Quality & Technical Standards
Saudi Arabian Standards Organization (SASO) has over 2,030 SASO and
1,060 Gulf promulgated standards, and is actively pursuing the
promulgation of hundreds of new standards currently in various
drafting stages of development. SASO has decided
to adopt ISO 9000 as the approved standards for Saudi Arabia, and
will act as an accreditation body through the Quality Assurance
Department. Compliance will be on a voluntary
basis. However, it would be prudent for exporters to consider this matter seriously in planning
to do business in Saudi Arabia. There may be many
cases where procurement agencies will insist on purchasing and
placing orders only with those companies that are in compliance with
Arabia's residential electric power system of 127/220 volts, 60
Hertz, is unique and has caused export problems for some foreign
exporters. However, SASO will accept electrical
products as low as 120 volts, 60 Hertz.
As of August 2004, the
International Conformity Certification Program (ICCP) will
cease. The Ministry of Trade and Industry is
expected to take over and set up its own program.
Since its inception in 1995, the certification program known
as the ICCP was applicable to 69 regulated products.
The purpose of the program was to insure consumer protection
and that products entering Saudi Arabia conform with SASO
standards. On behalf of SASO, Intertek Testing
Services used to administer the ICCP on a global basis.
With the exception of certain food products, all other
regulated products used to require Certificates of Conformity issued
Saudi Arabia, SASO will set up its own certification organization
for locally manufactured products, as several SASO employees have
been certified to work as professional auditors in conformance with
ISO 9000 series standards. For imported products,
SASO will cease to implement the ICCP program as of August 2004, and
the Ministry of Trade and Industry will be setting up its own
is the only Saudi entity that is empowered to accredit.