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Monday, July 28, 2014
Headlines in Italic are ones modified by Cover Mongolia from original
XAM trading flat in early morning at A$0.081
KHDDH343 COMPLETE RESULTS - HIGH GRADE EXTENSION EAST OF ALTAN TOLGOI
– KHDDH343 intersects 550m of copper-gold mineralisation from 58m.
– KHDDH343 significant intersections include:
o 550m @ 0.39% Cu & 0.39g/t Au (0.64% CuEq) from 58m; including
o 242.70m @ 0.55% Cu & 0.75g/t Au (1.02% CuEq) from 358.30m.
– KHDDH343 high-grade intervals include:
o 27.70m @ 0.72% Cu & 0.55g/t Au (1.07% CuEq) from 358.30m; and
o 32m @ 0.40% Cu & 1.06g/t Au (1.07% CuEq) from 400m; and
o 14m @ 0.38% Cu & 0.77g/t Au (0.81% CuEq) from 440m; and
o 132m @ 0.65% Cu & 0.89g/t Au (1.21% CuEq) from 468m.
– KHDDH344 continues to intersect visible copper sulphides including from 223m to the current hole depth of 574m.
– KHDDH343 and KHDDH344 remain open at depth and along strike indicating potential bulk-tonnage copper-gold mineralisation at economic grades.
July 28 -- Xanadu Mines Ltd (ASX:XAM – "Xanadu") is pleased to announce the complete assay results for KHDDH343 to a final depth of 617.8m following the 23 July 2014 release of results received to a drill hole depth of 563.6m.
KHDDH343 intersected a 550m zone of porphyry and tourmaline breccia hosted copper-gold mineralization and remains open to the east and at depth. The mineralisation is predominantly hosted in tourmaline breccia and minor zones of relic quartz-chalcopyrite stockwork mineralisation. This result represents a material increase in the mineralised envelope at Altan Tolgoi and indicates potential for a bulk-tonnage copper-gold mineralised zone of economic grades. KHDDH343 is a 100m step out from historical drilling and tested a buried IP anomaly along strike from Altan Tolgoi.
KHDDH344, a further 50m to the east of KHDDH343, is at a current hole depth of 574m (reported to 331m on 23 July 2014) and continues to intersect visible copper sulphides comprising disseminated and breccia-hosted coarse grained chalcopyrite hosted by a strongly tourmaline-magnetite altered quartz monzodiorite.
Drill collars are shown in Table 1 and Figure 1 with assay results presented in Table 2. A section of KHDDH343 is shown in Figure 2. Photographs of representative sections are shown in Figures 3 to 6.
WOF closed flat Friday at A$0.04, +25% in the last month. Trading flat as well in early Monday
Australian Wolf stalks Mongolian oil opportunities
By Christine Forster
July 25 (Platts) Mongolia might not be the first place that springs to mind as a potential investment destination for oil and gas players, but one small Australian company is hoping the recent passing of a new petroleum law will open up opportunities in the landlocked nation between Russia and China.
Wolf Petroleum (ASX:WOF) is the only Australia-listed oil and gas company operating in Mongolia. But the industry minnow, capitalized at just A$5.5 million ($5.2 million), claims a position as Mongolia's largest petroleum acreage holder, with one production block and two exploration areas covering more than 74,400 sq km (18,000 million acres).
The long-awaited petroleum law, which was enacted on July 1, replaced one which had been on the books since 1991.
The new law is designed to boost foreign investment in Mongolia's petroleum industry and provide among the most competitive production sharing terms in the world, Wolf Petroleum's Ulaanbaatar-based CEO Bataa Tumur-Ochir told Platts this week via email.
Under the new law, production sharing contracts can be approved by the government within 180 days of request by the developer. Royalty payments are 5% and contractors are exempt from customs duty, VAT in the first five years and income taxes from oil sales.
In addition, exploration, operation, development and production costs can be recovered 100%.
According to Tumur-Ochir, the petroleum industry enjoys huge support within Mongolia, which is keen to reduce its dependence on imported oil from Russia. The country currently imports via rail close to 7 million barrels/year of Russian petroleum products, subject to demand from the mining industry, the CEO added.
The new petroleum law provides Wolf with "easy and transparent procedures" to farm out a stake in its SB block, and "an advantage" on applications for production sharing contracts on its BU and Jinst blocks, Tumur-Ochir said.
The SB block in Mongolia's east is Wolf's most advanced project and is currently at drill-ready stage. The block, which is close to the Chinese border and existing infrastructure, has the potential to hold between 462 million barrels and 2.2 billion barrels of recoverable oil, according to independent estimates, Tumur-Ochir said.
Wolf recently opened a data room for potential strategic partners interested in farming into SB. The block could be brought into production within six to 12 months, depending on drilling results, but with Mongolia lacking an oil refinery for now, any output would be exported to China.
"We are receiving interest from potential strategic partners and we are sharing the data we have," Tumur-Ochir said. "With the new petroleum law in place, the interest in the Mongolian oil and gas industry is steadily increasing. [In addition], the Mongolian mining sector is starting to recover."
Meanwhile, potential resources at Wolf's neighboring BU block, located near a producing 2.25 billion barrel oil field operated by PetroChina, are currently being estimated. The company is also in discussions with the government over the PSC terms for the block.
Wolf's Jinst block in Mongolia's west is the country's largest petroleum exploration area, at more than 41,000 sq km. The company has completed initial geological and geophysical programs at Jinst, identifying 12 large sub-basins which Tumur-Ohir said were identical to producing fields in China.
Mongolia has a history of producing and refining its own oil, but the domestic industry shut down in the 1960s. According to the US Energy Information Administration, oil production resumed in a small way in 1998, but did not start climbing significantly until after 2005, reaching 14,050 b/d in 2013.
"PetroChina and Sinopec started their first oil production in 2005 and production has multiplied 25 times within the last nine years," Tumur-Ophir said. "Mongolia forecast annual production for this year would be close to 7 million barrels/year and by 2016 [it would be] over 10 million barrels/year,"
The EIA put Mongolia's oil consumption at 23,260 b/d in 2012, with net petroleum imports estimated at 13,330 b/d.
With plans afoot to build a new refinery in the country, albeit one which would use Russian crude initially, Wolf's extensive acreage position might make it a small player sitting on an interesting opportunity.
Cash at end of quarter at A$203K. VOR closed -0.1c to 0.1c Friday on low volume. Trading flat early Monday.
Voyager Resources: Quarterly Activities Report
July 25, Voyager Resources Ltd. (ASX:VOR) --
The process of transferring the property portfolio from Xstrata Do Brasil Exploração Mineral Ltda, (Glencore Xstrata) to Voyager Resources Limited (VOR or the Company) is proceeding and is expected to be concluded in the coming months. The Company is extremely pleased with the portfolio of assets it is acquiring in one of the premier global copper provinces.
The Company continues to assess a number of additional copper opportunities further supplementing its existing portfolio of Carajas copper licenses.
All projects and assets in Mongolia are currently being rationalized with sale and or joint venture partners being sought.
