A. Foundational Principles
… As to OECD, the Italian Government -through its OECD NCP-gives particular attention to due diligence and responsible supply chain management, also through multi-stakeholder initiatives
Responsible Business Conduct and OECD due Diligence Practices
With reference to the promotion of responsible business conduct, the Italian OECD NCP is committed to implement the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises by promoting them through an in-depth dialogue with businesses, trade unions, nongovernmental organizations, representatives of civil society.
Since the 2011 review of the OECD Guidelines, the NCP developed tools to make international standards operational especially for SMEs such as the “Due Diligence Guidance for SMEs” and activities for awareness raising and pilot projects involving large companies and SMEs with the aim of spurring a proactive responsible supply chain management through training, information and assistance.
Sustainable supply chain is indeed one of the main focus of the NCP action. In 2013, following the Rana Plaza collapse, the “Action Plan for Bangladesh” was launched with the involvement of Italian enterprises in the sector operating in Bangladesh. In this process, the NCP issued the “Report on responsible business conduct in the textile and garment supply chain. Recommendations of the Italian NCP on implementation of the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises”. Specific recommendations were given with regards to the adherence to the “Accord on Fire and Building Safety” and the participation to the “Rana Plaza Trust Fund” and for future action.
In this respect, the Italian Ministry for Economic Development, together with other six Ministers of EU Countries, signed the “Statement” recommending global companies to contribute generously to the Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund, set up to compensate victims of the accident in Bangladesh. The Bangladesh case showed the need to switch from a reactive approach to a preventive approach and in this view multi-stakeholders and collective actions are favoured and supported as they are seen more effective to tackle system issues.
Such activities at national level are accompanied by active participation to the OECD proactive Agenda projects, such as the “OECD Sector Project on Responsible Supply Chains in the Textile and Garment Sector” and other EU and international initiatives. Other OECD guidance for due diligence are promoted among companies such as the “OECD-FAO Guidance for Responsible Agricultural Supply Chain” and the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict affected and High-Risk Areas.
The NCP also takes direct action, cooperating with national and international organisations such as ILO and UNICEF.
Ensuring Policy Coherence
As far as Non-judicial remedies are concerned, an important role is played by the specific instances offered by the Italian National Contact Point. As requested by the OECD Guidelines, the OECD NCP manages the “specific instances” through a non-judicial mechanism where the NCP offers good offices when a stakeholder considers that a multinational enterprise has adopted behavior not compliant with the principles and recommendations set out in the Guidelines …
- Improve the visibility and the knowledge of interested parties about the existence of the NCP’s “specific instances” procedures; Assess, in line with the G7 “Action for Fair Production” commitments, the performance of the Italian NCP and lead by example, by carrying out an OECD Peer Review of the NCP and hosting peer learning activities.
Italy’s Updated NAP
D. BUSINESS, HUMAN RIGHTS AND CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
As for business and human rights, in 2013 the Ministry of Economic Development – NCP commissioned to the Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna a research project aimed at examining the adequacy of the Italian regulatory and institutional framework in relation to the international standards set forth in the UNGPs. The project was concluded with the publication of the final report “Imprese e Diritti Umani: il caso Italia” which includes some recommendations for the elaboration of the National Action Plan (http://pcnitalia.mise.gov.it/en/news/item/271-business-and-human-rights-the-italian-case). The study does not necessary reflect the official opinion of the Ministry of Economic Development.