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Wednesday, August 13, 2014
Headlines in Italic are ones modified by Cover Mongolia from original
TRQ closed +0.59% to US$3.40 Tuesday
Turquoise Hill announces financial results and review of operations for the second quarter of 2014
VANCOUVER, BC--(Marketwired - August 12, 2014) - Turquoise Hill Resources (NYSE: TRQ) (NASDAQ: TRQ) (TSX: TRQ) today announced its financial results for the quarter ended June 30, 2014. All figures are in US dollars unless otherwise stated.
· Oyu Tolgoi had an All Injury Frequency Rate of 0.51 per 200,000 hours worked and no fatalities for the first half of 2014.
· Oyu Tolgoi recorded net revenue of $436.0 million in Q2'14 on sales of approximately 202,500 tonnes of copper-gold concentrate.
· Q2'14 concentrate sales increased approximately 320% over Q1'14 and exceeded production resulting in an inventory drawdown for the quarter.
· In Q2'14, Oyu Tolgoi had its strongest quarterly performance since production began in 2013 with 140,000 tonnes of copper-gold concentrate produced containing 36,200 tonnes of copper.
· Concentrate sales, which are expected to be strong throughout the second half of 2014, are scheduled to exceed production through the end of 2014.
· Sales contracts have been signed for 100% of Oyu Tolgoi's expected 2014 concentrate production and 92% of 2015 planned production; 84% of concentrate production has been contracted for up to eight years.
· Ore grades are expected to increase as the Oyu Tolgoi open pit deepens into a high-grade zone during the second half of 2014.
· Turquoise Hill continues to expect Oyu Tolgoi to produce between 135,000 – 160,000 tonnes of copper and 600,000 – 700,000 ounces of gold in concentrates for 2014.
· Following receipt of a Tax Act from the Mongolian Tax Authority during Q2'14, all parties continue to work together to resolve these issues.
· The feasibility study for the underground is largely complete subject to confirmation of some estimate assumptions.
· All 15 global banks participating in the Oyu Tolgoi project financing agreed to extend their commitment letters to September 30, 2014.
· All parties remain committed to the underground development of Oyu Tolgoi and are working through the outstanding shareholder issues; underground development is subject to resolution of shareholder issues, the finalization and approval of the feasibility study by all shareholders, the agreement of a comprehensive funding plan including project finance and receipt of all relevant permits
· On July 29, 2014, Turquoise Hill entered into a share purchase agreement with National United Resources Holdings for the sale of a 29.95% stake in SouthGobi.
· Turquoise Hill's cash position, on a consolidated basis at June 30, 2014, was $201.2 million.
Discussions with the Government of Mongolia and project financing update
In June 2014, Oyu Tolgoi received a Tax Act (Tax Assessment) from the Mongolian Tax Authority (MTA) as a result of a general tax audit for the period covering 2010 through 2012. The Company believes the Tax Assessment includes breaches of the tax stabilization provisions of the Investment Agreement. The unpaid taxes, penalties and fines imposed by the Tax Assessment are approximately $127 million and the claim is being disputed.
Oyu Tolgoi is engaging with the Government of Mongolia and the Mongolian Tax Authority to try and resolve these tax disputes.
All of the 15 global banks participating in the Oyu Tolgoi project financing have agreed to extend their respective commitment letters for the financing of the underground development at Oyu Tolgoi to September 30, 2014. In addition, Export Development Canada, the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Export-Import Bank of the United States, as well as the Australian Export Finance and Insurance Corporation, also have conditional board approvals to close the financing.
The feasibility study for the underground is largely complete subject to confirmation of some estimate assumptions.
Further underground development is expected to recommence once successful resolution has been reached on the outstanding shareholder issues including satisfactory resolution of the recent tax claims and potential breach of the Investment Agreement, agreement of a comprehensive funding plan including project financing, completion and approval of the underground feasibility study and obtaining all necessary permits for the mine.
Class action lawsuits
On December 13 and 18, 2013, two putative securities class action lawsuits were filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York against the Company and certain of its officers and directors. The Court has now consolidated these actions and appointed a lead plaintiff. The lawsuit seeks to recover damages resulting from alleged misstatements about the Company's financial performance and business prospects arising from revisions to its recognition of revenue on SouthGobi's coal sales, as disclosed on November 8, 2013. The Company believes the complaint is without merit and will vigorously defend against the lawsuits. The Company filed a motion to dismiss on June 19, 2014. In the opinion of the Company, at June 30, 2014 a provision for this matter is not required.
Announcement made after Tuesday close. MEC closed -0.45% to HK$0.219
MEC: FURTHER EXTENSION OF MORATORIUM ON REPAYMENT
The holders of the SF Convertible Note, 3.5% GI Convertible Note, and 3% CTF Convertible Note have agreed to further extend the moratorium on repayment of their respective convertible notes due and payable by Mongolia Energy Corporation Limited to 12 September 2014 for concluding a debt restructuring with all the Company's noteholders.
August 12 -- This announcement is made by Mongolia Energy Corporation Limited (HKEx:276, the ''Company'' and together with its subsidiaries, the ''Group'') pursuant to the provisions of inside information under Part XIVA of the Securities and Futures Ordinance (Cap. 571, Laws of Hong Kong) (the ''SFO'') and Rule 13.09(2) of the Rules Governing the Listing of Securities on The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited (the ''Listing Rules'').
The Company refers to its announcements on 14 May 2014 and 16 June 2014 (the "Announcements") respectively. Capitalized terms in this announcement have the same meanings as those defined in the Announcements, unless otherwise stated.
