Business Ethics Unicol Paper

Business Ethics Unicol Paper - Unacol in Burma Is it...

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Unacol in Burma Is it possible for multinational firms to act morally when operating within countries where blatant disregard for their own people occur? Unacol’s involvement in Burma presented a highly controversial situation, investing in a gas pipeline from Myanmar to Thailand despite Myanmar’s reputation for brutally suppressing internal dissent. Through four popular ethical decision making criteria, I will argue that Unacol’s decision to invest in the pipeline was wrong and that they are morally responsible for the injuries and deaths of those involved in the project. Utilitarian ethical theories holds that moral worth, the rightness or wrongness, of an act is derived entirely from its overall consequences and their utility. Thus, Utilitarianism views morality as a kind of higher economics, viewing moral reasoning on the model of economic profit-loss calculations—where profits and losses are replaced with intrinsic costs and benefits. Unocal had provided 7,551 paid jobs to Burmese workers during construction and would continue to employ 587 Burmese. Unocal also spearheaded efforts in improved health conditions greatly decreasing infant mortality in the pipeline region. Besides an initial investment of $8.6 million, Unacol spent an additional $230 million on the gas pipeline construction, and a $10 million per year cost for operation of the project. In return, Unocal’s gas revenues were $75 million a year, continuing over the course of its 30-year contract. It appears that
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This note was uploaded on 09/15/2009 for the course PHIL 237 taught by Professor Soffer during the Fall '08 term at SUNY Geneseo.

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Business Ethics Unicol Paper - Unacol in Burma Is it...

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