Blue Wolf Mongolia Countdown: 61 days left till liquidation
Kincora Announces 2012 Exploration Review and Corporate Update
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Feb. 19, 2013) - Kincora Copper Limited (the "Company", "Kincora") (TSX VENTURE:KCC) announces updated exploration results, a review of the 2012 field season activities for the Bronze Fox project and provides a corporate update.
Exploration activities in late 2012 focused on determining the potential for higher grade copper-gold porphyry mineralisation at depth and near surface oxides at the West Kasulu prospect and drilling two previously untested geophysics anomalies at Bronze Fox. These activities looked to consolidate promising drilling results earlier in year and recent 3D Induced Polarisation ('IP') analysis.
The results of the 2012 exploration programme continue to demonstrate that the Bronze Fox project hosts a large area of lower grade copper and gold mineralisation, open at depth and in every direction with high-grade intersections and new targets continuing to be generated. Following further zones of broad mineralisation being encountered and drilling at one of the aforementioned geophysics targets extending the West Kasulu prospect's potential strike significantly, the Company is investigating the potential use of follow up geophysics and deeper IP analysis at its advanced exploration target zones to assist in identifying additional targets.
Commenting on today's announcement, John Rickus, President and CEO of Kincora, said:
"Our review of the 2012 exploration season reiterates our belief that Kincora's wholly owned and flagship Bronze Fox project is prospective for both bulk lower grade and deeper higher grade copper mineralisation. Following the successful C$4.6 million private placement late last year drilling activities increased from two to three rigs and ran until the week before Christmas. All core work programmes were completed including: step out drilling around Hole F62 at West Kasulu; advancing key infill drilling and initial metallurgical analysis for a potential oxide development project, also intersecting further shallow porphyry mineralisation (eg 8 metres at almost 1% CuEq); and, drilling a number of untested anomaly targets.
Large zones of lower grade mineralisation, both oxide material at surface and sulphides at depth, were returned. While not intersecting economic mineralisation this drilling, and that of two previously untested anomalies, warrant follow up activities and illustrates the Company's systematically exploration of its large regional landholding, the majority of which has experienced limited previous exploration.
The recent private placement provides Kincora a number of options and flexibility to resume optimal exploration activities in 2013. The Company continues to monitor yet unsubstantiated local Mongolian media speculation regarding two licenses held by Kincora, the proposed draft Minerals Law, up coming Mongolian Presidential election, and the global markets for exploration juniors. While impacted by these aforementioned factors, we continue to access various other commercial opportunities and discussions with potential strategic investors regarding technical and financial synergies."
Corporate and Financing update
As announced on November 29th, 2012, Kincora closed the second and final tranche of a private placement raising a gross proceeds of C$4,631,775 million. Subsequently approval from the TSX Venture Exchange ("TSXV") has been granted for an institutional group becoming an insider with the $538,906.50 of the gross proceeds of the Offering, forming part of a $1,994,700 subscription for Quantum Partners LP was released from escrow in early 2013.
Kincora's cash balance at January 31st, 2013 was approximately C$3m. The recent private placement provides Kincora a number of options and flexibility to resume optimal exploration activities in 2013 with approval of the upcoming field season's budget expected at the next board meeting. The Company continues to monitor yet unsubstantiated local Mongolian media speculation regarding two licenses held by Kincora, the proposed draft Minerals Law, up coming Mongolian Presidential election and the global markets for exploration juniors. Whilst impacted by these aforementioned factors, we continue to access various other commercial opportunities with advanced exploration and/or development projects in the immediate region and have discussions with potential strategic investors regarding technical and financial synergies.
Kincora is attending the PDAC International Convention Trade Show & Investors Exchange, Mining Investment Show from March 3rd -6th, 2013, at booth 2903, including Mongolia@PDAC Investment conference on March 5th.
Mongolia Growth Group Ltd. Publishes January 2013 Monthly Letter to Shareholders
Ulaanbaatar, MONGOLIA, February 19, 2013 /FSC/ - Mongolia Growth Group Ltd. (YAK - TSXV) is pleased to announce the release of its January 2013 letter to shareholders.
January 2013 Shareholder Letter
To the Shareholders of Mongolia Growth Group Ltd.,
January in Mongolia is a period of rather intensely cold weather, yet despite the temperature, our team has remained quite busy. On the acquisitions side, we obtained three properties and I should point out that these are the first purchases that we have made in very many months. Much more importantly, we have successfully completed two of our three sizable renovation projects.
As you will remember, in the early summer, we began a plan to improve the quality and efficiency of three of our office property assets. After a few months of planning, the exterior work was undertaken before the cold set in and the majority of the interior work has been completed during November, December and January. There are still some minor exterior details that need attention after the thaw, but the work is now essentially done on two of these three assets.
White: White is a very well located office building that had not been used for a number of years due to legal issues which were resolved upon acquisition. When we acquired this asset, it needed to be completely remodeled. This process involved; new exterior cladding, windows, roof, heating, plumbing, electrical systems and replacing many of the non-structural walls which were damaged. In total, renovations have increased the total cost basis of the building by approximately a quarter, however we are quite pleased with the current quality of the asset and even more pleased by the overall purchase price of the asset which was at a sizable discount to current market prices. This building has now been renamed "The Anand Building" (which means "Bliss" in Sanskrit, and was selected by our employees). Since renovations were completed in January, 35% of the building has been leased with relative ease—even given the constraints caused by moving during the cold. We anticipate that we will be able to completely lease the building by the early spring. Given the scope of the work undertaken, we felt that a quick video would be the best way to show the changes to the building. I hope that you enjoy it.
Pink: If you recall from the May 2012 letter, we added a fifth floor to this well located building. At the time, we had also planned extensive renovations to the lobby, stairs and other interior spaces. However, we chose to put these off as a tenant occupying two of the five floors was moving out and we felt that waiting a few months for this tenant to move would be a much more practical way to do a complete overhaul of the building. Since this tenant moved out in September, we have completely repainted the exterior of the building, remodeled two interior floors, painted the stairs, wired the building for internet access and retrofitted an existing garage so that it could serve as retail space and add to the revenues of the building. Since the renovations were completed, we have begun to market the building and have leased out 57% of the building, with verbal commitments on additional space. Once again, we anticipate that we will have the building completely rented by early spring. This building has now been renamed "Denver Center".
In summary, we believe that these changes will substantially increase the returns from these assets, while adding minimally to our recurring costs of operating these buildings.
