Submission to the joint meeting of the OECD Working Party on Responsible Business Conduct and the NCPs
Submission of OECD Watch to the OECD Working Party on Responsible Business Conduct (WPRBC) and the NCPs. The submission provides input for the WPRBC's discussions on seven subjects: on addressing the functioning, performance and impact of NCPs, on a concept note on the General Guidance on Risk-Based Due Diligence for RBC, on a proactive agenda for the implementation of guidance on agricultural supply chains and meaningful stakeholder engagement in the extractive sector, on the 2016 OECD Global Forum on RBC, on the adherence of Ukraine to the investment declaration, on the accession of Latvia to the OECD and to substantial structural funding needed for OECD RBC unit work on NCP-related issues.
In a joint statement, BIAC, TUAC, and OECD Watch call upon the OECD to provide the resources necessary to fund an effective peer review programme. They also call upon governments of all adhering countries to ensure that their NCPs are adequately equipped and staffed, so that they can fulfill their objectives, as set out in the OECD Guidelines.
OECD Watch welcomes the G7 Leaders Declaration issued following the G7 Summit at Schloss Elmau, Germany, on 7-8 June 2015. OECD Watch commends the G7 leaders for the commitment expressed in the Declaration to strengthening mechanisms for providing access to remedy for the victims of corporate misconduct, including the National Contact Points (NCPs) for the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. The G7 leaders acknowledgment of the need to strengthen and improve the NCP system echoes the findings in OECD Watchs recently-released “Remedy Remains Rare” report. In order to improve the functioning of NCPs, OECD Watch and the G7 leaders agree that one immediate step to be taken is to enhance and strengthen the current system of peer reviews. OECD Watch is particularly encouraged by the G7 leaders commitment to ensure that G7 NCPs “are effective and lead by example”. This statement provides G7 countries with concrete recommendations as to how they can fulfil this promise and ensure that their NCPs lead by example.
National Contact Points (NCPs) were established to promote adherence to the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (the Guidelines). In 2000, these statebased offices began accepting complaints from people harmed by companies’ noncompliance with the Guidelines. With this new role, NCPs acquired the potential to serve as a much-needed forum for accessing remedy for corporate abuses. Now, 15 years on, we look back on NCP performance in handling these complaints.
The highlights of this Quarterly Case Update include 5 new cases filed against 9 companies. New cases alleging breaches of the OECD Guidelines have been filed against the Dutch dredging company Van Oord, the export credit agency Atradius, the Indonesian cement producing company Holcim, the Swedish energy company Nykomb Synergetics Development AB, pharmaceutical company Mylan, the Korean cotton processor Daewoo, its parent company POSCO and the pension funds NPS and NBIM. The UK NCP rejected two complaints by Reprieve for not having substantiated the allegations related to the link between BTs services and US drone operations. The UK NCP recommended that the complaint by Reprieve against G4S be re-submitted with the US NCP. Finally, the UK NCP released a final statement in the case against Gamma and the UK NCP facilitated a successful mediation in Formula 1 Bahrain human rights cases. Also Arla and ActionAid Denmark reached an agreement in the case related to the companys sale of milk in West-Africa and the process of a mediated dialogue was initiated by the Dutch NCP in the case between Friends of the Earth against Rabobank. The Australian NCP has yet to issue initial assessments in the ANZ Bank Cambodian sugar case, and in the G4S Manus Island asylum seekers case. The Irish CRH case and the Japanese Toyota Philippines case were included again as they set new all-time records for inordinate delays in cases.