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José Manuel Pinto

ANGOLA - Energy & Mining

José Manuel Pinto

CEO, Guara

Bio

José Manuel Pinto has a degree in engineering from the University of Porto and is a partner and CEO of Guara. With 24 years of professional experience, he founded Guara in 2014 after holding management positions in different internationally recognized companies, which allowed him to develop engineering and business management skills. His goal is to grow and consolidate Guara in Angola and expand the company in new businesses and markets in the coming years.

"The company has two major activities: the collection of waste, which started together with the company."
TBY talks to José Manuel Pinto, CEO of Guara.
Guara was created in 2015 and provides services to several clients, namely to commerce and services companies. What are the company’s main activities in Angola?

The company has two major activities: the collection of waste, which started together with the company; and environmental consultancy, which later emerged. In waste collection, we started with non-hazardous waste, and over time we moved on to hazardous waste too. It was in this context that the company developed, and today we have the capacity and environmental certification to work with hazardous, petroleum, and hospital materials. The area of environmental consulting occupies about 30% of the company’s business. In this department we develop environmental studies in order to certify the companies at this level, in compliance with Angolan law and, after that, we are monitoring our customers in the post licensing. We also have a small business area where we execute and sell recycling bins that our clients can later sort their waste. We have offices to support the administrative areas of the company’s management and logistical support for the collection activity.

Is environmental education in Angola possible in a short period of time?

There is great concern on the part of the executive about this, which is the most important step that can be taken; otherwise, it will never happen. There is a training plan in schools, where the government is already planning to carry out basic training for the next years. In schools, it is much easier, as children absorb more what is being taught. Environmental education is more difficult to do with those who are older but we must insist. This awareness campaign by the government, with advertisements on television and the media, will help people learn. People often complain that there is a great deal of garbage on the streets, and companies should do something about it; however, environmental education needs to start everywhere. It is true that the ones that can drive this change on an industrial level are companies. New companies need to keep these challenges in mind. Training and requirements are important, and companies need to start taking bigger steps. I am not in favor of fines and penalties; however, if these did not exist, companies would not take responsibility. The legislation is important, and I believe that eventually improvements will be made in the future.

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