Canada’s National Contact Point for the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises Stakeholder Information Session

October 27, 2011


  • Opening Remarks
  • OECD Guidelines for MNEs
  • National Contact Point
  • Guideline Update
  • Questions and Answers

OECD Guidelines

  • Guidelines are a government-endorsed framework of voluntary standards and principles for responsible business conduct
  • Canada is a member of the OECD and a signatory to the Guidelines
  • Inception 1976
  • Reviewed several times (most recently in 2011)
  • 42 adhering countries

OECD Guidelines

Guidelines provide recommendations on the conduct of MNEs in:

  • General Policies
  • Disclosure
  • Human Rights
  • Employment and Industrial Relations
  • Environment
  • Combating Bribery, Bribe Solicitation and Extortion
  • Consumer Interests
  • Science and Technology
  • Competition
  • Taxation

Guidelines also contain a Procedural Guidance chapter relating to National Contact Point procedures

NCP – Institutional Structure

  • Interdepartmental Committee
  • Eight member departments: CIDA, DFAIT, EC, Finance, HRSDC, IC, AANDC, and NRCan
  • Chairperson (DFAIT – DG level)
  • Vice-Chairperson (NRCan)
  • Secretariat (DFAIT)

Role and Responsibilities of the NCP

  • Promoting awareness of the Guidelines and making them available
  • Responding to enquiries about the Guidelines
  • Contributing to the resolution of issues that arise relating to the implementation of the Guidelines in specific instances
  • Reporting annually to the OECD Investment Committee


  • Confidentiality
  • Reporting

Specific Instances

  • Who can file a request for review?
  • Who can be the subject of a request for review?
  • Supporting information
  • What are the powers of the NCP to respond to a request for review?

Specific Instances

  • Forum for discussion
  • Since 2000 the Canadian NCP has received 11 submissions

Specific Instance Procedures Guide

  • Phase 1: Initial Assessment
  • Phase 2: Facilitated Dialogue
  • Phase 3: Statement

2011 Guidelines Update

  • Updates Guidelines adopted at OECD Ministerial Council Meeting on May 25, 2011.
  • Key New Sections
  • Human Rights
  • Supply Chains and Due Diligence
  • Stakeholder Engagement
  • Strengthened Procedural Guidance Section

Human Rights

  • New Chapter
  • While it is ultimately government’s responsibility to protect human rights, businesses have the responsibility to respect human rights, and avoid causing or contributing to human rights abuses

Supply Chains and Due Diligence

  • Companies to carry out risk-based due diligence
  • New text outlining a company’s responsibility in relation to their Supply Chains
  • If an enterprise identifies a risk of causing an adverse impact, then it should take the necessary steps to cease or prevent this impact

Stakeholder Engagement

  • Recommendation sponsored by Canada
  • Absence was a significant gap – did not reflect best practice
  • “Engage with relevant stakeholders in order to provide meaningful opportunities for their views to be taken into account in relation to planning and decision making for projects or other activities that may significantly impact local communities.”

Procedural Guidance

  • New procedures clarify and provide more guidance
  • Greater emphasis on transparency in NCP activities
  • Proposed timeframes
  • Additions will increase uniformity across NCPs (promote functional equivalence)

Other Guidelines Updates

  • Employment and Industrial Relations chapter now aligned with the ILO Tripartite Declaration
  • Environment
  • Anti-Bribery
  • Consumer Interests
  • Competition
  • Taxation

Social Partners

  • Canadian Chamber of Commerce (CCC)
  • Canadian Labour Congress (CLC)
  • Confédération des syndicats nationaux (CSN)

CSR Counsellor

  • One of the four pillars of the CSR Strategy of March 2009 “Building the Canadian Advantage”
  • Counsellor’s Mandate

For more information please visit Canada’s National Contact Point website: