of basic conditions on board vessels, exacerbate the problem. After looking at the Modern Slavery Act and its requirements in the UK, the briefing considers what are the modern slavery risks for shipping and what shipping companies can do to prepare themselves (and avoid being implicated). The article concludes that the burden of increased regulation may also create competitive advantage for compliant operators in some trades and markets. On the whole, it says, history suggests that the pace of change will be uneven and slow. Nevertheless, it is clear that the power of public scrutiny has already spurred the relatively rapid rise of modern slavery, as a business risk for the shipping industry.
On 21st May, law firm Volterra Fietta published a briefing providing an update in respect of the litigation and compliance risks in the rapidly-developing field of transnational human rights law, where parent companies may be held liable for alleged human rights impacts involving their subsidiaries overseas. It notes that governments have recently adopted innovative ways to address human rights, including legislation and a new ombudsperson’s office in Canada. The article goes on to provide a short update on legal and regulatory developments in the UK and Canada. It is notable that the cases cited, in both countries, mostly involve mining companies, though it reports that a Canadian case involving a retailer which indirectly sourced garments from factories in Rana Plaza in Bangladesh (where a factory collapsed in 2011 causing massive casualties) failed.