HAR closed +1c to 17c on Tuesday
Lippo Group's Stake in Haranga Falls on Dilution
February 19 (Cover Mongolia) After the issue of 30 million shares to Mongolian businessman Mr. Amarbaatar Chultem, Haranga Resources' (ASX:HAR) largest shareholder, Indonesian major conglomerate Lippo Group's stake in HAR falls to 13.43% from 15.05%, but share holding increased from its last notice to 32,470,000 from 31,866,940 shares. Lippo Group remains Haranga's largest shareholder with Mr. Amarbaatar 2nd with 12.41%.
MUB closed +1c to 6c on Tuesday
MRC: Resignation of Directors
February 18 -- The Board of Mongolian Resource Corporation Limited (ASX:MUB) announces the resignation of two Non-Executive Directors.
John Russell Hodder has resigned as a Non-Executive Director of the Company, effective 17 February 2013. The Board thanks John for his contribution, especially in the area of capital raising and wished him well in his future endeavors.
Stephen John Hamblyn has resigned as Non-Executive Director, effective 17 February 2013. The Board thanks Stephen for contribution since joining the Board in June 2012 and wishes him well in his future activities.
John Russell Hodder's Final Director Notice – 562,500 Ordinary Shares
Stephen John Hamblyn's Final Director Notice – 13,230,500 Ordinary Shares
GMM closed flat at 3.9c on Tuesday
GMM Director Offloads Shares
February 19 (Cover Mongolia) Change of Director's Interest Notice released today reveals General Mining Corp. Ltd's (ASX:GMM) Non-Executive Director Mr. Robert James Wanless sold 500,000 shares for gross proceeds of A$19,050, or on average 3.81c, on-market through 8-12 January. Mr. Wanless' stake stand at, directly and indirectly, 4,070,000 shares.
NRU closed -12.9% to 2.7c
Newera: Interim Financial Report, For the Half-Year Ended 31 December 2012
February 19, Newera Resources Ltd (ASX:NRU) --
Turquoise Hill Tumbles Amid Precious Metals & Mining Meltdown
February 19 (Emmet Kodesh via Seeking Alpha) Turquoise Hill Resources (TRQ), 51% owned by major miner Rio Tinto (RIO) has continued to tumble toward its secular post-crash low at $7.10 made in late December 2012. When TRQ commissioned its ore concentrator at Oyut Tolgoi (Mogi: can't even spell it right but thinks to know) in the presence of high government of Mongolia (GOM) officials, they affirmed the lease - royalty deal and praised Rio, foreign investment and their commitment to maximizing their nation's resources. The moment seemed ripe for steady production at this world class site laden with copper, gold, silver and cobalt. After all, Mongolia is expected to get about 71% of the life-of-mine cash flow and Mongolians have 88% of the jobs at the mammoth project. Issues also seemed resolved with SouthGobi Resources (SGQRF.PK) which Rio controls via TRQ (58% share in SouthGobi). But exhilaration was brief: about ten days after a rapid ascent of TRQ shares it began a tumble that preceded the collapse of nearly all precious metal and mining shares in February. TRQ sank to $7.26 on Friday the 15th traded a few pennies below that level February 19. The questions are why and what to expect going forward with TRQ, precious metals and mining generally.
Some of the problem is specific to the foreign investment climate in East and Central Asia. Partly this is rooted in ethnic-historic issues, partly in the geopolitics and finance of recent decades. Insight into how these factors play out is offered by a minor event in Rio's arrangement of its holdings in the area: the sale via TRQ of its $300 million interest in Altynamas Gold's Kyzyl mine in northeastern Kazakhstan to Sumeru Gold BV.
Russia had an operational mine there by 1956. It fell into disuse when the Soviet Union was re-structured. After a February 2012 feasibility study at Kyzyl, Turquoise Hill was proceeding toward renewed development when Rio cashed out to focus more on its Mongolian operations. A key to its struggles there lurk in the seemingly routine boilerplate about its sale at Kyzyl: "completion of the proposed transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals from the Republic of Kazakhstan's competent authorities."
Let's look at Kazakhstan and what is "customary" in that former Soviet Socialist Republic.
The Altynamas Gold project is near Ust Kamenogorsk (Oskemen) where Russia, China, western Mongolia and northeastern Kazakhstan kiss in a significant geographic crux. Kazakhstan is a "republic" with "authoritarian presidential rule and little responsibility outside the executive branch" as the CIA country overview explains. It is valuable reading.
The president has been around a long time. Nursultan A. Nazarbayev was Chairman of the Supreme Soviet of Kazakhstan S.S.R. for twenty months preceding creation of the new State in December 1991. Then he became President of the republic for the first of his seven-year terms. In May 2007 the terms were shortened to five years with a limit of two consecutive terms. Mr. Nazarbayev however is exempt from this limitation since his "official status" as the "First President of Kazakhstan allows him an unlimited amount of terms." This enables one to appreciate better the language in TRQ's provisional sale of its Altynamas Gold stake about "customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals from the Republic of Kazakhstan's competent authorities." As to competent authorities, Kazakhstan's "Council of Ministers" is appointed by President Nazarbayev who in 2011's election received 95.5% of the vote; the remaining 4.5% being ascribed to "Other."
Kazakhstan has a bicameral legislature, a Supreme Court (with 44 members) and many political parties but 81% of the seats are held by members of Mr. Nazarbayev's party, Nur Otan ("Fatherland's Ray of Light"). He is the chosen one and those who chose him affect investment, development and the share prices of the companies that make them. Kazakhstan is a crude example of how world management functions.
President Nazarbayev's consultation with representatives of various international advisors help constitute the "competent authorities" that rule on matters like TRQ's sale of its interest in Altynamas to Sumeru Gold. But $300 million is a very small matter compared to TRQ's Oyut Tolgoi mine (34% owned by the GOM) into which Rio has poured $6.2 billion. TRQ itself has a $7.5 billion market cap. Mining legend Robert Friedland began developing the site with his company Ivanhoe Mining (Mogi: again with the misspells) which became TRQ when RIO acquired a controlling interest in April 2012. He too poured large sums into the mine and Mongolia and retains a 10% interest in TRQ. But East Asians are chauvinistic, even xenophobic (Mogi: Wha?). Those who manage the West into insolvency and social chaos use this nationalism to speed re-distribution of global wealth from West to East. Something similar happens in Europe north to south as part of the predictable malfunctioning of the euro project.
