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Wednesday, July 8, 2015
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Mongolia Growth Group Ltd. May 2015 Monthly Letter to Shareholders
Toronto, Ontario, July 7 (FSCwire) - Mongolia Growth Group Ltd. (YAK – TSXV and MNGGF – USA), ("MGG") or ("the Company") a commercial real estate investment and development company participating in the dynamic growth of the Mongolian economy announces the release of its May 2015 Shareholder Letter.
May 2015 Shareholder Letter
To the Shareholders of Mongolia Growth Group Ltd.,
In May 2015, MGG's core commercial property portfolio* experienced a same-store rental increase of 6.2% relative to May 2014 on properties owned 12 months or longer, as measured in local currency (Mongolian Togrog). Total billed revenue for May 2015 was 262.7 million Mongolian Togrog, as compared to 257.0 million Mongolian Togrog in May of 2014 or a 2.2% increase.** The occupancy rate for the core portfolio in May of 2015 was 96.3% including an occupancy rate of 96.6% for core retail properties and an occupancy rate of 95.8% for core office properties***.
Six Month Review, Cash Flow Update and Insider Purchases
Six Month Review
Six months ago, I returned to the CEO role with the twin goals of reversing our accelerating losses along with restoring our operations to their prior levels of performance and efficiency following a noticeable deterioration in our company's basic operating functions. At the time, it was obvious, that only radical change could put the company on a sustainable path forward. Six months later, I can confidently say that we are ahead of where we thought we would be at this time.
Cash Flow Update
Upon resuming the CEO role, reaching positive cash flow has been my overriding priority. To get there, we could either increase revenues or reduce expenses. Given the state of the economy, the first option seemed far more difficult—particularly when it was obvious how bloated our cost structure was. Over the past six months, we have continued to hack away at these costs—many of which are not only unnecessary, but long overdue for elimination.
It does now seem that the low hanging fruit has been plucked and the goal now, is to ensure that the targeted reductions are completed and new expenses do not crop up to take the place of those that have been eliminated. Based on current rental rates, should we achieve our cost reduction goals, we anticipate that by the end of the third quarter of 2015, we will see a dramatic reduction in our cash losses, before expenses to advance Tuguldur Stage 2 when compared to our performance before I returned as CEO.
Of course, cost savings can only get you so far and with our continued improvement in productivity, the goal over the second half of the year will be to increase our revenues. Over the next few months, we intend to roll out a number of initiatives that have been in planning for quite some time. I intend to discuss a few of these in future letters.
In summary, we are now ahead of where we expected to be in terms of reducing our costs and restoring our operations. This allows us to once again focus on growing the business—but from a much more sustainable cost base. Despite a weak economy, we believe that there are many untapped opportunities to grow the company.
With our turn-around gaining momentum, I felt that our shares were attractively priced and I recently added to my ownership of MGG through open market purchases. Four other insiders felt similarly and joined me in making purchases.
Mongolian Economic Update
Since the most recent letter:
· As much as $6b of external funding will be raised through third-party project financing and other bank finance, product off-take arrangements and other forms of financing, according to the Oyu Tolgoi Underground Mine Development and Financing Plan, published by Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd. (Bloomberg)
· During seven-year underground stage construction and funding, estimated underground development capital is $4.7b, sustaining capital is $1.5b and VAT/duties on capital is $600m, agreement says. (Bloomberg)
· Government of Mongolia to receive $2.2b in direct payments; total estimated direct Mongolia spend is $9b during seven year underground stage construction and funding. (Bloomberg)
· A unit of France's Areva SA receives 3 mining licenses in Mongolia, according to Thierry Plaisant, general director of AREVA Mongol LLC. Licenses to allow mining at Dulaan Uul and Zuuvch Ovoo uranium deposits. Licenses issued to Cogegobi, a minerals exploration company 100% owned by AREVA Mongol LLC. Licenses to be transferred from Cogegobi to AREVA Mines LLC, a JV 34% owned by Mon-Atom, 66% owned by AREVA Mongol. AREVA Mongol 66% co-owned by Areva SA and 34% by Mitsubishi Corp. of Japan (Bloomberg)
· Mongolian miner Sharyn Gol JSC has agreed on a preliminary deal that would see its coal shipped to South Korea via Russia and North Korea, as the land-locked nation seeks new markets to counterbalance its dependence on China. (Bloomberg)
We look forward to updating you again on our progress and new developments in the Mongolian economy next month.
