The National Contact Point (NCP) for Responsible Business Conduct is a structure that contributes to the effective implementation of the OECD Guidelines.
The OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises provide a global framework for responsible business conduct covering human rights, employment and industrial relations, the environment, anti-corruption, consumer interests, science and technology, competition and agriculture.
All 49 states adhering to the OECD Guidelines are required to have an NCP. In Belgium, the FPS Economy hosts the National Contact Point.
Missions of the NCP for Responsible Business Conduct
The NCP is responsible for:
- promoting the objectives of the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises and fostering corporate due diligence (publications and events). It assists companies and their shareholders in adopting appropriate measures to ensure the effectiveness of the Guidelines.
- providing a non-judicial mechanism in the event of an alleged breach of the Guidelines by a company, namely a conciliation and mediation platform, also known as "dealing with specific instances".
The NCPs shall coordinate their respective actions. They meet annually to share experiences and best practices and report to the Committee on International Investment and Multinational Enterprises. This OECD Committee is the body responsible for the Guidelines within the OECD.
More information on the website of the network of the NCPs (site of the OECD.)
The Belgian NCP for Responsible Business Conduct
The Belgian National Contact Point for Responsible Business Conduct is a tripartite body bringing together representatives of federal and regional public services as well as three employers' and trade union organisations active at the national level and represented in the Central Economic Council and the National Labor Council. Each organisation or public service has appointed a representative.
For the federal and regional public services, these are the Ministers of Economy, Foreign Affairs, Employment and Labour, Justice, Finance, Environment and Public Health, the Flemish Region, the Walloon Region and the Brussels-Capital Region.
For the trade unions:
- the Confederation of Christian Trade Unions (CSC);
- the General Federation of Workers of Belgium (FGTB);
- the Centrale Générale des Syndicats libres de Belgique (CGSLB).
For the employers' organisations:
- the Federation of Enterprises of Belgium (FEB);
- Comeos (services federation);
- Agoria (federation of technological industries).
In order to fulfil its missions as well as possible, the NCP has created a network of experts calling on people with recognized skills in various fields.
The presidency and the secretariat are ensured by representatives of the FPS Economy, SMEs, Self-Employed and Energy.
Mediation role of the NCP – dealing with specific instances
The NCP acts as a non-jurisdictional dispute resolution body in "specific instances".
Under what circumstances?
Any organisation or individual may file a complaint with the NCP about an alleged violation of the OECD Guidelines by a company or organisation that is active on Belgian territory and/or has its registered office in Belgium but is active in another country.
If the NCP considers the request admissible, it can initiate a mediation through its offer of good offices.
Who can make a request to the NCP?
Any interested party impacted by the activities of a company, directly or indirectly (in case of violation to one of its members or its social purpose) may file a complaint.
This can be a trade union, an NGO, workers, a local authority or any other legal person.
How to file a complaint with the NCP?
A complaint can be filed to the Belgian NCP by one of the following means:
The complaint must contain at least:
- the identity and contact information of the notifier and the business or organisation involved in the complaint;
- an explanation of the case, its context and location;
- the interest of the notifier;
- the relevant chapter(s) of the Guidelines;
- the steps already taken by the notifying party to resolve the issue.
When the request is submitted, the NCP processes the application using a procedure consistent with the OECD Guidelines:
More information?FPS Economy, SMEs, Self-Employed and Energy
Rue du Progrès 50
Tel.: +32 2 277 81 63
Documents of the NCP
Partie II des Principes directeurs sur les Points de contact nationaux (p.75 et suivantes).