published: 09 September 2016
Mirbek Kurmanbayev, an employee of Kumtor Gold Company, has returned to work after receiving six-month training in Kal Tire, one of the world’s largest tire dealers providing tire maintenance to mining equipment. The training project was organized at the famous Tarkwa gold mine located in the Republic of Ghana, West Africa.
The mining techniques employed by Tarkwa being in many respects similar to those employed by Kumtor, was the basic reason why that mine was chosen for training. The training program was unique and specially developed for the KGC employee. He and his instructor, Vincent Mwula, had visited, in addition to the Tarkwa mine, two other mines that operate in cooperation with Kal Tire, Mirbek said. Moreover, he was given an opportunity to watch the used tire retreading process in the mother company.
Within six months, Mirbek received theoretical training in the expansion of tire life and mining equipment tire maintenance in conjunction with practical training at operating mines. Mirbek noted safety compliance at all the mines he had visited. “Health and Safety compliance is a top priority there, just as it is at our Kumtor mine. Sure, the mines are different climatically and geophysically. For example, we face risks relating to motor roads that freeze over in winter while they in Africa have to deal with python attacks. I can say with assurance that our company is best in Kyrgyzstan in what regards H&S compliance and is among world leaders in this respect,” Mirbek concluded.
As initially planned, Mirbek is to replace an expat employee of the mining tire maintenance department at Kumtor. At present, 97% of KGC’s staff are Kyrgyz citizens, their share constantly growing due to the program of gradual replacement of expat labor with local personnel.