Social Due Diligence Assessment

Social Due Diligence Assessment

Starch Processing Facility, Battambang, Cambodia

SLP Environmental was appointed by an international banking group to conduct and report a pre-investment Social Due Diligence (SDD) assessment for a starch production facility located in Battambang Province, Western Cambodia. Our client was considering investing in the planned expansion of the facility and in accordance with their corporate social responsibility and risk management policies required an assessment of the likely social impacts associated with the current (and an enlarged) operation as well as well as the labour and working conditions at the facility.

The SDD study was conducted and reported cognisant of good international industry practice (GIIP) guidelines including:

  • IFC Performance Standards 1, 2 & 4; and
  • The Equator Principles (2013)

SLP Environmental used a variety of rapid social survey techniques for the study and these included pilot questionnaire surveys and confidential semi-structured interviews with members of the local community and the facilities workforce. Of particular interest was the determination as to whether the facilities operations were potentially having a detrimental impact on community health, safety and security and informal consultations at the local community level provided interesting insights in this regard.

The company records pertaining to employment contracts, salaries and other statutory benefits were audited to assess compliance with national legislation and international good practice guidelines.

The welfare arrangements at the facility were also inspected to assess compliance with IFC PS 2 guidelines, with a particular focus on the employers provision of satisfactory accommodation, sanitation, utilities, health care and education to the workforce. The employer’s policies, procedures and practices regarding the protection of the health and safety of employees were also reviewed and performance benchmarked against the IFC Environmental Health and Safety General Guidelines.

The SDD report provided the clear and concise social performance insights the client required to inform their investment deliberations.