Mr Joe Burke ceased in his role as Chief Executive Officer of the Company. Mr Scott Funston also ceased in his role as Company Secretary of the Company. The Company appointed Mr Jonathan Hart as Company Secretary.
Winsway Chairman Pledges 29.9% Stake to Shanxi Coal
July 26 (Cover Mongolia) When Winsway Coking Coal Holdings (now Winsway Enterprises Holdings, HKEx:1733) announces that its founder and chairman Wang Xingchun, who holds 49.1%, pledged his 29.9% Winsway stake to a major China state-owned company, they didn't say to whom.
But soon enough, as per HKEx disclosure rules, the unnamed SOE was revealed as Shanxi Coal International Energy Group, listed on Shanghai Exchange with a market capitalization of RMB 8.56 billion ($1.38 billion), in a disclosure of interest notice.
MSE News for July 25: Top 20 -0.44% to 16,110.35, Turnover ₮16.1 Million
Ulaanbaatar, July 25 (MONTSAME) At the Stock Exchange trades held Friday, a total of 17 thousand and 280 shares of 16 JSCs were traded costing MNT 16 million 145 thousand and 504.80.
"Genco tour bureau" /10 thousand units/, "Remikon" /2,620 units/, "APU" /1,757 units/, "Hai Bi Oil" /941 units/ and "Tavantolgoi" /500 units/ were the most actively traded in terms of trading volume, in terms of trading value--"APU" (MNT six million 852 thousand and 900), "Tavantolgoi" (MNT two million 500 thousand and 145), "Atar-Orgoo" (MNT one million and 755 thousand), "Gobi" (MNT one million 359 thousand and 125) and "Genco tour bureau" (MNT 870 thousand).
The total market capitalization was set at MNT one trillion 610 billion 912 million 944 thousand and 178. The Index of Top-20 JSCs was 16,110.35, decreasing by MNT 71.82 or 0.44% against the previous day.
FMG Mongolia Fund lost 1.3% in 2nd Quarter
July (FMG Funds) The MSE Top 20 index was down 5% in local currency terms, mainly on the back of a 10% loss in APU - the blue chip spirits and Beverage Company. We reduced our cash position in April, and added to some of our core names at attractive levels. The Mongolian currency, the Tugrik, was down 2.5% over the quarter. According to the Mongol Bank Governor, the Tugrik is going through "seasonal depreciation". Most of the USD demand occurs in the spring season and the majority of the dollar inflow is in the second half of the year. The recent fall in tugrik can also be explained by poor coal sales and a weak coal price. Despite the poor performance of the Tugrik, the foreign trade balance has improved dramatically showing a deficit in Q1 of US$ 9 million compared with a deficit of US$ 400 million last year.
The trade balance is set to further improve as copper exports from Oyu Tolgoi mine accelerate. According to figures from Mongolia's National Statistical Office, copper concentrate export volume rose 53% year-on-year in March. Copper accounted for 35% of the country's total mineral export earnings in March, with sales rising by 67% year on year.
Politicians are also pushing to improve the Mongolian economy. A new law was passed by parliament that ended a four year freeze on issuing mineral exploration licenses, boosting opportunities for mining companies as the nation seeks to spur investment.
Mongolia's Prime Minister initiated a "100-day plan" to revive the nation's economy. The plan is intended to improve foreign exchange flows, to save 20% from budget operational expenditures, to boost the development of small and medium-sized enterprises, to reduce tax burdens for entities, as well as to increase mining exploration. These developments have given a boost to investor's sentiment and there is growing confidence that the mining sector is on track to see a rebound.
MSE Beta-Launching "MSE ALL," Index of All Stocks Listed
July 25 (MSE) Starting from July 28, 2014, MSE will be testing new launch of "MSE ALL" index.
"MSE ALL" common stock index testing will be calculated based on all of the 221 publicly traded company.
"MSE ALL" index testing is introducing in order to express the real trend of stock price movements, due to the price movement of even a single security heavily influences the value of the index, and a relatively small shift in the price of a large company heavily influences the value of the index.
Therefore, during the trial period of introducing "MSE ALL" index to the market, it's aware that try to not to use this index for any direct decision making in business.
BoM MNT Rates: Friday, July 25 Close
July MNT vs USD, CNY Chart:
BoM FX auction: US$16m sold at ₮1,854.02, CNY86m at ₮299.1, accepts swap $13m bid, $86m ask offers
July 24 (Bank of Mongolia) On the Foreign Exchange Auction held on July 24th, 2014 the BOM has received bid offer of USD and CNY from local commercial banks. The BOM has sold 16.0 million USD as closing rate of MNT 1854.02 and 86.0 million CNY as closing rate of MNT 299.10.
On June 24th, 2014, The BOM has received MNT Swap agreement bid offer in equivalent to 13.0 million USD and USD Swap agreement ask offer of 80.0 million USD from local commercial banks and accepted all offer.
Mogi: reminding you that 8% loans now make 68.4% of all outstanding mortgages. That's in May when it was ₮1.6T out of ₮2.4T. now it's passed ₮1.7T
8% Mortgage Program Update: ₮536.1 Billion Refinanced, ₮1.2 Trillion Newly Issued
July 24 (Cover Mongolia) As of July 23, ₮536.1 billion (₮537 billion as of July 20) existing mortgages of 18,519 citizens (18,511 as of July 20) were refinanced at 8% out of ₮853 billion (₮852.7 billion as of July 20) worth requests.
Also, ₮1,201.3 billion (₮1,195.4 billion as of July 20) new mortgages of 21,383 citizens (20,553 citizens as of July 20) were issued at new rates out of ₮1.2 trillion (₮1.2 trillion as of July 20) worth requests.
Link to release (in Mongolian)
De Facto: Is smart government an extractive club?
By Jargal Dambadarjaa
July 27 (UB Post) We celebrated our national holiday, Naadam, for an exceptionally lengthy time this year. This is the first time ever that a law was passed to extend the public holiday from three days to five days. Also, the 90th anniversary celebrations of more than 120 soums took place this year, causing a massive Naadam wave to move from the capital city to the countryside. Mongolian National Broadcaster reported that our government officials, including cabinet ministers, spent 10 days, "working in the countryside and actively checking up on the progress of their respective sectors they are responsible for."
It is doubtful whether our declining economy can survive these huge Naadam celebrations. Our economic growth, which was 17.5 percent three years ago, has now been reduced to 7.5 percent. The inflation rate, which was not supposed to exceed one-digit numbers as promised by the government, reached 14.7 percent in the first half of the year, while the current account deficit has grown as big as one-third of our GDP. Furthermore, foreign investment declined by 65 percent in the first five months of 2014. Also, due to the 3.8 trillion MNT injected into the economy by the government's price stabilization program, tugrug rates have fallen by 27 percent. As a result, one U.S. dollar is exchanged for 1,840 tugrugs today. The turgrug decline increased import prices, which caused many companies to squeeze their operations. It led to a significant reduction in tax revenue and government income. As a consequence, road and other construction projects financed by the governmenthave been suspended. Our foreign exchange reserves were cut in half within a year, falling to 1.6 billion USD by the end of May.
