The second “Forum of Responsible Business”

On October 5, the second Forum of Responsible Business was held in Kyiv. The event was sponsored by the Center for CSR Development jointly with the National Contact Point under the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine with the support of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Ukraine. The representatives of the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade, Ukrainian and international companies shared the key principles for the successful work of a modern Ukrainian enterprise. The forum started with the reports introduced by the representatives of the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade on the contribution of OECD Guidelines into building of the corporate social responsibility and on the work of the National Contact Points (NCPs). Thus, the company’s work should be based on the development of the strategy for sustainable development, reporting, human rights considerations, care for the environment and consumers, proper corporate management, working with employees. Thereby, any organization noticing any violations of the guidelines of the international organization can file a complaint to the NCP and receive the experts’ assistance with the resolution of the problem.

Also, the Center for CSR Development presented the results of the research “Development of Corporate Social Responsibility in Ukraine” and “Transparency Index of Companies in Ukraine-2018”. So, 83% of the companies are implementing CSR policies, but only half of them have a clear strategy. Thereby, information about its socially responsible activity is highlighted only by 21.7% of Ukrainian companies. The top 10 most transparent domestic companies, according to the 2017 Transparency Index, reveal it by 62.3%. The rate of publishing the non-financial reports is also extremely low – 16 out of 100 companies post this information on their website.

The Forum’s participants actively discussed the issues of responsible business conduct during the panel discussion with the participation of the Head of the Export Development Office, the Deputy Director of the EBA, representatives of the American Chamber of Commerce and the Departments of Economic Strategy and Macroeconomic Forecasting of the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade.

Not less exciting was the workshop on disputes resolution by means of mediation as an effective tool of the National Contact Points, where NCP staff shared their experience and answered the questions of the participants. Maryna Saprykina, Head of the Center for CSR Development, the member of the Interdepartmental Working Group at the NCP, told: “The Second Forum of Responsible Business has shown interest in the social responsibility. It is important that social responsibility itself is changing; it is becoming increasingly integrated into the activities of the companies. The fact that during the year, jointly with the National Contact Point, we increased the awareness of the OECD Guidelines for multinational companies by 15% and of the National Contact Point by 8%, is also important. That is why such Forums are important, because governmental structures, business and public organizations build trust there.”

*** Information:

The Center for Corporate Social Responsibility Development is an expert organization in Ukraine for responsible business and corporate social responsibility development. Priorities of the Center: development of CSR, career skills among youth, STEM education and popularization of science and technology among girls. Among the main achievements of the Center are the Annual Business Case Competition for Sustainable Development Goals, Pact for Youth, Career Map and Dream Career Community, Annual Forum “Business and Universities”, STEM Girls etc. As part of its activities, the Center cooperates with Ministries, international organizations and companies.

The National Contact Point on Promoting recommendations (guidelines) for multinational enterprises within the framework of the OECD Declaration on International Investments and Multinational Enterprises in Ukraine (hereinafter referred to as NCP) was established in 2017 under the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade. In 2018 the Interdepartmental Working Group was established to provide functioning of the NCP, which included representatives of NGOs, business associations, and Ministries. The main functions of the National Contact Point are: 1) to promote and to improve the efficiency of the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises; 2) to assist in addressing the issues of violation of the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. It is advisable to use the mediation format when dealing with the issues of violation of OECD Guidelines for Multinational Companies.