If Kyzyl mines with a half interest valued at $300 million require attention from the competent authorities of the republic of Kazakhstan, imagine the interests and authorities involved in the pace and conditions of development at Oyut Tolgoi and SouthGobi's coal mines at Ovoot Tolgoi. In my previous piece on TRQ's and RIO's efforts in Mongolia I suggested that readers research the adventures of Bat Khurts and Enkhbat Damiranon the intertwining of judicial, geopolitical and economic interests and their interface with Mongolian politics. This last link to Sain Banuu, Mongolians in London is particularly intriguing about Western intelligence agencies in the workings of GOM that like Kazakhstan was a Soviet Socialist Republic in the bad old days before the empire underwent a pre-Internet version of "the twitter revolution."
Mongolian politicians both in and not currently in power must spend significant time consulting with the competent authorities about foreign investment and the equitable proportion of royalties a host State should be paid for permitting outsiders to create wealth. The organizers of the game are more powerful than Rio. For them GOM is just an agency for global wealth management which may explain its volatility. Current President Elbegdorj has been in office only 3 and a half years (Mogi: not sure what he means by ONLY) and an election is upcoming in June. In 2009 he defeated Nambaryn Enkhbayar by a plausible margin, 51-47% similar to our own past two contests. Then Mr. Enkhbayar was convicted of misusing donated television equipment (Mogi: got convicted a little more than just TV equipment) and jailed. He wants GOM to own more than 34% of Oyut Tolgoi (Mogi: no he doesn't). He has compared Rio's agreement with GOM to the 7 decades of Russian occupation (Mogi: don't know where he got this from). Like all politicians he says he is against corruption. And so it goes. It is starting to seem that RIO-TRQ are an agency for transfer of Western wealth to East-Central Asia. Also indicating flows of power and wealth, the London Stock Exchange is re-structuring the Mongolian exchange.
RIO and TRQ produced the first ore concentrate on January 31 and plan to proceed to phase 2 development of Oyut Tolgoi in June, "pending feasibility studies." These may be affected by the outcome of the elections which have been postponed to enable installing an "electronic polling system" (Mogi: no it was not. The electronic polling systems are already in place and tested in 2012 elections. Reason it changed to June from usual May is the law on this year elections was passed in December. The constitution says it must be passed 6 months before the election, hence the June). Such systems can facilitate vote manipulation in Chicago, Hoboken or wherever (Mogi: international observers dubbed 2012 election as the smoothest ever). So the election will be closely watched by those with interest in Mongolia's development.
Given the many interested parties TRQ share prices are likely to remain volatile for years. Mongolia gets 95% of its oil and gas from Russia and nearly all its electricity from Russia and China (Mogi: not true, if not mistaken around 20-30% of its electricity) so those two powers have dogs in this hunt along with Anglo-Australian RIO and its various companies. In a related event, Barrick Gold Corp. (ABX) and Antofagasta Minerals (ANFGF.PK) had their mining lease in Pakistan voided by that state's high court. Is that justice or nemesis? Pakistan was created by Britain in 1946 and is run precariously in cooperation with Western Intelligence agencies via the ISI (Inter Services Intelligence).
The mining sector has had a bad year. If global economies truly were related to markets then miners should be doing fairly well. The fact is that Europe's economy has been declining for 18 months and America's economy is sluggish and slowing. See this link on alarming developments at Wal-Mart, America's largest retailer and employer where executives speak of "a tougher economic environment" and "smaller consumer spending pie." More people are being impoverished and/or indebted by governance focused on fiscal games and increasingly centralized management. Control not growth is the mode and outcome of new policies. The Fed continues its direct intervention (trading) in the markets via its POMO, "permanent open market operation." This is the future: total gaming of systems as the quality of life declines.
Precious metal prices have been battered for four months with the carnage accelerating last week. My previous piece mentioned that paper-trading ETF's like (GLD) or (SLV) facilitate manipulation of prices by those who, 1) wish to keep acquiring massive amounts of metal at deflated levels and by those who 2) wish to direct investable funds to equities. This latter tactic keeps people happy and, on paper, richer. It also sets them up for panic selling when markets sag. A couple of examples: Kinross Gold Corp. (KGC) reported favorable quarterly news and initially held up during the major sell-off last Thursday which saw Barrick Gold soar 5% and then give up half its gains in late day trading. On Friday Barrick gave up the rest of its gains and Kinross' share price collapsed 4.08% to $7.99, both companies falling on double their usual volume. It looks like people are fleeing the sector: buy panic. Similar results occurred from behemoths like Barrick to small and micro-caps from all regions, products (uranium, graphite, copper, gold or silver, rare earth) and stages of development: Uranium Energy Corp. (UEC), Focus Graphite (FCSMF.PK), Energizer Resources (ENZR.OB) with its huge hi-grade graphite property in Madagascar, and gold streaming company Sandstorm (SAND) lost 8.35%. The Junior Gold Miners ETF (GDXJ) made a new secular bottom (intraday) at $17.02 on double its usual volume and is down again Tuesday. The Silver Miners ETF (SIL) fared worse, down 3.28% while prominent silver streamer Silver Wheaton Corp. (SLW) fell 3.51%. NovaGold (NG), held by major investors like Seth Klarman was down about 3.5% and is nearing its 52-week bottom as people hasten to the overheated equities markets. To me that makes NG a good buy. Eric Parnell notes that a surge in precious metal prices usually lags stimulus projects by a couple of months. Regarding Central Bank purchases of gold, the much-quoted 534 tons in 2012 is clearly understated. China's purchases alone exceeded that amount with its holdings now at 3,900 tons.
An exception to the mining downtrend that is pertinent to East-Central Asian affairs was SouthGobi Resources which gained 1.18% to $2.14, still near its 52-week low and looks like a buy for the bold. China's appetite for coal has not abated, nor has the pollution it sheds on our Pacific coast. But people seek inexpensive plays with great upside potential and SouthGobi is one though the context ensures volatility.
It's time to be contrarian, especially on the gold miners and soon on gold bullion, too. Don't sell now except from necessity. The tree is being shaken, don't drop and get put in someone else's basket. As for Mongolia, on the surface its politics are a world-away from neighboring Kazakhstan but its electoral trappings generate more heat than light. As a result, despite the magnificence of TRQ's work at Oyut Tolgoi the stock looks more like a trading vehicle than a buy-and-hold. TRQ has the potential to be the Procter & Gamble (PG) or Altria (MO) of the resource sector but that time isn't yet. Buy around $7 and sell between $9 - $10. If the Enkhbayar faction gains power tussles over royalties will resume. Let's see what June elections and TRQ's 2nd stage of development brings. As I wrote in my first TRQ piece quoting investing legend Sir John Templeton, buy and "monitor aggressively."
