Story of the Day

Olympic sponsorship row fuelled by new Bhopal revelations

Feb 15

Written by:
15/02/2012 14:43  RssIcon



New documents reveal links between Dow and Union Carbide

Today the Independent has reported that it has obtained documents revealing that Dow Chemical sidestepped a trading ban in India after the Bhopal disaster.

According to the paper, the Dow Chemical company secretly traded through a web of intermediaries to avoid a legal ban on selling Union Carbide Corporation (UCC) products in India.

Legal documents obtained by the Independent showed that Dow continued to permit the unlawful practice started by UCC after it bought the company in February 2001.

The ban dated back to 1992 when a ruling by an Indian court prohibited the sale of UCC products without approval in an attempt to compel Union Carbide officials to return to the country to face criminal charges for culpable homicide.

As a sponsor of the 2012 London Olympics, Dow's legal duty to compensate Bhopal gas victims and deal with the ongoing environmental disaster has once again grabbed the headlines. The disclosure by the Independent undermines Dow's assurances to Lord Coe, chairman of London 2012 Organising Committee (Locog) that the DOW and UCC are 'distinct entities which operate independently'.
However the court documents revealed how in 2001 Dow became central to all aspects of the trading arrangements which included setting prices for the chemicals and other goods sold in India.

The documents emerged in a US court case between intermediary companies and Dow and Union Carbide for violations of anti-trust and breach of contracts which was later settled outside of court.
Campaigners want the Indian government to use the documents to hold Dow liable in an ongoing compensation battle for the gas victims and their families. The case, which challenges the $470m out of court settlement agreed by UCC, its Indian subsidiary UCIL and the Indian government in 1989 will shortly be heard by the Supreme Court.
The Locog and Dow claim that the 1989 settlement was 'full and final' and that Dow had no liability or responsibility for Bhopal, regardless of the ongoing civil and criminal cases in the US and India.

 

We'll be publishing an Olympic special issue in the summer. Sign up for our email newsletter for details of when it'll be published.

 

This story has been added to our corporate database. The database powers all our live buyers' guides, giving the score for each company on our rankings tables.

Tags:
Categories:

Coutts bank in tax probe

27 February 2015

RBS subsidiary probed by German government

Benetton delays paying into Rana Plaza fund

26 February 2015

Campaigners demand immediate payment of $5 million

Unhappy meal

25 February 2015

€1 billion in tax avoidance on the menu at McDonald's

ISA sugar mill linked to kidney disease

24 February 2015

Company denies link between disease and harsh working conditions

HSBC Swiss offices searched

20 February 2015

Inquiry into alleged money-laundering 

UK arms factory occupied

19 February 2015

Instro Precision Ltd occupied over link with 'Gaza’s misery' 

New animal welfare report released

17 February 2015

Signs of improvement amongst businesses

Santander financing forest destruction

12 February 2015

Tell them to stop lending money to forest destroyers

HSBC accused of helping clients dodge millions in tax

10 February 2015

Company turned blind eye to tax evaders

Tax dodging laid bare

02 February 2015

Mirror investigation outlines UK tax and profits of six corporations 

Two dead in LG factory accident

30 January 2015

Workers die of suffocation 

Apple announces record profits

29 January 2015

But campaigners call for clamp down on tax avoidance

Apple boss receives massive pay rise

26 January 2015

Tim Cook's pay now even more excessive 

McDonalds sued for discrimination

23 January 2015

Fast food giant in court for racial and sexual discrimination. 

