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Wednesday, September 24, 2014
Headlines in Italic are ones modified by Cover Mongolia from original
Tian Poh Resources IPO: EXTENSION OF CLOSING DATE
September 23, Tian Poh Resources (Proposed ASX Code: TPO) --
The Board has resolved to extend the Closing Date of the Public Offer and the Closing Date of the Vendor Offer from 15 September 2014 to15 October 2014.
Accordingly, the Indicative Timetable in Section 3.7 of the Prospectus shall be amended as follows:
Lodgement of Prospectus with the ASIC
12 August 2014
Opening Date and expiry of Exposure Period
20 August 2014
Closing Date of the Public Offer
15 October 2014
Closing Date of the Vendor Offer
15 October 2014
Despatch of holding statements
17 October 2014
Settlement of Share Sale Agreement
17 October 2014
Anticipated date Shares commence trading on ASX
24 October 2014
* The above dates are indicative only and may change without notice. The Company reserves the right to extend the Closing Dates or close the Offers early without notice.
Any references to any of the key dates listed above in the Prospectus shall be replaced with the key dates set out above.
Khan Mongolia Equity Fund: August +14.77%, July +11.39%
September 21 -- Khan Investment Management (Khan) is pleased to report that August performance for the Khan Mongolia Equity Fund (KMEF) was +14.77% - the second month in a row of positive double digit returns (following +11.39% for July).
Several years of economic headwinds compounded by previous political missteps, falling commodity prices, and negative investor sentiment appear to be coming to an end. With commitments of increased trade and investment made by the Heads of State of both China and Russia during recent official visits, coupled with renewed vigor by the Government of Mongolia (GOM) to resolve outstanding issues with Rio Tinto, Mongolia finally appears set for a rebound.
As previously reported, the GOM's necessity to increase foreign investment has involved significant legislative reform and increased efforts to boost foreign trade relations with neighboring China and Russia as well as regional partners Japan and Korea. Mongolia's first Free Trade Agreement (FTA), executed with Japan, represents the country's official entry into East Asia's proliferation of trade agreements. Not surprisingly, Ulaanbaatar is apparently also studying proposed agreements with South Korea and China.
More recently however, Mongolia has set its sights on economic policy reform concerning trilateral cooperation with its two neighbours, leveraging off improved relations with and between Russia and China, and connecting the two economic giants it borders.
In what was a highly anticipated visit, the first by a Chinese leader in over a decade, President Xi Jinping's visit to Mongolia in August was a significant step towards improved economic ties between Beijing and Ulaanbaatar. Numerous agreements were signed and pledges made with leaders of both countries jointly declaring to strengthen cooperation in areas crucial to economic development such as mining and energy. During the visit, the two nations also pledged to increase annual bilateral trade by almost 100% to USD 10 billion by 2020.
Two weeks after the Chinese delegation, Russian President Vladimir Putin visited Mongolia for the 3rd time during his tenure in Government. Similar to China's initiative, Russia is looking to strengthen its strategic partnership with its southern neighbours. China's dominance in the commodities trade has provided a tactical relationship considering Russia's complementing dominance in the energy industry. A strong relationship with Mongolia will clearly allow Russia to more seamlessly trade with the world's leading commodities buyer.
Following official visits to Mongolia by both China and Russia, Mongolia's President Elbegdorj was invited to attend the recent Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit and take part in a trilateral summit meeting with both Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin. During the meeting, Xi proposed the three countries create a trilateral "Economic Corridor" that would serve as a modern-day Silk Road. Xi called on the three sides to strengthen traffic interconnectivity, facilitate cargo clearance and transportation, and study the feasibility of building a transnational power grid. Putin further called for increased trilateral cooperation on joint projects in infrastructure, mining and energy. Specifically, Putin said "The natural geographic proximity of Mongolia, Russia and China makes it possible for us to implement good long-term projects in infrastructure, the power sector and the mining industry."
The development of a greatly expanded north-south railroad connecting Russia and China through Mongolia as well as a proposed north-south gas pipeline will drastically benefit the Mongolian economy.
More than ever, Mongolia is poised to benefit from strengthening relations with and between Russia and China.
The Khan Mongolia Equity Fund performance for month of August was UP 14.77%.
The Net Asset Value as at 31 August 2014 was USD 33.57.
Factsheets outlining monthly performance and commentary can be downloaded by registered users of the Khan Investment Management website – www.Khan-Management.com
Of the 17 positions in the portfolio, 6 gained, 9 declined and 2 remained unchanged throughout the month of August.
Xanadu Mines Limited (XAM:AU) continued to rally throughout the month on the back of further encouraging results from the ongoing exploration program at its flagship and highly prospective Kharmagtai copper-gold project. The stock price nearly doubled again from last month's close reaching AUD 0.16 at the end of August. We expect further announcements from Xanadu over the coming weeks until completion of its scheduled summer drilling campaign.
