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Promotional Activities’ Plan 2024


Introduction 

1. The Portuguese National Contact Point for the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (NCP PT) is coordinated by the Directorate-General for Economic Activities (DGAE) together with the Portuguese Agency for Investment and Foreign Trade (aicep Portugal Global).

2. Since they were established in 1984, the NCP have been responsible for promoting the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises on Responsible Business Conduct (“the Guidelines”). The promotion of the Guidelines, together with the promotion of instruments to deal with topics arising from the implementation of the Guidelines, comprises the mandate of the NCP.

3. Promotional activity is essential for effectiveness and for the implementation of the Guidelines and Due Diligence Guidance, which contributes to the functional equivalence of the NCPs, allowing them to be more visible, accessible and transparent.

4. According to the Guidelines, NCP should promote and make the Guidelines available in appropriate channels and in national languages to raise awareness of the Guidelines and their implementation procedures. NCP shall further promote the Guidelines through processes of cooperation with the business community, workers' organizations, other non-governmental organizations and with interested parties, as appropriate. The current wording of the Guidelines does not define minimum promotion requirements or types of promotional activities that NCP should be undertake.


Background

5. The NCP PT has not registered any specific instances since 2004. This scenario is indicative of the need to reinforce the promotion of the NCP PT, ensuring that the business representatives and workers' organizations are aware of the Guidelines and the role that NCP PT plays as a non-judicial platform of mediation and conciliation for the resolution of complaints about alleged non-compliance with the Guidelines identified in the companies' activities.

6. In 2023, were carried out by the NCP PT team the following promotional activities:

a. Organization of the Webinar "The Role of the NCP for RBC", held on April 13th. The Directorate-General for Economic Activities, in collaboration with aicep Portugal Global, organized this event, which was the kick-off for the cycle of annual events dedicated to promoting the activity of the NCP PT.

b. Participation in the Round Table "Proposal for an EU Directive on Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence", held on May 15th, 2023. This event, coordinated by #OurFoodOurFuture in collaboration with Oxfam, IMVF and Nova Business, Human Rights and Environment University, aimed to promote the debate on key issues in the CSDDD negotiation process and brought together a diverse range of policymakers and stakeholders. NCP PT took part in a panel that addressed the role of government in the negotiation and transposition of the CSDDD, where it highlighted the relevance of the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises in the context of implementing Responsible Business Conduct (RBC) practices and how the NCP network can support companies in implementing and promoting due diligence practices.

c. Participation in NOVA BHRE's Third Annual Conference on "Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence: From Law to Practice", held on September 26th.  This event included the sharing of some closing remarks by the coordinator of the NCP PT's DGAE technical team. In her closing remarks, she framed the topic of due diligence in the context of the European political agenda, taking into account the proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on corporate sustainability due diligence and explained the challenge of carrying out this agenda taking into account the current economic and social panorama, as well as the specific circumstances of SMEs and business partners operating in developing countries, pointing to the combination of binding RBC instruments with others of a voluntary nature as a solution.

d. Participation in the Workshop at the Instituto dos Mercados Públicos do Imobiliário e da Construção, I.P., held on November 24th. The main aim of this event was to develop a dialog on the importance of strategic public procurement in promoting environmental, social and innovation issues. NCP PT helped to identify challenges and solutions to social issues in the context of public procurement, explained the concept of RBC and Due Diligence and identified the expectations placed on governments regarding their role in promoting RBC and Due Diligence, particularly in public procurement. In its presentation, the NCP PT presented the OECD Guidelines and Due Diligence Guides, as well as the role of NCP as non-judicial mediation platforms for dealing with specific instances and promoting the Guidelines.

e. A clarification session with students from the European Law Students' Association on November 29th. This session was aimed at students responsible for developing a legal note on the Guidelines’ targeted update and this was one of the topics of the presentation along with the dual mandate of the NCP.

f. Webinar on "Responsible Business Conduct in Portuguese Business Activity" on December 13th. In collaboration with the DGAE, aicep Portugal Global organized this webinar aimed at national companies, which included practical examples from the speaker companies. The event featured a presentation of the Guidelines, the Due Diligence Guides, the mandate of the NCP PT and the ESG Capacity Building Program for Exporting SMEs. The second part of the event took the form of a round table, moderated by AICEP and with the participation of representatives from the companies Fravizel, Grupo Casais and Somincor, who presented good practices in terms of sustainability.

