Wednesday, May 7, 2014

[MNT breaches 1'800 for the first time, ₮1.6T mortgages now at 8%, and 26% of Mongolians use Facebook]

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Wednesday, May 7, 2014

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Overseas Market

Announcement made after Tuesday close. SGQ closed flat at C$0.63

SouthGobi Resources Announces Results of Annual Meeting of Shareholders and Resignations of Directors

HONG KONG, CHINA--(Marketwired - May 6, 2014) - SouthGobi Resources Ltd. (TSX:SGQ)(HKSE:1878) (the "Company" or "SouthGobi") announced today the results of the Annual Meeting of shareholders held in Vancouver, Canada on May 6, 2014.

The majority of shareholders voted in favour of all resolutions at the meeting as set out in the Company's Management Proxy Circular dated March 24, 2014 namely:

·         Election of Bold Baatar, Andre Deepwell, W. Gordon Lancaster, Pierre Lebel, Kay Priestly, Kelly Sanders and K. Ross Tromans as directors of the Company.

·         Appointment of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP as auditors of the Company.

·         Fixing the number of directors to be elected at the Annual Meeting of Shareholders at seven.

The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong has granted SouthGobi a waiver from Listing Rule 13.39(4) which requires that any vote of shareholders at a general meeting must be taken by poll. Therefore this notice does not contain the specific information set out in Listing Rule 13.39(5).


The board of directors (the "Board") of the Company hereby announces that to pursue other interests, Mr. Lindsay Dove resigned as a non-executive director, chairman of the Mergers and Acquisitions Committee, a member of Compensation & Benefits Committee and a member of Health, Environment, Safety and Social Responsibility Committee; and Mr. Sean Hinton resigned as the Deputy Chairman, a non-executive director and a member of Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee with effect from the conclusion of the Annual Meeting of shareholder.

Mr. Dove and Mr. Hinton have each confirmed that they have no disagreement with the Board and there is no matter relating to their resignation that needs to be brought to the attention of the shareholders of the Company.

The Board takes this opportunity to express its sincere gratitude to Messrs. Dove and Hinton for their valuable contributions to the Company.

Link to release


Announcement made after Tuesday close. CG closed -0.36% to C$5.53

Centerra Gold 2014 First Quarter Results

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - May 6, 2014) - Centerra Gold Inc. (TSX:CG) -

To view Management's Discussion and Analysis and the Financial Statements and Notes for the three-months ended March 31, 2014, please visit the following link:

Centerra Gold Inc. (TSX:CG) today reported net earnings for the first quarter of 2014 of $2.1 million or $0.01 per common share (basic), compared to $51.4 million or $0.22 per common share (basic) in the comparative quarter of 2013. The decrease in earnings reflects lower average realized gold price1, increased depreciation, depletion and amortization (DD&A) at Kumtor and lower ounces sold in 2014.

2014 First Quarter Highlights

·         Announced positive Öksüt Preliminary Economic Assessment (PEA), executive summary available on the Company's website.

·         Commenced Öksüt feasibility study.

·         Produced 116,669 ounces of gold in the quarter, including 102,933 ounces at Kumtor and 13,736 ounces at Boroo, compared to 115,220 ounces in the same period in 2013.

·         Cash provided by operations increased to $101.6 million compared to $92.0 million in the first quarter of 2013.

·         All-in sustaining costs per ounce sold(1) of $1,109, which excludes revenue-based tax in the Kyrgyz Republic, compared to $1,068 in the same period in 2013.

·         Reported all-in costs per ounce sold1, which excludes revenue-based tax in the Kyrgyz Republic and income taxes, for the quarter of $1,158 compared to $1,278 for the first quarter of 2013.

·         Kyrgyz Parliament adopted a resolution on the Kumtor restructuring as described in the previously announced Heads of Agreement (HOA).


At the Boroo mine in the first quarter of 2014, gold production was 13,736 ounces, compared to 25,602 ounces in the same period of 2013. The lower gold production results mainly from processing lower grade ore through the mill and having lower tonnage of ore under leach in the first quarter of 2014. The mill head grade averaged 0.66 g/t with a recovery of 61.3% in the first quarter of 2014, compared to 1.54 g/t with a recovery of 54% in the same period of 2013. Additionally, fewer ounces were poured from the heap leach operation (6,723 ounces vs. 10,372 ounces) due to having fewer tonnes placed under primary leach in the first quarter of 2014.

All-in sustaining costs per ounce sold1 were $1,001 in the first quarter of 2014 compared to $665 in the comparative quarter of 2013. The increase in all-in sustaining costs1 is primarily due to the 54% decrease in ounces sold at Boroo year-over-year, partially offset by lower adjusted operating costsand lower sustaining capital1 expenditures.

All-in costs per ounce sold1, which excludes income taxes, were $1,001 in the first quarter of 2014 compared to $665 in the same quarter of 2013 reflecting the lower production and resulting reduction in gold sales which was partially offset by lower adjusted operating costs1 and lower sustaining capital1 expenditures.