As the Company is in the mature stage of discussion of its debt restructuring with all the convertible noteholders of the Company, the Company requires additional time to conclude the respective agreements with the relevant parties. In this connection, the holders of the SF Convertible Note, 3.5% GI Convertible Note, and 3% CTF Convertible Note have agreed to further extend the moratorium on repayment of their respective convertible notes due and payable by the Company to 12 September 2014 for concluding a debt restructuring with all the Company's noteholders.
The Company will further announce when the agreements relating to debt restructuring are entered into with the relevant parties.
Shareholders of the Company and potential investors are urged to exercise caution when dealing in the shares of the Company.
MNGGF closed +3.2% to US$2.26, YAK +2.89% to C$2.49
Mongolia Growth Group: Profiting From The Land Of Luxury Blue Sky Promise
By Adem Tumerkan, August 12 (Seeking Alpha) --
· Mongolia is a resource rich country with increasing foreign investment which gives it the status of one of the worlds fastest growing economies with massive industrial/infrastructure mega projects underway.
· Mongolia has the largest commodity importer in the world, China, directly south of their border which has shown great interest in their economy. And Russia against their North border.
· Mongolia Growth Group gives investors leverage to the high-yielding real estate by purchasing high quality properties in important retail locations and accumulating re-development properties at low costs.
· MGG has put together one of the most attractive retail/office property portfolios in the center of the biggest and most important city in Mongolia - Ulaanbaatar.
· The company has an impressive management team featuring directors such as famous investor Bill Fleckenstein, and the recently hired CEO, Paul Bryne. Exceptional inside stock ownership, board aligned with shareholders.
Conclusion - Phenomenal Upside With Limited Risk:
It is true that for now, Mongolia is a speculation and a country that is dependent on foreign investment. The investor should have questions such as: what will happen to Mongolia's markets if US rates rise? Is the country fueled by speculation and cheap rates? Is China's imports likely to increase?
Kupperman: Our primary strategy is to buy retail properties located along the capital's main avenue. As Mongolia develops, its economy will get more sophisticated, and rents will inevitably rise. We're looking to profit from that transformation of a store front from a noodle shop to an Armani store, if you will. We also invest in office properties. But we find that retail gives us the best prospects for large rent increases. And that is the real investment story here.
While those are very important questions, the underlying thesis remains intact for the future bull run: Mongolia is a microscopic economy relative to its underlying resources and once per-capita incomes rise from the added wealth from unlocking resources, citizens with higher disposable incomes will want better living arrangements and luxury goods. That is when Mongolia Growth Group will prosper.
The CEO will focus on the companies strategy of commercial, office, and high yielding retail over the next 10 years. I encourage the readers to read thecompanies letter to shareholders.
Buy purchasing a share of Mongolia Growth Group the investor receives exposure to the following:
· The increase in foreign investment into an emerging Mongolian economy.
· The rise in the standard of living for Mongolian citizens with higher disposable incomes.
· The long term growth in real estate in the center of the biggest and most important city in the country.
· Leverage in Mongolia's currency markets and massively potential mining sector.
· Protection from dollar denominated assets and declining of the US standard of living as money flows to the East.
· Have a competent and shareholder friendly company management invest your money alongside their own with strong inside ownership.
· Luxury brands such as Armani, Louis Vuitton, and Hugo Boss paying rents to property owned by Mongolian Growth Group.
· Taking advantage of tier 1 quality assets in Ulaanbaatar for sale and re-developing properties. Once another fund comes along in the future to replicate Mongolian Growth Groups strategy, these tier 1 assets wont be available on the market.
With capital being scarce in Mongolia, for the time being, investors with money get extraordinary deals. Mongolia Growth Group is taking advantage of a market that no one else is interested in. Their long term thesis is fully conceivable and realistic. The prudent investor will "buy right and sit tight" with this company and allow this outstanding management to continue its growth.
If the investor follows the logic that has been presented in this article, it is not an "if" question, but a "when" question.
There is no denying the rise of the Asian markets and its massive growing middle class, along with the frontier markets such as Africa and Mongolia which will supply these countries with the resources they need to export and consume, growing wealthy as well from free trade.
Take advantage of the dips and sell off's using limit orders. And looking back, in the long run, investors will wonder how painfully obvious this was and how they missed this ample opportunity.
MNP Petroleum Quarterly Report
Early in 2012, Gobi Energy Partners LLC focused on the integration and interpretation of seismic data acquired in 2011. From April to May 2012, it conducted a passive seismic campaign using low-frequency spectroscopy to support the seismic. From June to August, 2012, Gobi Energy also conducted a 2D seismic acquisition (vibroseis) program covering 335 kilometers over both blocks.
Gobi Energy spudded its first well, Ger Chuluu A1, on August 23, 2012. It stopped drilling at a depth of 1098 meters without having encountered any seal. The initially planned second well East Sainshand A1 was located in another sub-basin 170 kilometers away. In order to have a conclusive evaluation of the Ger Chuluu sub-basin, Gobi Energy decided to drill a second well before moving to East Sainshand. Ger Chuluu D1, the second well in the Ger Chuluu sub-basin, was spudded on September 21, 2012. Drilling was stopped after reaching 600 meters without any hydrocarbon shows. After logging, the well was plugged and abandoned.
Gobi Energy had originally focused on six sub-basins in Mongolia; after drilling in the Ger Chuluu sub basin and conducting additional studies, Gobi Energy is now focusing on two sub basins, East and West Sainshand. In order to enlarge the area to define more prospects to drill the outstanding commitments, Gobi Energy signed a moratorium with the government of Mongolia for the duration of one year ending in May 2014.
During this period Gobi Energy expected the government to award us with relinquished areas from adjacent blocks. The government of Mongolia has not taken a decision on Gobi Energy's application to expand its exploration acreage before the end of the moratorium. Consequently, Gobi Energy has applied for an extension of the moratorium for one additional year.