SouthGobi Resources: Notice of Annual General Meeting, August 6, Vancouver
July 7 -- NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the annual meeting of the shareholders of SOUTHGOBI RESOURCES LTD. (the "Company") will be held at the Fairmont Pacific Rim Hotel, Room Emerald C, 1038 Canada Place, Vancouver, British Columbia, on Thursday, August 6, 2015, at 9:00 AM (Pacific time) (the "Meeting") for the following purposes:
1. to receive the report of the Board of Directors;
2. to receive the Company's audited financial statements for the financial year ended December 31, 2014 and the auditors' report thereon;
3. to appoint auditors for the Company for the ensuing year and to authorize the Board to fix the auditors' remuneration;
4. to consider, and if thought advisable, to pass an ordinary resolution fixing the number of directors to be elected at the Meeting at eight (8);
5. to elect directors for the ensuing year; and
6. to approve, by ordinary resolution, the Company's Equity Incentive plan (the "Equity Incentive Plan"), including an increase in the number of shares available under the share bonus plan component of the Equity Incentive Plan from 200,000 to 2,000,000.
The Company will transact such other business as may properly come before the Meeting or any adjournment thereof.
The Board has fixed June 26, 2015 as the record date for the determination of shareholders entitled to notice of, and to vote at, the Meeting and at any adjournment thereof.
Khanbogd Community Joins in Oyu Tolgoi Open Day
July 2 (Oyu Tolgoi) Oyu Tolgoi LLC today held its 'Open Day' event at Khanbogd on Thursday. The 'Open Day' events, organised on a regular basis, form an important part of the company's ongoing efforts to engage with its partner communities at all levels, and provide them an opportunity to learn more about the business and operations of the mine.
The event was held at the newly opened Oyu Tolgoi Community Interaction Center (CIC) in Khanbogd, saw a strong turnout, led by Khanbogd Speaker Mr Nekhiit. Oyu Tolgoi employees provided visitors updates on various aspects of the business, including, operations, environment, procurement, human resources, training, community relations, and health, safety and security.
Mrs Baigalmaa Shurka, General Manager of Social performance said "We are, as a business, committed to being a good neighbor of the community, building on mutual respect, active partnerships and a long-term approach to sustainable growth. The 'Open Day' is a great opportunity for us to engage with all members of the community – young and old – and helps develop deeper mutual understanding and cooperation."
In April 2015, Oyu Tolgoi signed a jointly administered Cooperation Agreement with Umnugovi aimag and Khanbogd, Manlai, Bayan-Ovoo and Dalanzadgad soums. The agreement focuses on broad-based economic development, social infrastructure, environmental protection and the promotion of cultural heritage.
Oyu Tolgoi continues to invest in sustainable long-term projects in the South Gobi. In the first five months of 2015, Oyu Tolgoi has spent approximately US$780,000 in the areas of health and safety, community infrastructure, pastureland management and herder well rehabilitation programmes.
MSE News for July 7: Top 20 -0.14% to 14,357.40, Turnover ₮9.26 Billion T-Bills, ₮55.1 Million
Ulaanbaatar, July 7 (MONTSAME) At the Stock Exchange trades on Tuesday, a total of 105 thousand and 953 units of 24 JSCs were traded costing MNT nine billion 315 million 023 thousand and 431.90.
