One of the NCP’s most important tasks is to promote the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises as an effective tool for preventing violations.

The Guidelines are more than just words. They are a practical tool that can prevent Norwegian companies from making the wrong decisions in their interactions with people, society and the environment in other countries.

Norway’s NCP carries out extensive information work and provides guidance to Norwegian businesses and other stakeholders on how they can meet the requirements of the OECD Guidelines, including through due diligence courses and sector-specific guidance.

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The turbulent year of 2020

The NCP has focused on maintaining and strengthening its role as adviser and driving force in this challenging year. The Government expects responsible business conduct – even in times of crisis.

One of the NCP’s main tasks is to guide Norwegian businesses on responsible business conduct. In a normal year, we do this by way of extensive external activities – seminars, courses, meetings and travels.

The coronavirus crisis is the very litmus test of a business’s due diligence work in that it is a new risk factor with sudden and widespread ramifications, challenging all areas covered by the OECD Guidelines. As a result, the demand for guidance has increased. The NCP has therefore made substantial efforts to restructure our work and provide advice and guidance digitally.

In the course of the year, the NCP was invited to a number of joint digital meetings with business representatives and provided continuous guidance to individual companies. The NCP also organised several webinars.

Include RBC requirements in stimulus packages

The Government must ensure that the coronavirus crisis does not set back the sustainability agenda, and instead use this opportunity to give it a significant boost by including responsible business conduct requirements in its stimulus packages.

That was the message of a letter sent to the Government in May 2020 in which the NCP requested that clearer expectations be made of stimulus package recipients. The NCP also believes that there should be consequences for support recipients that do not comply with responsible business conduct principles as described in the OECD Guidelines.

‘Responsible business conduct is a condition for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. We are now in a period of crisis. Business and industry have been hit hard and many Norwegian companies are fighting to survive. In periods of crisis, the principles are more important than ever, since the risk is greater,’ explains Frode Elgesem, Chair of Norway’s NCP.

The Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions (LO) and the Forum for Development and Environment endorsed the NCP’s request. The Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise (NHO) also expressed its support for the NCP’s request that the crisis must not set back the sustainability agenda, and that clear expectations of responsible business conduct are expressed to stimulus package recipients. The NCP’s request to the Government was unsuccessful.

Seminars, webinars and workshops

Seminar on responsible business conduct: Are Norwegian businesses at the forefront?
Webinar: Responsible business conduct in the coronavirus crisis
Workshop: Consistent advice from the state is necessary

Outward looking business

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Information film
Useful tool for different industries
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