Ministarstvo vanjskih i europskih poslova RH

National Contact Point as a permanent mechanism for promoting and implementing the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises for Responsible Business Conduct

The Croatian National Contact Point (NCP)
The Government of the Republic of Croatia, at its session held on 23 May 2019, adopted the Decision establishing a National Contact Point as a permanent mechanism for promoting and implementing the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises for Responsible Business Conduct.

Obligation of the Croatian National Contact Point
The National Contact Point is tasked with promoting and providing information on the Guidelines and the procedure for implementing them, contributing to the resolution of issues related to the implementation of the Guidelines in specific instances, performing the initial assessment of whether the question asked merits further examination, and offering the provision of good offices, including conciliation or mediation, in order to assist the parties involved in dealing with the issues at hand.

The National Contact Point Secretariat
The National Contact Point Secretariat is responsible for coordinating all activities of the National Contact Point, providing administrative support to the work of the External Body, drawing up an annual report on the National Contact Point's activities to be submitted to the OECD Investment Committee and participating in annual meetings of the OECD Working Party on Responsible Business Conduct.

The National Contact Point’s Secretariat consists of one official from the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs and one official from the Ministry of the Economy and Sustainable Development.

The NCP External Body
The NCP External Body is tasked with assisting parties in resolving issues related to the application of the Guidelines in specific instances, as well as for other activities regarding the promotion and implementation of the Guidelines in coordination with the Secretariat.

The NCP External Body representatives
The NCP External Body consists of one representative from each of the following:

  • the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs;
  • the Ministry of the Economy and Sustainable Development;
  • the Ministry of Labour, Pension System, Family and Social Policy;
  • the Croatian Chamber of Commerce;
  • the Croatian Employers' Association;
  • the Croatian Business Council for Sustainable Development;
  • the Autonomous Trade Unions of Croatia;
  • the Independent Union of Research and Higher Education Employees;
  • a non-governmental organisation dealing with human rights protection and
  • a non-governmental organisation dealing with environmental protection.

Main tasks of the National Contact Point
The National Contact Point has two main tasks:

  • raising awareness about the OECD Guidelines with companies, trade unions and NGOs; and
  • contributing to resolving issues arising from alleged non-compliance with the Guidelines in specific instances.

Guidelines for multinational companies regarding responsible business conduct
The guidelines focus on two aspects of the business-society relationship:

1) the positive contribution that multinational enterprises can make to sustainable development, and
2) avoiding negative effects and addressing them when they do occur.

The Guidelines recommendations are listed in 11 chapters and cover subjects such as disclosure, human rights, employment and labour, environment, combating bribery, bribe solicitation and extortion and consumer interests, in addition to three other fields - science and technology, competition and taxation.

The guidelines are intended for all entities within a multinational enterprise (parent companies and/or local entities), and their scope of application includes the enterprise’s activities and activities linked to the enterprise through business relations.

The Guidelines also have a built-in grievance mechanism. Under this mechanism, adhering countries are obliged to establish a National Contact Point (NCP) to assist stakeholders through a specific instance process to help to find a solution for issues arising from alleged non-compliance with the Guidelines.

A translation of the OECD Guidelines in Croatian can be found here.

The OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Business Conduct recommendations

The OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Business Conduct provides practical support to enterprises on the implementation of the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises by providing plain language explanations of its due diligence recommendations and associated provisions. Implementing these recommendations can help enterprises avoid and address adverse impacts that may be associated with their business operations, supply chains and other business relations and are related to workers, human rights, the environment, bribery, consumers and corporate governance. The Guidance includes additional explanations, tips and illustrative examples of due diligence.

In order to promote the effective observance of the Guidelines, the OECD has developed sectoral guidance which helps enterprises identify and address risks to people, the environment and society associated with business operations, products or services in particular sectors.

Responsible Business Conduct in the Financial Sector;
Responsible Mineral Supply Chains;
Meaningful Stakeholder Engagement in the Extractive Sector;
Responsible Supply Chains in the Garment and Footwear Sector;
Responsible Agricultural Supply Chains.

NCP Mediation
NCP mediation occurs when implementation of the Guidelines leads to differences in opinion among stakeholders, or when stakeholders believe that an enterprise is not adhering to the Guidelines. The NCP can assist the parties involved in finding a solution in order to avoid further escalation or reputational damage

When this situation develops, an informal procedure can be initiated or a formal notification of a specific instance can me made.

Initiation of specific instance contributes to advancing the implementation of the OECD Guidelines. The result of a specific instance can have broader impact on an industry or sector when it comes to establishing responsible business conduct in practice.

The OECD Guidelines are also the only international framework for responsible business conduct with a built-in grievance mechanism.

Rules of procedure in specific instances can be found here.

A leaflet in Croatian with information on the Guidelines and NCP procedures in specific instances can be found here.

 

The Croatian National Contact Point Secretariat:
Vjekoslav Juričić (Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs)
Tel.: +385 1 4598 138

Ana Čulo (Ministry of the Economy and Sustainable Development)
Tel.: +385 1 6109 765
E-mail: nkt-oecd@mvep.hr

 

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