During the first quarter of 2014 exploration expenditures in Mongolia decreased to $0.4 million from $1.0 million in the same period in 2013. At the ATO property in Mongolia the drilling program is expected to start in the second quarter of 2014.

The Gatsuurt project remained under care and maintenance in the first quarter of 2014 due to continued delays in permitting resulting from the Water and Forest Law which prohibits mining and exploration activities in water basin and forested areas. The Company continued discussions with the Mongolian Government regarding the Gatsuurt project during the first quarter. The Company expects that the Mongolian Parliament will consider the designation of Gatsuurt as a strategic deposit in the first half of 2014. If Parliament ultimately approves this designation, it would have the effect of excluding Gatsuurt from the application of the Mongolian Water and Forest Law and would allow Mongolia to acquire up to a 34% interest in Gatsuurt. The terms of such participation would be subject to further negotiations with the Government. See "Other Corporate Developments- Mongolia".



Centerra continues to be in discussions with the Mongolian Government regarding the development of the Gatsuurt property. Centerra remains reasonably confident that the economic and development benefits resulting from its exploration and development activities will ultimately result in the Mongolian Water and Forest Law having a limited impact on the Gatsuurt project, in particular, and other of the Company's Mongolian activities, including the ATO deposit. As previously disclosed, the Mongolian Water and Forest Law prohibits mineral prospecting, exploration and mining in water basins and forestry areas in Mongolia.

During meetings with representatives of the Mongolian Government, Centerra was advised that the Mongolian Government is currently developing a list of deposits, which will include Gatsuurt, to be submitted to the Mongolian Parliament for consideration as "strategic deposits". Centerra expects that Parliament and/or any relevant committees of Parliament will consider this matter further in the first half of 2014. If the Mongolian Parliament ultimately approves this designation, it would have the effect of excluding the Gatsuurt deposit from the application of the Mongolian Water and Forest Law and would allow the Government of Mongolia to acquire up to a 34% interest in Gatsuurt. The terms of any such participation would be subject to negotiations with the Mongolian Government.

There can be no assurance, however, that the Water and Forest Law will not have a material impact on Centerra's Mongolian operations. Unless the Water and Forest Law is repealed or amended such that the law no longer applies to the Gatsuurt project or Gatsuurt is designated by the Parliament of Mongolia as a "mineral deposit of strategic importance" that is exempt from the Water and Forest Law, mineral reserves at Gatsuurt may have to be reclassified as mineral resources or eliminated entirely and the Company may be required to write-off approximately $37 million related to the investment in Gatsuurt and approximately $39 million of costs that remain capitalized for the Boroo mill facility and other surface structures. These amounts represent the capitalized costs at March 31, 2014 associated with its investment in Gatsuurt and Boroo (where Gatsuurt ore is planned to be milled).

Link to release


Centerra Gold Announces Quarterly Dividend of Cdn$0.04 Per Share

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - May 6, 2014) - Centerra Gold Inc. (TSX:CG) announced today its Board of Directors has authorized a dividend of Cdn$0.04 per common share (approximately US$8.7 million at the current exchange rate). The dividend of Cdn$0.04 per common share is payable on June 5, 2014 to shareholders of record on May 22, 2014. The ex-dividend date will be May 20, 2014.

The dividend is an eligible dividend for Canadian income tax purposes.

In accordance with Centerra's dividend policy, the timing and quantum of dividends are to be determined by the Board of Directors from time to time based on, among other things, the Company's operating results, cash flow and financial conditions, Centerra's current and anticipated capital requirements, and general business conditions. While Centerra currently intends to pay quarterly dividends to its shareholders, there can be no assurances in this regard.

Link to release

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Local Market

MSE News for May 6: Top 20 -0.85%, Turnover 10.1 Million

Ulaanbaatar, May 6 (MONTSAME) At the Stock Exchange trades held Tuesday, a total of 2,987 shares of 16 JSCs were traded costing MNT 10 million 080 thousand and 059.00.

"Khokh gan" /2,000 units/, "APU" /269 units/, "Gobi" /267 units/, "Material impex" /154 units/ and "State Department Store" /80 units/ were the most actively traded in terms of trading volume, in terms of trading value--"Bayangol hotel" (MNT two million and 448 thousand), "Material impex" (MNT two million 246 thousand and 970), "Gobi" (MNT one million 933 thousand and 475), "APU" (MNT 995 thousand and 300) and "Gazar suljmel" (MNT 899 thousand and 520).

The total market capitalization was set at MNT one trillion 582 billion 094 million 280 thousand and 233. The Index of Top-20 JSCs was 15,412.96, decreasing by MNT 131.72 or 0.85% against the previous day.