Sandstorm Gold Arrives In Mongolia
February 19 (Seeking Alpha) Sandstorm Gold (SAND) is a precious metal streaming company. They provide financing for gold mining companies in exchange for a long-term gold stream. As stipulated on their website 'A gold stream involves Sandstorm making an upfront payment to a mining partner that is in need of capital to build their mine, refinance their obligations, complete an acquisition or for various other reasons. In exchange for that upfront payment, Sandstorm receives a contract which stipulates the purchase of a certain percentage of the gold produced from the mine, for the life of the mine, at a fixed per unit cost.' The fixed cost per ounce of gold is typically heavily discounted in comparison with the prevailing spot price. We provided more information on Sandstorm Gold in a recent article.
On February 15 Sandstorm Gold announced to the market that they have just closed another deal. We were instantly intrigued and decided to investigate the background, which we would like to summarize in the present article.
Rio Tinto's (RIO) world class Oyu Tolgoi Mine in Mongolia is at the heart of the story as we see it. This mine is currently under construction and production of first copper concentrate is imminent with commercial production scheduled to start before mid-year. The mine is estimated to yield 25 million economically viable tonnes of copper and is expected to last for more than 50 years. This mine will cost in excess of $10B to build and it will turn Mongolia into one of the world's leading copper producing countries.
The exploration properties immediately to the south and also to the north of the mine are not controlled by Rio Tinto directly, but by a JV entity called 'Entree - Oyu Tolgoi LLC Joint Venture'. The corporate structure of this JV is shown below. Obviously Rio Tinto controls this JV, but more to the point of the present story, a company called Entrée Gold (EGI) holds a 20% interest as well. And it is Entrée Gold that Sandstorm Gold has entered into an agreement with.
The importance and prospectivity of the land holding can hardly be underestimated, as visualized in the long section below. Phase 2 development of the Oyu Tolgoi mine will include the Hugo underground mine and the northern portion of this mine called Hugo North Extension will reach beyond Rio Tinto's direct control into the JV territory that Entrée Gold has a stake in. The southern portion of the land holding is called the Heruga deposit and also holds great future potential for a substantial underground operation.
Sandstorm Gold is paying $35M for the rights to purchase 25.7% of Entrée Gold's share of the gold by-products of these deposits, and 33.8% of the silver. Sandstorm Gold will pay $220 for each ounce of gold, and $5 for each ounce of silver for an initial period switching to $500 for each ounce of gold and $10 for each ounce of silver thereafter.
A further $5M is being paid to Entrée Gold by Sandstorm Gold for the right to purchase 2.5% of the copper produced in the two deposits for an initial price of $0.50 per lb rising to $1.10 per lb. Sandstorm Gold has sold the copper component of the agreement to their sibling company Sandstorm Metals & Energy (TSX.V:SND) in exchange for shares worth $5M.
In addition to the metal credit purchase agreement described above Sandstorm Gold has also purchased Entrée Gold shares worth $10M in a private placement scheduled to close in early March. Furthermore, Sandstorm Gold have purchased a 0.4% net smelter return royalty for Entree Gold's Ann Mason project in Nevada for a $5M consideration and has reserved rights of first refusal for future streaming and royalty arrangements for this property.
The metal purchases under the present deal will function similarly to Sandstorm Gold's other metal streams where technically Sandstorm Gold buy the physical metal from their partner companies and then sell at the spot price. In a slight variation Entrée Gold will satisfy their commitments through direct cash payments to Sandstorm which is the reason for calling the transaction a 'Metal Credit Purchase' rather than a 'Metal Stream' in the respective announcements.
Phase 2 development production including the Hugo North Extension might start as early as 2015. The current gold reserve of the Hugo North extension stands at 530,000 oz, and the combined indicated and inferred gold resource is given at 3.25M oz. Sandstorm Gold's share of just the gold reserve in the Hugo North extension (27,242 oz) is already worth $37.6M assuming a gold price of $1600 per oz and accounting for the $220/oz payment that Sandstorm Gold will have to make.
The southern Heruga deposit currently has a gold resource of 14M ounces which can only be described as blue sky for Sandstorm Gold when and if it gets to production as part of mine development at some point in the future.
This deal marks the first time that Sandstorm Gold have come in close contact with a world class deposit. It is also the first deal by Sandstorm Gold in Asia.
In our view this deal has quantum leap potential for Sandstorm Gold; but it also comes with considerable risks. In order to build the Oyu Tolgoi mine Rio Tinto negotiated a tax and royalty regime with the government that was fixed for a period of 30 years in 2009. Since then governments have changed, growth has slowed and questions have been raised. In 2012 new mining legislation was introduced (Mogi: new foreign investment legislation) and partly as a result of the new laws investments in Mongolia have dropped by 44% year on year leaving a large financial hole for the government to fix.
Late in 2012 the Mongolian parliament approved a budget for 2013 calling for $319M of extra income from the Oyu Tolgoi mining project which Rio Tinto is unwilling to pay. The details of this standoff are described in this article, which also speculates on possible actions taken by Rio Tinto in response. While we believe that it would be unlikely for Rio Tinto to walk away completely, we do believe, that down-sizing the operations at the Oyu Tolgoi mine is a realistic option. And such a move would probably put into question the underground development which is essential for Entrée Gold's assets, and therefore Sandstorm Gold's future revenue.
In this sense, the latest deal comes with an unusually large dose of country risk for Sandstorm Gold.
SOI closed +₮55 to ₮4,021 on Tuesday
ResCap Announces Mongolia's First Revers Takeover: Eurofeu Asia
February 16 (ResCap) ResCap Securities is pleased to announce that it has recently completed the first ever Reverse Takeover (RTO) on the Mongolian Stock Exchange. This RTO has proven to be a milestone for Eurofeu Asia JSC (MSE:SOI) and its international partners and shareholders – Eurofeu France and DEF International, along with ResCap Securities as exclusive advisor and broker.
Trading commenced on Thursday, February 14, 2013 on the MSE.