MSE News for August 12: Top 20 +0.16% to 15,930.09, Turnover ₮27.8 Million
By B. Khuder
Ulaanbaatar, August 12 (MONTSAME) At the Stock Exchange trades held Tuesday, a total of 21 thousand and 815 shares of 16 JSCs were traded costing MNT 27 million 829 thousand and 634.00.
"Jargalant uils" /15 thousand and 700 units/, "Gobi" /2,522 units/, "E-trans logistics" /1,550 units/, "Genco tour bureau" /1,108 units/ and "Darkhan khuns" /170 units/ were the most actively traded in terms of trading volume, in terms of trading value--"Gobi" (MNT 19 million 671 thousand and 600), "Jargalant uils" (MNT two million 716 thousand and 100), "Talkh chikher" (MNT two million 037 thousand and 080), "Darkhan khuns" (MNT 680 thousand) and "APU" (MNT 633 thousand and 210).
The total market capitalization was set at MNT one trillion 601 billion 986 million 101 thousand and 508. The Index of Top-20 JSCs was 15,930.09, increasing by MNT 25.07 or 0.16% against the previous day.
Mogi: just an iOS app? My poor BB. Looooonely, my BB's so loooonely, nobody loooooves him, …
MSE to Launch Mobile App for Real-Time Quotes on October 1
August 12 (MSE) Mongolian stock exchange started the preparation for dissemination of daily trading and price information to the public through mobile application.
This application will distribute the real time index and price information of that trading day to the customers. Application has its advantages which enable customers to create their own portfolio and give signals on the higher price fluctuation.
MSE is creating this new product by using local resources and planned to upload it on AppStore starting from Oct 1st 2014.
Mogi: better late than ever should not be acceptable
82 Stocks (Out of 244) File Q2 Financial Reports
August 13 (Cover Mongolia) --
New reports since last update:
BoM MNT Rates: Tuesday, August 12 Close
August MNT vs USD, CNY Chart:
BoM FX auction: US$24m sold at ₮1891.1, CNY107.5m at ₮307.12, receives no swap offers
August 12 (Bank of Mongolia) On the Foreign Exchange Auction held on August 12th, 2014 the BOM has received bid offer of USD and CNY from local commercial banks. The BOM has sold 24.0 million USD as closing rate of MNT 1891.10 and 107.5 million CNY as closing rate of MNT 307.12.
On August 12th, 2014, The BOM has not received any Swap and Forward agreement offer from local commercial banks.
USD Sell Price Reaches ₮1,900 at Naiman Sharga, Highest in History
August 12 (infomongolia.com) The regular Tuesday foreign currency auctions organized by Central Bank were held on August 12, 2014.
During the auctions held today, local commercial banks requested to buy USD and CNY, the Bank of Mongolia sold 24.0 million USD at a closing rate of 1,891.10 MNT/USD and 107.5 million CNY at a closing rate of 307.12 MNT/CNY respectively.
On the same day, the Central Bank did not receive any MNT or USD Swap agreement bid offer from local commercial banks.
As of August 12, 2014 by 04:45 pm, rates at the "Naiman Sharga" foreign currency exchange market, 1 USD was equivalent to 1,895.00 MNT (Tugrug) to sell and 1,900.00 MNT to buy, where 1 CNY - 309.00 MNT to sell and 310.00 MNT to buy.
Official Exchange Rates announced by the Central Bank on Monday, August 11, 1 USD was set at 1,884.00 MNT, 1 EUR - 2,523.81 MNT, 1 CNY - 306.15 MNT, 1 GBP - 3,163.24 MNT, and 1 RUB - 52.22 MNT respectively.
Mongolia Doubles Copper Concentrate Exports, Govt Reports
By Michael Kohn
Aug. 12 (Bloomberg) -- Mongolia exports of copper concentrate rose to 703,900t in first 7 months of 2014 from 332,200t yr earlier, National Statistical Office says in website statement.
* Value of copper concentrate exports rose to $1.2b from $470.4m a yr earlier: statement
* Coal exports rose to 10.4m tons in first 7 months of 2014 compared to 8.3m tons in same period yr earlier; value of coal exports fell to $499.6m from $595.6m: statement
* Mongolia exported 3m tons of iron ore in first 7 months compared to 3.6m tons a yr earlier; value of iron ore exports fell to $239.5m from $382.2m: statement
* Crude oil exports rose to 3.8m barrels in first 7 months compared to 2.6m barrels in same period yr earlier: statement
* Mongolia's exports reached $2.94b in first 7 months, including $2.68b in exports to China. Minerals products exports were valued at $2.44b: statement
Mongolia Jan.-July Trade Deficit Narrows 84% Y/y
By Michael Kohn
Aug. 12 (Bloomberg) -- Trade deficit of $207.6m in first 7 months of 2014 compared to $1.3b deficit yr earlier, the National Statistical Office says today in a statement.
* Mongolia exports increased 24.9% to $2.94b for the first seven months of 2014, according to the agency
* Imports decreased 14.6% to $3.14b in the first seven months
* Outstanding loans at end July reached 12.2t tugrik, an increase of 34.1% compared to the same period yr earlier
* In July, banking sector non-performing loans reached 599.7b tugrik, a 32.4% increase from yr earlier
Mogi: shrinking as BoM winds down price stabilization programs
Money Supply in July Shrinks 0.3%, Rises 24.6% MoM, YoY to ₮10.1 Trillion
August 12 (Mongolian Economy) During the first half of 2014, GDP by production approached MNT 9856.9 billion, which is up 14.6 percent at current price. GDP by expenditure experienced a similar trend as it reached a level of MNT 9429.7 billion. This is an increase of 11.1 percent at current price compared to the same period the previous year.
