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Human rights

Our commitment to human rights

Three employees at an industrial complex

Respect for human rights is one of our priorities

We are present in 34 countries and always align our operations with the United Nations Guiding Principles. We foster respect for human rights by following standard international principles and developing our own policy to ensure they are met.

We recognize companies' role as agents of change that must respect human rights and all applicable laws. We are aware that, due to the nature of our activities and the conditions in some of the environments where we operate, there are some areas with a greater risk of impacting human rights concerning:

  • Our relationship with public and private security forces.
  • Our business relationships.
  • Our relationship with different communities.
Pozo de petróleo
We defend the international regulatory framework and ensure human rights. Therefore, we follow the principles set out in:
  • The International Bill of Human Rights
  • The International Labor Organization Declaration, and the eight fundamental conventions that underpin them:

1. Freedom of association and protection of the right to organize
2. Right to organize and right to collective bargaining
3. Forced labor
4. Abolition of forced labor
5. Minimum age
6. Worst forms of child labor
7. Equal pay
8. Discrimination (employment and occupation)

  • The UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.
  • The OECD guidelines for multinational enterprises.
  • The IFC performance standards.

Our own Human Rights and Community Relations Policy

Our internal regulations are aligned with the United Nations Guiding Principles and built on three pillars:
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    We ensure human rights are respected in all our activities with employees, local communities, customers, partners, and in our business relationships.
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    Due diligence

    We identify and assess the potential impacts on human rights before undertaking a new activity or starting a business relationship.
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    Incident reporting channels

    We establish processes for communication, questions, complaints, and reparations available to the people affected by our activities.

Our commitment to human rights guides all of our actions

We are committed to respect, anticipation, creation of value, and efficiency. These guidelines for action form the framework that guides the basic behavior of all of our employees. Ethical conduct is essential, and as approved by our Board of Directors, our code applies to all Repsol board members, directors, and employees, regardless of the type of professional or work contract they have. Suppliers and partners are also required to abide by our regulations and behave ethically at all times to establish legitimate and productive relationships with their own suppliers and other companies with which they maintain a contractual relationship.

We create an environment based on trust and respect for human rights among our employees and communities, which enables our employees, neighbors, and even human rights defenders to communicate their complaints without fear of retaliation.

We promote our grievance mechanisms as the preferred means of conflict resolution with our stakeholders without recourse to legal proceedings and on the basis of the essential premise that we respect their rights. Moreover, we exhort our contractors and partners to strictly comply with these principles by including human rights clauses in our contracts, while performing social audits and supporting them through awareness-raising activities.  

An example of this is our communication success story regarding the human rights policy aimed at our contractors in Bolivia.

These codes set out a variety of rights, including:

  • Freedom of association and right to collective bargaining
  • Rejection of child labor
  • Rejection of forced labor

Our policies, approved by our Corporate Executive Committee, are respectful of the communities in our area of influence. We respect their identity, cultural diversity, different aspirations and needs, and their right to maintain their customs and social practices as laid out in our policy.

We work to provide increased security to shareholders, customers, employees, and other stakeholders by anticipating, managing, and controlling the risks to which the company is exposed.

Due diligence is an important part of all our operations

We are proud that we have mechanisms in place to help us work with due diligence in the area of human rights. We've had a specific internal policy on human rights since 2013. The assessment regulations are especially important in ensuring that human rights risks are identified throughout the life cycle of our projects, from design to dismantling. According to the United Nations Guiding Principles, due diligence is the process that helps us assess the real and potential effects of our activities. In accordance with due diligence, we analyze the context and specific social, economic, and cultural aspects in the countries where we operate, we assess our impacts, and we work under the commitment to maximize positive consequences while minimizing or mitigating the negative ones.

Anticipating and preventing negative impacts thanks to our operational grievance mechanisms

In order to attend to information requests, claims, concerns, and complaints from the communities in our areas of influence, at Repsol we set up operational-level grievance mechanisms in the countries where we are present, adapted and accessible in the appropriate languages for every context.

These operational-level grievance mechanisms are a contribution to fulfilling the responsiblity to respect human rights that all companies have and provide feedback on the effectiveness of the human rights due diligence process. Additionally, these mechanisms allow us to anticipate and respond to relatively minor incidents to be remediated early and directly, thereby preventing harms from compounding and grievances from escalating.

Oil rig at dusk

Best practices

The best way to show our commitment to human rights is by sharing real stories about the actions we have taken.