UN Global Compact and OECD Intensify Collaboration
New York/Paris, 27 October 2009
) – The United Nations Global Compact and the Organisation
of Economic Co-operation and Development (“OECD”) have recently begun to enhance their
collaborative efforts, particularly in countries that have both Global Compact Local Networks and
National Contact Points (“NCPs”) on the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises.
Following its participation in the 2009 Annual Meeting of the National Contact Points, the UN
Global Compact asked its Local Network Focal Points in countries that adhere to the OECD Guidelines
for Multinational Enterprises to actively explore collaborative opportunities with NCPs.
Additionally, Focal Points were encouraged to seek advice and guidance from NCPs, particularly
regarding follow-up procedures for OECD Guidelines implementation.
In an exchange of letters between Georg Kell, Executive Director of the UN Global Compact,
and Manfred Schekulin, Chair of the OECD Investment Committee, a mutual interest in closer
cooperation was indicated. Following a letter from Mr. Kell in September 2009, Mr. Schekulin agreed
that intensifying linkages between Global Compact Local Networks and NCPs was a desirable goal and
suggested that “possibilities for achieving this should be further explored”. Mr. Schekulin
additionally invited the UN Global Compact to consult in the ongoing process of updating the OECD
The OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises are a comprehensive code of conduct adhered
to by the 30 OECD countries, along with 12 non-member countries.
Designed to promote positive multinational enterprise action in economic,
environmental, and social issues, the OECD Guidelines are a complement to the Global Compact’s Ten
Principles. The Guidelines have a unique implementation mechanism as handled by National Contact
Points, which includes mediation and conciliation to help resolve investment disputes. This
dovetails well with the Global Compact’s focus as a learning initiative and facilitator of
dialogue, which helps participants implement policies that embody the Ten Principles.
In November, further collaboration between the OECD and UN Global Compact will occur through
the First Asia Pacific Trade and Investment Week (2-6 November, Bangkok) hosted by UNESCAP. This
will include a meeting of Global Compact Local Networks led by Marinus Sikkel, in charge of
UNESCAP's regional support hub for the UN Global Compact and former OECD Investment Committee
Chair. Also that week, the OECD-UNESCAP Conference on Corporate Responsibility will be held, with
discussion focused on synergies between major international corporate responsibility instruments
and the upcoming updating of the OECD Guidelines. These meetings provide an excellent opportunity
for Global Compact practitioners from Asia and the OECD to share experiences.
Head, Policy & Legal
Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Egypt, Estonia, Israel, Latvia, Lithuania, Morocco, Peru,
Romania and Slovenia. Morocco’s adherence will take effect in November 2009.