- June 1, 2023
- By: Verger Group
- in: News
As an importer in Saudi Arabia, one must keep his eyes and ears open to track all the information on trade and commerce in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. To ensure each import arriving in Saudi Arabia clears customs seamlessly, one must be actively involved in understanding the technical regulations set by the Saudi Standards of Metrology and Quality Organisation (SASO). There have been instances when consignments were returned to the supplier because the importer could not deliver the legal and mandatory documents at customs.
These incidents usually happen when importers or suppliers must be aware of the trade guidelines issued by SASO for regulated products. This article will broaden the reader’s spectrum of knowledge about the basics of import/export in Saudi Arabia.
What is SASO?
The Saudi Standards, Metrology, and Quality Organization (SASO) is a government body involved in standardization activities based on facilitating and developing the Saudi Standards. The general policies of SASO are outlined by a board of directors headed by His Excellency, the Minister of Commerce and Investment, and representatives of significant sectors concerned with standardization in Saudi Arabia.
SASO deals with all the activities and policymaking in standardization, metrology, and quality in Saudi Arabia. It is a competent authority designated to list down necessary measures for quality control of raw materials and products used in the Saudi market and lay down conformity assessment procedures for products based on quality verification, legislation, and the Quality Mark Scheme application.
SASO works closely with the private sector, government authorities, and consumer representatives to build a robust and quality infrastructure in Saudi Arabia. SASO is responsible for setting methods for testing, auditing, technical inspection, and setting procedures for conformity assessment and certification. It is the authority that sets technical regulations and promotes quality management systems.
SASO has accredited and notified some third-party service providers and laboratories through its conformity assessment procedure, to conduct testing and factory audits of products imported to Saudi Arabia and has authorized them to issue SASO Certificate of Conformity to items if their test reports and audit reports are satisfactory and the products comply with its set technical regulations.
Now, one would wonder how and where to find these third-party certification bodies to issue your products’ SASO Certificate of Conformity. This is where SABER comes in!
All About SABER Platform and SABER certificate
SASO launched a Saudi Product Quality program named “SALEEM” with one objective: to facilitate and develop trade and commerce in Saudi Arabia, keeping Saudi Standards the priority. The program fundamentally talks about safe and quality products in the Saudi market. To instill this criterion, SASO has introduced and made– A product Certificate of Conformity and a Shipment Certificate of Conformity mandatory for the regulated products imported to Saudi Arabia.
SASO developed an online portal named SABER to bridge the gap between the third-party certification bodies and the importers. Using this online platform, an importer can easily find all the listed SASO-notified certification bodies and choose one to get their products tested and factory audited.
As an importer, one must register their company on the SABER platform. Once registered, the importer can request any certification body listed on the portal to issue a SABER certificate for their products. When the certification body accepts the request, the importer can connect with the company and send a sample product for testing and audit. Once the test reports and factory audit reports are out and satisfactory, the importer receives the SABER certificate for their product through the SABER platform.
The SABER portal has helped thousands of importers make their import journeys in Saudi Arabia easy and convenient with technology.
SASO has introduced a SABER online portal to facilitate quality product imports in Saudi Arabia. The online portal is the medium through which importers receive the SABER certificate for their products. It is very user-friendly and has dedicated user guides importers can refer to before registering their products on the portal. The guides convey all the essential information on how SABER works. Listed below are the guides available for you to go through as an importer in Saudi Arabia on how to use SABER-
- User Guide for Registering Facility Account
- User Guide for Registering the Products
- User Guide for Certificate of Conformity
- User Guide for Shipment Request
- User Guide for Self-Declaration Request
- User Guide for Products not intended for direct marketing to the consumer.
On SABER, you can also find the list of Conformity Bodies notified by SASO authorized to conduct tests and factory audits for your products and issue a SASO Certificate of Conformity. Around 100+ third-party companies are working as Certification Bodies. VERGER Group is a listed Conformity Body on the SABER portal and can be contacted through e-mail or call.
Importers must know and understand the technical regulations on different items used in the Saudi market. You can access all the technical regulation documents on individual products on the SABER platform. These documents define and lay down the standards and norms mandatory to be followed by the items used in Saudi Arabia. Some of the regulations listed on SABER are-
- Technical Regulation for Used Imported Vehicles
- Technical Regulation for Leather Products
- Technical Regulation for Glue and Adhesive Materials
- Technical Regulation for Machinery Safety
- Technical Regulation for Paper and Cardboard
Harmonized System Codes (HScode) is a unique id given to every product (regulated and non-regulated) that helps classify the commodities. The SABER portal has a dedicated section for products and their subsequent HS codes. The products imported to Saudi Arabia follow a 12-digit HSCode where the first 4-6 digits are international.
To get complete HSCode details, an importer can mention their product’s category on the SABER platform.
Contact VERGER for SABER Certificate
VERGER Group is a NABCB-assessed and ISO-17065 accredited Conformity Assessment Body and a SASO-notified Certification Body serving clients in the Middle East and North African region. We are the front-runners in the quality assessment and certification domain.
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