As a corporate citizen, we aim to be a responsible partner for our stakeholders and mainly for the communities.This is achieved through ongoing dialogue with stakeholders, through community-based partnerships, and through projects that contribute to the sustainable development of communities. The company has operations in over 350 local communities. We invest in the development of communities where we do business, providing know-how and financial support to people and sustainable projects that help Romanian communities develop in the long run.
Andrei’s Country is the social responsibility platform of OMV Petrom and community of those who want a better country every day! Since 2009, through Andrei’s Country, OMV Petrom supports the projects that inspire the Romanian communities to take action, change their lives, to grow by their own forces.
Community relations and the development of society is a strategic aspect of business and fundamental to ensure smooth operations. Regular interaction with our communities is part of our day-to-day business and we work hard to be a supportive neighbor by avoiding the negative impact, and developing projects for communities’ socio-economic development.
Community relations and development management is based on centralized policies, standards and targets. We receive regular reporting and feedback from local community development teams, monitor developments and ensure that the company guidelines on community relations and development are adhered to and that our actions to ensure social responsibility are effective.
Our community relations and development management process starts by conducting a Social Impact Assessment (SIA). This assessment is conducted when we enter a new area, or there is a material change in our operations. SIAs include a baseline study, community needs assessments, stakeholder analyses, and a study of social risks (incl. human rights) associated with the project.
Projects are therefore prioritized according to their potential to generate long-term societal value and make a lasting change to beneficiaries’ lives, therefore mitigating social risks and contributing to local social, economic and environmental advancement in the areas where we operate. Our community and social investments are aligned with UN SDGs and community needs identified during the SIAs. The projects are regularly implemented in partnership with local stakeholders.
Community Grievance Management
Our approach to managing community grievances follows the precautionary principle of ensuring local approval for OMV Petrom operations by identifying and resolving the issues of concern to the local community early on. The management process of grievances established by OMV Petrom is a component of the Compliance Management System, which ensures compliance with applicable legal provisions and internal regulations, in order to minimize non-compliance risks and/or the financial implications of the OMV Petrom and to increase the efficiency of dialogue with stakeholders and communities.
We strive to conduct our operations in a way that limits any disruption to our neighboring communities to a minimum; however, grievances may still arise. We manage these grievances through localized Community Grievance Mechanisms (CGMs). Community Grievance Mechanism (CGM) at OMV Petrom is a process for systematically receiving, investigating, responding to and closing out grievances from affected communities in a timely, fair and consistent manner.
We define grievances as an expression of a dissatisfaction, the reporting of a problem or a request related to a dissatisfaction or a problem. Complaints and concerns can result from either real or perceived impacts of a company’s operations, and may be filed in the same manner and handled with the same procedure.
Our grievance management system aims to be based on dialogue with our stakeholders first and foremost and is designed so as to prevent any retaliation risks.
The CGM helps OMV Petrom and those potentially impacted by its operations to resolve issues in a non-judicial manner. However, OMV Petrom’s CGM does not replace, nor obstruct affected stakeholders, including local community, from access to judicial or to other forms of remedial systems with regards to their grievances. The CGM offers a channel to resolve grievances in non-judicial manner and, depending on the case, access to remedy for community members.
A well-functioning mechanism provides a transparent, credible and equitable process to all parties. A good grievances management process helps to build trust as part of the wider community relations activities and contributes to the overall success of the OMV Petrom Group's social performance.
At each OMV Petrom operated site a grievance expressed by our stakeholder goes through the below 5 step process.
Community Grievance Mechanism Process
- Receive and acknowledge
Grievances may be filled by individuals, groups of individuals, local or central public authorities, NGOs and may be submitted in written (in person, transmitted by ordinary mail or electronically mail), by phone, by fax, by company’s social media platforms. The grievances can be expressed anonymously, as well as on behalf of another individual. The grievances can be expressed anonymously, as well as on behalf of another individual.
Each grievance is acknowledged once received, and the petitioner is informed of the next steps.
- Assess & assign
Once received a grievance, it is assigned to a local Grievances responsible, who will follow through to ensure that the issue is investigated by departments that are best suited to do so, and that the petitioner is responded to in due course. Grievances with high severity levels are escalated to senior management levels.
- Investigate & respond
The Grievances responsible and the respective departments investigate the grievance and respond to the petitioner informing them about the proposed resolution. In some cases, more information may be requested from the petitioner to ensure a thorough investigation.
- Close out
We strive for our community grievance process to be based on dialogue where a resolution can be found together with the petitioner. Remedies may be proposed depending on the case. If the solution is refused, the petitioner can appeal, in which case the grievance will be re-evaluated by alternate investigators. Once the petitioner accepts the solution, the grievance is considered resolved.
- Lessons learned
A key step in the process is regular review and extraction of lessons learned from the grievances received. In order to prevent reoccurrence of the situations that generated the grievances, following the review of the grievances, the Grievances responsible, together with Community Relations responsible, will propose measures that will correct / prevent the non-compliant situations apt to generate possible new grievances.
We aim to solve all grievances quickly. Depending on the severity level of a grievance and the type of issue raised, the response to the petitioner can take anywhere between first 24 h in cases where immediate resolution is necessary or possible up to a maximum of 45 days in cases where detailed investigations or resolutions are required.
Our community grievance management aims to be fully aligned with the IPIECA best practice guidelines. To ensure that, OMV Petrom has further set a target to assess the CGMs at all of its sites against the UN Effectiveness Criteria for Non-Judicial Grievance Mechanisms by 2025, to ensure all sites follow the criteria. The UN Effectiveness Criteria require the grievance mechanism to be legitimate, accessible, predictable, equitable, transparent, rights-compatible, a source of continuous learning, and based on engagement and dialogue. During these assessments internal and external stakeholders are consulted on current CGM performance and improvements necessary in its design. The implementation of action plans resulting from the assessments are closely monitored by the Group community relations expert.
More details can be found in the interactive online sustainability report or on OMV Petrom Sustainability Report 2020.