2013 National Contact Point (NCP) Annual Report

OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises: Canada's NCP Report to the OECD 2013

National Contact Points must report annually to the OECD Investment Committee on the nature and results of their activities to further the effectiveness of the Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises, including implementation activities in specific instances.

A Common Reporting Framework, based on the Implementation Procedures of the Guidelines, assists NCPs prepare these reports. This information is the basis for the Chair’s Annual Report to the OECD Council.

Common Reporting Framework Table of Contents

Common framework for annual reporting by National Contact Points

The role of National Contact Points is to further the effectiveness of the Guidelines by undertaking promotional activities, handling enquiries and contributing to the resolution of issues that arise relating to the implementation of the Guidelines in specific instances. NCPs will operate in accordance with core criteria of visibility, accessibility, transparency and accountability.

A. Institutional Arrangements

1. Governmental location of the NCP

Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada
125 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, Ontario
Canada
K1A 0G2

2. Structure of the NCP

Interagency: Canada's NCP is an eight-member interdepartmental committee chaired by a senior representative of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada (DFAIT) and co-chaired by the Department of Natural Resources Canada, with participation by Industry Canada; Human Resources and Skills Development Canada; Environment Canada; Finance Canada; the Canadian International Development Agency; and Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada. Canada's NCP works with the Canadian Office of the Corporate Social Responsibility Counsellor for the Extractive Sector to support the implementation of the OECD Guidelines by Canadian business.

3. Does the NCP have an advisory body?

No.

4. Does the NCP have an oversight body?

No.

5. Was the NCP structure modified in the reporting period?

No.

6. How does this structure enable the NCP to operate effectively?

Each of the eight member departments that comprise the NCP has a specific expertise in their respective and mandated areas of responsibility, and thus are able to provide informed views and advice to the Chair on the broad range of issues covered by the Guidelines, and at the same time maintain the required level of accountability to Canada's domestic legal, regulatory, and administrative requirements.

7. Does the NCP have an allocated budget?

Yes.

DFAIT allocates the human and financial resources required for the Secretariat support to Canada's NCP Committee administration, as well as the requirements for furthering the implementation and promotion of the Guidelines. These activities include, inter alia, assuming the costs of non-judicial dispute resolution among parties on issues raised in a request for review; outreach and engagement to build awareness among stakeholder groups; and supporting the OECD and its Secretariat to further the effectiveness of the Guidelines within the Proactive Agenda workplan initiatives, including liaison, peer learning and capacity-building among the global NCP network.

8. Does the NCP have dedicated staff?

Yes.

One full-time resource in DFAIT is dedicated to the management of the Secretariat function as described above.

9. Are changes in the structure or resources available to the NCP contemplated in the near future?

No.

10. Does the NCP report within the Government on its activities?

Yes.

The NCP provides regular status reports, updates and briefings to the Office of the Minister of International Trade and other member Departments' Ministers, as required.

B. Information and Promotion

11. Does the NCP have a dedicated website or dedicated webpages?

Yes.

The Canadian NCP website is publicly accessible at: Canada's National Contact Point (NCP) for the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (MNEs) (in English) and Point de contact national (PCN) du Canada pour les Principes directeurs de l'Organisation de Coopération et de Développement Économiques (OCDE) à l'intention des entreprises multinationales (in French).

12. Are the 2011 Guidelines available online?

Yes.

Direct links are provided from Canada's NCP website to both English and French language versions available on the OECD website.

13. Are the 2011 Guidelines available in print? Yes

Yes.

In outreach conducted in the reporting period, nearly 200 copies of the 2011 Guidelines were made available to participating stakeholders.

14. Did you develop other products to raise awareness of the Guidelines?

No.

15. Is your Annual Report available online?

Yes.

Available at: Canada's National Contact Point (NCP) for the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (MNEs)

16. Is your Annual Report available in print?

Yes.

The document is accessible for download and printing on demand from our web site. Upon request, single printed copies can be provided to interested individuals.

17. Does the NCP coordinate with other government activities on responsible business conduct?

Yes.

Yes. Members of the NCP Committee are also involved in various related activities and initiatives at the federal and sub-national levels of government related to encouraging the use of standards and principles of responsible business conduct. Opportunities for cross-over in both sharing information and collaboration on outreach initiatives and capacity building to improve implementation of the Guidelines are identified and leveraged where possible.

As part of Canada's overall CSR Strategy for the Extractive Sector, the NCP coordinates with other elements of the strategy, particularly the Office of the CSR Counsellor for the Extractive Sector.

18. Does the NCP, together with appropriate state entities (export credits agency, investment stateowned enterprises, overseas investment guarantee and inward investment promotion programs ,..), inform prospective investors about the Guidelines and their implementation?