The Bank of Mongolia's statistics show that money supply by the end of last month amounted to MNT 10081.0 billion, showing a decrease of MNT 26.0 billion, or 0.3 percent from the previous month. Compared to the previous year, money supply has increase by 24.6 percent, or MNT 1992.3 billion. Currency issued in circulation shows a similar trend as well. By the end of July 2014, it reached MNT 859.6 billion, a 0.1 percent decrease from the previous month. Compared to the previous year, currency in circulation has increased by 3.3 percent, or MNT 27.4 billion.
In addition, during the first seven months of the year, 32.9 million shares were traded. This totaled to a value of MNT 134.7 billion in the stock market. Total equilibrated revenue and grants of the General Government Budget equals MNT 3305.2 billion and net lending of this budget reached MNT 3466.1 billion. This shows a deficit of MNT 160.9 billion.
At the end of last month, tax revenue increased by MNT 184.3 billion, or 7.0 percent. This is due to increases on social security contributions, taxes on goods and services and revenue from taxes on foreign trade. This increase happened despite downfalls in income taxes and revenues from corporate income tax.
Mongolia has traded with 122 countries during the first seven months of 2014. In turn, total external trade turnover reached USD 6088.6 million. Of this amount, USD 2940.5 was made up from exports. The rest, USD 3148.1 million, was made up by imports. Total external trade turnover increased by 0.8 percent, yet external trade balance had a deficit of USD 1.3 billion in 2013.
Another increasing trend is the national consumer price index. As of July 2014, it rose by 0.4 percent compared to the previous month and 14.9 percent compared to the previous year. This increase was caused by increasing in housing, water, electricity and fuels, transportation, clothing, footwear and cloth.
Unemployment Rate decreases by 10.9%
August 12 (Mongolian Economy) At the end of last month, the number of unemployed persons in Mongolia totaled 34.7 thousand, representing a decrease of 10.9 percent compared to the same period the previous year. This is a decrease of 4.2 thousand persons, says NSO monthly report
There are currently 56.1 thousand people actively looking for employment. Over half of these individuals are women. All around Mongolia, 55.4 thousand persons are newly registered to enable themselves to find legal jobs.
15.6 thousand individuals have already received employment through registration, but 63.5 thousand persons are not actively searching for job opportunities, resulting in being removed from the registry.
By examining educational levels of the unemployed, the majority only have a high school degree or undergraduate degree (Mogi: haha, high school or college, in the same category). They compose over 70 percent of those lacking jobs. Only 0.6 percent of those with a master's degree are currently unemployed.
Births increase 3.4%, infant mortality rises 10% in first 7 months
By B. Khuder
Ulaanbaatar, August 12 (MONTSAME) The National Statistical Committee (NSO) says that 47 thousand 279 mothers delivered children, where a number of live births reached 47 thousand 587, in the first seven months of this year.
The number of the mothers delivered children increased 1,464 women or 3.2% and that of children went up by 1,544 or 3.4% against the previous year.
Infant mortality reached 728, increasing by 66 children or 10.0%, of under-five mortality reached 884, going up 72 babies or 8.9% against 2013.
Mogi: yeeey, a free EIU article!!!
EIU: Interest rate rise may spark further instability
August 6 (The Economist Intelligence Unit) --
The Bank of Mongolia (BOM, the central bank) raised policy interest rates on July 31st, from 10.5% to 12%.
The move marked the first adjustment in interest rates since June 2013, and comes amid mounting fears over the country's economic stability. In its press release explaining the move, the BOM's monetary policy committee pointed to high levels of inflation—the national consumer price index was up by 14.6% year on year in June. Nine out of the ten committee members attending supported the rate increase.
Although the rate adjustment shows the monetary authorities taking a more proactive policy approach, it is far from clear whether the move will have the intended effect of cooling inflation. Much of the upward drift in prices has reflected the weakness of the local currency, the togrog, which has been weakened by the country's increasingly precarious economic outlook and a sharp drop in foreign-exchange reserves in recent months.
The side-effects of the interest rate increase could be significant. Domestic credit has soared since 2013 owing to a government policy that encouraged subsidised mortgage lending. The rate adjustment will probably not help to tamper the explosive rate of mortgage borrowing, as officials have indicated that the subsidised interest rate under the government's mortgage programme will remain in place. However, it could put other borrowers under greater financial stress. With foreign investment still weak (notably in the key mining sector), the country is ill positioned to deal with any slowing of growth in other parts of the economy. Although the rate move may have been warranted, it could serve to spark greater economic instability in the short term.
Impact on the forecast
The adjustment was earlier and slightly larger than we had anticipated; we had expected rates to be raised to 11.5% in the fourth quarter. We will adjust our interest rate forecasts upwards accordingly, but still expect further increases in both 2014 and 2015.
Political parties without parliament seats call for Premier's resignation
August 12 (news.mn) Representatives of parties without seats in parliament met recently to re-submit a petition calling for the resignation of Prime Minister N.Altankhuyag.
Last June, the parties demanded the Premier's resignation, claiming that the Law on Land, and Minerals Law initiated by the Government violated the Constitution, was a cause of rising corruption in Mongolia, and responsible for economic failures.
This time, the parties claim that the Prime Minister violated the law by seeing his senior advisor, L.Gansukh, without permission. L.Gansukh is currently being held in a detention center in Tuv aimag.
The parties insisted that the Prime Minister should resign. They delivered their petition to Speaker of the State Great Khural, Z.Enkhbold and parliamentarians today, on August 12th.
Korean Firm Signs Coal Transportation Deal with ETT at Mongolia-Korea Economic Forum
August 12 (infomongolia.com) The Mongolia-Korea Economic Forum is being held at the "Ikh Tenger" State Complex in Ulaanbaatar on August 11-12, 2014. This year's Forum brought over 120 participants from both countries' politicians, experts, economists, businessmen and representatives of leading enterprises.
