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Tuesday, August 19, 2014
Headlines in Italic are ones modified by Cover Mongolia from original
Announcement made after Monday close. MMC closed +1.47% to HK$0.69 Monday. MMC trading -2.9% Tuesday morning
MMC: Interim Results
August 18 -- For the six months ended 30 June 2014, Mongolian Mining Corporation ("MMC" or the "Company") and its subsidiaries (the "Group") sold a total of 3.2 million tonnes ("Mt") of coal products and generated total revenue of USD192.6 million, compared to 3.1 Mt of coal products sold with total revenue of USD247.8 million for the six months ended 30 June 2013.
The decrease in the total revenue was largely attributable to continued negative coking coal price trend, and to a lesser extent, to a lower sales volume of washed hard coking coal ("HCC").
The average selling price ("ASP") for HCC was USD86.2 per tonne for the six months ended 30 June 2014, compared to USD98.7 for the six months ended 30 June 2013, representing a decrease of 12.7%.
The loss attributable to the equity shareholders of the Company for the six months ended 30 June 2014 was USD28.0 million compared to a loss of USD25.2 million for the six months ended 30 June 2013. The basic loss per share attributable to the equity shareholders of the Company amounted to USD0.76 cents for the six months ended 30 June 2014, as compared to basic loss per share of USD0.68 cents for the six months ended 30 June 2013.
MANAGEMENT DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS
In the first half of 2014, crude steel production in China, the Group's principal market, witnessed an increase of approximately 5.7% compared to the same period in 2013. However, the price of coking coal remained under pressure amid competitive market conditions driven by the continued imbalance of global coking coal supply and demand. As a result of this imbalance, the average spot price for premium hard low-volatile coking coal imported into northern China from seaborne markets in the first half of 2014 was down by 22.3 % compared to the average price in the first half of 2013.
During the period under review, the Group's management remained focused on cash flow management strategies to ensure liquidity, strictly controlling operating costs and limiting capital expenditure. Production output from the Group in the first half of 2014 was optimized to support this strategy, and adjusted downward based upon available product inventory levels and sales volume projections to ensure continuity of supply meeting customers' requirements.
Within the challenging market, the Group maintained its leading position as the largest coal exporter from Mongolia with around 3.1 Mt of coal products exported in the first half of 2014, representing approximately one-third of the total coal export volume from Mongolia during the same period. Still operating as the only major washed coal producer and exporter from Mongolia, the Group's market share on an equivalent washed product basis is higher still.
With an aim to expand its integrated coking coal mining, processing, transportation and marketing platform, the Group implemented strategic measures to further improve its market penetration within China. These included the establishment of a joint venture company with Risun Mining Co., Ltd ("Risun") for coal trading and distribution, and with Shenhua Group ("Shenhua") of China for development of cross border railway infrastructure. These measures were pursued to improve access to transportation infrastructure interconnecting Mongolia and China, improving supply network and distribution in order to deliver more cost effective coal products to end-users in the main steel producing regions within China. This improvement to the coal delivery chain is expected to increase the Group's market penetration, strengthen the Group's position as a reliable supplier of high quality coking coal products, and enhance the Group's brand reputation in the target markets within China.
As part of the measures taken to maintain liquidity, on 5 March 2014, the Group successfully refinanced its existing coal pre-export loan facility. This reduced the burden of scheduled repayments in 2014, and extended the maturity of the loan until 1 December 2016. In addition, on 13 February 2014, the Group received approximately USD90.3 million for transfer of the UHG-GS Road to Erdenes MGL LLC, a state-owned Company appointed by the GoM to exercise state ownership pursuant to a decision by the GoM dated 16 August 2013.
PCY closed +10% to C$0.055
Prophecy Coal Consolidates Chandgana Nyalga Coal Basin, and Enrolls a Mongolian Shareholder to its Power Subsidiary
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Aug. 18, 2014) - Prophecy Coal Corp. ("Prophecy" or the "Company") (TSX:PCY)(OTCQX:PRPCF)(FRANKFURT:1P2) is pleased to announce that it has entered into binding agreements with Cosmo Coal LLC ("Cosmo") to:
1. Consolidate the assets of Prophecy's wholly-owned subsidiary, Chandgana Coal LLC ("Chandgana Coal") with the assets of Tugalgatai Mining LLC ("Tugalgatai"), which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Cosmo, into: Chandgana Tugalgatai Coal LLC, a newly-incorporated Mongolian company of which, Prophecy will own 51% and Cosmo will own 49%.
2. Transfer, for nominal consideration, 34% of the issued and outstanding shares of Prophecy's wholly-owned subsidiary, Prophecy Power Generation LLC ("PPG") to Cosmo.
3. Accept Cosmo's nomination of one new member to Prophecy's Board of Directors.
These actions are collectively referred to below as the "Transaction".
Further, Cosmo and Prophecy signed a non-binding intent letter in July whereby Cosmo agreed to assist PPG in securing a concession agreement and power purchase agreement, and Prophecy agreed to use its best efforts to bring to the power plant project equity investors, secure bank financing, and manage the equipment procurement and construction cycle.
The Tugalgatai Licenses contain an estimated coal resource of 2.33 billion tonnes according to official records from the Minerals Resource Authority of Mongolia. The resource is considered a historic estimate derived from records prepared previously by a wholly-owned subsidiary of Vale S.A.
If the 600MW power plant and coal mine begin operation, PPG and Chandgana are expected (based on current statistics) to be the largest private employer in Khentii province, and the largest private revenue contributor to the province.
The above land use rights, power plant construction and environmental licenses are all held by PPG, of which Cosmo will become a 34% shareholder (with Prophecy retaining 66%) upon completion of the Transaction.
Having a significant Mongolian shareholder in PPG could pave the way to the signing of a concession agreement and power purchase agreement with the Mongolian government.
Prophecy and Cosmo have met representatives from some of the world's largest thermal power plant and coal to gas/coal to liquid developers. It is expected that the Transaction will bring about greater economies of scale, and enable synergies to fast-track the development of these projects.
The Transaction is expected to close by October 2014, subject to regulatory approval. The technical contents of this news release have been reviewed and approved by Christopher M. Kravits, P.Geo, who is a Qualified Person as defined in NI 43-101. Mr. Kravits has 35 years of relevant US and international coal geology experience. He has been working actively in Mongolia since 2007.
MSE Weekly Review: Top 20 -0.78%, Turnover ₮129.69 Million
August 18 (Asia Pacific Securities) --
The MSE benchmark Top 20 index dropped last week. The market closed at 16,028, down MNT 125.77 (0.78%) from the previous week.
