विदेश दर्शन - २०४

Regulation of Transnational Corporations

I have already referred to the several problems confronting developing countries, but there is one major feature of the world crisis that I should like to comment on briefly. The present institutional structures, national as well as international, have failed to deal effectively with the intolerable and growing inequalities in income and wealth today. Existing arrangements by which investment in resources and technology is channelled largely through transnational corporations have proved to be not only irrational but also in many instances detrimental to the sovereignty and the freedom of the developing countries in the management of their own resources for development.

The conduct of transnational corporations should be subject to greater regulation so that they serve better the interests of development and co-operation. The governments of developed countries have a heavy responsibility in this regard. They should play a more direct part than hitherto in the process of facilitating transfer of resources and technology. There is an equal need for expanding and developing the science and technology potential of developing countries so that their resources endowments can be more effectively harnessed to ensure that mass poverty is eradicated everywhere. The international economic system has to be overhauled with imagination in the common struggle of developing countries against poverty.

The future of mankind is rightly the concern of the United Nations. But may I point out that this particular responsibility has to be discharged through the collective efforts of the sovereign States, Members of the United Nations, and not left to the unregulated activities of transnational corporations and private capital, whose past history of exploitation of developing countries does not entitle them to have a decisive say in the shaping of the world of tomorrow.