Aspire Mining Ltd. (AKM:AU) rallied 37.50% off recent lows to AUD 0.055. Importantly for Aspire, Railway Development agreements signed with Russia during President Putin's visit will provide much anticipated access to Aspire's Ovoot, Jijigbulag and Nuurstei mines situated in the north of Mongolia. Not only does the proposed rail line link to the Russian border at Arts Suuri, but also connects to the Chinese border in the south at Zamyn Uud via the Trans-Mongolian railway. Aspire is also set to benefit from bilateral agreements struck earlier in August to allow Mongolia access to Chinese seaports (via Zamyn Uud) for export to seaborne markets. It is noteworthy to remind investors that Aspire's 100% owned flagship Ovoot coking coal deposit contains 255Mt JORC compliant reserves, the second largest proven coking coal reserve in Mongolia after the massive Tavan Tolgoi coal basin.
Aspire successfully raised AUD 2.2M earlier this month in a share placement issue which the KMEF participated in.
Mongolian Mining Corporation (MMC) (975:HK) maintained its leading position as the country's largest coal exporter for the first half of 2014. MMC continues to be the only major washed coal producer and exporter from Mongolia. The company's share price has now rallied 80% since June lows.
Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd (TRQ:US) slid -2.31% to USD 3.38 per share by the end of August amidst growing concern about the looming deadline this month of the Phase Two financing at Oyu Tolgoi (OT). However, significant progress has been made more recently, specifically with regards to the company's outstanding tax bill which was officially cut from USD 130M to USD 30M last week. Importantly, this signifies great progress in the resolution of outstanding issues between the GOM and Rio Tinto and is representative of a clearly renewed effort on behalf of the GOM, seemingly more than ever, to resolve outstanding issues and pave the way for OT Phase Two development. Recent optimism over the seemingly improved relations has seen the TRQ share price rally over 20% this month.
Through increasing trade and strengthening bilateral relationships with both Russia and China, Mongolia is making positive progress to underpin continued economic growth and once again establish itself as a prospective investment destination for a wider range of investors. As one of the most active investors in the market we are excited by the prospects that increased investment flows will bring. Increasing investment flows are not only expected to result in further support for our current portfolio companies but we also expect to observe and participate in the expansion of the current Mongolian investment universe with additional opportunities foreseeably coming to market in the months ahead.
I'm extremely excited to be flying on MIAT Mongolian Airlines' inaugural flight from Singapore to Ulaanbaatar on Wednesday 24th September. The purpose of my upcoming trip is to undertake further due diligence on several opportunities we are currently reviewing.
The KMEF continues to attract new investors and grow assets under management on a monthly basis. We have already made capital allocation commitments to a number of opportunities in October, including the Tian Poh Resources Limited (TPO:AU) initial public offering in Australia.
As mentioned, Mongolia has never been better placed to benefit from strengthening relations with and between Russia and China and we firmly believe that the country is set for a rebound.
Should you have any interest to discuss our Mongolian outlook and expectations further, please don't hesitate to contact me.
I thank our investors for their continued support and I look forward to updating you further next month.
KHAN INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT LIMITED
Aspire Mining: Annual Report, 30 June 2014
September 23, Aspire Mining Ltd. (ASX:AKM) --
MSE News for September 23: Top 20 -0.23% to 15,897.77, Turnover ₮39.4 Million
Ulaanbaatar, September 23 (MONTSAME) At the Stock Exchange trades on Tuesday, a total of 65 thousand and 050 shares of 18 JSCs were traded costing MNT 39 million 390 thousand and 855.00.
"E-trans logistics" /35 thousand and 475 units/, "Hai Bi Oil" /14 thousand and 631 units/, "Genco tour bureau" /4,961/, "APU" /3,539 units/ and "Nako tulsh" /2,600 units/ were the most actively traded in terms of trading volume, in terms of trading value were "APU" (MNT 13 million 095 thousand and 300), "Hai Bi Oil" (MNT five million 852 thousand and 400), "Ulaanbaatar khivs" (MNT five million and 257 thousand), "Tavantolgoi" (MNT five million 240 thousand and 025) and "E-trans logistics" (MNT three million 263 thousand and 700).
The total market capitalization was set at MNT one trillion 596 billion 270 million 556 thousand and 423. The Index of Top-20 JSCs was 15,897.77, decreasing 36.02 units or 0.23% against the previous day.
Early morning USD rates: Khan (Non-Cash Buy ₮1,830 Sell ₮1,842), TDB (Non-Cash Buy ₮1,830 Sell ₮1,841), Golomt (Non-Cash Buy ₮1,831 Sell ₮1,843), XacBank (Non-Cash Buy ₮1,830 Sell ₮1,844), State Bank (Non-Cash Buy ₮1,830 Sell ₮1,842)
BoM MNT Rates: Wednesday, September 23 Close
September MNT vs USD, CNY Chart:
BoM FX auction: CNY44m sold at ₮299.31, accepts US$11m MNT, $54m USD swap offers
September 23 (Bank of Mongolia) On the Foreign Exchange Auction held on September 23th, 2014 the BOM has received bid offer of 5 million USD as closing rate of MNT 1837.00-1839.56 and 80.0 million CNY as closing rate of MNT 298.50-299.66 from local commercial banks. The BOM has sold 44 million CNY as closing rate of MNT 299.31.
On September 23th, 2014, The BOM has received MNT Swap agreement bid offer in equivalent to 11.0 million USD and USD SWAP agreement offer of 54.0 million USD from local commercial banks and accepted all offer.