g. DGAE implemented updates to the dedicated NCP PT page, which included redesigning the NCP PT page, adding specific information areas (Submit a complaint; OECD Guidelines; Due Diligence Guides; Database of Specific Instances; Promotional Plan; Relevant Documentation; NCP Activities; Reports) and making a page available in English with the same content.

h. Throughout 2023 the NCP PT published the following awareness-raising materials:

i. Video Tutorial of the OECD Guidelines for RBC: Chap. I

ii. Flyer: Portuguese National Contact Point (PT and EN version)

iii. PT translation of the Recommendation on the Role of Government in Promoting Responsible Business Conduct

iv. Flyer: An overlook at the Recommendation on the Role of Government in Promoting Responsible Business Conduct (PT and EN version)

v. PT translation of the Declaration on Promoting and Enabling Responsible Business Conduct in the Global Economy - Ministerial Declaration

i. December saw the launch of the first edition of the NCP PT Newsletter. The Newsletter is an online publication, developed by DGAE, which is published every six months and aims to communicate relevant news in the national and international context about the activity of the NCP Network and the OECD Working Party on Responsible Business Conduct (WPRBC). The Newsletter is both available in Portuguese and English. In this first edition, the contents covered were: NCP PT Peer Review Exercise; 2023 Guidelines Update; OECD Due Diligence Guides; NCP PT Activity in 2023; Awareness Resources published by the NCP PT in 2023; and the NCP PT Activity Plan for 2024.

7. Recognizing that NCP PT technical team is facing challenges inherent to the operation with financial (lack of an annual budget dedicated) and human constraints (current NCP PT team does not respond to the requirement regarding the allocation of the equivalent of 2 human resources full-time), it is considered that the elaboration of a communication plan is a crucial step for leveraging the activity of the NCP PT, allowing the more effective and targeted development of promotion initiatives.

8. Although it is recognized that the NCP should organize on-site and decentralized events, which guarantee greater proximity to different local communities and which enhance opportunities for cooperation within the scope of the implementation of the Guidelines, the constraints identified above restrict the typology and scope of the promotion activities that can be carried out. In this sense, NCP PT will give priority to the organization of online events which allow faster coordination and less allocation of financial resources. Promotional materials will also be developed in a virtual format, with the aim of facilitating rapid dissemination among interested interlocutors.

9. When holding awareness-raising sessions with interested parties, the NCP PT will ensure an on-site format whenever the entities can make their premises available for these sessions.

10. The contents of this Communication Plan are based on the note “Developing Promotional Plans for NCP”, prepared by the WPRBC Secretariat and presented at the NCP Network meeting in June 2022. This note presents a set of considerations that are relevant to the construction of a Promotional Plan for NCP and highlights factors to be considered in planning promotional activities. The writing of this plan also considers the guidelines shared in the brochure “COMMUNICATIONS BOOKLET | National Contact Points for Responsible Business Conduct”, of June 2019, prepared by the WPRBC Secretariat.

11. This plan, contextualized through the points above, also includes two tables: 1) The first identifies all the activities that are expected to be carried out over 2024 – hereinafter referred to as the “Activity Identification” Table; 2) The second is a schedule that marks the period foreseen for the development of the activities identified in the previous table, hereinafter referred to as the “Activity Timetable”.

12. The “Activity Identification” table is composed of the following fields:

a. ID: Displays the activity identification number.

b. Topics: Referring to the topics that will be addressed within the scope of this activity (eg.: Introduction to the Guidelines/to PT NCP/to Sectoral Due Diligence Guides, priority RBC issues, emerging RBC issues, among others).

c. Target Audience: Refers to the audiences to whom the activity is directed (eg.: Companies, Unions, NGOs, Academia, Government, among others). Depending on the topic, there may be multiple audiences covered in an activity.

d. Format: Referring to the type of activity, namely Events (Live – location, Hybrid – location, Online), Promotional Materials (Print, Social Networks, Website).

e. Partners/Multipliers: Business Multipliers, Stakeholders/Academy, Government, Journalists - Are there organizations that can multiply the efforts of the NCP? (e.g.: disseminating information, organizing events).

f. Hours of work: Referring to the number of hours of work spent by NCP PT members to carry out the activity.

13. Carrying out the identified activities presupposes the collaboration of the various stakeholders identified in the Partners column, who may play the role of multiplier/disseminator or, due to their skills and/or attributions, support the NCP in the development of the activity. In both cases, partners are seen as crucial elements in leveraging the NCP's promotional activities.

14. The calendar defined in the schedule may change due to unplanned activities that fall within the sphere of competence of the human resources assigned to the NCP team. 




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