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BoM MNT Rates: May 6 Close





































May MNT Chart:


Link to rates


BoM FX auction: US$20.2 million sold at 1,799.5, CNY26 million at 287.51, $46.5 million MNT swap offers accepted

May 6 (Bank of Mongolia) On the Foreign Exchange Auction held on May 6th, 2014 the BOM has received from local commercial banks bid offers for USD and CN. The BOM has sold 20.2 million USD as closing rate of MNT 1,799.50 and 26 million CNY at closing rate of MNT 287.51.

On May 6th, 2014, The BOM has received MNT Swap agreement offer in equivalent to 46.5 million USD from local commercial banks and accepted the offer.

See also:

·         FX Auction Statistics

Link to release


8% Mortgage Program Update: ₮520.1 Billion Refinanced, ₮1.05 Trillion Newly Issued

May 6 (Cover Mongolia) As of May 5, 520.1 billion (₮518.7 billion as of April 28) existing mortgages of 18,212 citizens (18,166 as of April 28) were refinanced at 8% out of 847.2 billion (846.3 billion as of April 28) worth requests.

Also, 1,049.8 billion (₮1,025.8 billion as of April 28) new mortgages of 18,693 citizens (18,339 citizens as of April 28) were issued at new rates out of 1 trillion (₮1 trillion as of April 28) worth requests.

Link to release (in Mongolian)                                                                                                                                    

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Independent MPs Seek Constitutional Amendment to Restrict "Double Deel"

Ulaanbaatar, May 6 (MONTSAME) Independent MPs -S.Ganbaatar, Ts.Davaasuren and Kh.Bolorchuluun-, along with G.Uyanga MP submitted a draft bill to amend the Constitution to the Government's Cabinet on Monday.

The amendments are expected to cohere up with a proposed change in the law on the Government that failed at a parliament final voting a few days ago. That draft bill amending the law on the Government (Cabinet) was to prohibit simultaneous holding of offices in the cabinet and the parliament in order to support separation of powers. Submitted by the President of Mongolia Ts.Elbegdorj, the draft bill was foreseeing resignation of nearly two third of current ministers in the Cabinet who simultaneously hold offices in the State Great Khural (parliament). During that voting, independent MPs Ts.Davaasuren and Kh.Bolorchuluun did not support the draft bill, suggesting making relevant amendments into the Constitution of Mongolia to avoid a conflict in legislation, ahead of choosing classic principles of governance.

This time, the independent MPs are proposing to amend seven articles that were added to the Constitution in 2000, including that one stating 'a member of parliament shall not hold an office except for an office of a Prime Minister and a Government member'. The Constitutional Court proved in 2000 the above article breaches relevant laws, but it has still been in force.

Today, there are 16 ministries in Mongolia, where 14 ministers hold dual offices of a minister and a member of parliament. Added to these ministers, the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister and the Cabinet Minister hold offices of parliament members the same time.

Link to article


DP Faction Reports on Meeting

Ulaanbaatar, May 6 (MONTSAME) At its meeting on Monday, the Democratic Party's (DP) faction at parliament discussed several issues, and the faction head D.Erdenebat and other party's authorities gave a report on the matters discussed at the meeting.

The DP faction meeting has prolonged due to submitting of several economically-important draft laws to parliament, and the faction meeting on Monday discussed some vital issues, Erdenebat said.

The faction of the Mongolian People's Party (MPP) has criticized an ineffective and uncontrolled spending of capitals of the "Chinggis" bonds. Regarding this matter, the DP faction affirmed that the "Chinggis" bonds exploitation must be transparent, and its members agreed with a position against spending of the money for useless and widespread welfare therefore they considered the Standing committees on economy and on budget should set up a working group for examining the "Chinggis" bonds exploitation, Erdenebat said.

DP faction members heard a report of the first discussion over the draft law on minerals, and then consolidated their position for arranging the geological and exploration works and for promoting investments, but they considered as necessity to see again a proposals from MPs about avoiding ambiguous clauses in the bill. The most important thing is that the law must be very understandable to people and investors, the DP faction members said.

Besides these matters, the DP faction considered a draft law on monitoring, a reform in the state policy on education, and a matter of new railways. The faction also discussed a request of Kh.Battulga, the Minister of Industry and Agriculture on resigning from the post, Erdenebat said.   

Link to article


Press freedom and the rights of journalists

May 7 (UB Post) Requiring sources to be transparent, supervising journalists' articles, prohibiting articles from being published, and putting pressure on journalists are just some of the issues that negatively impact journalists' rights and press freedom. This is an issue that touches all countries around the world. In connection with this issue, in 1993 the United Nations General Assembly announced the recognition of May 3rd as World Press Freedom Day. The main reason for celebrating this day is to end the persecution of the press and journalists, and to inform the public that these injustices encroaching on freedom are still active in society. Moreover, this day is a reminder of the value of press freedom and recognizing the ethical standards that governments and press organization officials should be held to.

For this year's World Press Freedom Day, the UNESCO National Commission, Globe International Center and the Confederation of Mongolian Journalists organized a round table meeting. A variety of press organizations and departments attended the meeting and discussed the Mongolian press sector in depth. They all agreed on one thing: the need to pass a law on press freedom.

