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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
South African Oil and Gas Association develops world-class standards
Article Type: Notes and news From: Industrial and Commercial Training, Volume 40, Issue 3.
Skill-development specialist Appropriate Training has launched the first phase of a program to develop an internationally recognized qualification framework for the oil, gas and shipbuilding industries of South Africa.
Building on a long relationship with the South African Oil and Gas Alliance (Saoga) and Cape Ship Repair, Appropriate Training has designed a program to boost the sector’s competitiveness by reconciling disparities between existing industry standards and those recognized internationally.
“Earlier this year, we hosted a Saoga delegation to the UK”, explained Cath Whelan, Appropriate Training managing director. “As a result of our discussions with further-education colleges and training providers, we saw that South Africa certainly had relevant courses, but it wasn’t clear to what extent they corresponded to internationally accepted standards and qualifications.
“Achieving proper recognition is vital to the industry, so the principal objective of this new program is to develop a framework that will guarantee that qualifications achieved through the South African Skills Education and Training Authority (Seta) are seen to be of a world-class standard”.
The first step is analysis of all relevant courses available in South Africa. Appropriate Training has begun to map these against similar UK qualifications, seeking to identify any anomalies in the content and any gaps between Seta qualifications and those required for compliance with international standards.
The process will continue with an assessment of existing training provision and how it meets the competency requirements of the sector. From this and other evaluations, a qualification framework will be created for specific jobs in priority sectors such as health and safety, welding, rigging and quality control. Appropriate Training will complete its work on the first phase by producing a report that sets out its findings and, where appropriate, any recommendations for improving systems of assessment, delivery and quality assurance.
“There is undoubtedly a substantial task ahead of us but, ultimately, it will have a profound effect on the sector’s reputation and competitiveness”, said Cath Whelan. “By putting in place a transparent, step-by-step process to address issues of training, standards and qualifications, the South African oil and gas industry is demonstrating its credentials as a credible global competitor”.