8% Mortgage Program Update: ₮539.1 Billion Refinanced, ₮1.36 Trillion Newly Issued
September (Cover Mongolia) As of September 23, ₮539.1 billion (₮539.1 billion as of August 22) existing mortgages of 18,618 citizens (18,644 as of August 22) (Mogi: folks getting disqualified? But amount hasn't changed) were refinanced at 8% out of ₮857.6 billion (₮853.3 billion as of August 22) worth requests.
Also, ₮1,358.2 billion (₮1,298.9 billion as of August 22) new mortgages of 23,945 citizens (22,919 citizens as of August 22) were issued at new rates out of ₮1.3 trillion (₮1.3 trillion as of August 22) worth requests.
Link to release (in Mongolian)
Move fast — Mongolia could be back
Mongolia's potential to be one of the fastest growing economies in the world could soon be unlocked. The smart money had better move fast.
By Virginia Furness
September 23 (GlobalCapital) This week, the Mongolian government is expected to announce the resolution of its long running tax dispute with Rio Tinto and in doing so, pave the way for the second phase of construction of the Oyu Tolgoi (OT) mine. The return of this project should switch the flow of foreign direct investment back on, which could pave the way for a return to international markets.
Widely touted as one of Asia's biggest growth stories in the boom years of 2011 and 2012, Mongolia looked like it had to become one of its biggest failures as a fight with Rio Tinto strangled the country's commodity-led growth.
In 2009, Turquoise Hill Resources and Rio Tinto signed an agreement with Mongolia's government for the construction and operation of a copper-gold mining complex called Oyu Tologi. But the project ran into serious difficulties.
In February 2013 the government declared financial war on Rio Tinto, freezing bank accounts and demanding unpaid taxes and on July 31 Turquoise Hill halted expansion of the development.
With the country's biggest project in jeopardy, the knock-on effect was enormous. Foreign direct inflows fell 64% year on year in the first five months of 2014 and the country's capital/financial account surplus was almost eliminated.
But it seems things are about to change for the better. Over the past couple of weeks, the Mongolian government has reached an agreement with Rio Tinto to end the long running tax dispute. Analysts expect that this will be made official by the end of this week and that phase two of OT will resume.
From that point, recovery ought to be rapid and investment opportunities abundant.
Analysts predict this will provide a catalyst for $6bn of investment starting with a series of Chinese infrastructure projects. The first of these is expected to be a rail project which will link Mongolia's biggest coal mine Tavan Tolgoi to China. With funding already approved, China is already loading coal onto trucks and driving it to the border.
After the railway, an interstate highway from the Chinese border to the Russian border, and redevelopment of the capital Ulaanbaatar.
Not only does the Mongolian Stock Exchange (MSE) have plenty to offer, but analysts expect the country to tap the international capital markets as it has done so successfully in the past.
As the sovereign has reached its statutory debt limit of 40% of GDP, it is likely that the Development Bank of Mongolia will issue a bond to boost its foreign exchange reserves before returning foreign direct investment starts to pay.
With Russia off limits, emerging market funds have money to put to work. A juicy Mongolian yield backed by a growth story that is back on track is worth a look.
Railway Gauge, US Transparency Agreement Top of Autumn Session Agenda
September 23 (news.mn) The Council under the Speaker of the Parliament of Mongolia held a meeting on Monday. The council decided that the autumn session of parliament would open on October 1st and discussed scheduled draft bills.
The Council under the Speaker of the Parliament agreed to first discuss the hotly debated railway gauge issue, which was left unresolved in the spring session of parliament.
The authorities have debated the issue of whether wide or narrow rail gauge should be used for years. However, the issue seems will be the first one to be discussed in the autumn session.
The council also scheduled an agreement on transparency in matters related to international trade and investment between Mongolia and the USA, a draft law on firearms, and a draft law on domestic violence. Many speculate that one of the most heated debates will be on the restructuring of the government.
What will autumn session discuss? – Montsame, September 23
Mogi: shouldn't this be done like every year? Without been made a big deal?
Training Conducted for Assistants of MPs Ahead of Autumn Session
By B. Amarsaikhan
Ulaanbaatar, September 23 (MONTSAME) A focus training for 80 advisors, assistants and agents of MPs ran September 23 at State House.
The training was held on the occasion of the upcoming on October 3 session of the State Great Khural. The gathered were addressed by secretary of the Office of parliament B.Tseveenpurev who reminded them an importance of their work and said that criteria for MP agents and assistants will be completed soon.
While parliament holds the power of drafting the law and legislation, its office is obliged to make recommendations on methodology for the realization of this power, he said. A quality of the work of MPs will greatly depend on their agents' efforts, he stressed.
The training gave information on important matters such as on E-system of sessions, the agents' aesthetics, on submission of income declaration, on press and media, and on moral of the agents.
Mongolia Prepares for Safe Use of Gas with Deal Inked with Korea Gas Safety
By B. Amarsaikhan
Ulaanbaatar, September 23 (MONTSAME) The Ministry of Energy of Mongolia and the "Korea Gas Safety" corporation of South Korea have adopted a memorandum.