The 2014 World Press Freedom Index covered 180 countries and Mongolia was ranked 88th as a result of talking about and taking action on many things related to press freedom. Compared to the previous year, Mongolia has made progress. Last year, Mongolia ranked 99th. Finland tops the index for the fourth year and the last position is held by Eritrea. When the index was published, specialists and researchers spoke about press freedom and its ongoing challenges.

We spoke with Mongolia's round table delegates about these issues.

D. Munkhburen, lawyer with Globe International Center

Approximately 670 journalists lost their lives in the past two decades. Nine of the ten detained journalists have not been sentenced. There is an attitude that this thing has become normal in our society. We should pay attention to it. Behind all these things, press freedom and the rights of journalists are being violated. We need a really good law that ensures our rights.

Kh.Battushig, General Secretary of the Confederation of Mongolian Journalists

We are discussing development trends after 2015. We are mostly working to improve the skills of journalists. We are announcing the celebration of World Press Freedom Day not only one day, but as a month long campaign. Therefore, cooperating with the National Emergency Management Agency, we are working on journalists' security.

Andrea Cairola, Communications and Information Advisor, UNESCO Beijing

In 2013, UNESCO appealed for attention to the following program "For a Brighter Future, Press Freedom: Intensifying the development program". Now we are facing a very important moment to define a new goal. Today, we are discussing how we will implement the things we have talked about.

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DBM-Sponsored Loans to "Industrialization" Projects to Carry No More Than 9% Interest

May 7 (UB Post) The government's monthly consultation meeting "Let's Resolve with Innovation" was organized under the theme "Let's Create in Mongolia: Project to replace imports and increase exports" with the presence of authorities from the Development Bank, authorities from commercial banks, owners of projects, and representatives of relevant agencies and ministries.

New Government of Changes declared 2014 the Year of Industrialization and reached a decision to spend one trillion MNT on developing industrialization, announcing the selection of projects to replace imports and promote exports under the initiative "Let's Create in Mongolia". At the meeting, Prime Minister N.Altankhuyag emphasized that the projects should be launched soon and financed in May.

A loan or financing is being granted to qualified individuals and entities who submitted their projects to a commercial bank, and the banks deliver a request for financing to the Development Bank. The Development Bank established an agreement with 13 commercial banks. Some 888 projects which fulfilled standards and criteria in the first phase have been transferred to these banks and commercial banks have began research on the projects. Once their loan documents and materials are complete, a project is submitted to Development Bank within two weeks by the commercial banks. Loans will be granted in MNT for a term of five years and loan interest will not be higher than nine percent, reported CEO of Development Bank N.Munkhbat.

Projects which requested loans of two billion MNT or less are to be financed from an SME fund. There are a total of 579 projects which require such financing. The total loan amount for these projects reached 560 billion MNT. The fund will resolve and make decisions on the projects in accordance with its internal regulations and rules. Other projects will be supervised and transferred to the working group headed by the Prime Minister, and the government will make final decisions accordingly.

According to the CEO of Development Bank, the commercial banks will issue loans equivalent to two thirds of the total cost of the project and the executing entity of the project will be responsible for one third of the total cost.

Project developers and initiators made suggestions at the end of the meeting, offering that support is needed in importing raw materials to make products, and that information regarding what projects and businesses received loans should be made available to the public.

Minister of Economic Development N.Batbayar noted that financing will be granted without difficulty once selected projects meet the demands and criteria of commercial banks.

Prime Minister N.Altankhuyag gave duties to Development Bank to intensify the loan granting procedure and advised project owners to deliver their comments and requests regarding project election and loan granting issues to the government's "11 11" hotline.

Link to article


Mongolia Approves 3,467 Out of 6,333 Foreign Worker Requests in Mining

Ulaanbaatar, May 6 (MONTSAME) The Labor Ministry and the Employment Center inform that they have received employment requests to work in Mongolia's mining sector from 52 entities and 6,333 foreigners.

Thus far, national authorities have permitted 3,467 foreign nationals to work in mining firms operating in the nation, with 807 of them being employed in mining and geology and 2,660 in oil sector, says the Mining Ministry.

Earlier, the Government has set up a maximum margin of foreign nationals to be allowed to get employed in the country, considering that 20%-25% of workforce in minerals explorers and operators can be foreigners, while overwhelming 60%-75% of oil workers could consist of foreigners. (Mogi: perhaps it's time to tighten the quota in oil now)

Permitted foreign workforce percentages in sectors are set according to the possibility to provide staffers in that sector from Mongolian-nationals.

Link to article


Finance Ministry State Secretary Meets with President of Korea Investment Corporation in Seoul

Ulaanbaatar, May 6 (MONTSAME) On last Friday, the State Secretary of the Ministry of Finance Kh.Gantsogt met with Mr Hank Ahn, the president and CEO of the Korea Investment Corporation in Seoul city, South Korea.

