16 September 2014

Neste Oil has initiated measures to improve the position of migrant workers in its supply chain

Published in Releases and news

Neste Oil Corporation
Press release
16 September 3 p.m. (EET)

Neste Oil has initiated measures to improve the position of migrant workers in its supply chain

Finnwatch has identified some shortcomings in the rights of workers on Neste Oil's Malaysian palm oil supplier's, the IOI Group's, plantation in a report published today, 16 September 2014. Neste Oil worked with Finnwatch when they were putting their report together and helped them visit the IOI plantation.

"Neste Oil was the only company that we looked at that was able to say where its palm oil comes from," says Finnwatch's Executive Director, Sonja Vartiala. "We also appreciate the assistance provided by Neste Oil and IOI in making our investigation possible by opening up information on their supply chain to us."

"NGOs do valuable work in highlighting issues and problems, and sustainable companies have an important role to play in dealing with these types of issues in today's global supply chains," says Kaisa Hietala, Neste Oil's Executive Vice President, Renewable Products. "If we become aware of issues or problems, we always require our supplier to take corrective action and work with them to develop their operations."

Neste Oil demands IOI to investigate report findings

In addition to demanding an explanation of all the report's findings Neste Oil demands IOI to take corrective action to ensure that working conditions meet the standards of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) and Neste Oil's sustainability criteria in areas such as providing a decent living wage to workers, improving the position of migrant workers, and ensuring freedom of association for employees.

"As a major buyer, we are well-placed to have a beneficial impact on practices in the industry, and we believe that our actions can help drive change in collaboration with our suppliers," says Kaisa Hietala.

"We are not calling for stopping purchases from IOI, but rather that Neste Oil should work with them to improve operations," says Sonja Vartiala.

Auditing criteria and verifying the quality of audits need to be improved

Neste Oil requires all its palm oil suppliers to be committed to RSPO (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil) principles, which also cover working conditions and human rights.

"In line with Finnwatch's position, we will work with the RSPO and ISCC to further develop certification criteria and improve the quality of audits," says Kaisa Hietala.

"Although it's clear that there are shortcomings in current auditing methods, we still encourage buyers of palm oil to use internationally recognized certification tools," continues Sonja Vartiala. "They represent a better alternative than simply relying on individual companies' own audits."


Neste Oil Corporation

Osmo Kammonen
Senior Vice President, Communications and Marketing

Further information:
Kaisa Hietala, Executive Vice President, Renewable Products, tel. +358 (0)50 458 4128

More information on our response at our web site.

Neste Oil in brief

Neste Oil Corporation is a refining and marketing company concentrating on low-emission, high-quality traffic fuels. The company produces a comprehensive range of major petroleum products and is the world's leading supplier of renewable diesel. Neste Oil had net sales of EUR 17.5 billion in 2013 and employs around 5,000 people, and is listed on NASDAQ OMX Helsinki.

Neste Oil is included in the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index, and has featured in The Global 100 list of the world's most sustainable corporations for many years. Forest Footprint Disclosure (FFD) has ranked Neste Oil as one of the best performers in the oil & gas sector. Further information: www.nesteoil.com.