Big pharmaceutical companies like Johnson & Johnson and Pfizer signed lucrative contracts with governments around the world to provide COVID-19 vaccines under the condition that the prices and contract terms were kept confidential. Health Justice Initiative, a South African NGO, won a lawsuit in the Pretoria High Court to make the documents public.
Mining company Telupac Holdings requested a government permit to explore for minerals under the unique Northern Jarrah Forest close to the city of Perth. The area included a monastery belonging to the Buddhist Society of Western Australia. The monks’ campaign to block Telupac’s application was successful when the company withdrew their application in August 2023.
Ramalingam Murugan, a migrant worker from Tamil Nadu, India, was employed by ship repair company Rigel Marine Services in Singapore. In January 2021, he fell off a company lorry and fractured his leg.
Three Iraqi men who brought a lawsuit against military contractor CACI for torturing them at the U.S. military-run Abu Ghraib prison will be allowed to take the case to trial after a court in Virginia denied an 18th attempt by the company to get the case dismissed.
Bayern Munich, Germany’s most famous soccer team, ended its 5-year sponsorship contract with Qatar Airways, after fans spoke out strongly about human and migrant worker abuses in Qatar. Human rights groups say the Qatari government (which owns the airline) turned a blind eye to abuses during the massive construction spree for the 2022 World Cup tournament.
Moti Group, a business conglomerate based in Johannesburg, tried to stop amaBhungane, a South African investigative news website, from reporting on leaked documents about an allegedly corrupt mining deal in Zimbabwe. A court-issued gag order was overturned on appeal in July 2023.
Energy Transition Minerals is demanding that Greenland fork over 76 billion Danish kroner (US$11.15 billion) after the government changed environmental laws that made uranium mining illegal – effectively shutting down a previously approved rare earth and uranium mining project in Kvanefjeld, southern Greenland.
Erik Adolph, an UberEats food delivery driver in California, sued Uber in 2019 for failing to pay work-related expenses. The company argued that drivers aren’t employees and so they aren’t eligible for expenses. Uber also argued that the drivers signed contracts agreeing not to sue. The California Supreme Court ruled that such contracts violated the worker’s legal rights.
Enel began construction of Windpeshi, a proposed 205-megawatt wind farm in the La Guajira desert on the ancestral land of the Wayúu Indigenous people in Colombia, in 2021. After two years of blockades and protests, Enel decided to suspend construction indefinitely. The company plans to sell the site if it can find a buyer.
Próspera, a company based in the U.S. state of Delaware, has invoked an investor-state dispute settlement treaty to try to force the government of Honduras to pay US$11 billion for outlawing the company’s plan to operate a privately run city on the island of Roatán.
“Fue una tragedia, una autentica tragedia”, dijo a CorpWatch José Luiz García, cuya tía fue una de las pocas personas que sobrevivieron al brote de COVID-19 en una residencia DomusVi en Alcoi, España. “Esto es el índice de fallecimientos en porcentaje que nosotros tenemos conocimiento más alto en toda Europa”.
“It was a tragedy, a real tragedy,” José Luiz Garcia, whose aunt was one of the few that survived the COVID-19 outbreak at a DomusVi care home in Alcoi, Spain, told CorpWatch. “This is the highest rate of deaths that we are aware of in all of Europe.”
Residents of Dubrovnik, a coastal town in Croatia, have been fighting Razvoj Golf’s proposed €1 billion luxury golf resort since 2010. After the project was annulled by a Croatian court in 2016, the company sued Croatia in a World Bank arbitration tribunal for US$500 million. In May 2023, the tribunal ruled against Razvoj Golf.
184 workers sued Sama Al, a contractor paid to moderate Facebook content in Africa for firing them illegally, after the company decided to not to renew its contract. A Kenyan court barred the company from laying off workers and ordered Sama to continue working for Facebook. When Sama disobeyed and stopped paying staff salaries, the court ordered Sama to pay back wages.
Fossil fuel giant BP has provided millions to sponsor the British Museum since 1996. Protests by activists from organizations like Culture Unstained, Extinction Rebellion and Greenpeace has cast this relationship in an unfavorable light. Internal memos uncovered by the media suggest that this sponsorship will not be renewed at the end of 2023.
The Isthmus of Tehuantepec is one of the windiest locations in the world. Located in Oaxaca state, México, it has been historically famous as the shortest distance between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Today it is also the location of major conflict between Indigenous communities and wind energy companies.
Village land in Chikor Leu commune, Koh Kong province, Cambodia, was forcibly seized in 2006 to give to local companies to grow sugar for conglomerate Tate & Lyle. The former residents sued Tate & Lyle in the UK. In April 2023, the NGO Equitable Cambodia announced that 200 families were compensated for the land and the human rights abuse, although details were not disclosed.
Bui Thi Nhung, a Vietnamese migrant worker working in New Taipei, Taiwan, at the technology giant Garmin informed management that she was pregnant in March 2023. Shortly after, Nhung was given untranslated resignation documents to sign which she felt obligated to comply with. After labor and human rights organizations raised an alarm, Garmin agreed to rehire Nhung.