The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has rejected a bid by Apple Inc to block a shareholder proposal asking the tech giant to provide greater transparency in its effort to keep forced labour out of its supply chain.
Earlier this year, a group of shareholders asked Apple’s board to prepare a report on how it protects workers in its supply chain from forced labour. The information request covered the extent to which Apple has identified suppliers that are a risk for forced labour and how many suppliers the tech giant has taken action against.
In a letter seen by Reuters on Wednesday, the SEC rejected Apple’s bid to block the proposal. “It does not appear that the essential objectives of the proposal have been implemented” so far, the letter said. Consequently, Apple will have to face a vote on the proposal at its next annual shareholder meeting.
The SEC has also denied a recent request by the tech giant to skip a shareholder proposal that would give investors more information about Apple’s use of non-disclosure agreements.