By the document the two sides aims to develop the energy production and to provide a preparation for using the natural gas in urban areas, central heating and other power uses, and to ensure here a safety for engineering.
The memo has been inked by the State secretary of the Ministry D.Delgertsogt and the president of "Korea Gas Safety" corporation Jun Dae-chun. A legal basis has been laid for cooperation in use of natural gas, in development of norms and regulations to be pursued during the construction of engineering facilities and infrastructure, in meeting high standards of safety, and in cadres preparation and trainings for engineers.
Korea Gas Safety is a 100-percent state-owned company responsible for safety audit in S.Korean gas sector, development and enforcement of the norms and standards, trainings and advertisement for use of gas, and license issuance on gas enterprises. Republic of Korea has become one of the leading countries by its safe conditions of gas use.
Intermed Hospital Becomes First in Mongolia with US Management
September 23 (infomongolia.com) The first hospital under European standard and American management, the United Family Intermed Hospital made its grand opening in Ulaanbaatar with participation of Government officials headed by Prime Minister N.Altankhuyag and Health Minister N.Udval on September 22, 2014.
The United Family Intermed Hospital was first opened as the Intermed Hospital in May 2014 with investments of Mongolian leading companies including MCS Group, Energy Resources, and Shunkhlai Group and from now on, the Hospital - has been providing its healthcare services under America's United Family Healthcare management - namely the United Family Intermed Hospital that aims to be a leading medical services provider not only in Mongolia, but also in the region to ensure international quality and safety standards, and provide a premium healthcare experience for patients.
In her remarks, President of United Family Healthcare, Roberta Lipson said, "United Family Intermed Hospital will bring international standard healthcare services to Mongolia. For some time now, many Mongolians and resident expatriates have been travelling overseas in search of a better healthcare experience and better healthcare outcomes. United Family Intermed Hospital will provide this level of care at home in Ulaanbaatar".
Director of Intermed Hospital, Tumendemberel BOLORMAA commented, "United Family Intermed Hospital marks a turning point for transforming Mongolia's healthcare industry. We're proud to be working with United Family Healthcare to bring quality care to Mongolians in Ulaanbaatar and beyond".
Mongolia Got Hospital under American Management – Montsame, September 23
Mongolian mining companies score below average in OSF Corporate Governance survey
September 23 (Mongolian Economy) Mongolian mining companies averaged 28 out of 100 points in terms of company governance, according to a recent survey by the Open Society Forum.
Oyu Tolgoi was ranked highest with a score of 48 out of 100. The average score was 28 points. The survey notes most of the companies were not able to achieve above-average scores.
Open Society Forum conducted a corporate governance evaluation survey that included nine state-owned mining companies between May to August 2014. According to the survey's results, the average score of the companies involved did not exceed the average expectations.
The results are 1.5 to 2.5 times lower than companies operating in other developing countries, including Vietnam, Thailand the Philippines, where the corporate governance scores range between 48 to 77 points.
The goal of the survey is to help corporate governance standards of state-owned mining companies reach international standard. "Foreign invested companies in Mongolia are listed on the stock exchange. Thus, their actions are transparent. This is one of the first things to do to improve corporate governance," said D.Bailikhuu, who led the corporate governance evaluation survey.
Although there have been a number of innovations and improvements relating to the legal frameworks of company governance in recent years, many issues still persist. For example, information on financial balances and reports are often not available or there is no evaluation on board members' activities, for which they don't hold any responsibilities. To change this, companies should be run as transparent as possible on both financial and operational matters, said the research team associates.
Recommendations were published on improving corporate governance for state-owned or state-participated companies. The survey, conducted by the Open Society Forum and the Ministry of Mining, based on the research methods of International Financial Corporation.
Better governance standards will attract both national and international investment and improve the operating environment of the country's mining industry.
Mongolia Doubles Production of Eggs in Two Years, Reduces Chicken, Fodder Import
By B. Khuder
Ulaanbaatar, September 23 (MONTSAME) The production of egg increased twice in the last two years, an import of chicken and fodder declined 40% thanks to a policy the cabinet for reforms maintain to support the poultry husbandry.
It was said by the State Secretary of the Ministry of Industry and Agriculture Kh.Zoljargal at the "Hours of great construction" weekly meeting on Monday.
He went on that, in frames of a programme on stabilizing the prices of consumer goods, soft loans of MNT 8.6 billion have been given to four companies of egg and chicken productions, and loans of MNT 160 million have been given to 11 enterprisers from reserves of the Ministry of Industry and Agriculture. Now some 20 companies have possessed 550 thousand laying hens nationwide, and the "Tumen shuvuut" and "NVTs" companies have reached international standards, Zoljargal noted.
The Mongolians consume some 170 million eggs a year, three years ago a majority of eggs used to be imported, nowadays, this import went down by 40%, he said.
"One person consumes 50 eggs a year, which is lower than that of developed countries, so we need to augment the egg production so as to reach 370 million per year. We will not need to import eggs when the 'NVTs' and newly founded 'Bayan shuvuu' companies will work with a full potential by 2018," he said.
The Ministry also says that measures will be taken to improve hygiene and to expand a free-of-charge vaccination.
