MANDATE OF THE INDEPENDENT EXPERT ON FOREIGN DEBT AND HUMAN RIGHTS
The Independent Expert on the effects of foreign debt and other related international financial obligations of States on the full enjoyment of all human rights, particularly economic, social and cultural rights (commonly referred to as the Independent Expert on foreign debt and human rights) is one of the thematic special procedures overseen by the United Nations Human Rights Council.
The mandate holder assesses the impact of international foreign obligations on human rights on the capacity of States to design and implement human rights-sensitive financial policies and programmes, particularly in developing countries. The Independent Expert also considers measures taken by the private sector and international financial institutions to ease the impact of foreign debt on human rights in developing countries. The Millennium Development Goals form a basis for the Independent Expert to determine the minimum standards necessary for the protection of human rights. Additionally, the Special Rapporteur considers the impact of illicit financial flows on the enjoyment of human rights.
COMPOSITION AND WORKING METHODS
The mandate of the Independent Expert lasts for a period of three years. The mandate is filled by one highly-qualified individual.
The Commission on Human Rights established the mandate of the Independent Expert in 2000 with Resolution 2000/82. The Human Rights Council extended the mandate in 2008 (Resolution 7/4), 2011 (Resolution 16/14), and 2014 (Resolution 25/16).
In fulfilling the mandate, the Independent Expert undertakes country visits and submits activity reports to the UN General Assembly and Human Rights Council.
One important function of the Independent Expert is to conduct country visits, which it does on the basis of an invitation from the country concerned. Country visits provide the Independent an opportunity to gain a first-hand understanding of how foreign debt impacts human rights.
The Independent Expert undertakes one to three visits per year, to States that have extended an invitation. View the list of previous country visits and the Independent Expert’s subsequent reports here.
More than 100 countries have extended standing invitations to country visits by all thematic special procedures. View the list of countries that have extended standing invitations here.
Reports to the UN General Assembly and Human Rights Council
The Independent Expert reports annually to the Human Rights Council and the UN General Assembly on all of its activities relating to its mandate. These reports are available on the Independent Expert’s Annual Reports webpage.
The Independent Expert may be contacted via email at: [email protected].