A total of 71,908 shares, equivalent to MNT 129.69 million, were traded during the week. Compared to the previous week, the trading volume was decreased by 35,929 shares, but the trading value went up by 58.93 million from the previous week. There were total of 197 transactions.
Most Traded Shares by Volume and Value
Trade and catering service provider the Jargalant Uils ("JLT") was the most traded company with 15,700 shares. Remicon ("RMC") was the second most traded firm with 10,110 shares. In terms of market value, Gobi ("GOV") traded the most with MNT 45.09 million. Please note that APS had rated GOV's stock as a "BUY". After GOV, Tavan Tolgoi ("TTL") had the second largest trading value.
Chrome producer the Mon-It Buligaar ("MBG") was the biggest gainer and traded at MNT 800.00, a 12.9% increase from the previous week. Mongol Nekhmel ("MNH") and Darkhan Nekhii ("NEH") also showed strong advances with shares increasing by 9.17% and 6.99% respectively.
Fur products manufacturer Sor ("SOR") has declined by 11.12% and traded at MNT 2,350.00. Nekheesgui Edlel ("NXE") faced the second most significant loss with its share price dropping by 11.11% (MNT 200.00).
APS Analysis & Review
Trading value of the MSE Top 20 index decreased slightly last week. Majority of the trade was made on the Gobi ("GOV") in terms of value, which was 34.76% of total trade.
By the board of directors' decision, Ulaanbaatar Hotel ("ULN") announced shareholders special meeting on 20th of August. This meeting will discuss the change of the company structure to become Limited Liability Company. In addition to that rules and regulations are expected to change as well. Thus, the company is expected to delist from MSE in near future.
Hermes Centre JSC ("HRM") held their board meeting on August 8, and decided to distribute MNT 6.11 dividends for per share. Thus, the company will distribute MNT 480.10 million to shareholders, and last year they have returned MNT 5.82 per share as dividends. This money will be transferred to shareholders' accounts from on August 20.
Long waited MSE's mobile application is going to be released on October 1, 2014. This application will update real time index and price information to MSE's clients. Application enables customers to create their own portfolio and give signals on the higher price fluctuation. The application will be distributed through mobile AppStore.
Mongolian Securities Clearing House and Central Depository (SCHCD) reported that there are 10 Joint Stock Companies have distributed dividends this year, by July 31, 2014. Therefore SCHCD transferred total of MNT 817.36 million dividends to the shareholders account. Please find the disclosed information on the left.
MSE News for August 18: Top 20 +0.14% to 16,050.33, Turnover ₮4.2 Million
Ulaanbaatar, August 18 (MONTSAME) At the Stock Exchange trades held Monday, a total of 1,343 shares of nine JSCs were traded costing MNT four million 172 thousand and 590.00.
"APU" /453 units/, "Mongolia Telecom" /382 units/, "Avto impex" /245 units/, "Arig gal" /180 units/ and "Ereentsav" /35 units/ were the most actively traded in terms of trading volume, in terms of trading value--"APU" (MNT one million 780 thousand and 290), "Avto impex" (MNT 759 thousand and 500), "Mongolia Telecom" (MNT 592 thousand and 100), "Gazar suljmel" (MNT 450 thousand) and "Arig gal" (MNT 414 thousand).
The total market capitalization was set at MNT one trillion 612 billion 616 million 109 thousand and 760. The Index of Top-20 JSCs was 16,050.33, increasing by MNT 21.78 or 0.14% against the previous day.
BDSec: Prospectus For Stock Offering with Preemptive Rights to Raise Minimum ₮11.59 Billion
In accordance with the "Company law", "Securities market law" and relevant laws of Financial Regulatory Commission of Mongolia, the Issuer is offering 6,000,000 common shares in order to finance working capital and increase share capital of the company to 1,700,000 MNT.
Additional shares offered to the public will be traded through Mongolian stock exchange. Prior to the public offering, shareholders who owned shares of the company as of March 3rd, 2014 will be entitled to exercise preemptive rights offering, in accordance with an article #38 of the "Company law" The remaining shares from rights offering will be sold to the public. The company's ticker registered on Mongolian Stock Exchange is "BDS:522".
Rights offering price:
Public offering price:
Will be decided by the BOD based on market price
Amount of raising capital:
Amount at rights offering price:
Amount at market price:
Anand Advocates LLP
HBOil Seeks Approval to Issue 45 Million Shares to Convert ₮8.98 Billion Debt
August 18 (Cover Mongolia) HBOil JSC (MSE:HBO) has submitted a request on August 13 to the Mongolian Stock Exchange (MSE) to register shares to be issued to convert ₮8.98 billion convertible debt obligations. HBO shareholders have approved issuing 45 million shares at ₮200.
Link to release (in Mongolian)
Hermes Centre Board Approves ₮6.11/Share Interim Dividend Worth ₮480.1 Million
August 18 (Cover Mongolia) Hermes Centre JSC (MSE:HRM) board of directors meeting on August 8 has approved an interim dividend of ₮6.11 a share after having review half-year results.
Link to release (in Mongolian)
Mogi: hard work doing MSE's job
Ulaanbaatar Hotel Announces Extraordinary Meeting to Approve Board Decision to Delist
August 18 (Cover Mongolia) Ulaanbaatar Hotel (MSE:ULN) has announced an extraordinary shareholders meeting on August 20 by the decision of the board to discuss board resolution to restructure UB Hotel as a LLC.
Link to release (in Mongolian)
BoM MNT Rates: Monday, August 18 Close
August MNT vs USD, CNY Chart:
BoM issues ₮10 billion 1-week bills, total outstanding -6.2% to ₮335 billion
August 18 (Bank of Mongolia) BoM issues 1 week bills worth MNT 10 billion at a weighted interest rate of 12.0 percent per annum /For previous auctions click here/
BoM Monthly Statistical Bulletin, July 2014
August 18 (Bank of Mongolia) --
BoM: CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEET OF BANKS
August 18 (Bank of Mongolia) --
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Central bank bills
In domestic currency
In foreign currency
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Profit/loss of current year
Apartment Price Index Rises Two Percent in July
August 18 (Cover Mongolia) Bank of Mongolia in partnership with consortium of real estate agencies Tenkhleg Zuuch, Aktiv Zuuch and Mongolian Properties has announced July "Apartment Price Index". The index calculates the average change in prices of new and old apartments that are for sale.
API has risen 2% in July over June, i.e. apartment prices in UB have risen 2% in July month on month, 3.3% year to date and 17.2% year on year.
China eyes trade route deal with Mongolia during Xi visit
August 18 (Reuters) - China expects to sign agreements to give landlocked and resource-rich Mongolia easier access to Chinese territory for its exports when President Xi Jinping visits the country this week, a senior diplomat said on Monday.