"Mongol nekhmel" /1,903 units/, "E-trans logistics" /1,500 units/, "Tav" /1,079 units/, "Aduunchuluun" /205 units/ and "APU" /180 units/ were the most actively traded in terms of trading volume, in terms of trading value were "Tav" (MNT 29 million 564 thousand and 600), "Suu" (MNT 13 million 505 thousand and 400), "Mongol nekhmel" (MNT six million 279 thousand and 900), "Material impex" (MNT one million 406 thousand and 500), and "Gobi" (MNT one million and 072 thousand).
The total market capitalization was set at MNT one trillion 364 billion 753 million 195 thousand and 392. The Index of Top-20 JSCs was 14,357.40, decreasing 0.14% and the all index of MSE was 998.67, decreasing 0.22% against the previous day.
₮10 Billion 14.885% 28-Week Bills Sold Out of ₮20 Billion via MSE
July 7 (MSE) On 07 July 2015, the bond orders of 28 weeks Government bonds with 14.885% annual interest, placed on order book, and Ministry of Finance supplied 100,000 or MNT10.0 billion out of total 200,246 pieces or MNT20.0 billion.
Bellow member brokerage companies participated in the bond trading as follows:
FRC grants securities trading, clearing, settlement permit to private firm
July 7 (UB Post) During its 18th regular meeting, the Financial Regulatory Commission (FRC) gave special permission to Dealer Commercial Center LLC to carry out securities trading, clearance, and settlement activities.
The company believes that their targeted market is looking for investment packages made through the state budget, foreign investment, individuals, organizations, insurance companies, commercial banks, and financial organizations by utilizing Nasdaq OMX Group's electronic commercial system.
Dealer Commercial will use an electronic commercial system that can make trading and exchanges of all kinds of securities, debt instruments, foreign currency and commodities (raw materials). The advantage of the system is that it has clearance, central depository, and brokerage sub-systems.
Government Securities Trading Report, 2Q: ₮175.3 Billion Issued, ₮1.3 Billion Traded
July 7 (MSE) As of second quarter of 2015, government securities trading on primary market organized 17 times and 1,815,441 government bonds worth MNT175.3 billion traded through MSE successfully. 12,968 government bonds on secondary market traded through 14 trading sessions and transaction of MNT1.3 billion has been made.
On primary market, 12 week government bonds trading were accounted 84.5%, 28 week government bonds and 52 week government bonds trading accounted 8.2% and 7.3% respectively out of total traded MNT175.3 billion.
12, 28 and 52 week Government securities traded on secondary market and total of MNT1.3 billion transactions has been made.
Following securities companies were most active on government securities trading on primary market:
Blue Sky Cashmere Launches Takeover Bid for Remaining 52.81% in Sor JSC at ₮1,618
July 7 (MSE) According to the Article No.: 57.1 of Company Law of Mongolia, the Regulation of to purchase or make offer to buy shares of JSC, "Blue Sky Cashmere" LLC that owns 47.19% of "Sor" JSC are making offer to buy rest of shares of "Sor" JSC at MNT1,618.00 from other shareholders.
Tender offer effective period: from 7 July 2015 to 07 October 2015
Date of tender execution: 10 October 2015
If you need more information, contact with following address: "Gendex" LLC , Ulaanbaatar 17032, Post Office division #36 box #866
Telephone: 70120785, 99036248
Goner JSC Controlling Shareholders Launch Bid for Remaining 41.74% at ₮160
July 7 (MSE) According to the Article No.: 57.1 of Company Law of Mongolia, the Article No.:22 of Securities Law of Mongolia, stated on the Regulation of to purchase or make offer to buy shares of JSC, joint interest shareholders who owns 58.26% of "Goner" JSC are making offer to buy rest of shares at MNT160.00 from other shareholders.