Founder of "Mongolia-Korea Economic Forum" NGO, MP G.Batkhuu noted in his opening remarks, "We have founded this Forum in order to determine mutually beneficial economic partnership policy between Mongolia and South Korea, moreover, to exchange entrepreneurs' experiences and to be a bridge between the two countries as well as to attract more investors. Within this year's Forum, parties would seek opportunities to broaden economic collaboration, particularly, exchange opinions on developing conditions and ideas to establish a free trade agreement and come to end-decision at a national level".
On the first day of the Forum, speeches on intergovernmental relations, reciprocal travel conditions between citizens, economy, and business environmental issues were delivered by Deputy Minister of Economic Development O.Chuluunbat, State Secretary at Foreign Ministry B.Boldbaatar, Executive Director of National Council of Private Sector Support Ch.Khashchuluun and Chairman of Business Council of Mongolia B.Byambasuren respectively.
During the Forum, Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation was signed between "Erdenes Tavan Tolgoi" JSC and Daelim Corporation represented by CEO of "Erdenes Tavan Tolgoi" Ya.Batsuuri and Senior Managing Director of Daelim Corporation Lee Sang-gi. In the scope of the document, the two companies will establish an agreement to transport coal from Tavan Tolgoi to Tsagaan Khad mine, where Daelim will be taking a full responsibility of transportation according to contract.
Organizers pledged to host such Forum biennially in both territories respectively.
Mongolia-S.Korea Business Forum Running – Montsame, August 12
Erel Bank Changes Name to Arig Bank
August 12 (infomongolia.com) Founded in 1997 by Erel Group, the Erel Bank announced to rebrand its bank name to Arig Bank, which is effective from July 29, 2014.
Arig Bank is one of the first commercial banks in Mongolia and during the company's shareholding meeting held on June 23, 2014, authorities came to the decision to change the previously known Erel into Arig Bank.
The word "Arig" means "thrift and economy" in English but the Bank implies "clean and clear" meaning as one of the main principles must to adhere by any banks and financial institutions.
Rio Tinto opens Galba public park in Khanbogd
- This project is a great example of community engagement, strong partnership and sustainable development in the South Gobi –
Khanbogd, Umnugobi, August 12 (Oyu Tolgoi) - Last weekend, Khanbogd soum celebrated its historic 90th anniversary. As part of the celebrations, Galba Public Park, built on initiative of soum residents and administration with financing under Rio Tinto's social investment programme, was officially opened.
Oyu Tolgoi LLC Board members, executives of Erdenes Oyu Tolgoi LLC, and Rio Tinto representatives attended the Khanbogd soum anniversary celebrations and Galba Park opening ceremony.
In his speech at the opening of Galba Park, Rob Atkinson, COO of Rio Tinto Copper Group said: "I would like to express my gratitude to all the people of Khanbogd who worked together with us and supported construction of this wonderful public park, designed for Khanbogd families and households. I am confident that our partnership and friendship will grow stronger and stronger with each passing year, as we build sustainable development together".
Khanbogd soum governor T.Buyan-Ulzii said "As Khanbogd residents celebrate 90th anniversary of our soum, one of 90 developments to mark this event is opening of this Galba Public Park, which will provide opportunities for children and adults to spend time in a pleasant and comfortable environment"
Respecting history of Khanbogd, this public park was named Galba which is the original historic name of Khanbogd soum. The park is five hectares and the amenities provide visitors with fountains, lawns, parking for 300 cars, restrooms and lighting. The park was built by a Mongolian company.
Last year, Rio Tinto supported more than 2,200 projects and programmes worldwide in areas such as health, education, business development, environment and agriculture. Galba Public Park is just one example.
KIVA: LESSONS IN MONGOLIAN HOSPITALITY
By Joshua Starkey
August 6 (Kiva) With my passport freshly stamped and excitement jittering through my body, I watch the sparse skyline of Choibalsan, Mongolia, unfold in front of me through the SUV window. My co-worker Stev and I are here to visit Kiva Field Partners who offer green, environmentally-friendly loans, which in Mongolia's harsh environment translates to energy-efficiency and insulation-improvement projects.
A SECRET WEAPON
Our first visit of the day is to see Kiva borrower Iijuu on his land along the outskirts of Choibalsan. Iijuu's family greets us with obvious pride for the land and the skill it takes to work it.
We learn from our conversations that for many years Iijuu worked as a taxi driver, but after he and his wife reached retirement age they decided to plant vegetables on their land as a source of food and income; his $725 loan was used to buy vegetable seeds.
Iijuu takes us on a tour of his property and shows us his secret weapon: pigs! He explained that the waste from the pigs is used to fertilize his field and increase the yield of his crops. Between the field and his pigs, he had a small, sustainable system that he and his family can rely on.
A HOME FOR THE NEIGHBORHOOD
Next we head to the Donard district to visit Gombouren, who received a Kiva loan of $1,075 to build a new home for his family. It is cold and windy when we arrive at his home, but upon stepping inside the weather melts away. Our eyes are immediately drawn to the vibrant carpets and other thick fabric adorning the walls – a stark contrast to the washed out landscape outside.
The focal point of the one-room home is the brick stove, radiating inviting heat. Gombosuren's wife obliges in a demonstration of the stove's power by brewing us up some milk tea.
I'm struck by how closely connected the family is with their neighbors. At the time of our visit there are so many neighbors in the mix it's hard to tell who actually lives here. Not only did Gombosuren's Kiva loan allow him to build a warm and protective house for his family, but he gets to share his success with his neighbors as well. Satiated and warm from hot tea and pleasant company, we reluctantly bid the family adieu and head outdoors again.