Yes.

The NCP Chair and the Committee routinely liaise with Export Development Canada (EDC), the export credit agency of Canada, regarding policies and other matters with respect to responsible business conduct. Canada's Trade Commissioner Service, along with its broader network of embassies, high commissions and other offices, both domestic and international, provide support and services to Canadian companies' international business operations. These activities include training, outreach, and response to stakeholders' queries regarding the OECD Guidelines, and the NCP's role in encouraging their promotion and effective implementation.

Canada supports the Intergovernmental Forum on Mining, Minerals, Metals and Sustainable Development, which convenes high-level representatives from resource-rich developing countries, donors, civil society and the private sector to discuss and advance issues of mutual concern. The Forum advances dialogue and influences policy change in areas important to developing countries, such as international standards and best practices in mining management and governance.

Canada continues to include voluntary provisions for responsible business conduct in its free trade and foreign investment promotion and protection agreements (FIPA) with other countries, such as those recently concluded with Colombia, Peru and Panama, as a foundation for bilateral dialogue and follow-up on standards and principles of responsible and predictable investment practices, such as the OECD Guidelines.

Canada’s approach to extractives and sustainable development in developing countries includes support for building resource governance capacity, growing businesses and improving local economic development through diversification, and enabling communities to maximize the benefits from the extractive sector. Canada’s international development assistance also supports the implementation of international standards and guidelines for leading practice, applying to both firms and countries, including the OECD Guidelines. Canada provides support ($1M, over 2 years) to the OECD Investment Committee to further the implementation of the OECD Guidelines by building the capacity of NCPs from non-OECD countries in fulfilling their tasks.

The Government of Canada’s support to the Canadian International Institute for Extractive Industries and Development (CIIEID) will leverage Canadian and international expertise to help resource-rich developing countries improve their capacity to implement responsible policies and regulations, such as those recommended in the OECD Guidelines.

19. If the NCP conducted surveys or collected data documenting enterprises' awareness and use of the Guidelines, such as references in corporate codes of conduct, provide details.

While the NCP has not conducted such a survey, the DFAIT unit responsible for Canada's policies and strategy for CSR is conducting a second annual survey of companies in May 2013 to gauge their awareness and implementation of international standards and principles related to responsible business conduct in the extractive sector, which includes coverage of the OECD Guidelines for MNEs. Another NCP departmental committee member, NRCan, continues research initiated in 2012 on Canadian extractive companies, which includes data related to their knowledge and application of the OECD Guidelines.

20. Does the NCP have a promotional plan on the Guidelines?

Yes.

Officials of the eight departments and agencies that comprise Canada's NCP identify and coordinate their participation in a variety of promotional activities and outreach initiatives in various fora where reference to the OECD Guidelines and the NCP's role has been discussed or referenced. These fora include:

  • the second annual multistakeholder information session hosted by the NCP on November 19, 2012;
  • workshop sessions and information provided at the annual Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada International Convention in March 2013;
  • 49 regional and country initiatives through DFAIT's Client Service Fund, which enables the pursuit of CSR initiatives such as workshops and information sessions scheduled around the world, aimed at stimulating discussion and dialogue on integrating CSR into business activities;
  • various speaking engagements in international and domestic fora, as for example, the InSight CSR and Sustainability Conference, December 2012, in Toronto, Canada; the Intergovernmental Forum on Mining, Minerals, Metals and Sustainable Development, October 2012, in Geneva; the UK-sponsored International Human Rights Bureau workshop on the NCPs' role in the Extractive Sector, in London, March 2013; the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada, in Toronto, Canada March 2013;and an International Experts Workshop on Non-judicial Access to Remedies, co-sponsored by the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights and Canada's Office of the CSR Counsellor for the Extractive Sector, in Toronto, Canada April 2013.

The NCP provides input to CSR-related articles in DFAIT publications, such as the CanadExport, a newsletter designed for Canadian exporters, and the CSR Bulletin, intended for a broad external multistakeholder audience.

21. Did the NCP organise any event to promote the Guidelines and their implementation procedures?

Yes.

Title: Multi-stakeholder Information Session on the revised 2011 Guidelines and the Role of Canada's NCP
Date: November 19, 2012
Place: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Further Details: Details regarding the event are available on the NCP website at: Responsible Business Conduct: How Canada’s National Contact Point Can Help Inform Smart Business Practices Abroad

22. Did the NCP participate in any event organised by stakeholders or other entities to promote the Guidelines and their implementation procedures?

Yes.

