E & S Complaints Mechanism

Any person or group of persons affected by an AFD-funded project from an environmental or social perspective can submit a complaint via the Complaints Mechanism.
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works, Guadeloupe
Once the complaint has been submitted, it is registered by the mechanism’s Secretariat, under the supervision of AFD’s Ethics Advisor. A panel of independent experts decides whether it is eligible and, if so, deals with the complaint.

Thanks to this mechanism, AFD has strengthened the environmental and social monitoring of the projects it finances, with the aim of enhancing transparency and accountability towards its partners.


electricity, energy, Vietnam

The complaint must:

  • be submitted by one or several natural or legal persons affected by an AFD-funded project;
  • exclusively concern the environmental and social aspects of the project;
  • concern projects conducted in foreign countries;
  • be made as a last resort, when the author of the complaint has exhausted the possibilities of dialogue and out-of-court redress procedures towards the contracting authority or AFD.


Cap insertion, Mauritania, training

Complaints may be sent:

Agence Française de Développement
Secrétariat du Dispositif de gestion des réclamations environnementales et sociales
5, Rue Roland Barthes
75598 Paris Cedex 12


Geopoppy project, computer, Côte d'Ivoire

The mechanism’s Secretariat is the permanent entry point for the reception of claims and their follow-up, under the supervision of AFD’s Ethics Advisor.

The Secretariat acknowledges receipt of a complaint within ten working days following its direct reception and within eighteen days when the claim is sent to a local agency.

The claim is registered if:

  • The author of the complaint or, where applicable, its authorized representative is identified;
  • The project is described and the environmental and/or social impacts are explained;
  • The efforts made by the author of the complaint to settle the dispute are presented;
  • The project is financed by AFD;
  • The complaint is made within two years after the author became aware of the facts.
  • Claims are subsequently handled by a panel of independent experts who initially assess their eligibility, based on criteria defined in the mechanism’s Rules of Procedure.

Additional information may be requested from the author of the complaint.

If the claim is deemed eligible, it is handled using one or both of the two following methods:

  • Dispute resolution, which seeks to restore a dialogue between the author of the complaint, or its representative, and the counterparty to resolve the problems which led to the complaint. It is completed when the parties concerned reach an agreement or when, in the opinion of the experts, no further progress is possible towards the resolution of the dispute;
  • The compliance audit, which determines whether AFD has complied with its environmental and social procedures or, otherwise, recommends remedial measures. An action plan is subsequently proposed and its implementation is monitored.

A report on the mechanism’s activities will be published on this page every year.