MODERN LIFE IN A YURT
We arrive next at a traditional Mongolia Ger, also known as a yurt, the home that Ariunbold purchased with the help of a Kiva loan. We gladly step inside and meet his family, including his wife, son and parents, who offer us assorted biscuits, cheese curds and, of course, more milk tea. While the tea brews we learn that Ariunbold's wife works at a local TV station, so she is used to being in front of a camera. The inside of the Ger is fairly modern, they have a working computer (though no internet) as well as a television.
Throughout our conversation Ariunbold's father is animated and jovial, clearly not one to let a language barrier keep him from making friends. As we enjoy the warm Ger, protected from the harsh winds outside, we realize we are experiencing the direct benefits of Ariunbold's Kiva loan and gain a new appreciation for the impact one microloan can have on quality of life.
A LESSON IN BRICK-MAKING
Like many of the other people we visited, Enkhtuya's Kiva loan was used to buy building materials and insulation for a new home. Enkhtuya gives us a tour of her property including the half-finished structure that the Kiva loan is allowing them to continue building.
Enkhtuya's husband proudly shows us his mastery of brick-making and gives us a detailed account of how he creates the insulated bricks used to build their soon-to-be home. This turns out to be one of my favorite parts of the visit. He describes how a mixture of mud, straw and sweat from some hard-worked muscles forms the bricks, which are then stacked in a staggered design to create walls. He explains how the straw in the bricks helps them stay together and also produces an insulating effect.
From Enkhtuya and her husband's energy, we can tell that they are excited to complete their new house and are looking forward to the extra protection it will provide from Mongolia's harsh climate. I'm not exaggerating about the climate either, note the picture below with ice on the inside of the windowsill-it was summer time! When we left Enkhtuya and her husband it was with a sense of deep appreciation for the fortitude and strength shown by our new Mongolian friends in the face of a truly uncompromising climate. You can make a Kiva loan to deserving borrowers across Mongolia here.
16 babies poisoned from excessive dosage of Luminal
August 12 (news.mn) Sixteen babies between the ages of four days and three months were poisoned from high doses of Luminal and are being treated at the National Centre for Maternal and Children's Health (NCMCH).
A pharmacist at the Ekh Nyalkhas branch of Monos pharmacies distributed high dosages of Luminal for the infants last Friday. Currently, 14 poisoned babies are being treated at the National Centre for Maternal and Children`s Health, and two are in critical condition and being treated in intensive care.
Medical specialists from the National Centre for Maternal and Children's Health commented on the incident, saying that high dosage of Luminal is poisonous to infants. The impact from such poisoning is dangerous. They say that even after the poisonous dose is expelled, a baby is still at risk to lung and kidney disorders.
The mother of a 20-month-old baby asked for help from her family physician, as her baby had yellowish eyes and skin. The mother bought Luminal Phenobarbital, as her family doctor had suggested, but the pharmacist at Monos, the nation's largest pharmaceutical chain, provided an adult dose of Luminal, 200 mg instead of a children's dose of 5-10 mg.
The mothers of the poisoned babies reported that the excess dose of Luminal caused dizziness, difficulty in breathing, and decreased appetite.
MOSCOW, August 12 (RIA Novosti) - Two military units from the Eastern Military District arrived Tuesday in Mongolia to participate in the bilateral military exercise Selenga 2014, Alexander Gordeyev, the district's representative said Tuesday.
Gordeyev said that "once the weaponry and military equipment is unloaded at the Bayan-Tumen station, the troops will go on a 15-kilometer [9-mile] march" to the military range in Choibalsan. The exercise will see the participation of Eastern Military District troops and 100 hardware units.
According to Gordeyev, the exercise for the first time will see the use of the Mi-24 helicopters from the air base located in the Zabaikalye Territory. The Akatsiya artillery system, Grad multiple launch rocket system and Shilka anti-aircraft system will also be deployed for the first time.
The exercise will start on August 15. Selenga 2013 also took place in Mongolia and saw 300 soldiers from the Eastern Military District, 250 members of the Mongolian Armed Forces and about 100 military hardware units from both countries in attendance.
Two Russian Military Units Arrive Today for "Selenge 2014" Joint Military Exercises
August 12 (infomongolia.com) It was previously reported that the "Selenge 2014" Russian-Mongolian joint military field exercises will be held at Munkh Khet polygon (firing field) near Choibalsan, the center of Dornod Aimag, Mongolia, which is expected to start from August 15, 2014.
So on August 12, 2014, two military units from the Eastern Military District of the Russian Armed Forces have arrived at Bayan Tumen railway station - which is about 10 km from Choibalsan - to participate in this sixth edition of joint military exercises.
Moreover, 100 hardware units were unloaded, whereas Mi-24 helicopters and T-72 tanks will be used for the first time, besides, "Akatsiya", 152 mm self-propelled artillery installations, "Grad" - multiple-rocket launch systems, "Shilka" - air defense self-propelled installations, and several "Vasilyok", 120 mm mortar launchers will also be deployed for the first time.
Ulaanbaatar to host Chinese cultural days as Xi Jinping sets to visit August 18
August 12 (news.mn) Chinese President Xi Jinping will visit Mongolia on August 18th, on the occasion of the 65th anniversary of establishing diplomatic relations between Mongolia and China.
During the visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping, Chinese cultural days will be organized in Ulaanbaatar.
The cultural days of will be held between August 20-30th. An amazing artists' ceremonial performance from Jilin Province of the People's Republic of China will be staged on August 27th. There will also be an exhibition of works by the best Chinese artists on display at Mongolian National Modern Art Gallery on August 22nd.
FM L.Bold Holds Meetings with Australia, Japan, Korea, DPRK, Singapore, Thailand Counterparts at ASEAN
By B. Khuder
Ulaanbaatar, August 12 (MONTSAME) In frames of the 21st ASEAN Regional Forum held last weekend, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Mongolia Mr Bold held official meetings with his counterparts and Vice Foreign Ministers of Australia, Japan, the Republic of Korea, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Singapore and Thailand.