Labour rights violations found in Uniqlo supply chain

22 January 2015

Researchers find long hours, low pay and unsafe conditions 

G4S investigated over Guantanamo Bay

20 January 2015

Company may have acted illegally in profiting from contract

EU rules against Amazon in Luxembourg

19 January 2015

Company accused of receiving state aid

Mass strike action at Indian factory

16 January 2015

Protests and sit-ins for the last month 

Companies named and shamed for not paying National Minimum Wage

15 January 2015

List includes H&M and Welcome Break

Campaigners target Doritos over palm oil

14 January 2015

Pepsico subsidiary slow on using sustainable palm oil 

Honda fined over reporting failure

12 January 2015

Car company to pay $70million

Shell settles out of court over Nigerian oil spills

09 January 2015

Fishermen to receive payouts of £2,000 each

Wal-mart destroys evidence in discrimination case

08 January 2015

Judge sanctions company

Electronics companies in forced labour claims

07 January 2015

Research reveals extent of indentured labour

Benetton fails to compensate Rana Plaza victims

19 December 2014
Benetton is the only international brand yet to contribute to the ILO fund.

Disney implicated in tax scandal

11 December 2014

New leaked documents appear to show tax avoidance through Luxembourg

Lobbying against transparency of food contamination

02 December 2014

Revolving door rules broken

Walmart workers plan wages protest

19 November 2014

Protests planned for Black Friday

Banks given £2 billion fine over manipulation of foreign exchange rates

12 November 2014

Regulator finds that banks put financial system at risk 

Hyundai and Kia violate US Clean Air Act

11 November 2014

Companies fined $100 million

BP implicated in kidnap

10 November 2014

Company sued over abduction of union leader in Colombia 

Procter & Gamble banned from Argentina

03 November 2014

Company accused of tax avoidance 

Nestle subsidiary charged with misleading consumers over baby milk claims

31 October 2014

Gerber brand likely to face court proceedings 

Amazon workers strike in Germany

30 October 2014

Distribution centres hit by latest round of industrial action

Tesco to face fraud investigation

29 October 2014

Serious Fraud Office is to launch a formal criminal investigation

Protesters occupy Airbus HQ over Israel link

24 October 2014

Company working with Israeli state owned arms manufacturer

Princes and John West target of Greenpeace campaign

23 October 2014

Companies continue to use irresponsible fishing methods

Big banks target of new Divest campaign

22 October 2014

Fossil fuel investments attacked by Move Your Money 

Palestinian students call boycott of Barclays

21 October 2014

Bank funding Israeli drone company

Boeing in overcharging dispute

17 October 2014

Company settles with US Navy

BP in court

16 October 2014

Company accused of negligence over Colombian pipeline leaks

Protests over Shell sponsorship of National Gallery

15 October 2014

Video: Campaigners’ theatrical intervention

Recognising corporate malpractice

14 October 2014

Companies nominated for 'Pinocchio award'

Lego end relationship with Shell

10 October 2014

Pressure from campaigners pays off 

Riverford Organics and fox hunting

09 October 2014

Fox hunting allowed on land used to supply box scheme

Amazon to face EU tax probe

07 October 2014

Company under investigation for Luxembourg deal 

AWE failing to manage nuclear waste

03 October 2014

Criticised over lack of safety personnel  

Fire Phone slammed for poor environmental performance

01 October 2014

Greenpeace questions Amazon’s transparency 

Apple believed to have received illegal state aid

30 September 2014

EU to investigate further 

More worker abuses uncovered in Apple supply chain

29 September 2014

Campaigners question company’s commitment to labour rights 

G4S subject of human rights complaint

25 September 2014

Serious abuse at detention centre

Tesco investigate financial misreporting

22 September 2014

Expected profits wildly overstated

Baku Games partners questioned

18 September 2014

Human rights groups pose some difficult questions

Apple supplier breaches code of conduct

15 September 2014

Company failed to act on previous report

Syngenta wants to increase usage limit for its bee-killing pesticides

12 September 2014

US government to decide by October 6th - act now

Burger King's tax avoidance merger

11 September 2014

Company to attempt an "inversion" 