Tender offer effective period: from 4 July 2015 to 10 August 2015
Date of tender execution: 10 August 2015
If you need more information, contact with following address: TDB Capital Securities Company, Ulaanbaatar, Sukhbaatar district, khoroo #1, Enkhtaivan Street-19, 14210
BoM MNT Rates: Tuesday, July 7 Close
MNT vs USD (blue), CNY (red) in last 1 year:
BoM FX auction: US$9m sold at ₮1,972.10, CNY44.5m at ₮317.91, accepts $79m MNT, $15.5m USD swap offers
July 7 (BoM) On the Foreign Exchange Auction held on July 7th, 2015 the BOM has received bid offers of USD 19.0 million in a rate between MNT 1970.00-1973.01 and CNY 98.0 million in a rate between MNT 317.31-319.00 from local commercial banks. The BOM has sold USD 9.0 million in a rate with MNT 1972.10 and CNY 44.5 million in a rate with MNT 317.91.
On June 7th, 2015, The BOM has received MNT Swap agreement bid offer equivalent to USD 79.0 million and USD Swap agreement selling bid offer equivalent to USD 15.5 million from local commercial banks and the BOM has accepted the offers.
President summons political leaders, calls for government unity
July 7 (gogo.mn) Today, President Ts.Elbegdorj met with the authorities of groups, parties and Government at 03:30PM on current situation of the politics. Authorities led by DP Leader and Speaker of the Parliament Z.Enkhbold, MPP Leader and Deputy Speaker of the Parliament M.Enkhbold and PM Ch.Saikhanbileg have participated in the meeting.
President expressed his protest against dismissal of the members from the Cabinet.
"Let's respect the people. I will not accept the dismissal of the members from the Cabinet. You were agreeing with me, before. We must do what we have said. The Prime Minister should take the initiative and express his position clearly. I think that the current Prime Minister will not be changed until next election", stated by the President Ts.Elbegdorj.
MPP discusses canceling cooperation agreement with DP in the Cabinet
July 7 (UB Post) The executive council of the ruling Democratic Party (DP) made a statement on July 3, on expelling representatives of the Mongolian People's Party (MPP) from the Cabinet. In regards to the statement, the executive council of the MPP held a meeting, followed by a press conference, where MPP faction Chairman M.Enkhbold announced that the party faction is ready to leave the Cabinet.
In remarks to reporters last Friday, L.Erkhembayar, the acting general secretary of the DP, said that the MPP was invited into the coalition last year to help improve Mongolia's economy. "Unfortunately, all the MPP does is fire government workers and slander the Democratic Party by saying the government is doing nothing," L.Erkhembayar said, and added that the government has been unable to operate normally since the MPP joined the coalition.
The DP claims that the MPP has cut more than 600 employees from ministries and government agencies and have been criticizing the government with an eye on elections next year. The DP blames the MPP for spending some 60 percent of time in plenary meetings on demanding the dismissal of previous Cabinet members, hindering progress. The DP says another reason for the MPP's expulsion is that the MPP has already announced its agenda for the 2016 election campaign and has begun to hinder state affairs and divide the people.
At the press conference on Tuesday, MPP Chairman M.Enkhbold shared his party's position, saying, "The MPP cooperated with the DP in Cabinet for six months. We never thought that we would be expelled from government after such a short period of time. We were planning to reach actual results by implementing grand projects to improve the country's economy and make people's lives better. The DP's executive council has made the decision to expel the MPP from government while its chairman was absent and on a working appointment to Govi-Altai and Zavkhan provinces, and while the Prime Minister was on a visit to foreign countries. In the DP's summary of the cooperation contract we have different positions. The DP executive council is only raising the issue that the MPP initiated turnover, hindering the state's work. Meanwhile, the MPP faction is discussing all issues included in the cooperation agreement on government and persistently seeking ways to intensify the stated projects. We have nominated and initiated 50 plans and issues in plans to overcome the current economic crisis."