Eurofeu Asia JSC is Mongolia's market leader in full service fire safety, supplying quality fire safety products including EU certified fire extinguishers and the only company in Mongolia providing full service safety risk assessments, risk management plans, fire safety product maintenance, and regulated disposal of dangerous fire extinguishers. Eurofeu has a 10-year track record in Mongolia lead by CEO/Founder Sebastien Marneur, a former member of the French fire and police and fire brigades.
Eurofeu has been brought to market at a very attractive entry price for investors. Based on Eurofeu's projected 2013E net income between $200-300k forecasted, the current valuation is 6.1-9.1x 2013E P/E. The average MSE listed non-resource company trades at 17.3x PE. The current market cap of just under $2 million allows significant upside both in terms of re-rating of company size and PE multiple; (excluding any company potential improvements or contracts secured for new business).
NEW FRC TRADING FEES TAKING EFFECT 25 FEBRUARY
February (MSE) Financial regulatory commission has passed resolution to make the following changes to its resolution No.156 of "Revision of regulatory service fee to be collected from license holders which are participating in securities market" of 30 October 2007 from the meeting on 6 February 2013:
Resolution No.:156, 1st appendix table's first row:
These changes shall be effective from 25 February, 2013.
FMG Mongolia Fund lost 1.4% January
The Mongolian equity market has been under some pressure due to the stalemate between Rio Tinto and their Oyu Tolgoi (OT) operations which is among the world's largest copper and gold mine operation and the Mongolian government's disagreement over share ownership of the mine. Talks over renegotiating the investment agreement in terms of seeking a higher stake in OT and potentially higher taxes are ongoing. On the last day of the month, OT produced its first copper and gold concentrate, and is soon to be in commercial production.
The currency, Tugrig, has remained stable against the US dollar the last three months and trades around 1380 to one US dollar. GDP per capita is forecast to be $4300 per person this year versus $3575 last year. The central bank reduced its policy rate, the first time in almost five years. Inflation has also become more subdued. Bank of China, one of the world's top 21 banks, opened a branch in the capital, Ulaanbaatar (UB).
GDP is forecasted to grow 10% this year, down from 12.3% in 2012. However, should OT's production go into full speed, the GDP number may hit 17% for the year.
FMG Mongolia Fund gained 7.4% in December
2012 was a difficult year for Mongolian equities with the Mongolian Stock Exchange (MSE) Top 20 Index finishing the year down 18.81%, versus the FMG Mongolia Fund which was down 16.9%. Much of the weakness in Mongolian shares was attributed to concerns of slackened demand from China and concerns amongst investors about the risk from talk of resource nationalism. There were also high-profile mining projects such as Tavan Tolgoi and Oyu Tolgoi which saw delays in mining production. After hitting a 12 month low early in December, market sentiment has turned positive on the back of six consecutive up-weeks in equity prices.
Last year Mongolia exported over 21 million tons of coal to China; about half of its annual output. Mongolia's coal exports are likely to grow following the construction of new railways and increases in production at some of the country largest mines, including from Tavan Tolgoi. Given the stronger growth path of China going forward, China's coal imports should increase this year.
The seminal USD 1.5 billion government bond released in November demonstrated investor's interest in Mongolia. Given the low trading volume on the MSE since the summer, we have allocated cash to two large mining companies with significant resources in Mongolia, which trade offshore. Both investments were up significantly in December. Given our continued bullish stance on China, we remain optimistic for the prospects of Mongolian equities this year.
BoM holds FX auction
February 19 (Bank of Mongolia) On the Foreign Exchange Auction held on February 19th, 2013 the BOM received from local commercial banks bid and ask offers of USD and CNY. BOM has refused the оffers as considering the demand and supply of USD and CNY is balanced.
Consolidated Balance Sheet of Banks, January 2013
February 19 (Bank of Mongolia) --
Hogan Lovells Client Alert: Mongolia Foreign Labor Force Ratio for 2013 February 2013
February 18 (Hogan Lovells) On 22 December 2012, the Government of Mongolia issued resolution #192 approving the foreign labour force quota ratio for 2013. This quota ratio sets out the total number of foreign employees an economic entity operating in specific sectors may employ, depending on the size of its workforce and its paid-in capital. Please note that the quota ratio only applies to those foreign employees who are permitted to reside in Mongolia under "HG" type visas.
Notable changes for the 2013 year are:
• the agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting sector has been removed in its entirety;
• there have been changes to the ratios for some sectors such as (i) support activities for mining (reduced from 25 per cent into 20 per cent in some cases), (ii) provision of accommodation services (some percentage increases), (iii) human health activities (1 per cent fluctuations depending on entity size), (iv) other personal service activities (1 per cent fluctuations depending on entity size), (v) food and beverage service activities (now 10 per cent for all entities) and (vi) wholesale and retail trade and repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles sector (now 20 per cent for all entities up from 5-10 per cent).
• a new category has been created for "representative offices of foreign legal entities and authorized foreign nongovernmental organizations operating in the humanitarian sector".
For sectors that are not specified in the ratio, up to 5 per cent of the employees can be foreigners. If the total number of local employees is less than 20, only one foreigner as an HG visa will be permitted in the workforce.
Further, the Government resolution instructs the Minister of Health to arrange for health screenings of foreign workers. This was not a requirement previously. No details were included in the Government resolution as to what this will entail, the frequency of the screenings or otherwise.
Please see page 2 the numbers/percentages for the main industries:
COAL MONGOLIA 2013, INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE AND EXHIBITION IN ULAANBAATAR ON FEBRUARY 21-22, 2013
February 19 (InfoMongolia) Coal Mongolia 2013, the Third International Conference and Exhibition for coal investors has been jointly organized by the Ministry of Mining of Mongolia at the "SS" Convention Center, Ulaanbaatar on February 21-22, 2013.
According to the upcoming event, Director of the Department of Strategy Policy and Planning affiliated the Ministry of Mining Ch.Otgochuluu, Director of the Coal Research Division affiliated the Mineral Resource Authority B.Altsukh and Secretary of the Conference Organizing Committee B.Altanshagai have called a press conference regarding the preparation works on February 18, 2013.
The primary objective of this event is to bring International Investors into the coal sector of Mongolia, to introduce the most advanced, environmentally friendly technologies in coal mining sector, and to create a mutually beneficial partnership that will strengthen Mongolia's competitiveness in Asian region. The third event is to be held distinct from previous ones, in which new policy on coal being implemented by new government will be introduced to foreign investors, and newly amended bill on Mineral Resources will be discussed openly, where authorities from Canada, China, Japan, Russia and United States, and some resident Ambassadors in Mongolia are also attend the meeting. Last year about 1,000 delegates from 300 companies from around 20 countries attended the conference and 60 companies had participated in the expo.