Another person falls to death from construction
September 23 (news.mn) An accident occurred Monday, when an 18 year old woman fell from a building under construction in Ulaanbaatar's Bayanzurkh district.
According to a report from the General Agency for Specialized Inspection, the co-executive operator company, Bai Lkhagva LLC, in charge of operating a crane on the site, had no special license, but the executive operator for the construction of the apartments, Zunshin LLC, signed an illegal contract.
The General Agency for Specialized Inspection gave Bai Lkhagva LLC a set term to fix the violation. When the accident occurred, two workers were expected to wear protective belts to avoid a fall, but the woman's belt is believed to have been faulty.
This is not the first accident related to construction project safety in Ulaanbaatar. Due to the construction boom all across the city, accidents and deaths have occurred as a result of failures to maintain safety.
Ulaanbaatar Adopts Tough Measures to Protect Dwindling Supply of Safe Drinking Water
By B. Amarsaikhan
Ulaanbaatar, September 23 (MONTSAME) The Citizens Representative Khural of Ulaanbaatar adopted September 23 a program on safety of drinking water at its 19th meeting.
Many action have been planned by the program. A security will be tightened at Ulaanbaatar's drinking water reserves with common and special regimes of hygiene, an illegal construction of facilities and settlements of homes will be eliminated near the drinking water reserves, and the environmental impact assessments will run in the tourist areas. The licenses of companies illegally exploring minerals in the bank of the Tuul river will be withdrawn, and a monitoring over reservoir areas will be fully automated to prevent a pollution.
The capital city's drinking water reserves will be re-estimated through researches in surface and ground waters, the results will be coordinated with a program on environmental protection. Many works can be facilitated through the document such as comprehensive measures to improve ger (national dwelling) districts' water supply through an estimation of expenses for exploiting, processing, reserving and serving water.
Turkish Ambassador Promotes Cooperation in Orkhon, Darkhan-Uul Aimags
By B. Khuder
Ulaanbaatar, September 23 (MONTSAME) The Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Turkey to Mongolia Mr Murat Karagoz has worked in Orkhon and Darkhan-Uul aimags with aims to fortify the Mongolia-Turkey economic, trade and cultural cooperation and to increase the open diplomacy of Turkey's Embassy.
Mr Karagoz and accompanying him officials have held meetings with the governors of Orkhon aimag's Erdenet city and of Bayan-Ondor soum to share views on the bilateral cooperation in construction, infrastructure, land farming and animal husbandry.
The Ambassador has also legged the "Erdenet" Mining Corporation and an Erdenet-based "Alapala" Turkish company. In Darkhan city, the Ambassador has met with the province's authorities and businessmen, has given interview to the local media organization, and has met with students of a branch of the Mongolian University of Sciences and Technology.
Foreign Minister Meets Counterparts at Asia Cooperation Dialogue Meeting
By B. Khuder
Ulaanbaatar, September 23 (MONTSAME) While taking part in the 69th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, Mongolia's Minister of Foreign Affairs L.Bold met Monday with his counterparts of the member- states of Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD).
Launched in 2012, the ACD is currently joining 31 countries and is chaired by the Foreign Minister of Saudi Arabia. The sides exchanged views on boosting the cooperation of Asia in economy, culture and humanity, on supporting a sustainable development, on creating and realizing proposals and initiatives on developing together by providing themselves with equal opportunities.
In his talk, Mr Bold noted that Mongolia, attaching a great importance to human development and education, initiated the UN Literacy Decade, and pointed out that the Mongolian government intends to host an international seminar for educational sector's experts from the ACD states in 2015.
The meeting decided to issue Riyadh Declaration on Cooperation in the Educational Sector at the 13th ACD Ministerial Meeting which will be hosted by Saudi Arabia on November 25 of 2014.
Foreign Minister Meets Cuban Counterpart in NY
By B. Khuder
Ulaanbaatar, September 23 (MONTSAME) During the 69th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, the Foreign Minister of Mongolia L.Bold met Monday with Mr Bruno Rodriguez Parrilla, the FM of Cuba.
They shared views on the Mongolia-Cuba relations and cooperation and on multilateral cooperation. Mongolia attaches a great importance to its ties with Cuba and wants to activate these traditional and friendly relations, especially in education, sport, health and agricultural spheres, Mr Bold said.
He underlined an importance of high level visits that will boost the relations and of determining the cooperation directions, and passed to Parrilla an invitation from the Mongolian leader to the Cuban President Raul Castro to visit Mongolia.
The two sides agreed to seek ways of enriching the Mongolia-Cuba cooperation with new contents, and touched upon issues of the multilateral cooperation, including ways of fruitfully collaborating and supporting each other within the UN.
Mongolia to Establish Diplomatic Relations with Trinidad and Tobago
September 23 (MONTSAME) The Foreign Minister L.Bold met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Trinidad and Tobago Winston Dookeran on fields of the 69th UN General assembly on September 23.
The parties talked about an establishment of diplomatic relations between Mongolia and Trinidad and Tobago and agreed to seek possibilities of bilateral cooperation on international arena.
Mr Bold requested his counterpart to support Mongolia in its seeking a membership in UN Human Rights Council in 2015. Mr Dookeran accepted it and said Trinidad and Tobago will work on getting a support from member-states of Association of Caribbean States. He also invited his Mongolian counterpart to visit Trinidad and Tobago.