At the meeting, Mr Gantsogt briefly spoke about work process of new structure establishment of finance in Mongolia and expressed willingness to run many activities such as to realize experience exchange program, to strengthen investment capacity between the two sides in frames of cooperation.

Link to article


Power Short Mongolia

May 6 (Mining Journal) Mongolia is short on energy, but long on potential, according to Philip Lam, senior banker for the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)'s power and energy team.

Speaking at last week's 2014 Mongolian Investment summit in London, he said Mongolia was at a crucial time in its economic development and a deficit in power could hit its growth potential. "Anyone that has been to Mongolia, you see CHPs [coal and heat power stations] from the airport. Those are all quite dated – ranging from 30-60 years old. They operate at 20-40% efficiency, whereas new[er] CHPs are running at 60%-70% efficiency. The central grid is 900MW, although only 70% of that is available at any one time," Lam said.

"This is all to say that Mongolia is at a really critical time in the development of the power sector. There are urgent capacity needs. There are lots of shortages existing – probably the worst in power and heat – and I would say urgent action [and investment] is needed."

The country had been getting by on expanding capacity at inefficient coal powered plants, which had "delayed the problem," he said, although the government was "very  aware" of present and future power shortages.

But while the country is struggling to keep the lights on there are many private investors waiting in the wings ready to invest in renewable energy in Mongolia. These investors need a commitment from the government to develop a sustainable and regulated industry, according to Lam.

"There is clearly private sector interest in the sector, Japanese investors and European investors that are really quite actively looking at projects. It's key that some of those projects get funded and get off the ground," he said. "A long term perspective on behalf of the government is really needed."

One project that highlighted the country's potential was the Salkhit wind farm, which the EBRD helped support with a US$47.5 million debt and equity finance package, Lam said. The project was connected to the grid in June of last year and started producing electricity around that time. "This sets the framework for future projects. I think it's key that it is seen as a success," he said.

But, should the country sort out its initial needs – Lam was realistic that not all of this initial power would come from renewable sources– there was potential for Mongolia to start exporting some of its renewable energy abroad.

He drew parallels with Georgia in Eastern Europe, which consumes a small amount of energy domestically with low energy prices, has been encouraging investors to build hydropower projects and export the energy. Private companies had benefitted from higher tariffs and prices from Turkey, situated just over the border after infrastructure was built by the government for export. Meanwhile, the government benefitted from the initial investment and at least some power staying within the country, he said.

"Mongolia is in a similar situation to Georgia. There are attractive prices and tariffs [abroad] and China, more than anything, needs to adapt a new approach to growth [in its power sector]." The export of power would not happen overnight, but "it certainly could happen if the right infrastructure is built [by the Mongolia government]," he said.

Link to article


Mongolian Drilling Association: An association that knows the drill

April 2014 (Worldfolio) Talking to United World, the Executive Director of the Mongolian Drilling Association (MDA) Professor Tseveenjav.J shares his thoughts on the importance of the drilling to a number of the country's key sectors as well the vital role the MDA for the industry

Professor, what do you find interesting about the country report we are conducting on Mongolia, and more specifically, relative to the drilling sector?

It is really nice because we are one world. Your company's name is United World, which is a truly perfect name, and really portrays that we are one people. As for drilling, this subject is really important for geology, mining, and others such as construction and energy supply. In Mongolia, we have had drilling activities since the 40s of last century. Firstly in Mongolia, we had water well drilling for agriculture and livestock. After that, since 1941, oil and gas drilling started and at the same time, Mongolian geology expansion and mining drilling started taking place. Now in Mongolia, we have more than 300 drilling organizations with about 1000 drilling racks. 

You mentioned the Mongolian mining sector. How do you think this report could contribute to major exposure of the Mongolian drilling sector? 

Drilling is one aspect in theory and another in aspect. Mineral exploration drilling, blast hole mining drilling and water well drilling are all included in the drilling aspects. All these types of drilling exist in Mongolia. Many drilling organizations in Mongolia are from the geology and mineral exploration sector. We also have many mining and drilling companies, such as Ochyr Undraa that do blast hole drilling. Water well drilling is very popular in Mongolia because Mongolian territory is vast yet there is not enough surface water except for Khuvsgul, Orkhon and Tuul lake. As a result, we need to drill in other territories to have ground water for agriculture, livestock, and people in the suburbs. I think that the Mongolian people and young generation are very competent and skilled. I'm very glad that drilling companies from Australia, Russia, China and other western companies are coming to Mongolia and our local companies are learning from them. Our young drillers are being trained. Now young Mongolian drillers work not only in Mongolia, but also in Australia, Armenia, Kazakhstan. Galbadrakh, who worked in Western Africa and Mauritania, got a drilling certificate. Also Dorj Ariunbold, who is my student, is working in Qatar and Altangerel Ganzorig, another student of mine, is working in Egypt. However, in winter, he came here as the political situation in Egypt was unstable. 

What are the some of the major challenges that the sector faces? 