Although it has been 60 days since the government announced their 100-day action plan to revive the economy, there has been no change in our economy except for the enactment of foreign investment, petroleum, the "glass account", and mineral laws, as well as the signing of the concession agreement for CHP-5 power plant (combined heat and power plant-5). Despite some decreases in sales, real-estate prices are not going down but are still heated while the banks that are allocated with one-third of the housing mortgages are facing risk. Also, as the amount of bad loans increases, there is a threat that the economy could entirely go into decline.
ROOT CAUSE OF ECONOMIC DECLINE
Mongolian politicians today are rushing to make the point that foreign investment will increase and there will be double-digit economic growth as soon as a stable legal environment is created. They are saying that good laws will get rid of corruption and restore the faith of other countries in Mongolia. As if in response, Moody's, the credit rating agency, downgraded Mongolia's sovereign rating from B1 to B2, and presented a Naadam gift that set a more negative trend.
Mongolia's current economic decline is mainly caused not only by legal instability, but also the failure of our government to implement and enforce existing laws. If the authorities do not benefit from implementing and enforcing a law, they simply make changes to the law or pass new laws such as the tax amnesty law. Mongolia's economic decline traces back to our politics, not the economy. Unless we determine the cause of Mongolia's current unfavorable market conditions and fix it, the situation will stay the same regardless of what laws are passed. Due to repeated changes, both external and internal investors do not have faith that the government will not do it again. Our recent history shows that large investors want to establish a stability agreement before commencing a big project in a country with an unstable legal environment, like Mongolia.
Daron Acemoglu, an MIT professor, and James Robinson, a Harvard professor, studied the experiences of Zimbabwe, Sierra Leone, Colombia, and other countries that have gone bankrupt due to artificial causes that helped the authorities of those countries get rich while ordinary people became poorer. When they asked the question "Why do nations fail?", they came up with a very crucial conclusion. Their answer to the question was that the reason why a nation fails is that their government becomes an extractive institution (not inclusive) that is used as a tool by a few elitists to protect their interests, acquire wealth, and maintain their political power for a longer amount of time.
Although our government and its structure have not become such extractive institutions today, it can be said that they are well on their way to getting there. A trend has been set for the last ten years that political party leaders have come to have monopoly power in their political parties. Instead of demonstrating leadership in society through their ideology, political parties appear to be turning into a tool for power for the few and their followers to acquire more wealth, and to control others using money.
The main condition that allows for such a situation is the ongoing non-disclosure of political party funding for campaign financing as well as operating costs. Financial reports, including revenue and expenditure, are not even disclosed to political party members, let alone the public. This secrecy becomes the underlying cause that dramatically increases corruption in public governance as soon as a political party acquires ruling power.
We, the citizens of Mongolia, have the right to know who is financing political parties, how they get refunded through the public budget, and have laws passed in their favor. Behind the scenes of legal instability, there is a huge battle going on for the protection of different interests, as well as a status quo of the redistribution of wealth and leverages against each other. It can be seen from how mining licenses and land permits are issued, withdrawn, and reissued.
Being cautious of doing business, Mongolians are increasingly becoming more interested in working for the government. The number of businesses associated with the government is going up while people now realize that such businesses never go bankrupt, despite how much debt they have or how much deficit they run. There is a Mongolian saying, "You will not go hungry if you follow the livestock." It is now said that one will not go hungry if one follows a political party. It has been a long time since they started laying off almost the entire staff of the previous government after every election, as the winning party replaces everyone – including janitors – with people who are associated with their political party. As the staff turnover continues, there is less opportunity for people to gain experience and improve their skills. As a result, the capability of our executive branch is diminishing. Even though our political parties are aware of this situation, they are choosing to ignore it while attempting to make every government institution serve the interests of their political party leaders.
In order to prevent our government from becoming an institution that only serves a minority, we must have political parties produce their financial reports truthfully. It is the foremost objective of the citizens of a democratic Mongolia. To achieve this objective, the General Election Committee must be replaced by a Commission of Voters and be managed by trusted citizens with no political party affiliation, and have political parties produce their financial reports regularly.
Mogi: DBM steps in where TDB couldn't without a GoM guarantee
Development Bank of Mongolia out with $200m
The Development Bank of Mongolia is raising a $200m loan that features a $100m greenshoe option, made even more appealing with a guarantee from the country's government
By Shruti Chaturvedi
July 24 (GlobalCapital) Credit Suisse is the sole bookrunner for the deal, which is split into three portions: a three year bullet, which pays a margin of 425bp over dollar libor, a five year amortiser offering 437.5bp, and a seven year amortiser paying 450bp over libor.
Lenders are allowed to commit to any or all of the tranches, said a banker.
The deal is open to banks at three levels of participation - mandated lead arrangers coming in with commitments of $50m or over will earn 125bp as fees for the three year, 150bp for the five year and 175bp for the seven year.
Lead arrangers pledging between $25m and $49m earn fees of 110bp, 125bp and 150bp for the three tranches respectively, while co-arrangers committing between $10m and $24m net fees of 85bp, 100bp and 125bp, respectively
The fundraising comes just after the Trade & Development Bank of Mongolia had to pull a dollar bond issue when investors were reluctant to open their portfolios to Mongolian risk.
However, because the DBM loan comes backed by a guarantee from the government of Mongolia, it is unlikely to run into similar headwinds, according to bankers.
KEPCO signs MOU to build 200MW power plant in Ulaanbaatar
(Chief negotiators from KEPCO and the Mongolian Energy Ministry shake hands after signing a memorandum of understanding to build a fossil fuel power plant in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, Thursday. / Courtesy of KEPCO)
By Park Si-soo
July 25 (Korea Times) KEPCO, Korea's biggest power supplier, won the exclusive right to build and operate a fossil fuel power plant in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, the company said Friday.
Chief negotiators from KEPCO and the Mongolian Energy Ministry signed a memorandum of understanding in Mongolia, Thursday, three months after the two sides agreed to work together to improve the power supply infrastructure in Mongolia.
"This is a milestone making it possible for us to make inroads into the fast-growing power supply market in Mongolia," KEPCO said in a statement. "This project will make it possible for us to win other projects there."
It is uncertain when the two sides will sign an official contract and when construction will begin.
"We will start a feasibility study soon," said a KEPCO official familiar with the case. "So it's hard to predict when we will sign an official contract."
KEPCO is the world's sixth-largest power plant builder, having built nearly 40 nuclear and fossil fuel power plants in 20 countries.
KEPCO said it was seeking business opportunities in other developing nations in Central Asia.
Kepco makes inroads in Mongolia's energy market – Korea JoongAng Daily, July 26
TDBM Launches Representative Office in Tokyo
July 25 (infomongolia.com) The Trade and Development Bank of Mongolia has launched its first ever Representative Office in abroad in the Japanese capital city Tokyo on July 23rd, 2014.
