On 9 April 2019 a notification was filed by Frank Bold Foundation against OLX sp. z o.o., part of the multinational corporate group OLX group, at the Polish OECD NCP. The notification concerns activities of OLX in Poland related to running online marketplace. The complainants allege that OLX allows to advertise products and services harmful for the environment, with specific focus on air quality and misleading consumers, therefore violating OECD Guidelines, specifically chapter II section A point 1 and 13, chapter VI point 6 and chapter VIII points 2 and 5. Complainants were seeking mediation from the NCP in order to reach an agreement that would lead to improvements of OLX’s environmental and consumer protection policies.
Relevant OECD Guidelines
- Chapter II
- Chapter II Paragraph A1
- Chapter II Paragraph A13
- Chapter VI
- Chapter VI Paragraph 6
- Chapter VIII
- Chapter VIII Chapeau
- Chapter VIII Paragraph 2
- Chapter VIII Paragraph 5
On 25 June 2018 the NCP completed an initial assessment accepting the case for further consideration. The NCP then organised a meeting with both parties during which both the representatives of FBF and OLX expressed the will to reach an agreement. Due to both parties’ openness it was decided to continue negotiations without direct participation of NCP, while keeping the NCP informed.
In the beginning of 2019 the parties reached a preliminary agreement and on 25 April they signed a letter of intent.
On 13 May 2019 the NCP issued its final assessment on the case and presented it to the parties for their acceptance.
On 13 June 2019 the parties accepted the final statement. In the letter of intent the parties emphasized the significance of air pollution in Poland and the necessity to take up actions to increase environmental awareness and promote attitudes compliant with the principles of the environmental protection and of sustainable development. OLX agreed to cooperate with FBF in improving their environmental policies, improve screening of advertisements published on their website and prioritise notifications of illegal advertisements submitted by FBF. FBF, in cooperation with Polish Smog Alerts, now monitors the OLX portal for adverts breaching the conditions set in the agreement and notifies OLX about the situation.