Automotive Labour Conditions Question 1

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Does the brand (company) have a Code of Conduct (CoC) for own factories and suppliers, which includes the following standards: No forced or slave labour, no child labour, no discrimination of any kind and a safe and hygienic workplace?

Dutch version: Heeft het merk (bedrijf) een Code of Conduct (CoC) voor eigen fabrieken en toeleveranciers waarin de volgende standaarden staan vermeld: Geen gedwongen arbeid, geen kinderarbeid, geen discriminatie van welke aard dan ook en een veilige en hygiënische werkplek?

German version: Hat das Unternehmen einen Verhaltenskodex (Code of Conduct, CoC) für seine Fabriken und Lieferanten, in dem folgende Standards eingeschlossen sind: keine Zwangs- oder Sklavenarbeit, keine Kinderarbeit, keine Diskriminierung jeglicher Art sowie ein sicherer und hygienischer Arbeitsplatz?


The car making industry has for a long period been located in low-risk countries like Japan and Germany where labour rights are globally not regarded as a major concern when workers can join labour unions, bargain collectively and have the right to strike. However, there is a shift of production towards low wage countries like China and India where providing proper labour rights need extra attention. Besides the shift of own production facilities, most car brands have hundreds of parts suppliers (like electronics) around the world, of which a considerable part are based in these low wage countries. For that reason we ask car brands if there is a Code of Conduct (CoC) for own production facilities AND for suppliers in high risk countries.

This CoC is applicable to factories and suppliers in low-wage (high risk) countries, where labour rights are at stake. For that reason, car brands should publish a breakdown of the countries where the cars are made, as well as the supplier countries; or at least recognize that part of the production takes place in low wage - high risk countries; or state that all production including parts takes place in low-risk countries.

In accordance with our criteria in the Electronics and ICT hardware Question 1, the standards should be based on the conventions and recommendations of the International Labour Organization ILO. The standards concerning forced labour and slave (bonded) labour are based on the Conventions 29 and 105. The standard concerning the minimum employment age (i.e. no child labour) is based on ILO Convention 138 and 182. The standard on no discrimination is based on ILO conventions 100 and 111, and the right to a safe and hygienic workplace is based on ILO convention 155.

Ranking guidelines

Reward a ‘Yes’ if all these four standards are clearly mentioned and it is clear that the code is applicable to all suppliers of parts. And there should be a breakdown of the countries where the cars and its parts are produced, or the brand should at least recognize that part of the production chain takes place in low wage countries.

A ‘Yes’ is also applicable when all the cars and parts are made in ‘low risk’ countries as defined by Made-By.

'?' is rewarded to brands that don't make it clear if the CoC is applicable to the suppliers, or don't make clear where car and parts production takes place, or don't recognize that part of the production chain takes place in low wage countries.