Also, during the event some training and seminar with the new advanced technology in coal industry will be organizing, and holding a competition among journalists regarding an article on issues in coal industry. In addition, on February 23, there will be an introduction tour to the biggest coal mines in Mongolia, to "Ukhaa Khudag" and to "Erdenes Tavan Tolgoi". As part of the tradition, Person of the Year, Best Miner, Best Export Supply Company, Best Local Supply Company and Best Exploratory Company will be selected and bestowed.
Mining in Mongolia
Mongolia's mining sector has recently celebrated its 90th anniversary. These 90 years have seen Mongolia and its mining sector rise above challenges, turn into a vibrant democracy and an integral part of the world's mines and minerals sector. At year-end 2012, the mining sector was responsible for 18.6 percent of GDP, 67 percent of total output, and 87.7 percent of total exports of the country.
The coal sector of Mongolia is distinguished by being the pioneer in the development of geological and mining industry in Mongolia. Mongolia's current reserve estimates stand at 173.3 billion tons today, placing it among the top resource-rich countries. This strong resource base of the country serves as a solid basis for Mongolian coal sector's competitive position on the international market place. Mongolia produced 31.1 million tons of coal in 2012, of which 20.5 million were exported generating 828.5 billion MNT in budget revenues.
First and Second Event Results for Coal Mongolia International Conference and Exhibition held in Ulaanbaatar, 2011 and 2012:
Savings Insurance Corporation to be established
February 19 (Business-Mongolia.com) Mongolian parliament passed a Savings Insurance Law on the 10th January, 2013. Within the framework of the new law, a task force with representatives from Ministry of Finance and the Mongol Bank has been established to set up a Savings Insurance Corporation in Mongolia. The key objective of this new organization will be to insure the money saved by citizens in the commercial banks.
In accordance with the savings insurance law, savings no more than MNT 20 Million will be protected from potential risks. In other words, in case a bank goes bankrupt, people who had savings less than MNT 20 Million would be entitled to receive a reimbursement from the Savings insurance corporation.
99% of the individual holders of the savings at Mongolian banks maintain savings at or below MNT 20 Million. Therefore, the law states that the maximum amount of money a client can be claim will be MNT 20 Million.
It has been decided by Ministry of Finance and Mongol Bank that MNT 50 Billion will be allocated to the new corporation. Also, it is expected that it will receive approximately MNT 100 Billion from the commercial banks as insurance fee, in accordance with the law.
300 Mwt thermal plant to be built in Ulaanbaatar
February 18 (Business-Mongolia.com) The current heat production capacity in Ulaanbaatar will not meet the demand that will peak in -the winter of 2013/2014 according the government estimations. It means that the supply of the heat in the city will be in a serious shortage.
A Cabinet meeting of the Mongolian government was held on 16 January, 2013. The Cabinet made a decision to build a thermal power station with a production capacity of 300 MWt in the eastern part of Ulaanbaatar city, namely the 8th Horoo in Bayanzurkh District. The new power station station would be constructed in basing on the US-15, an outdated heat plant.
The government will make an agreement with a selected contractor with 'turn-key' condition. Energy Minister M.Sonimpil was tasked to commission the first furnace of the plant along the required heat distribution line by December this year.
KFC soaks up Mongolia's middle-class gravy
February 18 (Terrence Edwards via bne) There's nothing so tired as the chicken-or-the-egg argument, but if next year a slew of foreign restaurants begin opening in Mongolia's capital, investors might be asking whether it was the economy or the chicken restaurant.
Mongolia is falling in the footsteps of the nation that is also it's largest trading partner, China, who's first western food chain was Yum! Brands' KFC in 1987. Now Tavan Bogd Group, one of Mongolia's largest holding companies, has attained the rights to develop and operate the restaurant famed for its buckets o' chicken. Last year it announced four would open up in the Mongolian capital Ulaanbaatar, with the first to open in mid-2013.
The chicken franchise will try to tap into Mongolia's emerging middle class that has grown out of a blossoming mining industry. The remote north Central Asian country saw the launch of one of the world's largest coal mines in 2011 and the continued development of one of the world's largest mines for copper. The latter, the Oyu Tolgoi copper-gold project, is due to begin operations in June this year and its output is projected to comprise a third of the economy.
Oyu Tolgoi in particular has driven up Mongolian wages, giving people the ability to spend more on food, clothing and housing. According to the World Bank, the country's per-capita GDP grew 61% from $2,250 in 2010 to $3,623 in October 2012. Matt Jones, an analyst at Mongolian Investment Capital Corporation (MICC), says: "Bullet points would be the large youth population – youth are generally more knowledgeable and disposed towards import goods like imported clothing, Western foods, and the like. And there's the high growth rate and all the wealth that comes from the mining sector."
Jones says his firm has looked to partner with franchises such as Papa John's and Dominoes to tap into that prized demographic.
Meat in the middle
Mongolian diets are heavy in meat, with beef and mutton being two particular favourites of the locals. Though people in the countryside live more traditional lives centered around the five customary meats from cows, goats, sheep, and even horse and camel, chicken imported from China is now easily available and consumed widely in the city. As Western culture continues to spread and the middle class grows, Tavan Bogd and Yum! are betting that this fast-food chain will perform as strongly here as it has done in China where the company experienced 3% same-stores growth in the fourth quarter despite an 8% decline following bad press on the company's chicken supply, and 15% growth in sales over the five-year period between 2007 and 2011.
Drawing in US franchises to Mongolia such as KFC or McDonald's has long been a goal for companies. Though its rapidly growing youth demographic is interested in western brands and products, multinationals have been hesitant to open up shop.
US franchises have opened in Mongolia before, but with varying degrees of success. Though BD's Mongolian Grill still caters heavily to the tourist crowd during summer months, Kenny Roger's Roasters' – who would have been KFC's main competitor – has long been closed. The fact that KFC is willing to take this risk now is acknowledgement of the rapid transformation taking place in the country.
The crux for franchises in Mongolia has been the ability to deliver the consistency one expects from these restaurants and ensuring quality control in such a far-flung and isolated destination. The challenges of dealing with only a single rail line from China that leads to Ulaanbaatar and the absence of other logistical infrastructure raises the cost of necessary ingredients and drives the price away from the low costs that western consumers are familiar with.