Title: Inauguration of the Office of the Colombian NCP
Date: June 9, 2012
Place: Bogota, Colombia
Further Details: Canada participated in the inaugural event at the request of Colombia; met with Colombian officials, and provided an overview of the Canadian NCP's inter-agency model, procedures and key activities. As part of the program, discussions were held with Colombian officials and Canadian mining interests operating in Colombia, and in the surrounding region.

Title: Tripartite Roundtable on Labour Issues
Date: N/A
Place: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Further Details: N/A

Title: International Human Rights and Business Workshop on NCP's Role in the Extractive Sector
Date: March 22, 2013
Place: London, UK
Further Details: N/A

Title: International Experts Workshop on Access to Non-judicial Remedies
Date: April 29-30, 2013
Place: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Further Details: N/A

Title: Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada Trade Show and Convention
Date: March 3, 2013
Place: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Further Details: Seminar on Canadian CSR Strategy including OECD Guidelines opened by the Hon. Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade.

23. What use has been made of embassies, notably in emerging markets and other nonadhering countries, for raising awareness and promoting the Guidelines?

As the NCP Secretariat is housed in the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Canada has integrated extensive use of Canada's international platform abroad to promote and enhance awareness of the Guidelines. This includes the funding of mission-led CSR initiatives through DFAIT's Client Service Fund, such as workshops and information sessions aimed at stimulating discussion and dialogue on integrating CSR into business activities.

24. Does the NCP have a direct relationship with OECD partner organisations and/or other leading responsible business conduct instruments:

ILO?

Yes.

UN Global Compact and its local networks?

Yes.

UN Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights?

Yes.

National Institution for the Protection and Promotion of Human Rights?

Yes.

Global Reporting Initiative?

Yes.

ISO26000?

Yes.

Other

Yes.

Through its eight-member interdepartmental Committee and its Social Partners, the NCP maintains a relationship to the institutions listed above as well as the Intergovernmental Forum on Mining, the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, and the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative.

25. Does the NCP or another government agency promote the OECD Risk Awareness Tool for Multinational Enterprises in Weak Governance Zones?

Yes.

The NCP is situated within the unit at DFAIT responsible for CSR, and works closely with related divisions responsible for both policy development and transfer payment (grants and contributions) programming in weak governance zones. Knowledge and promotion of the Risk Awareness Tool is promulgated through these channels; through outreach and information exchange with embassies and offices abroad; through direct links from the NCP website to the Tool; and in presentations by the NCP Chair and its interdepartmental Committee members to interested stakeholders.

26. Does the NCP or another government agency promote the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High Risk Areas?

Yes.

The NCP works as appropriate with the Human Rights and Governance Policy Division of DFAIT, which leads the coordination of Canada's contribution to this initiative, and co-facilitated the Working Group on Gold's drafting committee process on the Gold Supplement. During the reporting period, Canada remained active within the 3Ts Working Group to create global consensus on responsible mining and sourcing practices in the tin, tantalum, and tungsten sectors.

27. Were enquiries received on the Guidelines and their implementation procedures

From the NCPs?

Yes.

From the business community?

Yes.

From labour organisations?

Yes.

From non-governmental organisations?

Yes.

From governments of non-adhering countries?

Yes.

Other

No.

C. Proactive Agenda

In accordance with the Investment Committee's proactive agenda, NCPs should maintain regular contact, including meetings, with social partners and other stakeholders in order to: a) consider new developments and emerging
practices concerning responsible business conduct; b) support the positive contributions enterprises can make to identify and respond to risks of adverse impacts associated with particular products, regions, sectors or industries

28. Did the NCP identify new emerging challenges for enterprises, or engage in any related activities?

Yes.

Canada and Norway continued efforts to advance the Proactive Agenda project to develop a user's guide for extractive companies and relevant stakeholders in exercising due diligence in stakeholder engagement to avoid harm or the adverse impacts of business operations, products or services to the countries and communities in which they operate. The literature review commissioned by Canada to assess gaps in existing guidance on the matter was initially circulated at the June 2012 NCP meeting and reviewed and discussed by the Working Party of the Investment Committee in October and December 2012. In December 2012, the Working Party endorsed the establishment of a multistakeholder advisory group to inform the project's further development. Since then, the composition, terms of reference and a preliminary workplan has been developed for the Advisory Group. In a preliminary teleconference on March 6, 2013, the Advisory Group identified some of the emerging challenges in addressing complex issues and relationships along the spectrum of activities represented by companies' operational cycles, as well as activities along their supply chains. It was also agreed that further discussion to identify regional differences, and particularly emerging economy perspectives, on stakeholder expectations and challenges was needed. It was agreed that dialogue on key elements identified would form part of the program of the inaugural Global Forum on Responsible Business Conduct in June 2013 to help clarify priorities and next steps.