Mongolia's First Ambassador to Mozambique, Banzragch Odonjil Accredited
September 23 (infomongolia.com) On September 19, 2014, a non-resident Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Mongolia to the Republic of Mozambique Mr. Banzragch ODONJIL has presented a Letter of Credence to the head of state Mr. Armando Guebuza.
During the credential handing ceremony, newly accredited Ambassador B.Odonjil conveyed a greeting of the President of Mongolia Ts.Elbegdorj and pledged to take every effort to boost Mongolia-Mozambique relations and cooperation. In 2015, the two countries are marking the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations and during the meeting, President Armando Guebuza and Ambassador B.Odonjil exchanged views on implementing some measures of collaboration in the scope of the event.
Mongolia and the Republic of Mozambique have established the diplomatic relations on September 27, 1975 and the newly accredited envoy B.Odonjil is the first Ambassador of Mongolia to Mozambique and has been serving as the resident Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Mongolia to the Arab Republic of Egypt since July 2012; concurrent Ambassador of Mongolia to the Republic of South Africa since October 2013 and to the Lebanese Republic since February 2014.
Ambassador to Mozambique presents credentials – Montsame, September 23
2nd Session of Belarus-Mongolia Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation Held
September 23 (Belarus Foreign Ministry) On September 20 – 24, 2014 the Mongolian delegation headed by Deputy Minister of Construction and Urban Development of Mongolia Ms.Gochoosuren Baigalmaa is on a visit to Belarus to participate in the 2nd session of the joint Belarus-Mongolia Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation.
On September 23, 2014 during the plenary session the sides discussed the development of bilateral trade and economic relations, relations in the field of industry, agriculture, education, construction and urban planning, as well as in transport and logistics, scientific, technical, financial and banking sectors.
Following the results of the meeting, the parties signed the Protocol of the 2nd session of the joint Belarus-Mongolia Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation.
The Program of the visit includes meetings with the leadership of the Ministry of Architecture, Minsk Executive Committee, the Ministry of Industry, visit of the Mongolian delegation to the enterprises "BelAZ", "MTW", "MAZ", "Agrokombinat" Dzerzhinsky", "Minsk Stadler, Belarusian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Mongolian-Chinese Culture and Education Fund Grants 37 Scholarships
By B. Amarsaikhan
Ulaanbaatar, September 23 (MONTSAME) The Mongolian-Chinese Culture and Education fund gave scholarships to Mongolian children last Saturday at the Ulaanbaatar office of China Bank.
The 37 awardees are the winners of "Dream Star" and "Future Star" programs which were run among secondary schools.
This fund was established in early May of 2014 but managed to invest 420 thous. CNY in 12 projects and programs. For the above scholarships it received from domestic and Chinese entities one million 560 thous. CNY.
Present at the event were vice minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism M.Tumenjargal, Chinese Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Mongolia Wang Shaolong, and representatives of Mongolian and Chinese entities, together with the awardees' parents.
Giant Telescope Installed at Tavantolgoi to Monitor Cosmic Collision Threats
By B. Amarsaikhan
Ulaanbaatar, September 23 (MONTSAME) An OWL (Overwhelmingly Large) telescope is being installed September 23 at the Tavantolgoi Earthquake Station, 55km to the west from Ulaanbaatar. The telescope is to trace satellites and floating cosmic wastes and to estimate collision threats.
The installation ceremony ran Tuesday in a scope of a cooperation between Astrology and Geophysics Research Center of the Academy of Sciences and the Korea Astronomy and Space science Institute (KASI) of Republic of Korea. The telescope has a diameter of 45cm, is a modern technology of Ritchey Chretien Optic System, assembled inside of a pavilion with semispherical deck.
Our side will be able to use the telescope for many kinds of researches such as investigation of small planets in the sun-belt, comets and optic post-explosion lights. The station aims to cooperate with the S.Korean side in joint observations, information sharing, and development of scientific articles.
The S.Korean delegates will get au fait with the "Palace of Stars" in the Astrology and Geophysics Research Center the same day.
Mongolia Celebrates Int'l Day of Peace with Prayer of All Religions
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, 21 September (UN Mongolia) In a world where the media daily reports news of human conflict and prejudice of all kinds, including racial, gender, class, political and religious prejudice, Mongolia's annual celebration of UN International day of Peace on September 21st stands out as a call for unity and peace. On the International Day of Peace, the United Nations called for a complete cessation of hostilities around the world. This will be the eleventh year that the different religious communities in Mongolia have cooperated with the United Nations by joining countries throughout the world in observing the Peace Day.
The International Day of Peace ("Peace Day"), established by a United Nations resolution in 1981 to coincide with the opening of the General Assembly, provides an opportunity for individuals, organizations and nations to create practical acts of peace on a shared date. The first Peace Day was celebrated in September 1982 and in 2002 the General Assembly officially declared September 21 as the permanent date for the International Day of Peace.
The theme of this year's observance is "Sustainable Peace for a Sustainable Future".
