(MENAFN Editorial) The Gulf Petrochemicals & Chemicals Association (GPCA) today announced the launch of a three-year assessment program across the GCC region that will promote supply chain efficiency, flexibility and transparency in the petrochemical and chemical industry.
The Gulf Sustainability and Quality Assessment System (SQAS) is a uniform, independent and standardized program for petrochemical logistics service providers that will enable companies to track and monitor progress in their environment, health, safety, security and quality (EHSS&Q) processes, helping them to identify and improve weak areas in the supply chain and develop cost-efficient practices that shorten lead times and are environmentally sustainable. Reports generated from the assessment will assist petrochemical and chemical companies in evaluating their service providers.
"The Gulf SQAS program will measure the EHSS&Q standards of all the logistics service providers in the six GCC countries," said Alan Izzard, Director of GPCA's SQAS program. "Certified independent assessors will evaluate a variety of technical aspects related to chemical and petrochemical warehousing, road and future rail transport and associated chemical cleaning stations, which are crucial elements of a product supply chain."
Izzard continued: "The program will lead to an efficient and integrated system for logistics companies, driving consistent alignment with the advancements in the petrochemical and chemical industries worldwide. It will also ensure that international benchmarks are established outside the manufacturing facilities.
The Gulf SQAS program will essentially extend the chemical industry's Responsible Care initiative beyond the fences of the petrochemical plants. Responsible Care is a comprehensive set of standards for environmental, environmental, health, safety and security for the chemical industry. The GPCA introduced region specific guidelines for Responsible Care in 2009, which are aligned with initiatives from United Nations Environment Program, United Nations Development Program and the International Council of Chemical Association (ICCA).
"The Gulf SQAS program is a natural step forward in our drive towards making the region's petrochemical industry efficient, safe and successful," said Dr. Abdulwahab Al Sadoun, Secretary-General of the GPCA. "The initiative demonstrates that sustainability cannot be exercised in isolation, and needs to be undertaken in a holistic and integrated manner."
The program has the support of the region's major petrochemical companies.
"To date, 29 of the region's main players, accounting for 87% of the total regional production volume, signed a declaration of support for this program" concluded Dr. Sadoun. "It is testimony of how the industry is evolving with a vision to adopt long term perspectives."
The initiative was launched during GPCA's sixth annual Supply Chain Conference, which took place from May 6- 8, 2014 in Dubai, UAE. SQAS was initiated by Cefic, the European Chemical Industry Council and sister organization of the GPCA.