On the same day, President Ts.Elbegdorj held a meeting with Chairman of the MPP and Deputy Speaker of Parliament M.Enkhbold, Chairman of the DP and Speaker of the Parliament Z.Enkhbold, Prime Minister Ch.Saikhanbileg, and chairmen of other political party factions in Parliament. At the meeting, the President stated that he is strongly against turnover in Cabinet. He emphasized that the government may face an unstable situation with the changing of even one or two ministers.
The Prime Minister is to decide whether or not to fire the MPP's ministers from his cabinet.
The coalition government consists of 19 ministers and was formed in December, made up of four different political parties that represent the vast majority of the 76 members of Parliament. The DP has 35 seats in the legislature, while the MPP is the second-largest member with 26 seats. Other seats are held by a two-party alliance, three independents, and a small party focused on environmental issues. The DP won the 2012 elections, but in November last year, the legislature voted to dismiss then prime minister and DP leader N. Altankhuyag, after he was accused of cronyism and failing to address growing economic problems, leading to the formation of the present coalition government.
The DP faction in Parliament backed the July 6 decision of the DP executive council to expel the MPP representatives from the cabinet.
The decision was made during the faction meeting, also attended by Speaker Z.Enkhbold and Prime Minister Ch.Saikhanbileg. The faction was united on the position that the MPP had not fulfilled its duties under the cooperation agreement. If the MPP's ministers are expelled, the Cabinet will be run by the democrats, the Civil Will Green Party and the Justice Coalition.
Parliament Session Agenda for July 7: Standing Committee Meetings
July 7 (gogo.mn) Standing Committee meeting is scheduled for today.
1. Justice Standing Committee meeting at 08.30AM:
- Draft law on criminal code and affiliated other drafts.
- Draft law on violation and affiliated other drafts.
- Draft law on road traffic safety and and affiliated other drafts.
- Amendments to law on border of Mongolia, amendments to law on intelligence
- Draft law on amnesty
2. Budget Standing Committee meeting at 08.30AM at B Hall.
- Amendments to law on value added tax, amendments to draft law on Procurement of Goods, Works and Services with State and local funds, amendments to draft law on Government special funds,
- Amendments to Draft Resolution of State Great Khural on "Approval of tax rates on imported goods"
- Renewed law on value added tax and affiliated other drafts
- Draft law on promoting economic transparency
3. State Structure Standing Committee meeting at "В" Hall.
- Law on public hearing and affiliated other drafts
- Draft law on violation and affiliated other drafts.
- Amendments to law on State Great Khural of Mongolia, Amendments to draft law on order of the Parliamentary session
- Renewed draft law on civil service
4. Economic Standing Committee meeting at B Hall.
- Law on supporting production and affiliated other drafts
- Amendments to draft law on oil
- Introduction of audit result by the working group to analyze activities of civil aviation sector
- Introduction of audit result by the working group to come up with report on trading expenditure of Government securities
5. Environment, Food, Agriculture Standing Committee meeting at 11AM at B Hall.
- Amendments to draft law on forest and affiliated other drafts.
- "Approval of State policy on food and agriculture and draft resolution of State Great Khural on establishing "Khalkh Gol" free zone
- Amendments to draft law on land
- To hear the information on current situation of land utilization and protection
7. Social Policy, Education, Culture and Science Standing Committee meeting at 11AM at B Hall.
- To give direction on decreasing sexually transmitted disease and AIDS
- To establish working group on law on labor and affiliated other drafts
8. Security and Foreign Policy Standing Committee meeting at 3PM at A Hall.
- Amendments to draft law on intelligence agency and affiliated other drafts
- Draft law on approval of "Education Quality Reform" project which is to be implemented by soft loan of the World Bank`s International Development Association
- Draft law on approval of "E-health" project which is to be implemented by soft loan of the World Bank`s International Development Association
- Draft law on approval of "Smart Government" project which is to be implemented by soft loan of the World Bank`s International Development Association
- Draft law on approval of Millennium Challenge Corporation's compact agreement with Mongolia
- Draft law on approval of Skills for Employment Project which is to be implemented by soft loan of Asian Development Bank
- Draft law on approval of Darkhan Wastewater Management Improvement Project which is to be implemented by Asian Development Bank
- Information of Nuclear Energy Commission
MPP members absent from standing committees today
July 7 (gogo.mn) Standing Committee Meetings are scheduled for today at the Government Building. According to the schedule meetings of Justice Standing Committee and Budget Standing Committee were set to start at 8.30 AM this morning, but is being postponed due to the incomplete attendance.
