22 November 2013 - In accordance with the decision of the OPCW Executive Council’s adopted on 15 November 2013 which requested the Director-General of the Organisation to explore ‘options for destruction in commercial chemical disposal facilities’ of a range of chemicals declared by Syria, the OPCW has invited commercial chemical disposal firms to convey to it their expressions of interest (EOI).
The EOI document lists 18 chemicals, mostly bulk commodity chemicals including some that are used and traded worldwide. A significant amount of Syria’s declaration of its chemical weapons programme includes chemicals that fall in the category of common industrial chemicals or otherwise chemicals that can safely be rendered harmless or destroyed.
The companies will be selected through a tendering process in accordance with established procedures.
The chemicals to be disposed off commercially are estimated at 800 metric tons, accounting for a major part of the Syrian stockpile. Internationally accepted safety and environmental regulations will be strictly observed.
The commercial companies will also destroy the effluent resulting from the higher priority chemicals that will separately undergo “effective destruction”, as per the Executive Council Decision.
The estimated costs relating to the destruction activites to be undertaken by commercial companies is estimated at 35 to 40 million Euros.
A specific Trust Fund was established on 19 November 2013 and the OPCW
Director-General has called on all States Parties in a position to do so to provide voluntary contributions in support of the mandate of the OPCW-UN Joint Mission in Syria.