Mongolia, nervous about over-dependence on its enormous neighbor, had once favored a more circuitous and expensive northerly rail route via Russia that would connect its mines to the Pacific coast, a plan the World Bank said was unrealistic.
But in an apparent recognition that China is still the best option for Mongolian exports, Mongolia is now talking with China about a route directly south.
Assistant Chinese Foreign Minister Liu Jianchao said that making the trans-shipment of goods from Mongolia would be one of the topics for discussion during Xi's two-day trip to Ulan Bator, which astarts on Thursday.
"Everyone knows that Mongolia is a land-locked country with no sea ports, so the issue of trans-shipment, especially via China, is a very important need for Mongolia. China fully understands this and will do all it can to help Mongolia to smoothly and more easily carry out trans-shipments," Liu told reporters in Beijing.
"Both sides are currently having talks on this issue," he added, declining to provide details. "The direction of these talks is to make Mongolia's trans-shipments easier and smoother."
Soaring Chinese demand for commodities like coal has underwritten Mongolia's rapid growth, with more than 90 percent of its exports sold to China.
Still, Beijing's growing economic hegemony has caused disquiet among Mongolian lawmakers, who hastily drafted a law in 2012 to limit foreign ownership in "strategic" sectors.
Mongolia had ambitions to become China's top coking coal supplier (Mogi: which Mongolia did in 2011), largely through the development of one of the world's biggest untapped mines at Tavan Tolgoi, near the Chinese border.
However Mongolia has complained that it has not received fair value for the coal, arguing that the lack of alternative buyers allows Chinese firms to drive down prices. A dispute with Chalco, which signed a supply deal with Tavan Tolgoi in 2011, has contributed to a decline in coal shipments.
Liu said that while there were "different points of view" on certain issues, generally China felt that Mongolia welcomed Chinese business.
"From what we can see from our contacts with the Mongolian government, people and companies, the Mongolia side really welcomes China's investment," he said.
"Both sides have had very effective cooperation on the energy and mining side. Talks on relevant projects, including coal mines, railways and roads are ongoing. We hope that there can continue to be progress."
In October, Mongolia agreed to establish a working group with China to oversee the construction of new road, rail and pipeline infrastructure connecting the two countries with Russia.
Liu would only say that China was talking with both Mongolia and Russia about the oil pipeline.
Energy deals expected as Xi heads to Mongolia
August 18 (CCTV) Chinese President Xi Jinping is set to begin a two-day state visit to neighboring Mongolia starting Thursday. It will be his first visit to the country since taking office two years ago, and also the first for a Chinese president in 11 years.
During his visit, Xi will meet with his Mongolian counterpart Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj on the future development of China-Mongolia ties.
China has been Mongolia's largest trading partner and source of investment for over a decade, and experts believe the visit will focus on deepening economic relations.
Big deals expected:
-The visit is expected to result in major deals in energy and infrastructure.
-According to Mongolian authorities, a gas supply agreement is expected to be reached.
-The deal will include the construction of two coal factories that will start producing gas in 2019.
-The majority of the gas they produce will be transported to China.
-Mongolian media outlets have also reported on possible cooperation in building and running an industrial park close to the China-Mongolia border.
-Other areas of cooperation include mining, animal husbandry and transportation.
Watch this video for a deeper understanding of China-Mongolia ties: http://youtu.be/X8cSvCWEJMc
Banpu halves capital expenditure in Mongolia till 2015
August 15 (Bangkok Post) SET-listed Banpu Plc, Asean's leading coal miner, is likely to cut its planned capital expenditure this year and next by US$150 million from $779 million by postponing and adjusting investment projects in Australia and Mongolia, says chief executive Chanin Vongkusolkit.
In Australia, Banpu moved machinery from its Newstand mine to the Myuna project earlier this month, which should increase production output at Myuna by 300,000 tonnes to 2.1 million tonnes a year. Banpu scrapped its plan to produce high-cost coking coal at Newstand, reducing its planned investment of $197 million for 2014-15 by about $100 million.
Banpu's five-year investment plan through 2015 allotted $779 million to be spent this year and next, with 40% allocated to its coal-fired Hongsa power plant in Laos, said Mr Chanin.
Also, its investment plan in Mongolia has changed and the capital required till 2015 will be halved to $50 million. Major investment in Mongolia might resume some time between 2016-17, he said.
Mongolia aims to become a major player in the tourism market
Mongolia's prime minister on strategies and the future of tourism
August 15 (ITB Berlin) "Tourism plays an important role in our country", says Mongolia's prime minister, Altankhuyag Norov. On 23 June 2014 he set the tone for future growth, announcing that Mongolia would be the partner country of ITB Berlin 2015. Figures show that in 2013 Mongolia registered around 417,000 international arrivals and a market turnover of around 263 million dollars, equivalent to about four per cent of the country's GDP. The prime minister is optimistic about the future: the aim is for international arrivals to reach 600,000 in 2015. The 2016 goal is 800,000 and in 2017 Mongolia will be targeting one million tourists. Accordingly, income is expected to rise from 600 million to one billion dollars. What is more, Altankhuyag Norov wants to convince the government of the benefits of the internet, which he considers key to developing Mongolia's tourism industry.
In future, tourism managers will be making a joint effort. Thus, a CNN marketing team helped to develop the new slogan 'Mongolia, Nomadic by Nature'. This trademark slogan aims to promote Mongolia around the world as a must-see destination, a country in which a nomadic lifestyle that is close to nature has been kept alive over the centuries. Ts. Oyungerel, Minister of Culture, Sport and Tourism: "As the partner country of ITB Berlin 2015 Mongolia will have an opportunity to show the entire world what makes it so unique."
As a result of Mongolia's participation in ITB Berlin 2015 as the show's official partner country cooperation within the public and private sectors has intensified. In order to join the ranks of the world's cost-efficient and sustainable tourism destinations Mongolia has several projects that it aims to realise. Strategies for the future include building a new international airport, new visa-free travel regulations for citizens in over 40 countries and promoting sustainable tourism. According to Altankhuyag Norov, "these joint efforts aim to conserve nature and preserve Mongolia's cultural heritage and the country's unique traditions for future generations while establishing long-term economic growth."
• An independent, parliamentary republic in Central Asia situated next to China and Russia
• The country of the legendary Genghis Khan, the Silk Road, the Gobi Desert, and rich in long-standing traditions
• The capital Ulan Bator has five-star accommodation and direct international transport links
• Tourist highlights: horse trekking, excursions to visit nomads, dinosaur fossils, ancient temples and ruins, festivals
PODCAST - Mongolia: Investment landscape
August 14 (Control Risks) Anna Walker, Head of Europe Analysis at Control Risks looks at the current investment situation in Mongolia following the introduction recently of some more investor-friendly legislation.
FAO Country Brief: Mongolia, August 12
August 12 (UN Food & Agriculture Organization) --
FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT
· The 2014 wheat harvest is expected to recover from 2013's below-average output
· Wheat imports forecast to increase in the 2013/14 marketing year
· Prices of beef and mutton at near-record levels
The 2014 wheat harvest is expected to recover
FAO's latest forecast for the 2014 wheat production, to be harvested in September, stands at 430 000 tonnes, 17 percent up from last year's weather-depressed harvest. The good output is mainly attributed to generally favourable climatic conditions between April and mid-August in the main producing areas and a 6 percent expansion in the area planted compared to last year's reduced level, due to the delayed onset of seasonal rains.
Wheat imports forecast to increase sharply in the 2013/14 marketing year (October/September)
Wheat and rice are the two major imported cereals, mainly from the Russian Federation and Kazakhstan. Cereal imports in the 2013/14 marketing year (October/September) are forecast to increase by more than one-third from last year's low level, to 155 800 tonnes. The increase reflects larger wheat imports, which are expected to grow by 50 percent to 120 000 tonnes, due to lower domestic availabilities. Rice imports in 2014 are anticipated to remain similar to last year's average level.
Prices of wheat flour, beef and mutton increase in 2014
Wheat flour prices increased between March and May, due to lower domestic availabilities during the lean season. However, in June prices remained unchanged, partly attributed to decreasing export prices in the Russian Federation, the country's main supplier. In Ulaanbaatar, the capital's main market, prices of wheat flour in June were 23 percent above last year's level. Bread prices, generally subsidized, have remained stable since March 2013 and were lower than those of wheat flour. Prices of rice showed comparatively stable trends in recent months.
Prices of beef and mutton meat in Ulaanbaatar, which have been generally increasing since the beginning of 2014, were at record and near-record levels in June. Continued strong domestic demand, associated with overall economic growth, has supported prices.
According to the Central Bank of Mongolia, the year-on-year inflation rate in June 2014 was 14.6 percent.
Even/Odd Plate Numbered Participation Announced for Vehicles, August 22-31
August 18 (infomongolia.com) The Traffic Police Department of Ulaanbaatar issued a 10-day regulation permitting only vehicles those plate numbers ending with EVEN numbers to participate on the road on EVEN days and vehicles ending with ODD numbers allowed on ODD days, which is effective from August 22 until August 31, 2014.
The regulation that approved by Capital City Administration is connected with the increasing number of vehicles entering the City due to new academic year that cause a heavy traffic. Therefore, the temporary regulation to decrease the traffic will be implemented for above 10 days between 07:00 am and 09:00 pm.
In other words, vehicles with license plates ending with 0, 2, 4, 6 or 8 are allowed to participate in the road traffic on August 22, 24, 26, 28, 30 and vehicles ending with 1, 3, 5, 7 or 9 will be riding on August 23, 25, 27, 29 and 31. The regulation does not comply to special equipped vehicles on duties such as police, ambulance, fire and etc.
President Addresses Northeast Asian Mayors' Forum
By B. Khuder
Ulaanbaatar, August 18 (MONTSAME) The leader of Mongolia Ts.Elbegdorj delivered a speech at the opening of the Northeast Asian Mayors' Forum which kicked off Monday in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Ulaanbaatar.
The forum has brought together delegates of Russia, China, Japan, the Republic of Korea and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea besides of Mongolia.
Starting his speech, the President underlined an importance of the Mayors' Forum and wished the gathered successes.
"Recent years, it is said that the development of world countries has been determined by their city mayors, and the Mayors are the kind of leaders who bear the people's trust," he said. Our cities have both good jobs and problems, "so I hope that this forum will seek opportunities to tackle them," Mr Elbegdorj said.
After this he highlighted his ideas on cities. "The most vital matter is to develop a city for its people; which means all special structures that always serve the people's needs. If we do our urban planning in this way, the urban development tendencies will go correctly," Mr Elbegdorj said.
He also noted a unique feature of the Forum--"it has been running here prior to visits of the Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin". Here he expressed a hope that agreements reached at this forum will be touched upon during these visits.
The Northeast Asian Mayors' Forum will continue until Tuesday.
Ulaanbaatar and Pyongyang to Accelerate Economic, Agricultural and Cultural Partnership
August 18 (infomongolia.com) Upon the initiation of the Governor of Capital City, the Northeast Asian Mayors' Forum themed "Sustainable and Inclusive Cities" is ongoing in Ulaanbaatar on August 18-19, 2014.
At this Forum over 120 representatives from six Northeast Asian countries are participating and Governor of Capital City and Mayor of Ulaanbaatar E.Bat-Uul received in his office delegates from North Korea headed by Chairman of Pyongyang City Mr. Cha Hui-rim on August 16, 2014.
Ulaanbaatar and Pyongyang cities have established sister-city relations in November 2003 and noting this Mayor E.Bat-Uul underlined, "Although our two cities collaborating since 2003, the partnership comparatively slowed down in recent years. We have a lot to study from Pyongyang, particularly, we want to cooperate in economy, city planning, gardening and agricultural sectors".
In response, Pyongyang Mayor Cha Hui-rim said, "We glad to participate in this Forum and the cooperation between our two countries has been accelerating in the past two years. In this regard we are ready to deepen partnership between the two cities focusing on economy, agriculture and cultural spheres".
UB Mayor Meets N.Korean Counterpart – Montsame, August 18
Elbegdorj Q&A with 13 Chinese New Agencies
August 18 (MONTSAME) President of Mongolia, Mr. Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj met Chinese journalists on 15 August 2014 and answered their questions.
The list of representatives of Chinese media who visited Mongolia on the eve of the state visit of the President of the PRC, Xi Jinping is as follows:
1. Sun Guangyong Deputy Head of the Second Division, News Editorial Board, International Department, Renmin Ribao
2. Fengjian Senior Reporter, International Department, Xinhua News Agency
3. Xiao Wuming Editor, CCTV
4. Tong Lage Deputy Director, North East Asia and Central Asia Centre, China Radio International
5. Qiu Bo Reporter, International Department, China Daily
6. Ma Zhenhua Deputy Chief of Office, Guangming Daily
7. Qi Ping Deputy Director, Editorial Board, Economic Daily
8. Bai Tiantian Reporter, Editor of domestic news, English edition of Global Times
9. Xie Kaihua Deputy Director, Special Topics Editorial, Reference News
10. Fang Yuan Third Secretary, Press and Information Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, PRC
11. Yang Tao Reporter, China Daily
12. Lei Hao Reporter, CCTV
13. Wang Ning Reporter, Xinhua Agency
President Ts.Ebegdorj: - I suppose that you are interested in the issues related to the bilateral relations, especially in the upcoming state visit of the President of PRC, Xi Jinping, which will take place this month. Therefore, I am ready to answer your questions.
Q: Good morning, Mr President. Thank you for sparing you time to meet our media representatives. This year marks the 65th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Mongolia and China. Over the past period, our bilateral relations and cooperation have been steadily and uninterruptedly developing, and today they are at the best time in their history. The cooperation between the two countries is expanding in all fields. Moreover, the growing frequency of high-level visits between the two countries serves as a solid basis for developing strategic partnership. What concrete ideas, as head of state, do you have in your mind for further development of the strategic partnership between the two countries? What concrete measures would you take? Thank you.
A: Mongolia was one of the first countries to establish diplomatic relations with the People's Republic of China, and it could be even stated that we are one of a very few of China's neighbours that shares with it the longest history of diplomatic relations. As you have just mentioned, 65 years have passed since then. In recent years, Mongolia has been striving to broaden its strategic partnership with China in every possible way. During President Xi Jinping's visit, the two sides are going to upgrade Mongolia-China strategic partnership to the level of comprehensive strategic partnership. By comprehensive strategic partnership, we understand relations which meet the fundamental interests of our two peoples. The comprehensive strategic partnership would make our cooperation richer in substance. There are five prospective areas in this context.
In developing comprehensive strategic partnership, we should, first of all, increase mutual trust. Secondly, the security cooperation between the two countries will be broadened. Thirdly, substantial progress will be achieved in the issues concerning transit transportation and infrastructure. Fourthly, the contents and form of the multilateral cooperation will be enriched. Finally, mutually beneficial bilateral trade, investment and economic cooperation will be brought to new levels.
I believe that certain agreements covering the above-mentioned areas will be concluded during President Xi Jinping's visit.
Q: As of today the main pillar of the bilateral strategic partnership is trade and economic cooperation. For more than ten years in row the PRC has been Mongolia's not only largest investor but also its main trading partner. Our two countries are developing mutually beneficial cooperation in trade and economy, while their economies have mutually complementary nature.
In this regard, China is interested in fostering cooperation in the fields of trade and economy under the moto of "win-win cooperation". Within this framework, the Chinese big businesses are paying serious attention to Mongolia's investment environment and economic policies. In connection with the upcoming visit of President Xi Jinping, what is your position on increasing the level of the trade and economic cooperation and implementation of large-scale projects? How do you plan to increase the trust of Chinese investors?
A: I think that you have answered the largest part of your question yourself. The PRC is the leading trade and investment partner of Mongolia. I see that there are many ways to increase the trade and investment in the coming years. The improvement of investment environment is one of main priorities in Mongolia's trade and economic policies. The Parliament has recently adopted certain legislations in this area. We will also continue to take measures to improve the investment environment. In investment and trade fields we will pursue the principles of equality and mutual benefit.
Q: President Xi Jinping attaches great importance to developing friendly relations with China's neighboring countries. He has initiated four main principles in developing relations with China's neighbouring countries which are: to be more friendly, more honest, more beneficial and more tolerant. Both Mongolia and the PRC are interested in mutually beneficial cooperation in developing the North East Asian region. Within this framework, the two countries are actively participating in the activities of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building in Asia and Shanghai Cooperation Organization. How could the two countries contribute to development of the regional cooperation?
A: President Xi Jinping has clearly defined our bilateral cooperation in the region. The bilateral relations between our two countries have become one of the most harmonic relations in the region. I agree with this conclusion. I take this opportunity to express my gratitude to the PRC for continuous support of Mongolia's initiative in the North East Asian cooperation and especially in the security field.
Q: Your Excellency has met with President Xi Jinping many times and you two have become friends. What are your expectations for President Xi Jinping's official visit to Mongolia? At the same time, what long-term perspectives do you see in our bilateral relations?
A: Personally, I am very grateful that President Xi Jinping pays special attention to our bilateral relations. We had a bilateral meeting in Bishkek during the Shanghai Cooperation Organization Summit last September and then last May year in Shanghai on the sidelines of an international gathering, when President Xi Jinping invited me to a breakfast-meeting, during which we exchanged views on a broad range of issues. President Xi Jinping has very friendly and positive outlook on our bilateral relations.
During his upcoming visit we are hoping to finalize and sign some of the key bilateral agreements and treaties that have been under discussion for many years. Since Mongolia is a landlocked country the issue of transit transportation is of utmost importance for us. I am happy that negotiations on two agreements, namely one on transit transportation, railway network and one on seaports have been successful, and that these agreements are at their concluding stage. I am confident that these agreements would be signed during President Xi Jinping's visit.
Moreover, I am confident that certain agreements covering energy production, coal, mineral resources, infrastructure, culture and humanitarian fields will be concluded during the visit. Also I hope that private sectors of the two countries will sign contracts and agreements so that they could launch concrete business projects.
Q: Mr. President, if I may know, how do you spend your free time?
A: I spend my free time with my family and children.
Q: After President Xi Jinping's visit, the Russian President, Mr. Vladimir Putin will also be paying an official visit to Mongolia. Mongolia right now is at the centre of the world's attention. Please comment on Mongolia's policy on developing relations with China, Russia and the US?
President: Mongolia has a very unique geographical location. It is the only country in the world situated between China and Russia. And that is precisely why it is stipulated in the Foreign Policy Concept of Mongolia that "developing friendly relations with Russia and China is a first priority of Mongolia's foreign policy".
I always believe that there are two true things for Mongolia. One is that we are neighbours. And the second is that because we are neighbours we are constantly faced with issues that need to be resolved. Therefore, we should strive to resolve the issues that arise during our time to meet the interests of our peoples as well as interests of our neighbours.
As for policy with regard to relations with other countries, Mongolia defines it as the 'third neighbour' policy. I would like to note that our 'third neighbor' policy does not involve neither confronting nor to balancing our relations with our immediate neighbours. I hope that you understand that in general, developing equal relations with all the countries in the world is consistent with Mongolia's core foreign policy principles.
Just to sidetrack from what I have just said, for me it is the first time that I am meeting with a group of representatives of media from the People's Republic of China, so aside from officially addressing your questions, I wanted to give you all an opportunity to ask them. I am a journalist myself. So I always try to remember and respect how journalists look for and wish to take every opportunity such as this, to ask questions.
Q: We are happy to see Mongolia's fast trade and economic growth in recent years. Please comment on Mongolia's policy on industrialization. What kind of processing of mining products, particularly deep processing of coal being carried out?
A: There are some weaknesses in Mongolia's current economic development. The economy heavily depends on one sector - mining. One of our main economic policies is to reduce reliance on the mining sector. And to do so, it is important to develop industries, to diversify the income source of the economy. We mention about this to our Chinese colleagues as well. Mongolia cannot be seen merely as an exporter of raw materials. This does not meet the interests of our people. Therefore, it is in Mongolia's best interest to process minerals and agricultural commodities that creates value locally and then to export quality goods. Of course it would not be possible to produce everything in Mongolia. But we believe that there are immense opportunities to process and produce certain products. I would like to take this opportunity to thank China for understanding and supporting Mongolia's policy and also for cooperating with us.
Q: Mr. President, you have just mentioned that Mongolia and China will be signing a document on security cooperation. What are the concrete cooperative actions? Is there any specific cooperation on air defence?
President: When we talk about security cooperation, in a broader sense we mean strengthening mutual understanding and promoting confidence-building among the countries of the Northeast Asia. Mongolia has good-neighbourly relations with all the countries in the region, particularly the Northeast Asia; it has no outstanding issues with any of them. Last year we have formally launched an initiative for "Ulaanbaatar Dialogue on Northeast Asian Security". Just recently, we have held an international conference among scholars on that initiative. We have also played an intermediary role to hold bilateral meetings upon the request from governments of certain countries. These are the examples of Mongolia's potentials to contribute to strengthening mutual understanding between the countries of Northeast Asia. I would like to highlight in this regard, that this would be increased with the establishment of comprehensive strategic partnership with China. Cooperation between our military, defence, security and special force has been on increase. However, it should be noted that this cooperation by all means is not directed against the interests of any country.
Another important aspect of Mongolia's defence policy is promoting and strengthening peace throughout the world and taking active part in peacekeeping operations.
Q: Mr. President, there have been some cases where you have openly, through media, criticized some of Mongolian politicians, MPs. These were associated with the issue of gauge rails across the border to China. Please comment on Mongolia's rail policy. And also there are talks on implementing a project called "Silk Road" from the Chinese side and from the Mongolian side "Steppes", a project to connect five transit corridors. Are there any connections between these two?
A: Mongolia's state policy on railway is very clear. Due to its location Mongolia can become a bridge connecting countries of Asia-Pacific and Europe. The closest route between Asia and Europe is through Mongolia. There are immense potentials for Mongolia-China-Russia trilateral cooperation in this sector. We have not yet fully utilized all of these potentials. Mongolia's main railroad uses only one-sized gauge rails and that is the the former Soviet-standard wide gauge. Since Mongolia has two immediate neighbours we should consider the interests of both of its neighbours. The most important thing is Mongolia's interest. There is a policy that if it is necessary to use the current gauge for the new railroad, then it is to build using the current gauge and connected to the existing railroad network. However, if it considered that railroads from mining sites and other railroad routes to be constructed using different gauge size, there is a possibility to discuss and approve it at the Governmental as well as Parliament levels. It was already discussed at the Government level that the standard gauge railroad that is used in China can be constructed and this issue is submitted to the Parliament for further consideration. We have two neighbours and our neighbours use different gauge railroads and therefore, we consider that we need to pursue a flexible policy regarding the railroad standards. This policy is clearly outlined in the "State Policy on Railway Transportation". We have an open system that provides an opportunity for public and individuals to discuss and express their opinions openly on issues regarding the nation's development. Therefore, it takes longer time for final decisions. The advantages of openly discussing issues are that the thorough and open discussion provides smoother implementation and the public has unanimous understanding of it.
The Silk Road Initiative is actively discussed in our region. From the historical point of view, I consider that Mongolia and China played the most important roles in developing of the Silk Road. I personally consider that the Silk Road project cannot be imagined without participation of Mongolia and China. Our border with the People's Republic of China stretches for total of 4710 kilometers. However, in terms of development in railroads construction, gas pipelines and roads network, Mongolia lacks behind compared to achievements of some other neighbours of the People's Republic of China. There is a need for our countries to boost our cooperation in these fields and I trust that we can succeed on that. As for five corridors, my opinion is that we should start from the most realistic project first and continue step by step to others. The first realistic project should be construction of railroads. The other important channel is the production and export of energy from Mongolia.
Q: Cultural exchanges between Mongolia and China are successfully developing. It is great to know that we have jointly registered at UNESCO throat singing and traditional long song as a cultural heritage. Are there any activities directed at preserving the cultural heritages of both countries?
A: We are discussing the possibility of establishing a mechanism of mutual information sharing and dialogue prior to submission to UNESCO for registering cultural heritages. I am glad that we are making progress in this area.
Using the opportunity of meeting media representatives today, I would like to explain a core principle that we follow in Mongolia. Public, individuals and media in Mongolia enjoy an opportunity to freely and openly express their opinions on the issues related to our domestic issues. However, a solid and unified position should be maintained on the matters of foreign policy. We regretfully notice that articles containing inaccurate information related to sovereignty and history of Mongolia have recently been published in Chinese media and websites. We are carefully studying and monitoring this situation. We all know that mass media and operation of websites are strictly regulated in China. Inaccurate interpretation and publication of historical events, making wrong conclusions in relation to recent day developments is unhelpful in our endeavours to strengthen mutual trust and friendship between our nations.
I would like to share another matter of concern. I personally support President Xi Jinping's policy to strengthen the rule of law, combat corruption and limit unnecessary public expenditure. I also try to implement such measures in Mongolia. However, I consider that the time has come for us to pay greater attention to cross-border corruption in political spheres.
Another concern is related to import of labour from China. There are cases where relevant laws of Mongolia have been violated. Any country would enforce policies that are consistent with its laws and regulations. We are grateful for understanding of this position and current cooperation and look forward for continued cooperation in the future.
Q: During my time in Mongolia, I have seen that tourism sector is growing in Mongolia. What policies does Mongolia conduct to attract more tourists?
A: Tourism is an important sector that can contribute to economic development of Mongolia. Citizens of the People's Republic of China make up one of the biggest number of tourists in the world. I really wish that we grab this opportunity and broaden our cooperation in tourism sector. Because of landlocked location, air connection plays an important role for Mongolia as well. We are actively working in this direction and also broadening our cooperation with China by creating proper legal environment. I would like to note here that Mongolia is open to anyone who respects our traditions and is interested in getting acquainted with unique traditions of Mongolians and beautiful nature of Mongolia.
Q: It is a great pleasure to meet you today and to learn that you had also worked in the field of journalism. Also, I am grateful that everyone is granted an opportunity for asking a question. This is a great privilege for us. I think that lack of understanding and insufficient bilateral relations lead to those cases of misunderstanding between the two nations as you have just mentioned. In order to train more Chinese-speaking personnel and foster mutual understating, the Confucius Center was established in Ulaanbaatar. What kind of activities are planned to be carried out from Mongolian side?
