The Group’s Aktogay and Bozshakol projects have generated valuable employment and training opportunities for local workers in Kazakhstan. KAZ Minerals seeks to employ highly skilled operators from around the world who are then tasked with transferring skills to local workers through training, mentoring and succession planning. To meet the Group’s needs for a skilled workforce, significant investment has been made in education and training. A key example of this approach is the apprentice scheme at Aktogay.
During the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic, all employees were given the opportunity to leave the Aktogay site before travel restrictions came into effect. However, most decided to stay on site and continue working, including apprentices undergoing training.
The contribution of the apprentices to maintaining production during this difficult time was highly appreciated by site General Director, Philip Welten. “As far as possible, we gave the option for apprentices to stay on site so that they had the opportunity to rise to the challenge, accelerate their learning and contribute to achieving the goals of the company. As we say here, the work continues regardless! I was very impressed with how the apprentices performed, they did their job and were valuable members of the team. They really strived to work safely and contribute to maintaining stable production.
Over 90% of interns have made it through the apprentice scheme to this point, so I expect that around 200 will complete their training and become full-time employees shortly. Several trainees have already taken up permanent positions. We targeted hiring for the scheme in areas close to our operations and this has helped to build links with those communities. I am really proud of them – they are the next generation of miners in Kazakhstan and I hope to see them as regular employees and future leaders of our company.”