Most notably, the launching ceremony of the TDB Representative Office in Tokyo was taken place during the official of visit of the President of Mongolia to Japan in which the Governor of the Bank of Mongolia N.Zoljargal, the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Mongolia to Japan S.Khurelbaatar, the President of TDB Randolph Koppa, the former Chairman and the Commissioner of the Financial Services Agency of the Government of Japan Ryutaro Hatanaka, the Senior Managing Director of the Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ Yoshikawa Eiichi and other well-known politicians and businessmen have attended respectively.
The TDB Representative Office in Japan will be the trustworthy financial bridge to connect the Japanese investors and businessmen to the state-run and private sectors of Mongolia. Elsewhere, the TDB has become as the first Mongolian organization which made a bet to support the Mongolian sumo wrestlers in Nagoya Basho 2014 by introducing Mongolia throughout Japan.
July 25 (TDB) In addition to being a successful banker, B. Medree edited the book "From Good to Great" a few years ago. He has now edited an exciting book called "How Georgia Succeeded". We welcome you to a glance at the career and a personal view of B.Medree, Chief Executive Officer of the Trade and Development Bank of Mongolia.
- I'd like to share some news with our readers. The Mongolian-Japanese business forum will be organized on July 22nd of this year. A sizeable group of government officials and private sector representatives are going to visit Japan. Isn't that correct?
- Yes, a group of 100 people from both public and private sectors of Mongolia are visiting Japan, and about 300 people from Japan are going to participate in this forum. I was informed that Mr.Elbegdorj, the President of Mongolia, will give a speech during the forum, and Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, will also pay a visit. I am positive that such an extensive forum organized mutually will have a great impact on cooperation between the two countries. Mongolia has established a strategic partnership agreement with Japan, and therefore, the President, the Chairman of the State Great Hural, the Prime Minister, and the Minister of Foreign Affairs pay an official visit once every four years to evaluate and summarize work performance and to discuss future plans. N.Altanhuyag, the Prime Minister, made the most recent visit to Japan in September 2013, as a result of which, both parties signed a Memorandum of Understanding and released a statement to cooperate in certain sectors of the economy.
- The Mongolian-Japanese business forum will be held at a very interesting time looked at it in the bigger picture. Mongolia entered into a strategic partnership with Japan, and Russia and China established an agreement to supply natural gas last spring. The main subject of discussion at the moment is issues surrounding railway construction and banks.
- In my opinion, the two countries need to focus on realizing agreements and negotiations previously made at the state and government levels. Mongolia and Japan have discussed short, medium, and long term prospects of cooperation a number of times. This time, I believe that they will discuss additional proposals and initiatives that suit the present day situation, as opposed to new aspects of cooperation.
In the 42 years since Mongolia started diplomatic relations with Japan in 1972, we have been cooperating effectively in political, social, economic, and cultural arenas as well as in sports.
Since Mongolia made the transition to a market economy in 1990, cooperation between the two countries has been developing and expanding steadily based on the common values of human rights, democracy, and market economy.
Since 1990, Japan assisted Mongolia in building factories and plants which are the pillars of the industrial sector of Mongolia, for instance, the iron plant of Darkhan, the Makh industrial complex, the Gobi industrial complex in Ulaanbaatar city, and other experimental factories.
Japan has provided numerous aid and support in our difficult times of development. One of the examples is the "Uvsnii undes" project under which many secondary schools and kindergartens were built and renovated in rural areas. Even today, Japan continues to assist Mongolia by building a new international airport in Khushigt valley. Japan has made many contributions in the fields of art and culture. Cultural representatives of Mongolia, for example, N.Norovbanzad, the Mongolian labor hero and public artist, have created enormous value by introducing the folk art of Mongolia to the Japanese people. This practice still continues today.
- There is so much to discuss in the education sector. The immediate example is the young people of Mongolia who were sent to schools in Japan in Soviet times.
- There were very few students studying in Japan before 1990. As the country transitioned to a democratic system, the number of students studying in Japan increased dramatically. For example, this year, 1,000 Mongolian students were granted non-refundable scholarships by the Japanese government to study for undergraduate degrees, masters' degrees, and doctoral degrees in Japan.
- Moreover a sizable infrastructure project construction is being planned in Mongolia. Is this the metro construction project?
- Yes, Mongolia will have a metro. This is going to be a significant event in our history. Mongolia and Japan have signed an agreement to cooperate in building a metro line in Ulaanbaatar city, as well as renewing the sewage treatment plant complex, developing tourism, building hotels, tour camps, increasing trade and investment, implementing a technical cooperation project to reduce air pollution in Ulaanbaatar city, and building a semi coking compact fuel plant. I believe that these plans will be realized. Moreover, I am sure that Japan will provide further assistance if Mongolians come to a common understanding about the railway, narrow and broad gauge. I also assume that Japan will cooperate in producing liquefied natural gas. In general, I would like to emphasize that collaboration between Japan and Mongolia has been expanding in all sectors.
- Recently, large Japanese corporations have expressed their interest in investing in Tavan Tolgoi project. However, as you may know, there has been talk that Mongolia left Japanese and South Korean investors "outside the circle". Do you think that their interest in investing in South Gobi remains the same for such investors? Do you have updates on this matter?
Most definitely. Mongolia is focusing on expanding cooperation with Russia and China in the first place. But also it is striving to bring cooperation with northeast Asian countries, such as Japan, and South and North Korea, Hong Kong, and Macao, to a new level. Our country has enormous wealth in natural resources. On the other hand, Japan is one of the eight leading industrial countries of the world with top economic factors listed after the USA and China. It has great knowledge, expertise, and new technology. Therefore, I think it is absolutely necessary to collaborate with Japan in an even broader sense. However, I would say that Mongolia should look carefully into expanding cooperation in producing value added products. For instance, we can export coal and uranium processed at a certain level, and copper as an end-product to Japan. There can be many initiatives when it comes to processing commodities.
Mongolia is considered to be one of the ecologically clean countries of the world and has a distinctive weather conditions. It can be +30°Centrigade in the daytime and +10°Centrigrade at night. Food grown in Mongolian soil and its livestock products are of good quality because of these extreme weather conditions.
If we can manage well the hygiene and safety aspects, we have great potential to supply organic food products and semi and fully processed meat products to Japan, as organic farming and ecologically friendly products are the world trend.
Although Mongolia has abundant natural resources, it is not the path or model of development. It may be seen as one of the basic industries to assist in accumulating monetary assets. I think this is the proper way of looking at the natural resources and their usage.
- People are saying "The economy is in crisis". How about the climate in the banking and financial sectors?
Mongolia: The other side of the coin
By B.Zulbayar, Lehman Bush LLC
July 27 (UB Post) It seems that everyone is now concerned that Mongolia's economic growth is not going to be as robust as was expected for 2014, and the country's future prospects look a bit grey. This is not just because of the great uncertainty about the Mongolian legal environment, which has persisted since 2012. It is also due to declining commodity prices. Mongolia is very dependent upon revenues from commodities such as the precious and base metals and coal it produces.
With the recently lowered GDP growth rate estimates by international organizations, unimpressive FDI inflow statistics for the first half of 2014, a shocking inflation figure of 14.6 percent and an ever-deteriorating exchange rate, Mongolia is not yet a top destination for foreign investors, even though the country is said to be sitting on minerals worth more than one trillion USD.