iPhone 6 and new campaign launched today

09 September 2014

Tell Apple to reinstate fired iPhone 6 workers

BP ruled "grossly negligent" over spill

05 September 2014

Oil company faces higher fines over 2010 disaster

Microsoft's tax dodge

04 September 2014

Company reports show money held offshore

DuPont pays out over worker death

29 August 2014

Toxic leak and lax safety led to fatality 

Samsung supplier using child labour

28 August 2014

China Labor Watch find new labour rights violations

Protests over new opencast coal project

27 August 2014

Thousands take part in cross-border action

Coca Cola forced to abandon $25million dollar project

26 August 2014

Campaigners celebrate victory as bottling plant fails to gain licence  

UK bank fined in US

20 August 2014

Standard Charter fails to act on money laundering

Co-operative Group pressured to axe Amazon’s in-store lockers

19 August 2014

GMB union calls on members to pressure management  

Apple bans two dangerous substances

18 August 2014

Announcement given cautious welcome by campaigners

Child labour and forced labour found in Nestlé's cocoa supply chain

15 August 2014

Fair Labor Association publishes independent report

Hygiene failings at major British poultry supplier

14 August 2014

2 Sisters Food Group in breach of legislation

Guardian ad blames Hamas for Palestinian deaths

13 August 2014

Newspaper accused of pro-Israel bias

British mining company threatens livelihood of Europe's only indigenous people

12 August 2014

Beowulf iron ore mine opposed by Swedish Sami reindeer herders

iPhone 6 supplier sacks union leaders

07 August 2014

NXP Philippines workers were trying to negotiate better working conditions

InterContinental in Lhasa trouble

06 August 2014

Hotel chain fails to provide evidence of human rights due diligence.

Activists shut down Israeli drone weapons manufacturer

05 August 2014

Elbit factory near Birmingham occupied by London Palestine Action

Matalan pays up

31 July 2014

Company bowed to pressure and contributed to Rana Plaza compensation fund

BDS protesters shut down store selling Israeli cosmetics

30 July 2014

Campaigners target store in Manchester

Matalan fails Rana Plaza victims

29 July 2014

Campaigners shine the spotlight on retailer

Campaigners call for Adidas living wage

24 July 2014

Company making billions but paying poverty wages

Insurance and building firms subject of human rights complaint

23 July 2014

New Zealand residents wait four years for housing repairs 

Tullow Oil ordered to pay $407m tax bill

21 July 2014

Company denied sweetheart deal in Uganda

Amazon Web Services malware hosting on the rise

18 July 2014

Company struggling to control net nasties

UK “attractive” tax haven

16 July 2014

US Senate report names UK as tax haven

Thai company attempts to silence critics

15 July 2014

UK academic potentially facing jail time

Child labour at Samsung supplier

14 July 2014

Company acts after campaign group revelations 

Nando's using tax havens

11 July 2014

Elaborate offshore web of companies belonging to the family behind the Nando's used to avoid tax

Bakers refuse order from gay couple

10 July 2014

 Firm could be taken to court over discrimination

Companies shirking supply chain responsibilities

09 July 2014

Ten companies named and shamed over poor reporting

easyJet fined for discrimination

08 July 2014

Disabled woman refused entry to flight

Amazon investigated over tax avoidance

07 July 2014

EU looks at arrangement with Luxembourg

PwC conflict of interest over transparency initiative

04 July 2014

Company awarded contract to investigate effects despite lobbying against the initiative

Facebook experiments on users

03 July 2014

Psychological experiment on users causes anger

Greenpeace targets Lego's Shell partnership

02 July 2014

Company distributed more than 16m Shell-branded toys 

L'Oreal using misleading ads

01 July 2014

Company settles with US regulator

Wonga forced to pay compensation

27 June 2014

Company using fake law firm to send threatening letters

Message in a pocket

26 June 2014

SOS note found in Primark clothing

Ecover using GMOs to replace palm oil

25 June 2014

Some detergents now contain 'synthetic biology' algal oils

Adidas is back onside

24 June 2014

Adidas agrees to stop the greenwash and come clean

Shell to be fined over spills

23 June 2014

Residents reject out-of-court settlement

Top ten U.S. companies avoiding tax

20 June 2014

Campaigners name and shame worst offenders

Glencore accused of greenwash

19 June 2014

Company fails to keep its environmental and social promises in the Congo

Coca-Cola plant shut down

18 June 2014

Company breeches license agreement