Moreover, the Foreign Minister met with Mr John Kerry, the US Secretary of State, and with Ms Catherine Ashton, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.
At all the meetings, the sides shared views on the bilateral and international cooperation and touched upon issues of attracting support to Mongolia's goal to become a partner of the ARF and to join the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC).
FM Meets with Chinese, Russian Counterparts at ASEAN on Xi, Putin Visits
By B. Khuder
Ulaanbaatar, August 12 (MONTSAME) The Foreign Minister of Mongolia L.Bold has held official meetings with his counterpart of China Mr Wang Yi and the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia Mr I.V.Morgulov during the 2014 ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) which ended last Sunday in Naypyitaw, Myanmar.
Matters the dignitaries discussed were a preparation for the forthcoming visits of the Russian and the Chinese Presidents to Mongolia, expected early September and late August this year. They touched upon, for example, agendas and documents supposed to be established during the visits, and reached a general understanding on some specific matters.
Mr Bold also talked about policies of our government on bringing these visits' importance and outcomes to a higher level and on augmenting the impact on Mongolia's development. He highlighted a position of the Mongolian side over a meeting that is to be run for the first time next month among the Presidents of the three countries.
Mongolian President to visit Tajikistan in September for SCO Summit
August 12 (Asia-Plus) A source in the Tajik Government reported to Asia-Plus that the Mongolian President, Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj, will visit Dushanbe on 11-12 September to participate in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization Summit.
According to the source, the Mongolian President is to meet and hold talks with Tajik Presdient, Emamali Rahman.
"Afghanistan and India, both of whom have observer status in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, have still not decided who will be in their delegations during the upcoming SCO Summit in Dushanbe," says that source.
According to the source, Iranian and Pakistani delegations, who are also observers in the SCO, will be led in the Dushanbe Summit respectively by the Iranian President, Hassan Rouhani, and the Pakistani Prime-Minister, Nawaz Sharif.
SCO delegations will be led during the Dushanbe Summit on 11-12 September by the Russian President, Vladimir Putin, Chinese President, Xi Jinping, Kazakh President, Nursultan Nazarbayev, Uzbek President, Islam Karimov, and Tajik President, Emamali Rahman.
The source also reminded that in the frame of the SCO Summit, Iranian, Chinese, and Kyrgyz leaders will make official visits to Tajikistan.
International experts believe that Mongolia, currently an observer-state in the SCO, has the best chances to become a full member in the Organization during the 2015 SCO Summit in Russia.
ACMS: This Month in Mongolian Studies - August 2014
August 12 (The American Center for Mongolian Studies) --
In this Issue:
Upcoming ACMS Sponsored Programs and Events
Calls for Papers, Conferences and Workshops
Research Fellowships, Scholarships and Grants
Other News and Events
Mongolian Economy Magazine Partners with Global Water Partnership for Sustainable Water Resources
August 12 (Mongolian Economy) Mongolian Economy magazine is an official Partner of the Global Water Partnership, a network of Partners who collaborate together to ensure the sustainability of the world's water resources. GWP believes good water management comes from good governance, thus the importance of Partners working together to create effective solutions to combat negative water-based impacts.
The main goal for the GWP is to construct a more solid network of Partners. With this, the starting point is advocacy to place water at high priority levels. More Partners means more dialogue. More dialogue means more positive changes. Through advocacy, the network can build capacity, share knowledge and in turn, change the way water is managed. This way, we can create a water secure world.
First class of student-soldiers taking oath on Wednesday
August 12 (news.mn) The first class of 410 students from 42 national universities and institutes are serving in the army through the "Student-Soldier" program, approved by the Government of Mongolia on February 14th, and launched by the Minister of Education and Science based on Presidential Decree 92.
Now, the student soldiers will take oath at Chinggis Khaan Square on Wednesday, August 13th. For the oath taking ceremony, President Ts.Elbegdorj and other officials will be present. The student soldiers are serving in the army at the Armed Forces 119th unit training center in Altanbulag sum in Tuv aimag, taking special training courses.
For two months, the student soldiers take nine different courses for 560 hours of training. In addition to the core courses, student soldiers take an exam following the 96 hour "General Military Course" and medical check-ups.
They will now begin the second phase of the program. When the four-month military course is completed by a student, they will be considered for enlistment. Student soldiers who serve in the army will be granted their bachelor's diploma along with a military service member certificate and will qualify for jobs in state services.
Librarians from Mongolia Visit OCLC Seattle
August 12 (WebJunction) Ninety minutes is all it takes to cross oceans, continents and cultures to find library synergy. That was the experience when staff from the OCLC Seattle office had the chance to sit down and talk about libraries with two librarians from the Ulaanbaatar City Public Library in Mongolia, along with their translator.
Mr. Soyombobaatar Sukhbaatar (Soyom), Director of Ulaanbaatar City Public Library, and Ms. Bayartsogt Boldbaatar (Bayar), the library's Program Coordinator of the American Cultural and Information Center, have been recognized by Mongolia's US Embassy as leaders in the field of library services. The Embassy invited them to visit the US to participate in the "Managing American Corners" program, part of the State Department's premier professional exchange International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP). Soyom and Bayar spent three weeks visiting libraries across the United States, seeking understanding of the role, operations, and management of libraries, with particular interest in innovative strategies and best practices for using new technologies, social media, public programming, community outreach, and engagement.
Mongolia is a large and sparsely populated country, with most of the population concentrated in the cities. Ulaanbaatar City Public Library is the largest public library system in Mongolia, serving a population of just over 1 million, with 500,000 volumes and an annual circulation of more than 600,000 transactions. Patrons can submit check-out requests online but they need to pick up the books in person from the libraries. High-speed internet is available in the urban areas, with variations in speeds governed by organizational budgets. For example, the Central Library of Mongolia has the best internet connectivity speed compared with other libraries because it has a higher budget. At Ulaanbaatar City Public Library, the main branch is connected through fiber optic cables while the other 3 branches are connected through DSL. Typically, the bandwidth is bifurcated: half is reserved for administrators and staff while the other half is made available to patrons.
