WWF Virunga campaign: WWF International 's OECD complaint against SOCO International plc ACCEPTED

 

The Document : « Initial assessment by the UK National Contact Point for the OECD guidelines for multinational enterprises: complaint from WWF International against SOCO International plc»

 

This statement records the decision of the UK National Contact Point (NCP) to accept for further consideration a complaint from WWF International against SOCO International plc, a UK company operating in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

 

Please download also: WWF - KEY ELEMENTS OF THE DECISION AGAINST SOCO

 

Extract from the WWF Press release: Major victory in conservation battle against oil company

 

London, 14 Feb 2014 – A major corporate social responsibility agency today has announced an examination of Soco International PLC for alleged violations of human rights and environmental protections related to the company’s operations in an African World Heritage Site.

 

The move was triggered by WWF’s complaint alleging that Soco has breached the most respected global corporate social responsibility standards in its pursuit of oil in Virunga National Park, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). WWF’s case has exposed “material and substantiated issues meriting further examination,” a United Kingdom Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) agency said in its initial assessment published today.

 

In the complaint, WWF documented evidence of Soco’s alleged violations of the Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises including intimidation, threats and unlawful detention of local activists, as well as withholding critical information about environmental and social risks from those likely to be impacted by the company’s activities.

 

“Today WWF’s concerns about Soco have been validated. This initial judgement is a victory for conservation and sends a strong warning to any company that thinks it can get away with disregarding international standards,” said Lasse Gustavsson, WWF International Executive Director of Conservation. “We urge governments and the investment community to join us in telling Soco to leave Virunga. If it fails to do so, the company risks permanently damaging its reputation and that of the industry it represents.”

 

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