D. Co-operation and Peer Learning

In addition to contributing to the Committee's work to enhance the effectiveness of the Guidelines, NCPs will engage in joint peer learning activities. In particular, they are encouraged to engage in horizontal, thematic peer reviews and voluntary NCP peer evaluations. Such peer learning can be carried out through meetings at the OECD or through direct co-operation between NCPs.

29. Did the NCP engage in direct co-operation with other NCPs?

Yes.

Throughout the reporting cycle, the Canadian and Colombian NCPs collaborated on the establishment, structure, and sharing of best practices relevant to the latter's new offices and participated in outreach and promotion of their newly established offices inaugurated in June 2012. At the request of the US NCP, Canada offered lessons learned and best practices on mediation and voluntary dispute resolution to the USNCP Stakeholder Advisory Board (SAB), January 2013. In April 2013, NCPs and the OECD Secretariat were invited to participate in an International Experts Workshop on Non-judicial Access to Remedies co-sponsored by the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights, and Canada's CSR Counsellor for the Extractive Sector, in Toronto. In May 2012 the Canadian and Mexican NCPs both received a request for review regarding the same specific instance in Mexico. In consultation, the Mexican and Canadian NCPs determined that Mexico was best placed to lead the review of the request. Canada assisted Mexico's NCP as requested throughout their initial assessment and the Mexican NCP subsequently shared a copy of its findings.

30. Is the NCP interested in volunteering for a peer evaluation?

Yes.

Canada would consider a peer evaluation to begin at a time to be determined after 2015.

31. Is the NCP interested in being part of the team conducting a voluntary peer evaluation?

In response to Norwegian NCP's informal request in 2012, Canada has indicated its willingness and availability to participate in its peer review process starting in September 2013.

E. Specific Instances

32. Did the NCP develop procedures for handling specific instances?

No.

33. How many new specific instances did the NCP receive in the reporting period?

1.

Information on new specific instances: Please fill in, where appropriate (and subject to any relevant confidentiality provisions in the Procedural Guidance and Commentary) the following template for each new specific instance received in the reporting period.

Title: Mining, Mexico
Leading NCP: Mexico
Supporting NCP: Canada
Description: Concerns raised by PRODESC; La Eijido Sierrita; Sindicator Nacional de Trabajadores Mineros, Mtealurgicos, Siderurgicos y Simlares de la Republica Mexicana (SNTMMSSRM); MiningWatch Canada; United SteelWorkers, and the Canadian Labour Congress.
Themes:

  • II. General Policies
  • III. Disclosure
  • IV. Human Rights
  • V. Employment and Industrial Relations
  • VI. Environment

Date specific instance received: May 29, 2012
Host country: Mexico
Source:

  • Trade Union
  • NGO
  • Other interested parties

Industry sector: Mining and Quarrying
Status: Concluded
Summary: Note: Due to the proximity of the date of receipt of this request for review and deadlines for submission of input to 2012 Common Reporting Framework cycle, Canada was unable to report this as a new instance.

On May 29, 2012, Canada received the request for review of Excellon Resources Ltd's operations in Durango, Mexico. A request for review was submitted concurrently to Mexico's NCP. In consultation, the Mexican and Canadian NCPs determined that Mexico was best placed to lead the review of the request. This decision was conveyed to the parties on June 28, 2012. Canada assisted Mexico's NCP as requested throughout their initial assessment. The Mexican NCP shared a copy of its findings with Canada's NCP on December 5, 2012.

34. Do you have any updates on specific instances that were reported and not concluded in the previous reporting period?

Yes.

Update on specific instances from previous reporting period

Title: Gold Mining, Papua New Guinea
Status: In progress
Link: Pending completion

Title: Gold Mining, Mongolia
Status: Concluded
Link: Link to NCP website pending

F. Useful Experiences and Future Work

35. Provide any other information on the nature and results of NCP activities during this implementation cycle of the updated Guidelines, including on any useful experiences and/or difficulties encountered in carrying out the duties of the NCP.

One of the difficulties the NCP experienced was mediation at distance. The mediation process is also made more complex with multiple notifiers.

36. Based on your recent activities, what issues might deserve particular attention during the 2013-2014 implementation cycle of the OECD Guidelines?

One issue that deserves more attention is the need for greater cooperation between NCPs.

NCP Contact Information

Canada's NCP Secretariat
125 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, Ontario, K1A0G2
Canada
Website: www.ncp.gc.ca
Email: ncp.pcn@international.gc.ca
Telephone: 613-996-2947
Fax: 613-944-1574