However, in spite of the negative outlook from various organizations, I personally believe that predictions of doom and gloom for Mongolia are completely unwarranted, and it is due to misinformation and ignorance about Mongolia's true potential. In fact, in my opinion, now is the best time to invest in Mongolia. Let me explain why.
Whether you agree or not, I believe my opinion is justified by a number of facts. Firstly, the recent announcements about mega project deals with China such as the one billion ton coal supply contract for the next 20 years, a Sinopec memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Mining Ministry for a coal gasification plant, and an MoU between the Mongolian government and a consortium of GDF Suez, Sojitz Corporation, Posco Energy and Newcom Group for the multi-billion dollar development of CHP-5 (Combined Heating and Power Plant) clearly illustrate Mongolia's business potential and Mongolia's willingness and intention to become an important player in the world's business community.
Secondly, it is well known that commodity prices are always volatile, reflecting events and phases of the global economy and regional economic activity. We are now in a boom-bust economic cycle. When there is downward movement, then upward movement follows. Therefore, even though Mongolia's main export commodities prices are now significantly lower than in previous years, they will definitely revive sooner than predicted. According to statista.com, the GDP growth rate of China, Mongolia's biggest buyer of commodities, is predicted to be around six to seven percent until 2020. This means there will be a growing appetite and demand for copper, coal and iron ore from Mongolia's southern neighbor.
Moreover, in addition to Mongolia's recently passed Investment Law, Investment Funds Law and the ending of the moratorium on issuing exploration licenses, the amendments to the Mineral Law passed by Mongolian parliament on July 1, 2014, shows that foreign investment is definitely being welcomed in Mongolia from all parts of the world.
The above actions taken by the Monglian government and the current stage of the general economic lifecycle in the country clearly support my take on Mongolia's economy in the near future. Accordingly, my expectation is that Mongolia will be back on track again and a big economic expansion is about to happen here. In a nutshell, Mongolia's long term economic prospects look very promising.
So, my question for you now is, when the world's once fastest growing economy is back at the center of international investors' attention, how would you, as a foreign investor, like to be positioned to do business in Mongolia?
My suggestion to people, whether they are professional or amateur investors, or even casual adventurers who are looking for business opportunities in Mongolia, is that now is the best time to come to Mongolia and get your slice of cake.
Because some people are taking a relatively conservative and cautious position on economic prospects and the property market, you can find great properties in Ulaanbaatar for very inexpensive prices to sell later for a profit, provided that you have cash available to invest immediately.
Also, since the government has cancelled its previous ill-advised moratoriums on exploration licenses, mining activities will once again commence. Hence, suppliers' businesses, such as catering, transportation, mining equipment, and service providers for mining companies are sure to benefit greatly. How about investing in one of these enterprises?
If the above business prospects are not what you are interested in, then, you may be interested in investing in more recession-proof industries such as the food industry, information technology and education in Mongolia, which can generate a comfortable level of income for you. In addition, professional services businesses such as accounting and legal services, and insurance and small loan services are likely to show robust growth due to strong incentives for companies to save HR costs and manage their short-term financial needs. These are just a few of the potentially profitable business opportunities in Mongolia existing now.
In addition, I can assure you that if you are an entrepreneurially minded person, then, you will be pleased to know that there are many well educated, well-qualified, energetic, young people in Mongolia who are willing to work for you during this uncertain economic time at a lower rate of pay so they may gain experience. This is a huge plus that compliments the recently revived economic and legal environment in Mongolia, which now, once more, welcomes foreign investment.
In summary, the economic and legal environment Mongolia is good now overall, and it is rapidly improving every day. There are investment opportunities in Mongolia with great potential. Therefore, my final piece of advice is to see the other side of the coin and remember, from time to time, Brian Cohen's song "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life" from Monty Python's "Life of Brian". Take a closer look and see what Mongolia has to offer you!
Zulbayar Badral works for Lehman Bush LLC, a consulting firm which provides business consulting, market intelligence and corporate services. Lehman Bush LLC has affiliate offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Houston, Texas. For more information, please visit lehmanbush.mn. You can contact B. Zulbayar at Zbadral@lehmanbush.com.
Is Mongolia the next emerging market for your international business strategy?
July 25 (FITT) Jordan Belfort, the former stockbroker made famous by the book he published in 2008 and the subsequent award-winning film in 2013 starring Leonardo DiCaprio, paid a visit to Mongolia recently.
No, he was not invited to give trading tips. In fact, the convict turned author and motivational speaker was there to talk about how Mongolian government officials and business representatives can help speed along the country's success "by effectively telling its story".
Ironically, Mongolia is far from lacking in qualities that make for a good story; the trouble might just be choosing which to share.
Embracing Tradition while Looking Ahead to a Bright Economic Future
Accented with lush and serene vegetation in the summer months, parts of Mongolia could easily be confused for Switzerland, according to Lonely Planet.
"Known the world over for Genghis Khan (Chinggis Khaan) and the traditionally nomadic lifestyle that is still purportedly led by more than 30 percent of the population, Mongolia is looking to capitalize on its unique culture and attractive scenery in a bid to open the world's eyes to many of its strengths as a place to visit and do business."
With more than 1.5 million square kilometres of land inhabited by just under 3 million people, Mongolia is the world's most sparsely populated independent country in the world; although that would be difficult to believe for someone visiting the nation's capital of Ulaanbaatar, which nearly half of the country's citizens call home.
Since its democratic government toppled the communist regime in 1990, the country has been reinventing itself as a unique place where old traditions meet modern life.
As a country rich with natural resources and a well-established mining industry, Mongolia has been actively promoting itself to investors and business owners around the globe, including in Canada through its newly established Canada Mongolia Chamber of Commerce, located in Toronto. I had the opportunity to speak with the Chamber's Executive Director, Bolor Sambuu.
"After 70 years of Russian influence ending in 1990, the new generation in Mongolia is not ignoring its past steeped with Tibetan tradition," he said. "It is also in search of new opportunities to share the talents and hard work of Mongolians with the world.
These days, Mongolian cashmere and sea-buckthorn berries have been two of the latest Mongolian exports to gain popularity on the world stage.
And likewise, as a country that has seen regular double-digit growth, its emerging middle-class enjoys travelling to other countries and imported goods."
Opportunities for Canadian Businesses in Mongolia
Canada is the second largest investor in Mongolia, and Export Development Canada (EDC) is actively pursuing business there, having assisted 28 Canadian firms from its regional offices in Moscow, Russia.
Canadian businesses already export nearly $72 million to Mongolia, and according to EDC, the business environment ranks quite favorably compared to similarly rated markets as denoted by the World Bank Ease of Doing Business or World Economic Forum competitiveness indicators.
Furthermore, the Canadian government has taken an important step to offer additional support to Canadian businesses by opening up a Canadian Embassy in Ulaanbaator.
Learn about government funding programs for export development and find out more about doing business in Mongolia and making it part of your international business strategy by visiting www.canadamongolia.ca or by contacting Bolor Sambuu.
