UK National Contact Point: make a complaint about a multinational enterprise

How to make a complaint that the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) guidelines have not been met.

Who can complain

Any interested party can file a complaint. The complainant may be, for example:

  • a community affected by a company’s activities
  • employees or their trades union
  • a non-government organisation (NGO)

A complainant may act on behalf of identified other parties.

When a complaint can be made

You can make a complaint if a company is breaching the OECD guidelines.

The guidelines are recommendations for responsible business conduct that adhering governments encourage their enterprises to observe wherever they operate.

They cover a broad range of issues, including:

  • due diligence in the supply chain
  • disclosure
  • human rights
  • employment and industrial relations
  • environment
  • working to stop bribery
  • consumer interests
  • science and technology
  • competition
  • taxation

Raise a complaint

To raise a complaint with the UK NCP, you should:

  1. Identify which parts of the OECD guidelines may have been breached - please note that this updated version of the guidelines was endorsed by the OECD on 25 May 2011 and applied by the UK NCP with effect from 1 September 2011 (if your complaint is about actions that took place before 1 September 2011, you should refer to the version of the guidelines that applied before to confirm what requirements applied under the guidelines at that time).

  2. Prepare the complaint and relevant supporting material on the basis of the UK NCP’s guidance on bringing a complaint under the OECD guidelines for multinational enterprises.

If the complaint includes issues relating to a company’s due diligence, you may also find it helpful to review the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises: due diligence obligations - additional guidance (PDF, 129KB, 3 pages).

Complaint process

The UK NCP’s procedures for dealing with complaints brought under the OECD guidelines for multinational enterprises set out what happens at each stage of the process.

Further guidance

The review procedure for dealing with complaints sets out the review process opened to the parties of a complaint when the UK NCP issues an initial assessment rejecting a complaint, or a final statement.

Read more about the UK National Contact Point’s (NCP) handling of parallel legal proceedings for complaints.

Contact the UK National Contact Point

For queries, complaints under the OECD guidelines, or inclusion on our mailing list, please email us at, or write to:

UK National Contact Point for the OECD guidelines for multinational enterprises
Department for International Trade
3 Whitehall Place

Find out more about the UK NCP and the steering board

Published 12 December 2012
Last updated 30 January 2015 + show all updates
  1. Added link to due diligence obligations - additional guidance under 'Raise a complaint' (with the UK NCP).
  2. Minutes of the 29th meeting of the UK National Contact Point steering board held on 17 September 2014 added.
  3. Added NCP steering board minutes for meetings held in Nov 2013, Feb 2014, May 2014.
  4. Added note of the 25th meeting of the UK National Contact Point (NCP) steering board.
  5. Added new case statement.
  6. A new initial assessment added to the 'what's new' February 2013
  7. Updated ''UK National Contact Point - what's new'' to add 2 initial assessment decisions
  8. First published.