Justice Standing Committee consists of 19 members of which seven members from MPP are not present, while three members from DP and Justice Coalition are absent as well.
For the Budget Standing Committee meeting MPP members are absent and with attendance of MP S.Demberel the meeting has started at 10AM.
Spring Session of the State Great Khural is to be closed on July 10th. Due to the extended list of the issues to be discussed the Parliament Sessions are being held on a constant basis. But it seems as MPP is upset with the current developments in the political sphere and has decided to pull back the process.
Why Weren't Governments Better Prepared for the Commodity Price Crash?
By Andrew Bauer and David Mihalyi
July 3 (Natural Resource Governance Institute) Headlines about resource-rich economies faltering under crashing commodity price pressures fill the news. "Venezuela in a bind as Nicolas Maduro faces default dilemma" warns the Financial Times. "Alberta premier considers sales tax to fix ailing, oil-based economy" says the Canadian Press. "Iran says it can no longer afford Ahmadinejad's cash handouts" reports the Guardian.
Congo, Rep. of
United Arab Emirates
We use the label "well prepared government" here to mean one that meets two conditions: (1) the government is in a sustainable fiscal position in absolute terms, meaning that it has low public debt levels and/or relatively large holdings of foreign assets to withstand a prolonged commodity price slump; and (2) the government acted in a fiscally responsible manner relative to its degree of capital scarcity in the decade(s) prior to the commodity crash, meaning that, if it was capital-rich a significant portion of resource revenues were saved, whereas if it was capital-scarce it was investing well in human and physical infrastructure.
Yet for every crisis, there is a story of a government having planned in advance for exactly this circumstance. Some governments spent years paying down public debt so they could borrow when needed. Others saved money in a sovereign wealth fund upon which they might draw during a downturn. Still others invested to diversify their economies, making them less vulnerable to commodity price cycles or unexpected declines in production in the first place.
Neither geography nor level of economic development nor degree of democracy explains why one government would be well prepared for a price downturn while another would not. Successes and failures can be found on every continent, in developed and emerging economies, and across authoritarian and democratic countries.
Stability for some…
Most successes have emerged from a consensus—often codified in law—that fiscal stability and sustainability principles ought to drive public finance decisions. Peru, for instance, passed the Fiscal Responsibility and Transparency Law in 1999, following decades of economic crises. The law established Peru's fiscal rules—a deficit limit and an expenditure growth rule—which were then reviewed in 2013. The result was a reduction in public debt from 44 percent of GDP in 2004 to 20 percent of GDP in 2012, one of the lowest rates in Latin America. At the same time, the government established the Fiscal Stabilization Fund (FSF) to accumulate fiscal surpluses. Today the FSF holds approximately $9 billion, equal to 4.6 percent of GDP.
In another example, Norway's political parties jointly committed to its fiscal rule in 1990. The rule set the non-oil budget deficit at 4 percent, which is the expected long-term return on savings in the country's sovereign wealth fund. Similar to the Peruvian case, Norway established its rule after decades of financial mismanagement, including two banking crises. Norway's sovereign wealth fund has accumulated $884 billion, making every Norwegian a krone millionaire ($173,000 per capita) on paper.