During the day on Friday September 21st, each of the religious communities in Mongolia were holding prayers and meditations for peace in their various places of worship (cf. programme). The ceremony was opened at 11.00 am with the programme of prayers from all faiths represented in Mongolia around the Peace Bell in Sukhbaatar Square. The Resident Coordinator of the United Nations in Mongolia, Ms Sezin Sinanoglu, opened the ceremony and read the Peace Message from the Secretary General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, and called for one minute of silence for Peace. The ceremony was closed by Mr. Tsedendamba, representing the President of Mongolia's Council of Religious Affairs.
This simple ceremony around the Peace Bell, demonstrates that peace is central to the spiritual teachings of all faiths, and echoes the ringing of the Peace Bell at the United Nations Headquarters every year on the International Day of Peace. The Peace Bell in New York was cast in 1954 from coins donated by children from 60 countries, and was a gift from the UN Association of Japan. For half a century since, the bell has sent a powerful message around the world about humankind's aspiration for peace. On "Peace Day" in Mongolia we were ringing our own Peace Bell to remind ourselves of the oneness of humankind, the oneness of all religions and the need for peace, unity and tolerance among the peoples of the world.
"Let's Cut the Chain" Run to Raise Awareness in Fight Against Human Trafficking
September 23 (news.mn) A group helping sex trade victims in Mongolia, Lantuun Dohio (Лантуун дохио) an "NGO network against human trafficking" are organizing the "Let's Cut the Chain" run to raise public awareness about human trafficking at National Garden Park, on September 27th.
The "Let's Cut the Chain" campaign is aimed to help sex trade victims and their families find relief from pain and suffering.
People with disabilities are at an increased risk of abuse and are more likely to be victims of assault.
The run will include participants with disabilities. On that day Lantuun Dohio will also provide free legal advice on combating drug abuse and trafficking, the sex trade, abuse and children's rights, and will offer free counseling services and tests.
Anyone who wants to participate in the run, families, colleagues, clubs and companies, are invited to join the campaign.
Mongolian Cover Group, Tusgal Photography Club, Clubs Council at National University of Mongolia, and other NGOs have joined the campaign.
The run will kick off at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday. Male and female winners in every category will be awarded medals and cash prizes.
Mogi: not sure what the title here is supposed to mean
It's Not Genghis Khan's Mongolia
By RACHEL NUWER
ULAN BATOR, Mongolia, September 23 (The New York Times) — For all of his victories and skills, Genghis Khan always insisted that the god Tengri — the Eternal Blue Sky — deserved the credit for his triumphant success in uniting the vast Mongol Empire in the early 13th century.
Now 21st-century science may be proving him right. Not long ago, researchers studying ancient tree rings found evidence that the Great Khan rose to power during an exceptionally mild 15-year stretch.
Back-to-back years of plentiful rain and favorable temperatures — known as pluvials, the opposite of droughts — promoted vegetation growth, the researchers believe, and that in turn supported the livestock needed to power an army.
"The Mongol Empire pluvial was quite exceptional in its duration," said Neil Pederson, an ecologist at Harvard Forest in central Massachusetts. "It was the only one in the past 1,000 years that lasted more than 10 years, so it's really a singular event."
These days, Mongolia's climatic tides have been shifting toward another extreme. A 10-year drought and heat wave from 2000 to 2010, according to the tree ring data, was the most severe the country had had in a millennium.
"I'm more and more convinced that the only way we can understand this 21st-century event is within the context of climate change," said Amy Hessl, a geographer at West Virginia University. "And the human side of that — combined with a constellation of other factors — is going to be incredible."
Today, Mongolia is largely herders, not warriors. Sandwiched between Russia and China, it has almost three million people in a vast tract of desert and rolling steppe grassland, punctuated by mountains and forests. Climate continues to significantly shape the lives of Genghis Khan's descendants, around one-third of whom still practice the seminomadic herding of their ancestors, moving their house — traditionally, a dome-shaped tent called a ger — with the seasons.
While televisions and solar panels are a common sight in modern gers, herders still rely on thousands of years of collective knowledge to thrive in the harsh Mongolian environment, where the temperature regularly dips below minus 15 degrees Fahrenheit in winter. Yet the predictable ebb and flow of warmth and cold, rain and snow, has begun to falter in recent years.
"I don't know why the weather has become unusual, but I'm very worried about it," said Urgamaltsetsg Suvita, 47, a herder in the Gobi Desert. Summer is hotter and drier and plagued by sandstorms, she said, and winter brings too much snow or too little.
In 2010, an extreme snowstorm killed her flock of livestock — nearly 1,000 animals, including horses, sheep and goats. "Winter is no longer winter," she said.
Like much of the world, Mongolia is already experiencing the effects of climate change. The country's average annual temperature has risen more than 3.8 degrees Fahrenheit since 1940; paradoxically, winter months have grown colder over the past 20 years. Streams and lakes have begun to dry up, and fires frequently blaze across millions of acres of steppe and forest.
"The steppe ecosystem is burning and burning and burning," said Oyunsanaa Byambasuren, a lecturer in forestry at the National University of Mongolia. "But we really don't have enough specialists or professionals dealing with those issues."