Though Mongolia has 14 heads of cattle for every person, meat producer Just Agro is the only one that has facilities that comply with standards for export. Russia put a ban on Mongolian meats due to outbreaks of animal illnesses such as foot and mouth disease. That ban was lifted in November 2011 and the Mongolian government is interested in seeking out ways to sell its meat as a high-quality specialty project. "I'm very sceptical that chain restaurants will be able to provide the same proportionate low cost service they can in the US in these developing markets due to ingredient scarcity," says Jones, whose company has still yet to find a franchise interested in coming to Mongolia. "In order to obtain high-quality and consistent products, you have to pay a higher price relative to the rest of the market."
Jones says the biggest obstacle is finding the right partner who is willing to take the plunge and invest in a country that is still unproven and with demographics that nobody knows very much about. In this instance, KFC is the "first-mover" that stands to either lose and pack up or lead a trend and have the best chance of dominating the market for some time.
Sudan Bombs South Ahead Of Mongolia President's Visit
February 18 (Chimpreports.com) Mongolian President, Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj arrived in Juba on Friday despite plans to threaten his visit to the areas in which Mongolian peacekeeping troops operate in South Sudan.
On Thursday at around 4pm, Sudan Armed Forces bombed Jau area, northern part of Unity state, a place where the majority of the Mongolian peacekeeping troops serving under UNMISS are based.
Briefing the press at the airport on Friday, Government spokesperson, Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin said the President was in the country to inspect its troops serving under United Nations Mission in South Sudan areas of Rumbek, Lakes state and Bentiu of Unity state.
Dr. Benjamin said although Khartoum's aim was to scare the Mongolian President from visiting Bentiu, the President would visit because he is for the peace of Sudan and South Sudan.
Interestingly, Elbegdorj later visited areas in which his troops are maintaining peace.
Dr. Benjamin condemned the activities carried by the Khartoum government on the territories of South Sudan saying it is belligerent since there is a cooperation agreement between the two states.
He as well disclosed that the Mongolian President would be accompanied by deputy defense minister and a team from the RSS Presidency.
Sources said there are over 800 Mongolian peacekeepers in South Sudan.
Based on a report from the UN Representative of the Secretary General, Hilde Johnson, Mongolian troops are high quality and duty bearer troops that don't hesitate being sent to hotspots.
Rwanda also contributes to peacekeeping operations in Darfur.
Mongolian president visits peacekeeping forces in South Sudan – BENTIU, February 17
Ranking Corruption in Mongolia
February 4 (The Mongolist) Recent news about executives at Mongolian Airlines (MIAT) being detained on embezzlement charges1 and my own recent post on accountability in the Gobi has made me think about the way corruption is usually discussed in the Mongolian context. Bribery is the form of corruption that I most often notice in the media, and a quick check of the Google News Archive shows the search terms "bribery," "money laundering," "abuse of power," and "embezzlement" along with "Mongolia" producing 372, 287, 196, and 95 articles, respectively.2 Not exactly incontrovertible proof, but it illustrates the point that bribery gets a fair bit of coverage relative to arguably more pernicious forms of corruption, in particular embezzlement. Bribery's elevated position in the discussion strikes me as puzzling, because it seems like such a pedestrian and passe crime in a booming, speculative economy and weak regulatory environment like Mongolia's. There is surely far more opportunity for those in positions of authority to embezzle funds from government and business organizations alike with a lot less effort than demanding bribes. This is not to suggest that bribery doesn't occur or that there isn't an unacceptable amount of it but rather that it is not necessarily Mongolia's most significant corruption problem. The Asia Foundation (TAF) conducted a "Benchmarking Survey on Corruption" from 2006 to 2010 that produced some interesting data regarding corruption at the household level which provides some evidence to support this argument.
TAF described the purpose of the benchmarking survey as an attempt to statistically measure levels of bribery and abuse of power in order to contribute another perspective on the issue from what TAF described as less statistically rigorous measures such as Transparency International's Corruption Index.3 Each survey was conducted with a random sample of 600 to over 1,000 households in Ulaanbaatar and various provinces, producing statistics with measurable levels of error (i.e. extrapolation to the wider population was possible). In each survey a series of questions was asked about perceptions of corruption and actual incidences in which households experienced some form of bribery. The surveys consistently demonstrated that the majority of respondents were quite able to identify different forms of corruption, even conflict-of-interest, and the level of bribe-paying and bribe-taking (both identified as crimes by respondents) at the household level was on a steady decline.
Graph 1 shows the percentage of households in each survey which responded that a member of the household had paid at least one bribe in the previous three months. In addition, the types of bribes paid as a proportion of the bribe-paying households are overlaid. Some households may have paid multiple bribes for multiple reasons, so these proportions do not add up to one hundred percent. Bribe-paying at the household level was significantly high, but it was lower than most discussions on the topic might imply. By the last survey, in fact, only 13 percent of households had paid bribes in the previous three months, and the steady decline seems to have been almost entirely attributable to a decline in people paying for "services they were entitled to" as opposed to the other two types of bribes which remained proportionally stable over the survey period. This category of bribe is better understood when you consider the top three professions that households paid bribes to in order of average frequency: doctors, administrative clerks, and teachers. The survey does not differentiate between someone paying a bribe to receive an entitled service that was outright denied or someone paying a bribe to expedite access to a service (i.e. to jump queue), but I am inclined to think the latter is more often the case given the professions listed and my own personal experiences.
In the seven years I have lived in Mongolia I personally have never found myself in a situation where I was denied a service I was legally entitled to and I have never detected a situation in which I was being solicited for a bribe to receive those services. I have found myself in plenty of situations in which things have progressed much slower than I would have preferred and the perceived incompetence of the person or agency I was dealing with could easily be construed as dodgy, but I cannot think of a single incident in which the process, although slow, did not unfold exactly the way the agencies' own public rules stated it should.
I do recall a situation, however, in which an American acquaintance of mine once surprised me by saying he had paid a bribe to receive a marriage license for him and his Mongolian wife. I asked him to explain the details. He explained that he went to the government office to apply for the license and the clerk informed him to come back on Thursday to pick it up. It was Tuesday, and he wanted it that day, so he paid the clerk one hundred dollars to complete the license immediately. Although in a perfect world the clerk would have turned down the offer or, better yet, the agency would have had an official expedited service option, this acquaintance was almost entirely in the wrong and paid to have a service he was entitled to quicker but would have eventually received without the bribe.
