CSOs push for Common Approaches revamp
Members of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) are currently reviewing a 2007 Council Recommendation regarding export credit agency (ECA) operations. The Recommendation on Common Approaches on the Environment and Officially Supported Export Credits (Common Approaches) is a “gentlemen’s agreement” that seeks to establish a level playing field regarding ECA environmental practice. CSOs argue that the Recommendation’s impact is undermined by the lack of effective accountability mechanisms to ensure consistent and effective application by member governments.
OECD, Export Credit Division, Trade Directorate
2, rue André-Pascal
Paris Cedex 16 - France
Brussels, 12 January 2010.
Further to your letter of December 2009, you will find below the elements that ECA-Watch and Amnesty International would like to see addressed and revised in the review of the 2007 Revised Council Recommendation on Common Approaches on the Environment and Officially Supported Export Credits (Common Approaches). We believe that the 2010 Common Approaches Review must consider these issues in order to improve ECA standards and practices and to meet the objectives set out in the Recommendation.
Corporate Accountability Hearings Heat Up
Things were hopping this month in Parliamentary hearings on Bill-300, An Act respecting Corporate Accountability for the Activities of Mining, Oil or Gas in Developing Countries (see IU February 2009). The Bill was presented before the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development by MP John McKay on May 25. This month Committee members heard riveting testimony from diverse witnesses (see JUST THE FACTS). Speakers included: Romina Picolotti, former Secretary of the Environment for Argentina and winner of the prestigious Sophie Prize for environment and sustainable development; Stephen Hunt, former mine worker and current Director at the United Steelworkers union; Marketa Evans, the federal government’s new Corporate Social Responsibility Counsellor; and mining companies Barrick Gold, Goldcorp and Kinross.