Maritime trade has always played an important part in developing Brunei’s economy. Before the advent of aviation, shipping was the dominant mode of transportation in the transfer of goods.
Fast forward to today, shipping is still the preferred method of transferring goods, particularly because of its capability to transport large volumes and hazardous materials like crude oil and gas.
Marine transportation thus, remains an important asset to Brunei as the country continues to rely on its oil and gas trade as its main revenue.
This is why it is imperative for the industry to continually develop strategies that ensure safety – not only for the raw materials that are being transported, but also for its people.
HSE AND BGC
Among the stakeholders responsible to facilitate this much needed development is Brunei Gas Carriers (BGC) whose core business involves the transport of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) overseas, particularly to Japan.
For BGC, health, safety and environment have always been a top priority, boasting an accumulated 13 years of Lost Time Injury (LTI) Free with its first vessel, Abadi.
The company’s commitment for safety is reflected in its achievement as it surpassed 17.7 million-man hours without any LTI and 2.4 million-man hours without any total recordable cases (TRC) last year.
In light of the World Maritime Day celebration today, the company is determined to avoid incidents that may negatively impact its employees, shareholders and stakeholders, as well as the marine ecosystem, by looking into maintaining a collective ‘Goal Zero’ record across its five vessels.
For BGC, maintaining Goal Zero means to achieve no harm and leaks across its operations. It is meant to encourage its employees to be meticulous in handling their tasks, so as to avoid near-miss incidences that may negatively affect the company and community.
Maintaining good safety records could also help the company increase its value, as it helps to improve the quality of its workforce. It also helps improve its credibility to its clients.
Besides instilling safety into its corporate culture, Goal Zero aims to ensure all of its employees return safely to their loved ones after working hard at sea.
MAINTAINING AN ACCIDENT-FREE ENVIRONMENT
BGC’s core values are SHIP, which stands for Safety, Honesty, Integrity and Professionalism. All these values and practices aim to keep the company on par with other top quartile shipping industry players across the region.
Being in the industry for more than 20 years has allowed the company to build a clientele that includes major industry players, which is why keeping up-to-date with current policies and making sure BGC remains credible as an LNG shipping company is important to ensure its business sustainability.
For safety, BGC depends on its onboard Ship Management Team (SMT) to maintain an accident-free operation. The team ensures that all communications are seamlessly facilitated across the board, using several best practices including Tool Box Talks and 12 Life Saving Rules checklist.
On top of this, BGC is also working together with Shell Trading and Shipping Company Ltd (STASCo) to learn the latest information, development and legislation on HSE standards.
At the same, the company has also adopted the culture of ‘Positive Intervention’, allowing its seafarers and staff to look more into their duties and how they affect BGC’s welfare, environment, assets and reputation.
BGC AND THE FUTURE
BGC takes its Bruneianisation initiative seriously as it looks to create sustainable employment and development for locals in the Maritime industry. Its goal is to maximise the number of local seafarers, which continues to become an integral part of the firm’s vision and mission.
The company is also actively involved in grooming local talents to become senior marine professionals, recognising that skilled talent is the backbone of one of Brunei’s main economic drivers, LNG.
Keeping its focus on developing Bruneians to fill key leadership positions in the company, BGC continues to maintain an external mindset and ensure adequate transfer of knowledge, aiming to bridge its vast pool of seafarers with the latest developments and practices from other parts of the industry.
BGC is also the first blue water shipping company in the Sultanate to be issued a Document of Compliance (DOC) by the Maritime and Port Authority of Brunei Darussalam (MPABD) which officially recognises the company as a fully-fledged ship manager internationally.
Following this, BGC pledges to continue exploring and growing other aspects of Brunei’s shipping industry, while also helping to diversify Brunei’s economy through its maritime expertise.
The Bruneian | BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN