Mining Human Resources: Vale invested US$35 Millions training young mozambicans in Brazil

Young Mozambican professional, Atumane Age, in training in the Operational Control Centre of Vale port in Vitória, Espirito Santo, Brazil
Young Mozambican professional, Atumane Age, in training in the Operational Control Centre of Vale port in Vitória, Espirito Santo, Brazil

Vale invested $35 million in training skilled manpower in Mozambique between 2012 and 2014, an amount that includes young apprentices and other training programs. Vale has also logistics improvement programs in Brazil for Mozambican senior professionals.

The young Mozambicans professionals of Vale will conclude in September a course of six months in Brazil in the area of locomotive drivers. The training includes practical lessons on the Vitoria-Minas railway (EFVM), which belongs to Vale. When they complete the course, they will return to Mozambique qualified to work in the operation of the Nacala Corridor, consisting of 912 kilometers of railroad and a port, both in the final constructions stages. It is expected that the first train loaded with coal produced by Vale in the Moatize coal mine, in Tete, may runs through Nacala Corridor at the end of the year.

The practical experience offered to the young Mozambicans in the EFVM is part of a program implemented by the global miner Vale since 2010 for Mozambique young professionals training in Brazil, where the company will open by the end of the year a distribution center for iron ore. From 2010 till date, were trained at Vale operations in Brazil 285 Mozambicans apprentices. The training included courses in training of drivers, mines operators, mine equipment maintenance, and Ports operation and maintenance.

At the moment, there are 81 apprentices Mozambicans Vale in Brazil, of which 50 are being trained as train drivers in localities of Minas Gerais and Vitória, Espírito Santo, where Vale has the Tubarão complex, one of the major ports for iron ore exports in Brasil. The remaining 31 trainees attend the trainings in the port area of Victoria. The courses are extended over periods of three to eight months, and once completed the training, the young professionals return to their country of origin.

From September, 60 more Mozambicans will land in Victoria to attend the trainings. Trained the equivalent of high school in Brazil, they are recruited by Vale, before passing through theoretical programs in Mozambique and then face the practical part in Brazil.

Paula Eller, Director of Human Resources at Vale for Africa and Asia, said the decision to send apprentices to Brazil relied on the fact that the company has mature operations in the Brazilian market, rail and port. In Mozambique, the operations in the Moatize mine has not yet reached full capacity and the Nacala Corridor, with capacity of 18 million tons of coal per year, not started operating. Today, coal transportation is done via the Sena line, that line does not belong to the Vale.

“We give learners the opportunity to train in mature operations and running at full capacity,” said Paula Eller. She added: “He [the young professional] acquires the technical expertise, but also issues of safety, health and environment that are important for us.”

“Isso mostra que a acção é sustentável porque investimos [em treinamento] e o conhecimento se fixa, se perpetua,” frisou.

Paula Eller said there will be less and less need, from a technical standpoint, to take apprentices from Mozambique to Brazil, once trained professionals replicate the acquired knowledge to other colleagues on their return.

“An example of that,” said the director of Human Resources at Vale in Mozambique, “is that today there is no need to train in Brazil, operators of dump trucks working in the Moatize mines. This occurred at the beginning of the program, but today is done locally.”

“This shows that the action is sustainable because we invest [in training] and the knowledge is fixed, perpetuating itself,” he said.

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