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An agreement on international recognition of the competence of Russian engineers has been signed in London

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Thanks to this agreement, Russian public companies will manage to increase their capitalization through improving human resource capacity.

A number of breakthrough agreements were signed in London on Thursday, June 13. Most importantly, the document on recognition of the Russian National Association of Mining Engineers as a regional representative office of the UK-based Institute of Minerals, Materials and Mining (IOM3) was signed. The agreement was signed by Vladimir Litvinenko, President of the Association and the Principal of St. Petersburg Mining University, and Colin Church, Chief Executive of the IOM3.

Under the terms of the agreement, Russian partners of IOM3 were granted exclusive rights to accredit mineral and raw material specialists as holders of such titles as, for example, "Professional Engineer" and "Fellow Engineer". The agreement between IOM3 and Russian National Association of Mining Engineers will dramatically expand the possibilities for international certification of Russian mining engineers as well as specialists from oil and gas and chemical industries, construction and other fields, since the experts of Association have been licensed by IOM3 to certify specialists of extracting and processing enterprises.

The procedure will be as follows: the Russian representative office will assess the competence of candidates in mining engineering and lead on recommending them for accreditation by IOM3– for professional members only and for chartered professionals as well. The IOM3, in turn, will issue the certificates themselves. The holders of these certificates will be automatically given a serious advantage in the labor market in most of the world's countries.

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According to Dr. Church, "We are working at a time of unprecedented challenges: climate change, population growth, depletion of raw materials. It is quite possible that in the future the competence of mining engineers will become a crucial factor in the response to these challenges. The engineering qualifications confirmed by IOM3 – especially in the case of chartered registration – are globally recognized qualifications under the Washington Accord and under the EU’s mutual recognition rules. Major countries such as Russia, the US, Australia, South Africa, Brazil and China recognize it, as does most of the rest of the English-speaking world, all of the EU, much of Latin America and many countries in Asia. Currently, we are in the process of training our Russian colleagues from the Mining University to do some of the assessment, and there will also be an element of the assessment in the UK as well".

Accreditation in accordance with IOM3 procedure on the basis of the International Competence Centre for Mining-Engineering Education under the auspices of UNESCO will serve as a mechanism for increasing efficiency of Russian mining industry in the global marketplace. Russian engineers will get a chance to increase their own career competitiveness. The capitalization of Russian public companies will be also affected positively through improving human resource capacity.

The core of the idea is that university graduate acquires practical skills in the field through internship lasting two to three years. The next step is that a specific company sends that person for a monthly training in accordance with "Professional standards" program. The training course takes place at the Competence Center. After completing the education, the candidate is required to take an exam organized by the commission of certified experts from the National Association of Mining Engineers. If the exam is passed, a certificate confirming the title of Professional Engineer is awarded, which may be seen as a proof of competence and reaching certain level in the profession
Vladimir Litvinenko, the Chairman of the Board of Governors of the International Competence Centre for Mining-Engineering Education under the auspices of UNESCO, also Principal of the Mining University

The higher number of accredited specialists works in a public company, the higher is the level of human resource capacity. It is expected that in the future this indicator will become one of the crucial ones in valuing the assets of the public companies trading at the London Stock Exchange.

The British IOM3 will develop a unified system for assessing competence of Russian engineers. On June 13, the agreement on that matter between IOM3 and the International Competence Centre for Mining-Engineering Education under the auspices of UNESCO was also signed at the residence of the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation to the United Kingdom. The UK-based Institute has committed itself to developing a common standard for mining engineering and a certain minimum threshold of skills and knowledge through unification of the world's best practices on professional engineering certification.

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According to Alexander Yakovenko, the Ambassador of Russia to the United Kingdom, "Over the past two years, bilateral trade between Russia and the UK has grown by 40%, which is a huge achievement. And the signing of these agreements is a completely new qualitative step forward in the development of relations between our countries".

Russian mining engineers may already seek the advice of the National Association of Mining Engineers and ask for consultation on applying for the certificate. However, applying through IOM3 directly is no longer possible. Previously, Russian individuals had to approach IOM3 on their own, and a number of Russian engineers have already become the members of the organization. As from now on, the British side will direct the Russian applicants to their corresponding representative office in Saint-Petersburg.

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