There is an ethical subtlety there, and I suspect there is a lot of this going on in Mongolia. This form of "corruption" is not as worrisome as other forms of corruption, though, when you consider that much of it could be addressed by offering official expedited or preferential services and vigorously enforcing ethics rules within agencies. It is possible, in fact, that part of the reason for the decline in bribe-paying for entitled services over the survey period as seen in Graph 1 was due to the establishment of the Independent Authority Against Corruption (IAAC), creation of a hotline for people to report on corrupt practices, and subsequent convictions of high-ranking officials on corruption charges. Survey respondents recognized this form of bribery as a crime, and the existence of the IAAC and a sense that corruption laws might be growing some teeth may have provided a visible and real deterrent for petty bribery for the purpose of jumping queue.
Although there was still an unacceptably high level of bribery in 2010 when the last survey was conducted, it was much lower than one might expect and declining. The situation in Mongolia is far from perfect, but the recent spate of high-ranking government officials and businessmen, including former president N. Enkhbayar, being accused and convicted of bribery, abuse of power, and embezzlement,4 does provide hope that things will continue to improve. The strength of that hope, though, is dependent on the IAAC and the public at large keeping up with the far more pernicious and devastating crimes of abuse of power and embezzlement. Measures of household bribery levels are downright quaint in comparison to the kinds of corruption that are possible as billions of dollars continue to flow into unregulated and speculative investments in Mongolia's booming economy.
1. "Eight suspects in MIAT money laundering case," News.mn, http://english.news.mn/content/131940.shtml, January 24, 2013.
2. Search conducted on February 4, 2013 using the Google News Archive.
3. "Mongolia Corruption Benchmarking Survey", The Asia Foundation, http://asiafoundation.org/publications/pdf/105, pg. 1.
4. See also the conviction of mining permits administrator as an example at http://english.news.mn/content/132721.shtml.
THE FIRST INTERNATIONAL ROAD EXPO МONGOLIA 2013 IN ULAANBAATAR
February 18 (InfoMongolia) The Ministry of Road and Transportation of Mongolia, AODE Company and the Mongolian Road Association in association with Ulaanbaatar City Administration and Mongolian National Chamber of Commerce and Industry are hosting the first "International Road Expo Mongolia 2013" on Road Equipment Producers, Suppliers and Service Providers Exhibition and Conference to introduce advanced technologies and to explore Mongolian market to take place in Buyant-Ukhaa Sports Palace, Ulaanbaatar on March 06-07, 2013.
With mining well the underway, infrastructural development has become the second engine of growth in the Mongolian economy. There is large number of new projects in roads and railway to be implemented in the near future; particularly the Government of Mongolia has established a Road Development Plan for 2012-2016, connecting all major cities and towns to the capital city by paved road.
Capital city of Ulaanbaatar will be connected with all aimags' (provinces) major cities by 2016 by paved road of about 4,100 km, and 990 km highway connecting Altanbulag with Zamyn-Uud. In 2013, 1,300 km of paved road will be built to connect Ulaanbaatar with 6 major cities of Bayankhongor, Khuvsgul, Umngugovi, Dundgovi, Dornogovi, and Dornod aimags. The Government is spending over 300 million USD on this project.
Mongolian Government also has a plan of kick-off railway construction project this year and already approved to spend 400 million USD to the project. These projects will be financed from the 1.5 billion USD Government bonds which were issued in the international financial market in 2012.
Current situation of Mongolia's road network is underdeveloped. As of 2012, Mongolia had only just over 7,000 km of engineered roads, of which 3,500 km are paved and rest of them are gravel. There are only two paved road links to the Russian Federation, none to the People's Republic of China; as a result, most international trade is carried by railways. Mongolian Government is supporting national road construction companies and will give low-interest loan this year. It is obvious that Mongolian companies are going to buy a large number of road construction machineries and equipments this year. That is why the Ministry of Road and Transportation of Mongolia, AODE Company and the Mongolian Road Association are hosting the first "Road Expo Mongolia 2013" International Road Exhibition and Conference.
General Police Department confirms their website was hacked
February 19 (news.mn) The General Department of Police website was hacked on February 15th according to local press reports.
Our journalist spoke to the press agent of the General Department of Police, T.Jargalsaikhan.
-Was the website of the General Department of Police hacked?
-The content control system for our website that uploads data, links with the database and has been operational for 5 years since 2008. A web developer team for the content control system temporally halted security and system restoration in order to launch a new system version.
But the website was hacked during the transfer to a new system version.
-Can you give more details about who and why the website was hacked?
-We started an investigation to find out who and where the website was hacked.
-Is there a possibility that some secret level information was leaked?
-The website of the General Department of Police post information related to activities of the Department such as notices, warnings, advice, selections, announcements and news but no secret level documents.
The website did not contain any private or company information so there is no risk of private data leaks.
-When will the website be restored?
-We have delivered a notice of the hacking to the related organizations. IT engineers are currently working on the case.
-What punishments would hackers face?
-Hackers will face punishment for crimes against cyber security.
If a cyber criminal is determined guilty he or she will be given fines worth 100-250 times their minimum wage or sentenced to between 3-6 months in jail. Or if the crime is serious the sentence will be between 2-5 years jail.
MONGOLIA GETS NOD TO SET UP CAMP IN ANTARCTICA
February 19 (InfoMongolia) It was previously informed that Professor and Leader of Mongolia's Antarctica Research Association Lkhamsuren DUGERJAV headed for Antarctica in December of 2012, and by accomplishing his tour, meanwhile for the first time hoisted the Flag of Mongolia at the Zero point of Antarctica, L.Dugerjav returned the national flag to the Prime Minister N.Altankhuyag in the Government House on February 19, 2013.
In the scope of his visit to the Antarctica, L.Dugerjav conducted a research expedition across the continent, besides held negotiations with authorities to accede Mongolia into the Antarctic Treaty, moreover Mongolia was authorized to establish its own camp (on the field of 10 x 20 meters) on Livingston Island, which is located in the South Shetland Islands at the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula, next to Bulgarian camp.
The Treaty parties meet each year at the Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting and this year is scheduled within March 15, prior the Government of Mongolia has to approve within its Cabinet meeting and by entering into Antarctic Treaty, Mongolia will be the 48th member state of the Antarctic Treaty.
Premier N.Altankhuyag emphasized that Professor L.Dugerjav contributes great significance into the development of Antarctica Research and made big investment for the people of Mongolia by negotiating to establish its own camp on Livingston Island, Antarctica.
"Mogi" Munkhdul Badral
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