Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Gulf Laboratories attain ISO 17025 accreditation

Local geotechnical investigation and materials testing company, Gulf Laboratories WLL, have recently been accredited to ISO 17025:2005 standard by International Accreditation Service Inc.
Qatar: Sunday, June 29 - 2008 at 12:00
Gulf Laboratories officials and staff.
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ISO 17025 is a rigorous international quality management standard detailing requirements for the competence of testing laboratories. 'Accreditation to this international standard will provide our clients with the assurance that testing is carried out to the highest level of care, precision and reliability', said General Manager Andrew Slate. Laboratory Manager Thomas Varghese added 'We have over 50 test parameters included in our current scope of accreditation which covers physical and chemical analyses of concrete, asphalt, aggregates, soil and water.' Gulf Laboratories also hold certifications for their Quality Management System in accordance with ISO 9001:2000 and their Health, Safety and Environmental management system in accordance with OHSAS 18001:1999. Gulf Laboratories WLL. is a part of the Mannai Corporation and have been operating in Qatar since the mid-1970s.


Bodycote Testing Ltd & Co. LLC - Muscat, Oman
The laboratory delivers testing capabilities in six principal sectors: - Environmental and Analytical Services. Includes both field monitoring services and laboratory analytical services provided by BMTS regional Laboratories. - Civil Materials Testing Services – A wide range of international standard and in house developed tests on materials and products used in the construction industry - Ground Engineering and Geophysical Services and an extensive range of piled foundation testing services provided by BMTS regional Laboratories. - Metallurgy and Coatings Testing Services to serve the petrochemical, industrial, civil, manufacturing and product supplier markets. - Specialist civil engineering tests including investigative services. - The establishment of on-site testing laboratories for major projects, especially in the construction sector. The laboratory is accredited to ISO 17025 by UKAS and participates in numerous international proficiency testing schemes.
Bodycote Testing Ltd & Co. LLCPO Box 869AzaibaMuscatPC 130Oman


Shell Oman

About Shell Oman Marketing Company
The History Of Shell Oman Marketing Company
Shell Development Oman
Intilaaqah Oman
A History of Shell Oman
printable version
In the Sultanate, dating back to 1937, the Royal Dutch Shell plc witnessed the birth of Oman's renaissance and had the opportunity to be an active participant in its development from the country's initial discovery of oil through the Royal Dutch Shell plc's association and partnership with the Omani Government in Petroleum Development of Oman, where Shell owns 34% of the equity, till the present day.



In the fuel marketing business in Oman, the Royal Dutch Shell plc was granted trading rights and lease of land at Mina Al Fahal in 1958. As Shell Company of East Arabia Ltd. (SEA), the forerunner of "Shell Markets (Middle East) Limited Oman" operated through a locally appointed agent. Its retail operation started at a time when there was minimum infrastructure in the country and cars were few. Drums of fuel were brought to Omani shores by ships, transported by small, locally made wooden boats, rolled on the beach and then taken to their storage destination for distribution. The market for petroleum products was very small with the only major consumers being the armed forces and an oil prospecting company.

With the accession in 1970 of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said, Oman began a process of rapid modernisation. In that year, a marketing franchise was granted to Shell for its retail business which started operations under the name "Shell Markets (Middle East) Limited".

The development, manufacture and marketing of fuels and lubricants is a highly specialised business, in which Shell is recognised as a world leader. In Oman the businesses have developed to their current strong position in all sectors of the fuel marketing business; retail fuel sales to the public via dealer-owned filling stations, direct fuel sales to government & commercial entities and users of aviation fuel; and non-fuel sales of lubricants and greases.

In 1984 the Royal Dutch Shell plc set up a joint venture with local partners to blend lubricants in Oman. Oman Lubricants Company was formed with a 45 per cent local shareholding, the balance was held by companies of the Royal Dutch Shell plc.

On 1st January 1993 Shell Markets (Middle East) Limited became Shell Marketing (Oman) LLC.
A lubricants blending plant was constructed in 1985 at Mina Al Fahal on land leased from the Government and operations commenced fully in 1986. The subsequent success of Oman Lubricants Company can be attributed to two key areas. First; the plant, which was designed and built using the expertise of the Royal Dutch Shell plc specialists, has proven to be reliable and flexible. Second; Oman Lubricants Company, has had access to the Shell brand and international formulations and has been able to sell its products through Shell’s retail network and through Shell’s marketing facilities to export through other Royal Dutch Shell plc companies outside Oman.

