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.
Proposal for strategic focus areas for the Danish Mediation and Complaints-Handling Institution for Responsible Business
OECD Watch appreciates the opportunity to submit a proposal to the Danish Mediation and Complaints-Handling Institution for Responsible Business Conduct (the Institution), functioning as the OECD National Contact Point (NCP) for the OECD Guidelines in Denmark, to guide the Institutions work plan for the period 2015-6. This proposal is intended to inform the Institution about sectors of particular strategic importance to Danish public and private enterprises and opportunities where the Institution can make a significant contribution to awareness raising about the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (the Guidelines).
Trade unions and NGOs call on governments to use their leverage and coordinate collective action to raise the missing $9 million for the Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund, before the second anniversary on the 24 April 2015.