Oil and gas sector in Argentina
Lead NCPArgentina
Supporting NCP(s)Netherlands
DescriptionSpecific instance notified by the NGOs the Institute for Participation and Development of Argentina (INPADE) and Friends of the Earth Argentina, regarding the activities of SHELL C.A.P.S.A a multinational enterprise operating in Argentina.
Theme(s)Disclosure, Environment, General policies
Date28 May 2008
Host country(ies)Argentina
Industry sectorMining and quarrying, Electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply
StatusIn progress

In May 2008, the NCP received a request for review from the NGOs Institute for Participation and Development of Argentina (INPADE) and Foundation Friend of the Earth of Argentina alleging that Shell C.A.P.S.A. was breaching the general policies, disclosure and environment provisions of the Guidelines.

The specific instance was accepted by the Argentinian NCP who would work closely with the Dutch NCP during the process. Separate meetings organised by the Argentinian NCP were held with with both parties. From the outset, SHELL did not accept the NCP's good offices, arguing that doing so could affect its position in the Argentinean Federal Courts as a parallel judicial process examining the same matters was already underway. The enterprise requested the NCP put on hold the proceedings until resolution was reached on the ongoing judicial case.

The Dutch NCP suggested that the parties hold a dialogue on the issues not covered by the judicial case, tackling the issues of ‘supra legal’ nature. The parties however, although assisted by the Argentinian NCP, could not reach an agreement on the scope and content of a possible dialogue.

The notifiers insisted on giving priority to the discussion of the matters included in the complaint as well as any other topic that could possibly arise over the course of this dialogue, even though they may not have been included in its formal presentation. The enterprise, in turn, insisted that the existence of parallel proceedings meant they could not to accept informal conversations, stating that the company had already carried out social development activities in the neighborhood close to the refinery, to help its residents.

In February 2009, in view of the insurmountable differences between the parties, both the Argentinean and Dutch NCPs decided that the best option is to await the decision of the courts.