Khalifa Fund teams up with international company for training

Emiratis with a technical flair could be selected for training at a state-of-the-art facility in Abu Dhabi that simulates power plants and oil rigs.

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ABU DHABI // Emiratis with a flair for the technical could be in line to receive expert training and mentoring from an international company this year.

Power and automation technologies company ABB has signed an agreement with the Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development to take talented local candidates and provide them with state-of-the-art training at its facility in Abu Dhabi.

The learning facility, located in the Aldar HQ building, can be made to simulate different types of power plants or oil rigs to test projects in a realistic environment.

“We wanted to see how we can increase our resources locally, in order to train Emiratis and develop some of the businesses in which we have knowledge,” said Pierre Leretz, president and region division manager for the process automation division at ABB.

“It became obvious that the Khalifa fund was the entity with which we should be discussing.”

The fund works to support Emirati entrepreneurs through education and partnership initiatives.

“We thought the best thing to do is to bring as many Emiratis as possible here to our learning facility to give them training and develop them.

“The learning zone is fabulous because you do not see these types of facilities often. We have recreated the environment of a live plant – it is composed of valves, transducers, control elements and a control room. It is super-sophisticated.

“You put people in the situation of having to deal with a real plant, if something goes wrong they have to work out what to do. There is no more sophisticated learning facility in this region. Mr Leretz said that the project was a vital part of the company’s plans to give back to the local community.

“Wherever ABB goes we try to support the community in ways we understand. If it has anything to do with electrification or automation, we have a century of experience.”

It is hoped that the first candidates chosen by the fund will begin training by September.

ksinclair@thenational.ae