A: I consider that role of mass media in fostering mutual understanding among nations is very important. Therefore, I wish that more and more representatives from Chinese mass media visit Mongolia to see the true situation, conduct interviews and broadcast to Chinese audience programmes based on actual facts. It is the same in politics and in life that in most of cases rumours are not true. Dialogue is very important and if we first recognize positive side of a certain issue, identify opportunities it renders and work for success then cooperation in any field will be the right one. Representatives of most recognized mass media have gathered here today. I personally try to read all articles published in Mongolian and English languages. Work of a journalist is difficult that knows no time limits. I am grateful to you for keeping journalism at high level and appreciate today's opportunity to meet you.
I have prepared small gifts for you. I am presenting you wrist watches similar to one that I have. Journalists always appreciate time.
Your contribution is paramount in increasing mutual understanding between our nations and boosting cooperation between the two countries. I wish all the best in your endeavours.
From late 1989 I have started to actively participate in political and social life. Since that time I had opportunities to have memorable meetings with various leaders of the People' Republic of China. However, I would like to emphasize that the approach of President Xi Jinping in building cooperation between the two countries is exceptional. I am confident that the visit of President Xi Jinping to Mongolia will be a great success.
Selenge 2014 Russian-Mongolian Joint Military Exercises to Continue until August 29
August 18 (infomongolia.com) The "Selenge 2014" Russian-Mongolian joint military field exercises are started at Munkh Khet polygon (firing field) near Choibalsan, the center of Dornod Aimag, Mongolia from August 15, 2014.
This year's military exercises are quite distinct from previous ones because the Selenge-2014 is being organized in the scope of the 75th anniversary of the victory by Soviet-Mongolian Army over the Kwantung Army of Japan in the Battles at the Khalkh River.
Over thousand militants from both sides with over 100 hardware units are participating, where Mongolian military servicemen are chaired by Brigadier General R.Sukhbat and Colonel B.Amgalanbaatar and the other part by Major General V.Ye.Sharagov.
The "Selenge" Russian-Mongolian joint military exercises will be continuing until August 29, 2014.
POPE FRANCIS SENDS TELEGRAM TO PRESIDENT ELBEGDORJ DURING FLIGHT OVER MONGOLIA
August 15 (President.mn) On August 13, 2014, during his flight to South Korea, Bishop of Rome, Pope Francis delivered telegram to President of Mongolia Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj.
In his telegram Pope Francis said: "As I fly over Mongolia, I extend to your Excellency and your fellow citizens the assurance of my best wishes. Invoking divine blessings upon you all, I pray that peace and well-being may flourish in the nation".
It's the Pope's first visit to Asia, and, as is papal protocol, during his flight, the Pontiff delivered a series of telegrams to the world leaders over whose countries he flew
Mongolia Immigration Issues Warning Against Nonessential Travel to West African Countries
August 18 (infomongolia.com) To date, the largest outbreak of Ebola virus disease (EVD), the outbreaks that have a case fatality rate of up to 90%, is occurred in West Africa, which is affecting Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia and Nigeria.
On August 08, 2014, the World Health Organization announced the EVD formally designated the outbreak as an emergency of international concern, which was first appeared simultaneously in Sudan and Congo in 1976.
Accordingly, affiliated organs report that no citizen of Mongolia is affected by the Ebola virus to date and the first statement was issued by Citizenship and Migration General Authority of Mongolia (CMGAM).
"As of today, it was registered that 12 citizens of Mongolia have returned from the Democratic Republic of Congo and currently there is no suspect of disease from these travelers, who are under control. The CMGAM is temporary not issuing a visa to Mongolia for those nationals whose country or region is registered as affected with EVD until the outbreak calms down. The CMGAM is also advising its citizens to avoid traveling to those regions if it is not essential".
Also, the National Center of Communicable Diseases (NCCD) reports, "We are doing some disinfections and analyses to those recently returned from and nearby countries affected with Ebora virus and giving people detailed info about the disease.
Moreover, we regularly exchange information with relevant bodies such the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and currently, there is no suspect registered with the EVD".
The General Staff of Mongolian Armed Forces reports, "However Mongolian militants are serving in hot spots overseas, but our peacekeepers are not involved in operations in those country or region, where the EVD outbreaks. Today, Mongolian peacekeepers are on duties in North and South Sudan and in Afghanistan".
'Remote Control' screened at Melbourne International Film Festival
August 18 (news.mn) Mongolian director S.Byamba's film "Remote Control" was selected for the Melbourne International Film Festival and shown to the Australian audience on August 10 and 12.
"Remote Control", which depicts the harmony and conflict between old and new in fast moving modern life, was seen by 600 visitors in two days. Melbourne International Film Festival, a renowned film festival in the Australia and Asia Pacific region, screened 320 films from 63 different countries in 2013.
"Remote Control" became the first Mongolian film ever selected for the festival.
This was a big move in bilateral cultural relations between Mongolia and Australia. "Remote Control" won the New Currents Award, the top prize of South Korea's Busan International Film Festival, and has been selected to screen in festivals in Munich, Shanghai, Terracotta, Seattle, Vilnius and an international film festival in Belgium.
Mongolian Movie Screened at MIFF – Montsame, August 18
Khuvsgul's Music and Drama Theatre performs at Festival de Montoire
August 18 (news.mn) The 42nd Festival de Montoire international folklore festival was held to celebrate world culture in Montoire, France, from August 12-17.
The Music and Drama Theatre of Khuvsgul Province staged performances for the first time at the festival, where ensembles and groups from Cuba, Uruguay, Ireland, France, the Canary Islands, Croatia, Bhutan, Vietnam and Nigeria were represented.
The annual folklore festival showcases folk music, dance groups and ensembles from every corner of the world and welcomes over 20,000 visitors.
The entire team of from the Music and Drama Theatre of Khuvsgul Province has participated in 14 festivals being held in France from May 28 through August 19.
Countryside Artists Participate in Int'l Festival in France – Montsame, August 18
Grant Funds First Preservation of Archaeological Region in East Gobi and Includes Sites 6,000 Years Old
August 15 (U.S. Embassy) The Embassy's Ambassador's Fund for Cultural Preservation funded a project for the Ikh Nart Reserve that is significant because is the first systematic effort at recognizing, recording, and making plans to preserve and protect cultural heritage landscapes of the East Gobi province (Dornogovi). The project team, headed by grant recipient Denver Zoological Foundation (DZF), discovered that Ikh Nart is extremely rich that sites range from Neolithic Period about 6000 years ago through the Mongolian Empire Period.