Timor-Leste has also taken a long-term view to managing its natural resource wealth. In 2005, the Petroleum Fund Act was passed establishing a fiscal rule that limits annual spending to 3 percent of petroleum wealth, unless justified to parliament. Any excess is saved in the Petroleum Fund. In recent years, Timor-Leste has spent beyond this limit to invest in electricity, housing, and education, among other items. Still, since the law was passed, the government has never run a fiscal deficit and built up $15.7 billion in savings ($13,000 USD per capita) as of July 2014. Even as oil prices collapsed, the Timor-Leste 2015 budget only called for $70 million in borrowing (4.5 percent of the budget)—a smaller percentage than in Chile or Saudi Arabia.
… and crises for others
Not all countries have done so well. Some resource-rich states have faced major financial and economic crises, and even violent conflict. These countries have little in common other than the absence (or abandonment) of a long-term macroeconomic framework during or even prior to their respective commodity booms. For example, Venezuela witnessed an enormous increase in government spending and widening budget deficits starting with the rise of oil prices in 2005. The government has run a fiscal deficit in every year since 2005, even during oil boom periods. The IMF estimates that in 2015 the Venezuelan budget deficit could reach nearly 20 percent of GDP.
The government's response has been to extend price and exchange rate controls, first introduced in 2003, and nationalize a number of companies that provide basic goods and services. These have led to shortages of imports, a growing foreign currency black market, hyperinflation, and demonstrations on the streets, rather than generating the type of growth and stability the government expected. Prices of credit default swaps on Venezuelan public debt suggest a 60 percent chance of default in the next year and a 90 percent probability of default in the next five years.
In mineral-rich Mongolia, exuberance around mining prospects contributed to a huge public and private sector spending boom starting in 2006 and that accelerated in 2010. The crash in mineral prices, including a 38 percent drop in copper prices—and consequent decline in fiscal revenues—has underscored the government's structural deficit (a budget deficit adjusted to strip out the effects of economic cycles). Mongolia has been left exceedingly vulnerable to further shocks. In the IMF's words, "Mongolia is […] at high risk of debt distress." The government and its state-owned companies are currently paying some of the world's highest interest rates on international sovereign debt markets due to perceived financial risk. The Trade and Development Bank of Mongolia, a government-guaranteed, state-owned institution, is now borrowing at over 8 percent annually in real terms on international financial markets. The government itself is borrowing at 4-6 percent more annually than Vietnam, another fast-growing Asian emerging market.
In both of these cases problems started before the 2012-14 commodity slump. In each, and in others (e.g., Equatorial Guinea, Mexico, Malaysia, Iran, South Sudan, Trinidad and Tobago, Yemen), the government was in structural deficit before the crash. This means that, prior to the crash, in each, public spending was not generating the growth (and non-resource tax revenue) necessary to meet public sector obligations over the long-term without relying on revenues generated from oil, gas or mining.
Unrealistic expectations drove overspending
Unrealistic expectations around resource revenues have also played a role in overspending and debt crises. In Ghana and Mongolia, for instance, claims of vast national wealth dominated the political discourse in the years preceding the start of major resource production. These assertions directly contributed to consumption-driven booms in both countries. Recently, Ghana has been forced into signing an IMF bailout agreement. While it saved slightly less than $500 million in oil revenues in two sovereign wealth funds from 2012 to 2014, the government borrowed approximately $7 billion on international financial markets, at interest rates approximately 5 percent higher than the rate of return on sovereign wealth fund assets. The Ghanaian experience highlights the dangers of over-exuberance when new discoveries are made.
A lack of transparency in public finances can exacerbate overspending. In the Republic of Congo, opaque reporting practices led external observers to believe that the country was well prepared for the current crisis, when in reality national savings were smaller than expected.
Beyond the immediate fiscal crises, budget cuts (e.g., Iran cutting cash transfers), asset sales (e.g., Russia raiding the National Wealth Fund, earmarked for public pensions), and tax increases (e.g., Alberta's plans to raise corporate and income taxes), the commodity price crash is impacting longer-term macro-fiscal plans. For instance, Papua New Guinea has delayed implementation of its sovereign wealth fund. There is also less interest in creating new funds in regions where large oil or mining projects have been delayed (e.g., Afghanistan, Liberia, Sierra Leone).