Former UB mayor receives prison time for illegal privatization to ex-President Enkhbayar
July 27 (UB Post) The trial of former Ulaanbaatar City Mayor Ts.Batbayar and three other state officials accused of the abuse of authority and massive financial losses for the state through the illegal privatization of state properties took place on Tuesday.
The court sentenced Ts.Batbayar, who was also Chief of the Property Privatization Commission at the same time he was mayor, to two years in a maximum security prison, while former Chief of the Ulaanbaatar City Council T.Bilegt was found guilty of illegal privatization by the court but didn't receive a prison sentence after consideration of the Amnesty Law of Mongolia. (Mogi: who gets amnesty and who doesn't, if it was in exchange for evidence against the other then it should be said as thus)
Chief of the Property Privatization Division at the Ulaanbaatar Property Relations Agency G.Manaljav and Ts.Batbayar's younger sibling, Ts.Chantsal, were acquitted.
The Independent Authority Against Corruption and Ulaanbaatar City Prosecutors Office found during an investigation that Ts.Batbayar abused his authority. He transferred the 605 million MNT ownership of Urgoo, an Ulaanbaatar-owned hotel, to Khar Dun LLC, owned by former President of Mongolia N.Enkhbayar's son E.Batshugar. Afterwards, Khar Dun became a subsidiary of N.Enkhbayar's Eskon LLC.
Ts.Batbayar is also accused of privatizing the Ulaanbaatar-owned Recovery Treatment Clinical Hospital, valued at 779 million MNT, at the far cheaper price of 256 million MNT to his younger
sibling Ts.Chantsal, with the help of G.Manaljav.
Riverside construction depleting UB's fresh water reserve
July 24 (UB Post) Each day, every eight seconds, a child somewhere in the world dies from drinking contaminated water. Today, 2.3 billion people out of seven billion people on earth live in water-stressed areas, according to U.N. estimates, and over one billion people are left using contaminated water for consumption. Every day, 400 million people are on the brink of dying from thirst. In some areas of Africa, people roam for five hours in search of water. In a village in Kenya, residents travel over 10 kilometers to get dirty water for consumption. All these statistics suggest that water is rightfully called "white gold" in Africa. But we Mongolians are lucky. There are fresh water lakes and rivers flowing across our wide prairies. Therefore, we've came to worship our rivers that make the continuation of civilization possible.
One of Mongolia's biggest rivers, the Tuul, has supplied residents with fresh water for 400 years, but this luxury is coming near its end. In recent years, a large number of construction companies have built a lot of buildings in the area of the river's fresh water reserve. A clear example can be seen from Agnista condominiums built by Imperial Castle LLC, situated in Khan Uul district's 11th khoroo, west of Leadership Academy. Not far from the banks of the Tuul River, the construction of their condominium center is underway. Fresh water has sprung up from the foundation of one of their buildings for over 10 days. The fresh water is entering the foundation from various places, and using motorized pumps, the water is being removed all night and day. News crew went to the site and there was water flowing out of the foundation through four big channels. The fresh water flowing out of the construction site amounts to hundreds of tons. When asked about the current situation, the construction supervisor remarked, "If the other buildings in this area are fine, then this should be fine, too. We will fill this spot first."
Imperial Castle has promoted this luxurious condominium center by stressing the fact that it is situated near the flowing Tuul River, and the estimated cost of their properties ranges from 3.5 to 4.5 million MNT per square meter. But with the repercussions of building these condominiums in this area, the company's acceptance of the responsibilities for looking after the environment once construction is complete is disputable. Residents who buy one of the expensive condominiums will later on suffer a loss and who will be responsible? The company will build the condo, and that is it. However, the residents will buy it with the intention of using it as a long term residence or an investment. It is important to note that water has also recently gushed from the foundation of a two-year-old apartment building in Zaisan Village by Jiguur Grand Group, and mold has grown as a result.
According to a security guard working at a building neighboring the Agnista construction site, water gushing from foundations is a common problem in this area. Therefore, the crew visited other apartment buildings already inhabited; the situation was no better. The resident's garages were underwater.
Land near the Tuul River has become a marked location for luxurious housing. In fenced-in enclosures stand two to three-story private houses. The houses are protected with big fences, like great walls, security guards and cameras everywhere. Officially, this so-called luxury real estate location is none other than an environmentally protected area for fresh water. By law, 200 meters surrounding the bank of any river is under special protection, and 500 meters from the riverbank is under normal protection. Under these protections, there should be no construction whatsoever. To dump contaminated water into the soil of a fresh water reserve is a disaster, according to specialists. Also, in a 2004 law, it was specifically stated that no construction work would be allowed in fresh water reserve areas. There are no companies following this law. Therefore, the administrators of the Ministry of Construction and Urban Development should take measures against these construction companies.
Not long ago, a conference organized by the Ulaanbaatar Water Supply and Sewage Authority and the Authority for Fair Competition and Consumer Protection resulted in a decision to increase the cost for one liter of fresh water to 48 MNT, and 24 MNT for wastewater. Supplying consumers with fresh water for 24 hours a day was guaranteed, and the increased expense for the required supervision and operational costs called for the increase in water supply and sewage charges. This was a good move to ensure continuous water distribution. But, after charging more, the benefits have not been evident. Instead of raising costs for residents, the authorities should charge the monopolizing construction companies with fair costs to make them realize how valuable the water supply is.
The Tuul River is the chief contributor to Ulaanbaatar's fresh water reserve and it makes up the majority of the water table. The city's need for water is growing every day and the Tuul alone cannot supply the water table. In this area, the law is clearly not a strong enough to take measures against outlaw companies. The Ministry of Nature, Environment and Green Development and other environmental agencies should not stay put and just observe the chaos, they should step in and take action by putting an end to construction in progress and stop their operations. For the U.N.'s first Environment Assembly, S.Oyun, Minister for Nature, Environment and Green Development of Mongolia, was elected as its president. But under S.Oyun's management, environmental management at the state level is clearly unacceptable. Minister S.Oyun is being warned to do her work better. If the Ministry does not do its job of enforcing the law, Mongolians will face water shortages in the near future.
Source: Ulsturiin toim
UB drinking water source by poor sewage at Urgakh Naran town
July 27 (UB Post) A total of 432 households in Urgakh Naran apartment town in 11th khoroo of Bayanzurkh District have been living in contaminated environment for a while as Blue Sky Partners LLC, the company responsible for sewage management of the apartment town, hasn't been fulfilling its duties.
The town is not connected to central sewer pipelines and Ulaanbaatar authorities have issued a budget every year for the disposal of the town's sewage and disinfecting soil in the neighborhood caused by accumulated sewage.
The Ulaanbaatar City Specialized Inspection Agency (UCSIA) took sample from the town's soil and a research showed soil pollution has exceeded the permitted level in nine hectares of land at Urgakh Naran.
The sewage of the town is not only polluting its neighborhood but also contaminating air and soil of the surrounding area where Ulaanbaatar's drinking water sources and pipes are located.