Dzuds — extreme winter events that cause mass livestock die-offs — also seem to be increasing in frequency and intensity. From 1999 to 2002, a succession of winter dzuds followed by summer droughts killed 30 percent of all livestock in Mongolia, and a 2010 dzud claimed 8.8 million livestock — losses equivalent to 4.4 percent of the country's economic output.
"Wealth in much of Mongolia is measured in animals," said Nicole Davi, a research scientist at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and at William Paterson University. "If you lose all of your animals, you lose everything."
Ayush Ish, 69, has lived in the Gobi Desert all her life. She and her husband lost their flock of goats and sheep in the 2002 dzud and drought, then slowly rebuilt it with the help of 50 animals allocated by the government. But when the 2010 dzud struck, all but 20 died. Around the same time, her husband died as well.
"I don't know if it will happen again," she said, tears running down her cheeks. "I can only hope that we're entering a good period now."
Like many rural Mongolians who follow a shamanistic belief system, Ms. Ish says that mining — which has recently become widespread around the country — is to blame for the changing weather patterns. Troy Sternberg, a geographer at the University of Oxford, said that "under the Mongolian belief system, the earth and sky are connected, so if you take gold out of the ground, you're disrupting the natural rhythms of weather and climate."
Whether or not that is true, the rise of mining — along with overgrazing by herders chasing the cashmere market — has led to wide desertification. Some studies indicate that 70 percent of Mongolia's grasslands are degraded.
Taken together, these patterns bode ominously for the herders' way of life. A team of Mongolian and international experts warned in a 2009 report that such trends "may lead to the end of the Mongolian traditional way of animal husbandry as we know it, that at onetime was the very core of the entire nomadic civilization."
Some herders have already reached that breaking point. After the 1999 to 2002 dzuds alone, 180,000 people moved to the capital, Ulan Bator, in search of a better life. "The movement from a rural, agrarian life to an urban industrial one is not necessarily a bad thing if people are interested in doing other things that are tied to a more diverse economy," said Maria Fernandez-Gimenez, an ecologist at Colorado State University. "But opportunities and services have to exist to enable that."
Those who reach the capital usually settle in the ger district, a sprawling, makeshift neighborhood that encircles the city and creeps into the surrounding valleys. Although the skyscrapers of downtown are in eyesight, basic services are luxuries. Families must trek up to a mile to collect water from communal wells, and in winter, they burn coal and garbage to keep warm, helping to make Ulan Bator one of the world's most polluted cities.
Khishigee Shuurai, 36, moved from western Mongolia to the capital around 15 years ago. In 2002, after losing their flock, her parents joined her in the city. Then her father died of a heart attack. Before that, she said, he frequently expressed a longing to return to the countryside.
For many, however, life here is preferable to the uncertainty and harshness of nomadic herding. Ms. Shuurai, a school custodian and mother of four, does not share her father's regrets.
She and her husband, a construction worker, have jobs, and they recently got electricity in their ger. Her 7-year-old daughter was honored as the top student in her class, and her 12-year-old son wants to become an engineer.
"There's many reasons to stay," she said. "I don't want to go back."
A version of this article appears in print on September 23, 2014, on page D7 of the New York edition with the headline: It's Not Genghis Khan's Mongolia.
Geordies Abroad: Expats share their stories of life overseas in their own words
In our new weekly feature we hear from North East expats on how life is abroad. To contribute your own story see chroniclelive.co.uk/geordiesabroad
September 22 (Newcastle Chronicle) --
Volunteer English Teacher Neil Porter, 66, from Seaton Delaval, living in Ulaanbaatar Mongolia.
Left the UK: 2012.
Family: My son Ben, aged 27.
Why I moved here: Discovered Mongolia whilst travelling on the Trans Siberian Railway, fell in love with the country, so when I retired from the Royal Mail, I decided to come back to teach English as a volunteer in the state schools.
Three things I miss: Football, especially on a Saturday afternoon in the Toon, it was a special atmosphere. I still watch Newcastle every Saturday night live on cable. I miss fish and chips, Mongolia's landlocked so no sea. And Christmas cake, it's a Buddhist country, so December 25th is just another working day and I love Christmas cake!
Three things I don't miss!: Politicians, they are all the same. People complaining about everything, they should see how other folk get by. Spoilt children, in UK they have and get far too much.
What I love about Mongolia: The vast open countryside once you leave the capital, there are herds of horses, sheep and goats roaming the Steppe. The friendliness of the locals when you meet them when they invite you to their home. The well mannered children who show respect to adults, they give up their seats on buses when older people get on.
How life is different: Winter; Ulaanbaatar is the coldest capital city in the world, temperatures -36C to -40C, not taking into account any wind, with annual average of -0.4C. The central heating (and it is controlled centrally, not in your apartment) comes on October 15th until May 15th whether it's needed or not. During the summer each district in the capital has its hot water turned off on a rota basis to repair any damage to the pipework.
Coming back?: Maybe, but not for a long time ,I enjoy teaching the children they really appreciate what you are doing. If I was at home in UK I would just be pottering about wasting my time, here I feel I am being of some use helping the children even though as a volunteer I don't get paid, the satisfaction is more than enough.
6th Floor, NTN Tower
Baga Toiruu, Chingeltei District 1
Ulaanbaatar 15170, Mongolia
P Please consider the environment before printing this e-mail.