I would like to say one thing. In Mongolia, we have really good drilling equipment from around the world. For example, Sandvik from Canada and Sharam, which cost more than 1 million USD, from USA, as well as Universal Drilling Rigs (UDR) from Australia, Russia, Japan, Korea and China. The main challenge is the drilling safety and environment aspects in Mongolia, because drilling operations are highly paid yet at the same time, tough to do. People need to work from 20 years to 45 years. After 45 years, you can be a consultant. It is the same around the world, Texas, USA and Russia. 

In terms of the natural resources that Mongolia has, what needs to be done in order for those resources to be more beneficial to the country?

Mongolia is geographically very well located, in central Asia between two countries. I think we need to exploit mineral resources and have a good legal framework set up by the government. Mineral resource laws and Petroleum laws are to be amended. Mineral Resource Law signed in 1997 was democratic and fair in terms of its aspects. The Government only needs to control and grant licenses. However, the Government shouldn't do any business. For example, in the case of OT, we don't need to have any shares. The revenue can be in taxes. And Mongolian people working for OT should have a high salary. Business freedom is necessary everywhere in the world. The government doesn't need to set any limits. 

You speak about the government and you also have the association you are the head of. Can you tell the readers what the exact role of the association is? 

The professional association works for a sector without any political influence. We support all the member organizations. Non-governmental organizations are essential in any country. The ministry of the country is cooperating with us. Of course, there is a government as well as monitoring. There are a number of other mining associations and I think, our drilling association works closest with the government. Our drilling association will work better in the future for the sector; otherwise it doesn't make sense for us to work for businesses, politics and money. Mongolian drillers and the drilling association take care of each other, locally and internationally. We have a memorandum of understanding with Russian, Chinese and Australian drilling organizations. I'm also a member of the Australian Industry Drilling Association. 

As for the Mongolian Drilling Association, can you tell us who the most representative members of the association are? 

First, our member fee is only 100 dollars per year. I am sometimes told to increase the membership fee. I don't like to increase it, as we can run our operations with this low fee from member companies. We are not paid either, whilst we have a sponsorship in case of any events which are Tanan Impex, Ordgeo, Ilgen, MUD (Mongolian Universal Drilling), Mongolian National Diamand Drillling company, owned by Mr.Banzragch, who was my graduate student. There are also joint ventures as well as foreign companies. A total of 300 Mongolian drilling organizations, of which 15 to 25 of them are joint ventures with Japanese, Russian, Korean or Chinese companies. 

As you already know, we have been here since September. And we have been working together with the National Mining Association. We interviewed the Vice Minister of Mining and various international mining companies that operate in Mongolia. However, for this report, we want to portray "100 percent Mongolian" companies. And everyone knows about ETT and OT and this is not necessarily what we are interested in. So, can you tell us some examples of those 100 percent national companies that are doing well given the current situation in the sector? 

Those companies are Tanan Impex, Ordgio, Ilgen and Mongolian National Diamond Drilling, which are all Mongolian companies. There is also a company called MUD (Mongolian Universal Drilling). These companies finance their operations with their own resources. 

Do you think these companies would be interested in partnerships or exposure in terms of technology, human capacity, and monetary investments from the United States? 

I think there definitely is. Regarding the US, soon Mongolian drillers will start executing oil drilling, first in the US, Russia and China. We now have only the Petroleum Law and Production Sharing Contract, which is not sufficient for Mongolia. Chinese companies, CNBC and Dustch Oil are cooperating with Mongolian companies. Our members prefer to participate in oil drilling, which is very beneficial to them. However, the Mongolian government policy and Petroleum Law of Mongolia shall be amended. Everywhere in the World, operational freedom is very important. Our drilling organizations need to have some partnerships or cooperation and be introduced to the API standard (American Petroleum Institute Standard Drilling), which includes financial support and operational experience. China is now a member of the World Trade Organization because previously, I visited many equipment companies in China to support the WTO.

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Korea's Chung Ang University Hospital to Train Songinokhairkhan District Health Center Doctors

Ulaanbaatar, May 6 (MONTSAME) The Health Center of the UB city's Songinokhairkhan district will cooperate with Chung Ang University Hospital of South Korea, this year.

In frames of the cooperation, the sides intend to organize specialized training for doctors with aims to improve professional skill, and to study experience on medical assistance and service from high-developed countries.

As supposed, a total of 50 doctors of district's medical center will be involved in this 5-day training in South Korea within this year.

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Ambassador of Mongolia to Canada R. Altangerel Presents Letter of Credence to Governor General David Johnston

May 6 ( Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Mongolia to Canada with residency in Ottawa Mr. Radnaabazar ALTANGEREL has presented a Letter of Credence to the Governor General of Canada, His Excellency the Right Honourable David Lloyd Johnston on May 05, 2014.