The UCSIA has sent demands to Blue Sky Partners LLC several times to attend to the current issue and fulfill its function but has received no reply. Therefore the UCSIA has proposed to Ulaanbaatar authorities to temporarily halt water and power distribution to Urgakh Naran in order to conduct a complex project on reducing soil and air pollution in the area.
Deputy Governor of Ulaanbaatar City S.Bataa visited the town and promised to launch the project if current sanitary issues are not resolved by September 15.
A spokesperson for Blue Sky Properties explained, "The reason that Urgakh Naran is still not connected to central lines is that sanitary pipelines passing the town have not been completed yet." The company pledged to solve the problem before September 15.
Interview with Canadian Ambassador on End of Term
July 24 (De Facto) --
Monument erected in Moscow for Khalkh River Battle Victory
Ulaanbaatar, July 25 (MONTSAME) The Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Mongolia to the Russian Federation Mr Sh.Altangerel has visited the Monument for Victory on Khalkh River Battle.
This Monument, dedicated to the memory of the Victory, has been created in Moscow by a movement headed by Konstantin Kuksin. Members of the movement operate a mobile cultural museum in the capital city of Russia.
Almost 88,000 citizens are on food coupons
July 27 (UB Post) For five years, the Government of Mongolia has implemented a food coupon program for citizens with income below the nation's subsistence level.
The Ministry of Population Development and Social Protection conducted a study to determine the subsistence level this year, and will grant 87,778 members of 15,137 families food coupons.
With the monthly coupons, 10,000 MNT for adults and 5,000 MNT for children, recipients can buy food from 668 shops in Ulaanbaatar. The coupons can be used to buy meat, milk, flour, eggs, vegetables, rice and fruit.
Corruption trial of 54 university officials for bribery postponed
July 27 (UB Post) On Wednesday, the District Primary Criminal Court no.1 was originally set to hold the trial for former director of the School of Trade at the National University of Mongolia B.Javkhlantugs and 53 other university officials for receiving bribery from students, but postponed the trial date to August 13.
The Independent Authority Against Corruption (IAAC) and Ulaanbaatar City Prosecutor's Office's joint investigation revealed that the 54 university officials, mostly teachers, have been taking briberies from students for better grades. The officials have been taking briberies repeatedly over a long period of time.
Mongolia: Here's What Can Happen When A Country Really Makes Education A National Priority
July 2014 (Upworthy) The Overseas Development Institute has released a new report on Mongolia that's amazing. Even though up to 40% of its population is nomadic, the country has found a way to achieve something wealthier nations can only envy: 98% of its girls and 93% of its boys are now getting a secondary education.
Mongolians value the education of their kids above almost everything else, and now their government — flush with money from a mining boom and improved taxation — has taken up the challenge of paying for it. With a completely overhauled modern education policy that's more responsive to families' needs, and with the support of external financing partners, they're actually getting it done.
Scroll down for some infographics about what's been going on and for captivating pictures showing the Mongolian people during this fascinating new era.
Nalaikh mine safety in question again as 20-year-old dies of suffocation
July 24 (UB Post) Issues about occupational safety in mines has been raised once again, following an accident where a 20-year-old worker died of suffocation at a micro-mine located in Nalaikh District on Tuesday. Another worker, aged 40, was also found dead due to lack of air in a mine at the same district last year in May.
The Mine Rescue Service of Mongolia (MRSM) received a report about the accident at 10:10 a.m. and the victim was pulled out from under 100 meters below the ground.
The mine is located in Orosiin Nuur, Nalaikh, and is owned by a man called Zoljargal. Nalaikh District's inspectors and the police worked at the accident scene and discovered that the opencast mine's power was cut off. The shaft of the underground mine was covered to prevent further accidents, after the investigation.
Ulaanbaatar City Governor E.Bat-Uul issued an ordinance in May 2013 to close all micro-mines in Nalaikh District in order to decrease rising number of casualties in mining accidents in the area. A total of 55.6 million MNT was spent from the city budget to cover pits of all micro-mines in Nalaikh.
The ordinance is still effective despite Nalaikh District residents' oppositions. There have been several reports that illegal miners are still extracting coal from micro-mines in Nalaikh despite the ordinance.
The MRSM's squad chief D.Purevsuren reported, "Brick factories buy coal from micro-mines in Nalaikh all year round, so illegal miners do not cease extraction despite low coal demand in warm seasons."
On average, ten to 17 people died in Nalaikh mines every year, with a total reported number of 125 deaths and 287 injuries between, 2004 and 2009. In total, 61 miners died in micro-mines in Nalaikh from 2010 to 2013.
Majority of the victims were young people aged between 15 and 35. Most common reason for accidents was either soil collapse at underground mines or lack of air provision.
This year, two miners have died, including the recent death of the 20-year-old miner in Nalaikh, and 27 miners have been rescued by the MRSM so far.
OT: Successful rehabilitation must use native species
- 13,000 Gobi saxaul seedlings planted so far –
Khanbogd, Mongolia, July 24 (Oyu Tolgoi) - With high expectations of environmental management from mining companies, Oyu Tolgoi is shaping a new approach to rehabilitation, firmly focused on maintaining the ancient natural environment.
The Mongolian Gobi has a dry and extreme climate and native plants such as the saxaul tree have adapted to the harsh conditions over generations. Desert saxaul forests prevent the movement of sand, creating more favourable conditions for other plants, livestock and wild animals to flourish.
Oyu Tolgoi plants saxaul trees in order to restore the landscape, vegetation and ecosystems of disturbed land back to as natural a state as possible.
In the autumn of 2013, during the first phase of Oyu Tolgoi's rehabilitation programme, 10,677 saxaul tree seedlings were planted across 6.34 hectares in the Gunii Khooloi area of Khanbogd soum. Eighty per cent of the seedlings successfully survived the winter, with those which had died replanted in the spring, along with an additional 2,860 seedlings.
B.Altantsetseg, Environmental Superintendent at Oyu Tolgoi said: "The preparation, planting and care of saxaul tree seedlings takes a lot of time. First, we collect wild seeds from the environment, clean and separate them from other seeds, and then dry them. We prepare seed pots between November and February. Between April and May we place the seed pots in the planting area and start growing.
"After two summers and one winter, the young seedlings are transferred from the pots and planted in the ground. The 10,677 seedlings that were transferred from the pots in the autumn of 2013 had been planted as seeds in the spring of 2012."
Oyu Tolgoi only uses native plants in its biological rehabilitation work. But even hardened, Gobi plants require extreme care and support to survive. The saxaul trees planted in the fall are irrigated and the soil is strengthened before it freezes, helping the young plants to survive the winter. By the time they face the harsh winds of spring, many are strong enough to survive.
Rehabilitation work relies on local communities to support and participate in the effort. Last autumn, 28 local herders worked on the programme, which will lead to the appearance of brand-new, saxaul forests in the Galba Gobi.
Powerful Wind Blows Away Cars, Killing Driver in Arkhangai
Rainstorm leaves one dead, 11 injured, 100 livestock missing
July 27 (UB Post) A powerful rainstorm with high speed winds hit Khashaat soum in Arkhangai Province on Saturday evening, leaving one person dead, nine injured, and about 100 livestock missing. Two of the injured are now hospitalized and in critical condition.
