Customs and Excise (Prohibition of Imports Made by Slave Labour) Amendment Bill

  • defeated on 29 July 2009

Customs and Excise (Prohibition of Imports Made by Slave Labour) Amendment Bill

Member’s Bill

57—1

Explanatory note

General policy statement

Slavery was abolished by Britain in the 18th century, but in some parts of the world slavery or coerced labour still exists. In order to prevent slave-owners from profiting from their crime, both the United States and Belgium have passed legislation to prohibit the importation of goods produced by slavery into those countries.

In 2005 Trade Aid presented a petition signed by 17,000 people requesting that New Zealand follow suit by legislating to ban the import of products made by slave labour.1 This bill fulfils that request by amending the Customs and Excise Act 1996 to make goods produced in whole or in part by slave labour a prohibited import.

Clause by clause analysis

Clause 1 is the Title clause.

Clause 2 provides for the bill to come into force on the day after the date on which it receives the Royal assent.

Clause 3 is the purpose clause.

Clause 4 provides that the bill amends the Customs and Excise Act 1996 (the principal Act).

Clause 5 inserts a definition of “slave labour” into the principal Act. The definition mirrors the definition in international law as laid out in the 1926 Slavery Convention and the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

Clause 6 amends the first schedule of the principal Act.

Hon Maryan Street

Customs and Excise (Prohibition of Imports Made by Slave Labour) Amendment Bill

Member’s Bill

57—1

The Parliament of New Zealand enacts as follows:

1 Title

This Act is the Customs and Excise (Prohibition of Imports Made by Slave Labour) Amendment Act 2009.

2 Commencement

This Act comes into force on the day after the date on which it receives the Royal Assent.

3 Purpose

The purpose of this Act is to prohibit the importation of goods made in whole or in part by slave labour.

4 Principal Act amended

This Act amends the Customs and Excise Act 1996.

5 Interpretation

Section 2(1) of the principal Act is amended by inserting the following definition in its appropriate alphabetical order:

slave labour means labour by persons over whom any or all of the powers attaching to the right of ownership are exercised.

6 Schedule 1 of principal Act amended

Schedule 1 of the principal Act is amended to add the following:

Goods manufactured or produced wholly or in part by slave labour.

1 Petition 2005/151 of Geoff White on behalf of Trade Aid and 17,000 others.