Following the credential handing ceremony held in Rideau Hall, newly accredited Ambassador R.Altangerel conveyed warm greetings of the state head of Mongolia to His Excellency David Johnston, where parties were satisfied with broadening partnership on Mongolia-Canada relations in political and economic spheres, afterwards new envoy pledged to take every efforts to foster traditional friendly comprehensive partnership relations and cooperation between the two countries.

Congratulating new Ambassador on taking his office, the Governor General of Canada D.Johnston mentioned his first state visit to Mongolia conducted in 2013 and expressed his satisfaction with opportunity to talk on bilateral cooperation with the country's President Ts.Elbegdorj and other officials.

At the credentials ceremony, Chairman of Canada-Mongolia Friendship Group at the Senate of Canada, Senator Mr. Joseph A. Day. Member of House of Commons Seating Plan Mr. Brad Trost and the Mongolian Embassy staff members were present. 

At the Cabinet meeting held on October 05, 2013, it was resolved to recall some envoys in foreign states and new Ambassadors were promoted, whereas incumbent Ambassador of Mongolia to Canada R.Altangerel succeeded the Ambassador Mr. Tuvdendorj ZALAA-UUL.

Mongolia and Canada have established the diplomatic relations on November 30, 1973.

Link to article


Mongolia's Defense Ministry to Sign Military Cooperation Agreement with Belarus

May 6 ( Mongolian military delegation headed by Deputy Minister for Defense of Mongolia Major-General Avirmed BATTUR is conducting a working visit to the Republic of Belarus on May 05-06, 2014.

According to the Belarusian Defense Ministry, during the visit the sides plan to sign a n agreement on military cooperation between the Defense Ministries of the two countries and to discuss issues of collaboration between the military sectors in education and peacemaking.

In the scope of the visit, Mongolian delegates will visit to the Military Academy of Belarus and get familiarized with the structure and activities of the country's leading military Academy, and the departments of defense, communications and control systems, Combined Arms Faculty and Research Training Academy ground.

On the first day of the visit, Deputy Minister A.Battur was received by the Minister of Belarusian Defense, Lieutenant-General Yuri Zhadobin and Deputy Minister of Defense, Major-General Mikhail Puzikov.

Link to article


Annual Spring Festival Takes Place in Tokyo, Promoting Mongolia for 15 Straight Years

May 7 (UB Post) The 14th Spring Festival 2014 was held in Hikarigaoka garden of Nerima, Japan on May 4 and 5.

The festival was organized by the Mongolian Students Union in Japan and supported by the Embassy of Mongolia to Japan, Administration of Nerima and social organizations of Japan.

At the center of the festival area, Mongolian ger, tent and marquees were built.

At the opening ceremony of the festival Japanese horse fiddle players, dressed up in Mongolian deel, played Mongolian melodies composed by N.Jantsannorov.

Head of the Mongolian Students Union in Japan J.Tserenchimid gave a speech and Ambassador S.Khurelbaatar and Head of the Department of Foreign Relation of the Administration of Nerima Ozaki participated in the opening.

Artist of Japan and Mongolia held various performances such as long songs, Mongolian traditional dances and horse fiddle performances.

A Mongolian traditional wrestling tournament was held among 32 young wrestlers from Mongolia and Inner Mongolia.

Some 60 thousand people took part in the Spring Festival 2014.

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Social, Environmental and Other

BCM: Mongolia Facebook Statistics

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Bringing health impact assessment to the Mongolian resource sector: a story of successful diffusion

Tsogtbaatar Byambaaa*, Meghan Waglera & Craig R. Janesa

Received: 5 Dec 2013

Accepted: 3 Apr 2014

Published online: 28 Apr 2014


Following the 2009 signing of the stability agreement between the Mongolian Government and Canadian mining company Turquoise Hill Resources (formerly known as Ivanhoe Mines), researchers from Simon Fraser University secured funding from the Canadian Institutes for Health Research to conduct applied knowledge translation (KT) research that introduces health impact assessment (HIA) to Mongolia's rapidly emerging resource sector. HIA is a highly regarded informed decision-making tool that helps to identify, assess and mitigate (or promote) potential positive and negative human health impacts of policies, projects and programs. We engaged in a series of knowledge synthesis, KT and dissemination activities with key public and private sector stakeholders as well as community representatives. Our goals were to develop consensus on a socially and culturally appropriate approach to equity-focused HIA, draw on this consensus to develop a contextualized HIA toolkit, build local HIA capacity based on this toolkit, strengthen the HIA regulatory environment and provide evidence-based support for efforts to institutionalize HIA in the resource sector. These efforts have resulted in the inclusion of HIA in the environmental impact assessment law of Mongolia, and the focus has now shifted from KT to further supporting HIA institutionalization and practice.

Link to report page (Mogi: 46 bucks to buy this thing)


Champions of Nepal, Mongolia Qualify for 2014 AFC President's Cup from Group C

May 6 ( The "C" Group matches of the "AFC President's Cup-2014" international football tournament were successfully organized in Ulaanbaatar on May 01-05, 2014.

