Legal issue 3
The company violates consumer rights because it deceives customers that is unacceptable practice in the US and internationally. In addition, the trade with such countries as Iran and Afghanistan is strictly regulated. The company deceives its customers that contradicts to fundamental principles of the customer protection legislation. In fact, the deception of customers, such as the US government may lead to the legal action against the company which may be initiated by the Federal Trade Commission. However, the main problem the company may face is the loss of customers because they will be dissatisfied with the quality of products supplied by the company.
At the same time, the deception of customers is apparently the breach of duty from the part of GN. In fact, the breach of duty leads to the supply of products of the low quality that are dangerous to health and life of customers. Therefore, the US government as the customer of GN can file a lawsuit against the company and the company will have to compensate damages caused by its products of the low quality which lead to injuries or death of the US soldiers.
In such a way, GN deals with negligence in regard to fulfillment of its duty in relation to customers. The negligence makes the company legally liable for the breach of duty. Therefore, the company should be ready to pay off compensation and damages to its customers. The negligence is one of the core concepts of the tort law, while GN policy matches the concept of negligence. Therefore, the company is likely to face lawsuits and legal action against the company, while the company may face a risk of paying off damages caused by its products of the low quality.
Recommendation: Ethical issue 1
On analyzing ethical issues GN confronts today, it is possible to suggest some recommendations for the company. First, GN should stop selling landmines and introduce safer products in relation to civilians. The company should respect international legal norms that will help the company to tackle its ethical problems. The respect to international laws means that the company should select carefully its business partners and customers. For instance, the company cannot sell products to countries, which face international economic sanctions. Obviously some countries cannot maintain free trade and companies cannot supply certain products, especially weapon, to such countries. In case of GN, the company supplies weapon to Taliban in Afghanistan and to Iran which is an undemocratic country with aggressive international policy. In actuality, the international community has imposed limitations on sales of technology and equipment related to nuclear technologies to Iran. Obviously, land mines are not related to nuclear weapon but the reason for the limitation of trade with Iran is its threats and aggression in relations with its neighbors and countries in the Middle East and the world, especially the US and Israel. Therefore, the company should respect the position of the international community and assess adequately the potential threat of Iran and Taliban to the US and international community. In fact, the problem is that the company sales products to countries and organizations that maintain international terrorism. Such policy contradicts to international and American ethical norms and rules. In such a situation, the only solution to this ethical problem is the end of any cooperation of GN with Iran and Taliban.
In fact, the refusal from the cooperation with Iran and Taliban should be accompanied by the refusal from the sales of land mines because they are extremely dangerous for civilians and their use and sale will still raise a number of ethical issues. In fact, the company should act responsibly not only in relation to its customer but also to the society at large. In this regard, the refusal from sales of land mines would be a reasonable solution to existing ethical issues. The company will improve its public image and avoid the public pressure because of the spread of land mines in the world.
Recommendation: Ethical issue 2
The company should focus on its target customer group, namely GN should choose either to supply its products to the US or to Iran and Afghanistan. Obviously, the company cannot sale its products to actual or potential enemies. At any rate, from the ethical point of view such cooperation of GN with the US government, Iran and Taliban in Afghanistan is absolutely unethical and there is no other solution but to choose, which customer the company prefer. However, while making a choice, the company will have to take into consideration not only ethical but also legal issues. To put it more precisely, the international legislation and the US Arms Export Control Act of 1976 ban the cooperation with countries and organizations which maintain international terrorism. In this regard, Taliban and Iran do support international terrorism and, if the company chooses these countries, this decision will be ethically controversial again and, more important, this decision will raise a number of legal issues as well. Therefore, the company should focus on the US as its major customer and this solution will be adequate and effective, taking into consideration existing ethical and legal issues.