Addressing contemporary forms of slavery in EU external policy
Contemporary slavery is the exercise of the powers attaching to the right of ownership-control over a person by another such as a person might control a thing. There are an estimated 30 million slaves in the world today, including 1.1 million slaves in Europe. Recognizing that human trafficking is not in itself slavery, but rather a mechanism or conduit that brings a minority of the world’s enslaved people into slavery, the EU should shift its focus very clearly from trafficking to slavery. EU anti-slavery efforts might include new research, trade agreements targeting slave-made goods that... enter the European economy, and slavery inspectorates in Member States. This more comprehensive strategy should not be limited to trafficking victims but also aimed at the many people who are enslaved without a trafficking process. The EU must think bigger than it has done so far and aim for a slave-free Europe and eventually a slave-free world. It is not possible to fully separate internal from external policy with regard to the EU’s response to human trafficking and modern slavery, and so this report attempts to demonstrate the link between the two and recommend specific actions.