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  • Writer's pictureSiddhartha Suresh

Recipe: Cooking Spaghetti

Updated: May 12

Multinational corporations (MNCs), or transnational corporations (TNCs) are companies that work in multiple countries, while holding their headquarters in countries that are typically developed. Their intentions when doing so are usually in order to exploit resources, cheap labor, land, and more of the foreign countries they work in. Due to economic need, developing countries allow MNCs to work in their country to take advantage of the minimal, short term gain such as job opportunities, even though the pay is usually far below the standard of living leaving people in a continued cycle of poverty. Often called transnational corporations (TNCs), multinational corporations (MNCs) have operations in several nations, with industrialized nations serving as their preferred location for headquarters. They may take advantage of cheap labor, conduct human rights violations in order to get natural resources, and profit from foreign territories thanks to this strategy. MNCs clearly have economic goals, which often take precedence over ethical conduct, but their effects on developing countries are proving to have very complex advantages and disadvantages. Because companies promise quick economic gain, developing countries frequently jump at the opportunity to host multinational corporations instead of looking and taking into account the devastating long term effects. Even though these jobs frequently pay less than the standard of living, they nevertheless represent a significant short-term benefit for these nations. Additionally, MNCs are further supported by foreign investments and the possibility of technology transfer from developed countries to developing ones. This seemingly mutually beneficial partnership is still filled with disadvantages, though. A very important effect of MNCs' existence in developing nations is the continuation of the poverty cycle. The pay these companies offer frequently falls far short of the living wage, despite the fact that they create jobs. As a result, workers struggle to make ends meet, deal with a lack of income, and maintain their financial vulnerability; this leads to a plethora of issues such as a lack of access to adequate food sources. Furthermore, MNC resource exploitation may have very harmful effects on the ecosystem. Seeking economic gain could result in abusive actions that prove harmful against the environment, making the problems faced by developing countries even more severe. Without enough environmental protections, the extraction of natural resources may have long-term negative effects on nearby communities and ecosystems.

The UN has put in place a number of initiatives to promote sustainable development, human rights, and environmental preservation. First, the UN has aggressively promoted moral business practices through the Guiding Principles on Corporate and Human Rights. This UN document specifies what states and businesses need to do to prevent, address, and atone for human rights breaches originating from corporate operations—including those of multinational corporations conducting business in developing nations—are outlined in these guidelines. Instead of forcing companies to choose between promoting social and economic growth and safeguarding human rights, this is the aim of their economic activities. Second, the UN assists developing countries in fortifying their ability to more effectively use a variety of organizations and initiatives to better negotiate fair and equitable agreements with multinational corporations. Typically, this takes the shape of providing technical assistance, promoting openness, and fighting for inclusive decision-making processes. The intention is to foster an open and cooperative relationship while allowing developing nations to engage with multinational corporations on an equal footing and reducing the likelihood of the abusive and intimidating tactics that these corporations frequently employ to coerce nations into signing these agreements. In addition, the UN has been instrumental in resolving environmental problems associated with MNC activities. In addition to raising public awareness, organizations like the United Nations Environment Programme work to promote environmentally responsible and sustainable behavior when it comes to things like mining practices.


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