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GPCA Launches legacy initiative, 'Al Rowad' Award

by Martin Menachery on Nov 23, 2017


"We believe that the history of the industry in our region is an important shared legacy that brings us together and encourages us to advance our industry even further," remarked Dr Abdulwahab Al-Sadoun, secretary general, GPCA.

The Gulf Petrochemicals and Chemicals Association (GPCA) announced the launch of the GPCA Legacy Initiative and GPCA Legacy Award 'Al Rowad' dedicated to the pioneers of the chemical and petrochemical industry in the Arabian Gulf.

First of its kind in the region, the annual programme will honour individuals who have made extraordinary contributions to foster and strengthen the development of the chemical and petrochemical industry in one or more of the GCC states.

It will further aim to recognise, preserve and make known the achievements of those individuals who set the foundations for a regional chemical industry, and played a pivotal role in establishing its position as an important global player.

Each year, individuals will be recognised as Arabian Gulf Chemical Pioneers by the GPCA Legacy Initiative, and the GPCA Legacy Award ‘Al-Rowad’ will be bestowed upon one of them, or upon one of the pioneers who was selected in a past year.

Nominees for the GPCA Legacy Initiative and the GPCA Legacy Award ‘Al-Rowad’ are currently made by members of a Nomination Committee, which is made up of long-time veterans of the petrochemical industry in the Arabian Gulf region. Each of the GCC countries is represented on the Committee. Nominations could also be made by GPCA Board Members who wish to nominate a candidate for the consideration of the Nomination Committee, provided he/she meets the nomination guidelines.

The right candidates for the initiative can be of any nationality but must have been based in the Arabian Gulf region when realising the achievements for which they are recognised.

In addition, they must be retired for three years from all involvement in the petrochemical industry, i.e., no longer occupying an executive position with a regional government entity (e.g., ministry) or any company or agency that is directly engaged in the manufacture, marketing, and/or distribution of petrochemical products.

The candidate may be deceased, and must meet one of the following qualifications: (i) formulated and implemented state policy that successfully initiated or dramatically expanded the chemical industry in a given Arabian Gulf country; (ii) launched and led a state owned or privately held GCC based chemical company or companies that have become lasting enterprises and a significant economic force; (iii) played a leadership role in fostering the development of a successful joint venture in a GCC country.

This year GPCA will be honouring the late Dr Ghazi Al-Gosaibi (1940-2010), Yousif Al-Shirawi (1927-2012) and Abdulbaqi Al-Nouri (1929-2010), all of whom would be recognised as Arabian Gulf Chemical Pioneers and would be posthumously bestowed with the GPCA Legacy Award ‘Al Rowad’. In future years, further pioneers will be recognised for their achievements and honoured as part of the initiative.

Dr Abdulwahab Al-Sadoun, secretary general, GPCA, commented, “These prominent individuals were the first to realise and explore the potential of setting up a chemical industry in the region by challenging the status quo, by overcoming any obstacle on the way and illuminating the road for the next generations to come. Through this initiative, GPCA seeks to pay tribute to their life and achievements, foster national pride and inspire current and future generations to emulate outstanding individuals from our industry’s past.”

“We believe that the history of the industry in our region is an important shared legacy that brings us together and encourages us to advance our industry even further. In addition, this initiative brings attention to a shared heritage, and thereby strives to strengthen the sense of community among GPCA member companies,” remarked Dr Al-Sadoun.

Dr Ghazi Al-Gosaibi

Dr Ghazi Al-Gosaibi, Saudi Arabia’s minister of industry and electricity (1976-1983) and first chairman of SABIC, will be recognised for his instrumental role in founding SABIC, and leading it into a path of great development and success.

As SABIC was evolving, Dr Al-Gosaibi furthered the formation of the chemical industry in Bahrain and promoted cooperation among Arabian Gulf states. In 1980, SABIC joined the Bahraini government and Petrochemical Industries Company (PIC) of Kuwait to form Gulf Petrochemical Industries Company (GPIC).

In many ways, Dr Al-Gosaibi showed the path that Saudi entrepreneurs could follow in creating private Saudi chemical enterprises. In this regard, he may be viewed not only as the progenitor of SABIC but of the whole growing private chemical sector in Saudi Arabia.

Dr Al Gosaibi will be recognised by GPCA for his pioneering role in establishing a basic chemical industry in Saudi Arabia and laying the path that has led to the flowering of a robust private and state-owned Saudi chemical sector.


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