In January 1996; as a gift to the Sultanate on its 25th National Day anniversary, the Royal Dutch Shell plc initiated the "Intilaaqah" project with funding initially for five years which since then has been further renewed annually. This project, as well as being of help to young Omanies - the country's main asset - would contribute to the development and diversification of the country's economy, and demonstrate the commitment of Shell to the Sultanate.

In line with government policy, training is conducted in both Arabic and English in qualified institutes that are approved to deliver "Initilaaqah's" training to NVQ 2 & 3 in business planning and ownership. During training, trainees learn how to prepare a full business plan and part of this plan is a feasibility study of their own business idea, based on practical market research. So far, the programme has benefited more than 390 graduates. Of these 75 have started their own businesses, some providing employment to other Omanis.

Today, the "Intilaaqah" programme is recognised as one of the best initiatives led by the private sector towards diversification and Omanisation. With this in mind, the Government has recently initiated the "Sanad" (Support) programme aimed at providing soft loans to young entrepreneurs to help them start their own businesses, a challenge which previously faced many young Omanis needing capital to start their dream project after their successful graduation from the "Intilaaqah's" programme.

With the formation of Muscat Securities Market, the Omani Government started implementing various incentives to encourage the floatation of privately owned companies. The process was seen as a tool to get more Omanies to benefit from the opportunities derived from the projects in the development of the needed infrastructure in Oman.

While "Shell Marketing (Oman) LLC" and its joint ventures subsidiaries continued to achieve impressive financial results, with more than R.O. 136 million turnover and R.O. 4.4 million profit in 1996, the Shell Group decided to float the company, making it the first foreign company in Oman to be floated on the Muscat Securities Market.

Accordingly, Shell Oman Marketing Company SAOG was formed in August 1997 as an Omani public joint stock company. The response was overwhelming - the IPO of 40% was 32 times oversubscribed, which required the Ministry of Commerce and Industry to create a special methodology for the allocation of shares. Today, there are more than 7,000 shareholders in Shell Oman Marketing Company SAOG, representing a broad spectrum from the various sectors of the economy, ranging from financial institutions and pension funds to individual small private investors.

In both 1999 and 2000 Shell Oman ranked as number one in a survey of Oman's largest companies conducted by the Oman Economic Review, a local business magazine. The Company was also voted number one in survey of best practices that was published in January 2001 by Business Today, another leading publication in the Sultanate.

Across Oman, Shell’s customers' needs are changing and SOM is determined to anticipate and respond quickly to developing market conditions. To this end, Shell service stations have continually evolved, as witnessed by the rapid expansion of Select - Oman's first 24-hour convenience store. Other innovations include the introduction of Shell Cards- the Sultanate's first electronic fuel payment system for commercial customers, and a trial launch of Shell Genie, a new and innovative way of changing motor oil that is clean, convenient and environmentally friendly.

Health, safety and the environment - HSE - are among the Company’s primary concerns and the focus of attention in all areas of the Company's operations. The management of the environment, together with the generation of profit and the support of social initiatives from what is termed in Shell as the Sustainable Development Framework, and since its formation, Shell Oman Marketing Company SAOG has focused its attention on maintaining high environmental standards.

This focus on the environment has developed and progressed in Shell Oman in line with local and international principles. The company follows strict international standards to ensure that the company applies the latest techniques in environmental management. This is achieved by adopting both administrative and technical tools to assist in avoiding any harmful consequences to our environment. This stratagem is based on the fact that the protection of our environment cannot be achieved only through internal legislation and policies and by activities associated with the clean up after an environmental disaster, but rather through the elimination or reduction of any impact by Company operations on the environment. Environmental risk management-based techniques are therefore part of the armoury of tools used to ensure that capital spend is optimised in relation to environmental hazards.

The contribution of Shell Oman to the preservation of the environment is managed through administrative procedures and controls. The Company puts direct responsibility onto Senior Managers to achieve specific environmental targets, and places protection of the environment high on the Company's agenda. In addition, the Company does not assess its performance on profit alone but also takes into account whether environmental conservation targets have been successfully met.

The Company participated in a number of Shell initiatives to explore ways of introducing e-enabled services to its customers. In October 2000, Shell Oman web site (www.shelloman.com.om) was launched, making Shell Oman the first Shell Company in the Middle East and South Asia to have its own web site. The site is intended not only to be interesting and informative, but also to give customers a forum where they can communicate directly and easily with the Company. They can, for example order fuel cards, and see their balance on-line. Currently on trial is a system which allows the ordering of other products over the Internet.

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