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Title:Brewing security? Heineken's engagement with commercial conflict-dependent actors in the Eastern DRC
Author:Schouten, Peer
Year:2013
Pages:41
Language:English
City of publisher:Stockholm
Publisher:CCDA Project
Geographic term:Congo (Democratic Republic of)
Subjects:multinational enterprises
beer
militias
armed forces
private security services
Link:http://ccda.se/wp-content/uploads/sites/34/2015/12/CCDA-Report-Heineken-DRC.pdf
Abstract:Since the end of the Cold War, transnational corporations increasingly operate in volatile environments. This has led to widespread concern with human rights abuses stemming from the impact that commercial activities have on security governance in unstable areas. While attention has hitherto mainly been directed at the activities of extractive industries in volatile environments, corporate presence in volatile environments is not restricted to mineral resource extraction. Transnational consumer goods and services corporations often also operate in similar contexts. This report has two interrelated goals. First, it aims at shedding light on the risks and challenges that arise when transnational corporations engage security actors in volatile environments. It does so - second - by developing an analytical framework for understanding the resulting dynamics, by examining the impact of transnational corporations on security governance in terms of their interaction with commercial conflict-dependent actors (CCDAs). CCDAs are defined as actors that have based their actions or adjusted them to an armed conflict in such a way as to benefit financially from it. Dealing with conflict actors and influencing local conflicts is not the typical core business of transnational corporations. Yet corporate willingness to operate in volatile environments means transnational corporations are inevitably confronted with CCDAs. As engaging with CCDAs entails a serious corporate risk, this study should be seen as a case study that helps corporations identify and avoid CCDA's. In order to provide a nuanced understand of the dynamics of transnational corporate engagement with CCDA's in volatile environments, this reports presents an in-depth case study of Heineken's subsidiary Bralima in the Eastern Congo. Based on extensive fieldwork, it discusses Bralima's interaction with three different types of commercial conflict-dependent actors: first, Bralima's complicity with rebel groups during 2006; second, Bralima's use of private security companies; and third, Bralima's engagement with Congolese state security forces- both the police and army. It discusses in detail how each of these actors qualify as commercial conflict-dependent actors within the context of the Democratic Republic of Congo, to subsequently give a systematic overview of how Bralima engages them. Rather than aberrations, the report shows how these engagements form an intricate part of Bralima's structures of corporate governance, that are to a large extent co-determined by the Heineken Group. The report concludes with a summary and recommendations to the Heineken Group regarding the impact they have on security governance through their subsidiary's engagement with CCDAs. As this case study forms an example of the more general tendency for transnational corporations to engage commercial conflict-dependent actors, this report is of relevance both to academics and NGOs concerned with corporate security governance and to transnational corporations operating in volatile environments. [Book abstract]
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