Ikh Nart Reserve is located in East Gobi and was established as a natural reserve in 1996. The Reserve covers approximately 66,000 hectares of grassland and semi-desert steppe environment and harbors a wide diversity of plant and animal species. Most archaeological research in Mongolia has been carried out in the north and northwestern portions of the country. There is literally no archaeological information or literature available for the Ikh Nart region; before this project, there had been no recognition of need for cultural heritage management strategies.
During this summer's field season the DZF, the Institute of Archeology - Mongolian Academy of Sciences (IA-MAS), and Earthwatch Institute volunteers, along with assistance from Mongolian Conservation Coalition, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, and the Anza-Borrego Foundation (California), completed the random sample survey of Ikh Nart Nature Reserve. Fifteen new cultural heritage sites were identified and are being registered with IA-MAS. The Cultural Heritage Ranger was hired, equipped, trained, and installed in his new position. In-depth investigation of one cultural heritage site dating back to the Hunnu Period was carried out. Lastly, an interpretive sign was developed for installation at the Ikh Nart Research Camp.
DZF has had a long-term partnership and cooperation with the Mongolian Academy of Sciences, and the two organizations work together to understand pressing issues in conservation and preservation. For this project, the Foundation also worked with Mongolian biologists, California State Parks, and the Institute of Archeology.
UNAIDS: Desk Review on the Legal and Policy Environment of Sexual Minorities in Mongolia
August 8 (UN Mongolia) The latest publication of UNAIDS, the Desk Review on the Legal and Policy Environment of Sexual Minorities in Mongolia, sheds light on the many problems that LGBT individuals face every day in the society.
The most serious human rights violations, according to survey participants, are problems in accessing legal services (27.8%); discrimination at the workplace (22.2%); facing harassment by the public and/or police when gathering together with fellow community members (22.2%); and getting their relationships recognized for official processes (20.4%).
To read the English version of the Desk Review, click here:
To read the Mongolian version of the Desk Review, click here:
UNAIDS would like to thank the LGBT Centre, the Support Centre NGO, the Together Centre NGO, and the Youth for Health Centre NGO for their assistance with the community surveys.
This desk review was conducted with the support of the 'European Initiative on Democracy and Human Rights Mongolia' grant by the European Union, as part of the project "Supporting civil society to strengthen the rights of Mongolia's sexual minorities and their families".
Top Mongolian fighter Narantungalag Jadambaa ready to put his country on the world map of MMA
August 18 (ONE FC) The biggest stage in Asian mixed martial arts (MMA) has been awaiting the presence of Narantungalag Jadambaa, who was out of action for 13 months while recovering from an injury that cost him his first loss in seven years.
Proving that he is still very much in the game, the 38-year-old top Mongolian fighter marked his ONE Fighting Championship (ONE FC) debut in May with much significance when he handed former Filipino champion Honorio Banario his third consecutive loss.
"I thank ONE FC for giving me such a big chance. I feel great now," Narantungalag said. "I would like to dedicate that comeback win to my teammates, family, supporters and the aspiring Mongolian youths who are currently training hard in MMA."
Opportunity of a lifetime
In only his second ONE FC outing, Jadambaa finds himself with the opportunity of a lifetime.
The ONE FC World Featherweight Championship is on the line as current titleholder Koji Oishi defends it once again; this time at ONE FC: REIGN OF CHAMPIONS at Dubai World Trade Centre on 29 August.
The former Legend FC champion plans to showcase his exciting style in front of what is set to be a full house in Dubai.
However, Jadambaa plans to leave with his hand raised in victory, along with capturing the most prestigious title in Asian MMA
A great honor it would be for the 12-fight veteran, Jadambaa added that he will "fight hard with all that he has to make his dream of winning the championship come true".
Blending the arts
Jadambaa excelled in many different martial arts before he found his way to MMA.
Holding a black belt in both Karate and Judo, it was only a matter of time before he used his experience to take on the world of MMA. Now, those skills see him vying for a world championship.
"MMA is the hardest of all martial arts, as you are able to use all that you know and you never know what will hit you next. It is tough and that's why I chose it," Jadambaa explained.
His professional MMA career started on the wrong foot with two straight losses, but he turned that around quickly and went on to achieve an eight-fight winning streak that spanned across a period of six years.
His most recent loss came at the hands of Japanese lightweight star Koji Ando, where Jadambaa suffered an accidental devastating ankle injury.
It is likely that Jadambaa will get the chance to avenge his loss, but right now he feels comfortable at the new weight category that he dropped down to.
"If I am given the chance for a rematch with Ando, I won't refuse it," Narantungalag exclaimed. "But at the moment, I think featherweight is suited for my height."
Being able to represent his home country of Mongolia on the premier world stage of MMA is a huge honor for Jadambaa.
He hopes his journey and achievements will inspire more athletes from his country to take up the sport.
"I am proud to be Mongolian and I hope we will see more and more Mongolian MMA fighters come out and becoming the number one fighter in the world one day. It is possible, as a lot of Mongolian young people have the confidence to train and succeed in MMA."
ONE FC: REIGN OF CHAMPIONS will be held on 29 August at Dubai World Trade Centre. Get your tickets for the blockbuster event at www.platinumlist.net or watch all the action live on STAR Sports or on livestream for US$9.99 at www.onefc.livesport.tv.
Deceased Mongolian teacher becomes Twitter trending topic
August 17 (Today's Zaman) Mongolian teacher Galimbek Sharivkhan, who died in a car accident in South Africa on Saturday, has become a trending topic on Twitter with the hashtag #MoğolistanınAdemTatlısı (Mongolia's Adem Tatlı) making the social networking site's trending topics lists for the world and Turkey on Saturday night.
Sharivhan was a teacher in Johannesburg at one of the Turkish schools established by educational volunteers affiliated with the faith-based Hizmet movement, inspired by the teachings of Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen.
He was involved in a traffic accident with his family on Saturday in Johannesburg, a provincial capital and one of South Africa's largest cities. Sharivhan died at the scene. His death on the evening of the very day he arrived to the city upset many.
Sharivkhan's friends created the hashtag on Twitter, a reference to the similarity of the circumstances of his passing to the late Adem Tatlı, another teacher at a Hizmet-affiliated school who died in traffic accident in Mongolia. Sharivkhan's friends called him "Mongolia's second Adem Tatlı" because he will also be buried thousands of miles away from his home country.
Tatlı, a Turkish citizen, was serving as an educational volunteer in Mongolia at the time of his fatal traffic accident.
The #MoğolistanınAdemTatlısı hashtag took the second spot on Twitter's list of worldwide trending topics at 8:25 p.m. and also was the top hashtag on the site's list of trending topics in Turkey. Social media users spoke about his tragic death under the hashtag.
He will be buried in the Nizamiye Mosque Cemetery in Johannesburg.
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