Representing the nation, Mongolia's eight-time champion of its National League, "Erchim FC" competed against the teams of Manang Marshyangdi Club (Nepal) and Svay Rieng FC (Cambodia).

The three teams of "C" Group in Ulaanbaatar have played on a single round-robin basis, where first two teams of each group (A, B, C) are to continue their games at the final stage to take place on September 22-28, 2014, the venue is not announced yet. 

The "C" Group games held in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia on May 01-05, 2014

First Match Result, Thursday, May 01

05:00 pm Svay Rieng (Cambodia) vs. Manang Marshyangdi Club (Nepal) 3-6

Second Match Result, Saturday, May 03

03:00 pm Erchim FC (Mongolia) vs. Svay Rieng (Cambodia) 3-1

Third Match Result, Monday, May 05,

05:00 pm Erchim FC (Mongolia) vs. Manang Marshyangdi Club (Nepal) 0-0

Following the total points earned, Mongolian and Nepali teams tied, but Manang Marshyangdi Club has greater performance of goals achieved than Erchim FC, therefore finishes the "C" Group in the first place.

Consequently, the first two runner-ups, Nepal and Mongolia have qualified to the final stage. The stadium in Ulaanbaatar hosting the games was pretty much full of audience, where a ticket for a match was 15,000 MNT (Tugrug) and on the last day, officials say about four thousand fans have gathered.

Link to article


Mongolians Claim Gold, Silver Medals at World Amateur Chess Championship

Ulaanbaatar, May 6 (MONTSAME) Mongolia's G.Monkhbat won a gold medal in men's category tournament of the 2014 World Amateur Chess Championships that took place in Singapore from April 25 to May 4.

With this achievement, G.Monkhbat has been awarded with a title of a world chess federation (FIDE) master. Another Mongolian U.Agibileg came second at men's category among 184 chess players from 39 countries to earn a title of a FIDE candidate master. These two successful Mongolians were followed by Ashvin Sivakumar from Singapore.

In women's category, U.Uuriintuya came third among 23 chess players and reached a title of FIDE women candidate master.

Co-organized by the Singapore Chess Federation and the World Chess Federation, the World Amateur Chess Championships were held in Singapore from April 25 to May 4. The next edition of the championships will be held in Chalkidiki, Greece on April 13 - 22 of 2015.

Link to article


International Conference on Mongolian Studies held in Washington D.C.

May 6 ( An International Conference on Mongolian Studies organized by the Embassy of Mongolia in USA, and the Mongolia Cultural Center (MCC) in Washington DC was successfully held in Washington, USA between May 2nd and 4th. The International Conference on Mongolian Studies was attended by over 50 delegates and was held at the Embassy of Mongolia in USA.

At the conference over 20 scholars from Mongolia, USA, Russia and South Korea were invited to four session meetings on the history of Mongolia, literacy, challenging issues and education with key speeches and presentations.

Ambassador of Mongolia, B.Altangerel, in his speech pointed the Government`s attention to the development of Mongolian studies abroad and expressed the hope that the newly established fund to support Mongolian studies would make great impact.

In the past the former International Conferences on Mongolian Studies focused on history, archeology, literacy and linguistics, but this year the key agenda of the conference was socio-economic changes in Mongolia, its impacts, gains and losses and summaries.

One of the session meetings during the conference was dedicated to the prominent scholar Khangin Gombojav who founded Mongolian studies in the USA and played a key role for Mongolia to join the UN and establish diplomatic relations with many other countries.

Organizers of the conference also guided the delegation to the Library of the United States Congress to introduce them to the Mongolian sutra collection kept there.

The head of the Mongolia Cultural Center, M.Saruul-Erdene, showed the delegates original texts of Mongolia`s legislation from the 1920s from his private collection.

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Student Soldiers of Mongolia to Take Maiden Oath During Summer Vacation

May 6 ( On 14th February the Government of Mongolia approved the launch of the "Student-Soldier" program with the aim to intensify civil defense preparedness, allowing students aged between 18 and 25 to serve in the army during their summer vacation. The program is also designed to create a legal environment for men who did not participate in national service.

The "Student-Soldier" program, based on the Presidential Decree 92, is included in an action plan of the Government of Mongolia. According to the Presidential Decree students who want to serve in the army will be granted their bachelor diploma along with a Military service certificate and will be able to get a job in state services.

The "Student-Soldier" program was launched on April 1st. The first phase of the program deployed over 500 students of the National University of Mongolia, the Mongolian University of Science and Technology, Mongolian State University of Education and other 69 national universities and colleges for military training.

Student soldiers study four areas of Defense legislation, Common tactics and Emergency Preparedness between 9.00 and 12.00 at weekends and study military preparedness.

Student soldiers will be sent to military exercises in Altanbulag Tuv province by June 15th after the completion of their academic study.

The student soldiers will take their oaths on June 28th, the day that the Presidential Decree was issued. There are many students who want to join the peacekeeping operation under the UN mandate.

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