Three vehicles were carried away in the storm's winds, with one driver killed while still inside, reported Arkhangai Province Emergency Management Agency (APEMA) officials.
The driver was a resident of Ulaanbaatar and driving a 2.5 ton truck with his friend. They parked beside a house to seek shelter from the rain and winds. His friend got out of the truck, but when the driver tried to follow, the truck was hit by the winds and carried away in the storm. The truck fell 300 meters from where it was parked and the driver died on impact.
Four gers and one log house were destroyed and the people inside were injured. Bag (smallest regional administrative unit) officials in Khashaat also reported that the storm carried away about 100 sheep and goats, according to Uransanaa, an operator with APEMA.
APEMA received a storm report at 7:37 p.m., when wind speeds reached 50 meters per second. However, the National Agency for Meteorology, Hydrology and Environmental Monitoring previously forecasted 12 meters per second wind speeds that evening.
APEMA sent one vehicle and a team of ten rescuers to the assist the affected soum's residents.
Mogi: Mongolia ranked 106th in 2013, showed 2nd highest growth.
Mongolia ranks 103rd, "medium development" in UNDP Human Development Report 2014
July 25 (Mongolian Economy) The Human Development Index released an updated list for this year on July 24, 2014 placing Mongolia in the 103rd position for another year. This index puts together a variety of indicators such as educational levels, income, and life expectancy to rank countries into different sections of human development. Through these three dimensions, the Human Development Index can be calculated by finding the geometric mean of these indices.
This index is published every year by the United Nations Development Programme and serves to measure as accurately as possible the levels of human development in each country. The four categories are as follows: (1) Very high human development; (2) High human development; (3) Medium human development; and (4) Low human development. With Mongolia's ranking at 103, it is categorized as a country with medium human development.
The two countries that fulfill the first two spots are Norway and Australia, showing no change as well. These nations represent very high human development. Rounding up the bottom of the list is the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Niger, showing low human development. It is also important to note that the list Mongolia presides in is also the shortest list compared to the other three.
SUMO/ Mongolia's Hakuho captures 30th title, gains on 2 legends on Day 15
July 27 (Asahi Shimbun) Yokozuna Hakuho defeated Mongolian compatriot Harumafuji on July 27 to win his 30th career title at the Nagoya Grand Sumo Tournament, which puts him within three titles of breaking the record for most championships in Japan's ancient sport.
Hakuho was pushed back to the edge by yokozuna Harumafuji in the final bout at Aichi Prefectural Gymnasium, briefly giving sekiwake Goeido and ozeki Kotoshogiku, the only wrestlers still in contention, a glimmer of hope.
But after a prolonged standoff, Hakuho finally got a grip on Harumafuji's belt and hauled his opponent down to close out the 15-day tourney with a 13-2 record. A loss by Hakuho would have forced a three-way playoff for the title.
"There were a few bumps along the way, but I knew if I stayed calm I could win today," said Hakuho, who is now just two behind the all-time record of 32 championships held by Taiho. Chiyonofuji is second on the list with 31 championships.
Harumafuji gave Hakuho a serious challenge but couldn't finish off his opponent and ended with a 10-5 record.
At 29, Hakuho has a good shot at being able to surpass the two sumo legends.
In another closely watched bout, Goeido overpowered Kotoshogiku to stay in contention for the title depending on the outcome of Hakuho's bout, while virtually assuring himself of promotion to ozeki with a 12-3 record.
Kotoshogiku, who came into the tournament needing a winning record to maintain his ozeki status, achieved that with ease but dropped to 12-3, a result that still left him in contention, too.
The Japan Sumo Association said Goeido would likely be promoted to ozeki with a win over Kotoshogiku on the final day.
Yokozuna Kakuryu of Mongolia got both arms around Kisenosato and waltzed the ozeki out over the edge in the penultimate bout to pick up his 11th win against four losses. Kisenosato saw his record fall to 9-6.
No. 11 maegashira Takayasu fell out of contention when he was swatted down by No. 4 maegashira Takekaze to fall to 11-4. Takekaze improved to 9-6.
Popular No. 5 maegashira Endo wrapped up a winning record of 8-7 when he swatted down Bulgarian komusubi Aoiyama, who finished at 6-9.
Egypt's Osunaarashi missed out on a winning record when he was thrust out over the edge by No. 6 maegashira Myogiryu. No. 3 maegashira Osunaarashi dropped to 7-8 while Myogiryu finished 11-4.
Elsewhere, No. 10 maegashira Toyonoshima finished with an impressive 10-5 record when he dispatched top maegashira Shohozan who fell to 4-11.
Hakuho captures 30th Emperor's Cup – The Japan Times, July 27
MONGOLIA ELIMINATED FROM EAST ASIAN CUP PRELIMINARY QUALIFIER
July 26 (InfoMongolia) According to the fixed schedule, the Mongolian National Football Team had played against Macau but lost 2:3 on July 25th and Mongolia has been eliminated from the preliminary competition Round 1 of the EAFF East Asian Cup 2015.
The same group competitors' match was also held same day as scheduled between Guam and North Mariana Islands and Guam took its' second lead by 3:0 and the Guam National Football Team moved up to the preliminary competition Round 2 of EAFF East Asian Cup 2015 with overall 7 points advantage.
At its' first match, the Mongolian National Team won the North Mariana Islands by 4:0 but lost 0:2 at the second match against the host nation Guam and again lost 2:3 against Macau on yesterday's match.
So, Mongolia stood at the third row with 3 points in the group standings and finished its' competition in the EAFF East Asian Cup 2015.
The preliminary competition Round 2 of the EAFF East Asian Cup 2015 will take place on coming November in Taiwan through which the host nation Taiwan will compete against Guam, North Korea and Hong-Kong national teams in the same group stage.
The winner of the preliminary competition Round 2 will get the notable advantage moving to the final competition round to compete against China, South Korea and Japan. The final round will be held in the People's Republic of China in July 2015 and the winner will become the Champion of the EAFF East Asian Cup 2015.
First Mongolian national belly dancing competition announced
July 27 (UB Post) A belly dance contest will be organized for the first time in Mongolia. The registration of the competition will continue from August 1 to September 1.
Belly dancing originated in the Middle East and is developing rapidly in Asia. A world belly dance championship is held every year.
Belly dancing has gained a lot of popularity in Mongolia, especially among women. According to the Mongolian Belly Dance Development Center, approximately 6,000 people so far have been involved in belly dance training and learned basic elements of the dance. Some 20 Mongolian dancers are currently training to become professional belly dancers .
Since it is the first time the Mongolian Belly Dance Development Center is organizing a belly dance contest, they are striving to involve as many dancers as possible.
There are no age or professional limits in the competition.
Some 20 participants will be shortlisted in the first stage of the competition and enrolled into professional training and an instructor will choreograph their performance for the next stage.
The closing performance of the competition will be held on November 28.
Room #5, Coffice Hub, 5th Floor, Time Center
21 Baga Toiruu Street, Sukhbaatar District 8
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia 15160
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