Keywords: UN Guiding Principle on Business and Human Rights; Duty to Protect; Corporate Due Diligence; Access to Remedy; National Action Plans; Italy.
The growth of the international business and human rights agenda has led to the development of an unprecedented debate as to the role of the State in protecting human rights from corporate-related abuses as well as in the implementation of the 2011 UN Guiding Principles on business and human rights. States are both the engine of the process of implementation of the Principles and the pace-maker of the mechanism of the National Action Plans (NAPs), which has been selected as policy-making tool for an effective implementation of the Principles. Since the launch of the first NAP by the United Kingdom in 2013, many other countries, especially within the European regional area, have adopted their own NAP; ultimately Italy adopted its Italian National Action Plan on Business and Human Rights 2016- 2021 on December 2016. This paper aims to provide a first appraisal of the Italian Action Plan, of its contents and methodology, in order to assess its strengths and weaknesses. Also, the analysis will allow to perform some remarks on the Italian NAP in the light of the broader process of implementation of the UN Guiding Principles within domestic legal systems.