Although the library has a widely accessible online catalog and is active on social media, primarily Facebook, Soyom described the status of "online libraries" in Mongolia as an "infant." He was very interested to discuss the pros and cons of online services and resources. Steven Dalley, Senior Software Engineer for OCLC's Digital Collection Services, demonstrated WorldCat, WordShare ILL, and OCLC ILLiad, and explained what can be achieved by using these resources. Soyom paid animated attention to Steven's overview of the CONTENTdm digital collections management system, injecting questions about servers and hosting options, security and copyright issues, and the process of digitizing content. He is in the planning stage of an initiative to digitize the Ulaanbaatar Library collections and greatly expand access to online resources.
Bayar had come to the meeting with a focus on continuing education for library staff at Ulaanbaatar, so the conversation naturally shifted to a discussion of WebJunction's resources for supporting library staff learning. Betha Gutsche, WebJunction Programs Manager, and Mantra Roy, University of Washington iSchool student and WebJunction's summer intern, enjoyed presenting a sampling from the bounty of available resources. Bayar described staff training and CE opportunities in Mongolia as "very limited" and was hugely impressed at the number of freely accessible resources that she will be able to take advantage of when she returns home. She saw an immediate use for the Competency Index for the Library Field, recognizing the value of defining the essential skills and training that successful library staff should possess or develop. She plans to share the Index with her Human Resources department as a foundation for composing job descriptions, recruiting new employees, and organizing sessions for professional development.
WebJunction has a wealth of material and experience to share about producing live online learning in the form of webinars, which was a term that needed no translation. Both Soyom and Bayar appreciated this format as an attainable entry point to online staff training, and one that continually provides current information in the midst of rapid change. They were impressed with the thoroughness of WebJunction's process for delivering successful webinars, the variety of topics covered, the size of the audiences, the richness of the participant chats, and most of all, the global availability. We won't be surprised if we see some attendees from Mongolia at future webinars. Our visitors were also impressed by the many ways in which webinar content is enriched and extended through the archive recordings, recap articles emphasizing key points, learner guides added to some webinar archives, and the location of archives in the course catalog, which enable receipt of a certificate of completion.
Another challenge that Mongolian library staff face - one that clearly resonates across the US - is the anxiety over being able to teach patrons about new technologies, especially mobile devices. WebJunction's coverage includes dealing with digital devices and Makerspaces, how to teach librarians to use these devices, and then to teach patrons in turn.
The final topic in the all-too-brief 90-minute visit was community outreach and engagement. Soyom and Bayar were nodding in agreement over our description of the evolution of US libraries moving away from being repositories for books and instead becoming community spaces, stating that this is also the hope for their libraries. They are familiar with makerspace ideas and intrigued by the possibilities of space innovations, with future plans to do space and community transformations at Ulaanbaatar. Soyom has a vision of a gallery space that brings Mongolian history to life, with a particular focus on the historic, uniquely vertical old script.
The afternoon concluded with a warm invitation to visit Ulaanbaatar and the hope that our paths cross again, at least virtually. Soyom and Bayar return to Mongolia with increased motivation to explore our webinars, courses, and stories. They intend to introduce Mongolia's Minister of Education to the resources we shared in the hope of some inter-agency collaboration in the near future. We all walked away with the sense of a universally shared mission - how to serve our communities the best way possible by constantly building new skills and knowledge, by offering digitized content, and by welcoming community members into the library space.
Award winning Mongolian actress roped in for Anil Kumar's film
August 12 (Times of India) Director Anil Kumar has finally decided to go public with the dream project he has been working on for several years now. We hear that the director, who recently completed the shoot of his debut Kollywood venture Serndhu Polama, is all set to direct an international movie, which goes on floor in October.
"I've been working on this script for years now and was in search of an artiste from China or Mongolia as the lead. When I got to know about Mungunzul Amgalanbaatar, the Mongolian National Award winner, I roped her in as I knew she would be able to do justice to the role," says Anil, adding that the movie based on the village will span through three countries - Mongolia, Vietnam and India. Though the basic language used in the untitled movie is English, the track will have almost all the languages.
The story is about a woman named Emma, a Mongolian native, and her journey to know more about the basics of Hindu philosophy. Through Emma I want to show that India is not about worshipping snakes and elephants, but it has a deep rooted culture that spans across centuries. She will take the audience through a journey that starts from Mongolia and ends in the Himalayas."
Apparently, an Australian theatre artiste will also play a key role in the film. Though many Malayali technicians are part of the crew, Anil says the casting doesn't have any actors from the south. Cinematographer M J Radhakrishnan will crank the camera for the movie scripted by Ashok Kartha.
Mongolian team wins gold at annual Nike Basketball 3ON3 tournament in LA
By B. Khuder
Ulaanbaatar, August 12 (MONTSAME) A Mongolian team for basketball has won a gold medal in the annual "Nike 3 on 3" tournament which was held last weekend in Los Angeles, the USA.
Organized by the Nike, the competition attracted the US 1.200 teams with 4,500 players. The Mongolian team was seeded in the second division alongside its 32 teams.
One of the types of basketball sports, the 3vs3 basketball is intensively developing around the world, and the success of the Mongolian players has been strengthening, for example, the boys' team took 5th place and girls'--11th in the World School Championship for 3vs3 Basketball, recently held in China.
Room #5, Coffice Hub, 5th Floor, Time Center
21 Baga Toiruu Street, Sukhbaatar District 8
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia 15160
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