At the same time, some governments are adapting the lessons of the past into draft laws on managing natural resource wealth. For example, Mongolia has tabled a Future Heritage Fund bill which calls for a portion of windfall revenues to be saved in a new fund. And oil-rich Bojonegoro
regency in Indonesia is planning to establish a fiscal rule and a fund to save a portion of its subnational government share of oil revenues.
Common success factors
We can point to a few commonalities among the resource-rich governments that have successfully countered fiscal revenue volatility and maintained fiscal responsibility despite having or expecting vast oil, gas or mineral wealth. First, each country has a history of sticking to a macroeconomic framework, whether or not the framework is rooted in the constitution, in a law, or in a policy document. In most cases, this is reflected in a formalized fiscal rule which generates a fiscal surplus. The fiscal surplus is then saved in a sovereign wealth fund or used to pay down public debt.
According to IMF staff estimates, national governments comply with fiscal rules approximately 60 percent of the time. Balanced budget rules are broken most often since they are complex and therefore difficult to enforce. Expenditure rules and debt rules are easier to enforce, particularly in emerging economies—since the data required for their determination is easily available and the calculations are fairly simple to carry out—which helps explain the higher rates of compliance. Expenditure rules (and revenue rules) generally have the added benefit of being counter-cyclical, making them particularly appropriate for emerging resource-rich economies.
Second, most countries have competent and powerful ministries of finance as well as strong oversight of their public finances, either through parliament or independent fiscal watchdogs.
Third, in many cases, leaders committed to long-term fiscal sustainability, resisting temptations to over-spend on projects that curry popular favor—especially on expensive but low-return status projects like stadiums. Political resoluteness by powerful individuals has often been key to sticking to a fiscal framework.
Finally, in most democratic countries, political consensus has played an important role in compliance with fiscal rules or fiscal sustainability and stability principles. Both Norway and Timor-Leste, for instance, have generally controlled spending, even in good times, by virtue of a cross-party political commitment to fiscal responsibility. While we don't have all the answers, recent experiences may help us better manage future commodity price booms—and busts.
NRGI revenue management data tools
NRGI is building visual tools and a database of indicators to help policymakers, media and researchers better understand macroeconomic preparedness for commodity revenue shocks. Below we present a sample of this work. We welcome comments on how to improve our approach.
Visual tool 1: Government revenues and expenditures over time in resource-rich countries, which shows budget balances.
Visual tool 2: Change in government revenue and expenditure over time in resource-rich countries, which illustrates government fiscal policy responses to volatility.
Measures of commodity price crash preparedness for selected countries
Yes (structural balance)
Yes (Pension Reserve Fund and Economic and Social Stabilization Fund)
Yes (SAMA Foreign Holdings)
Yes (structural deficit; expenditure rule; subnational debt ceiling)
Yes (Fiscal Stabilization Fund)
Yes (expenditure rule; suspended in 2010)
Yes (Reserve Fund and National Wealth Fund)
Yes (balanced budget, expenditure, revenue and debt rules; some operational in the future)
Yes (Fiscal Stability Fund)
Yes (Macroeconomic Stabilization Fund)
· Fiscal rules: National legislation
· History of volatility management and fiscal sustainability: Derived based on historical correlation between expenditure and revenue growth
· Expenditure volatility: Calculation based on historical variance of government expenditure growth
· Expected budget balance (budget deficit as percentage of total revenues): National budgets or government statements. For Mongolia it includes Mongolian Development Bank balance.
Andrew Bauer is a senior economic analyst at the Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI). David Mihalyi is an NRGI economic analyst.
Shearman, GTs advise Mongolia on its dim sum bond debut, Allen & Overy, MahoneyLiotta banks
July 7 (Asian Legal Business) Shearman & Sterling and local firm GTs Advocates have advised the Mongolian government on its sale of an offshore yuan bond, making it the second country after Britain to issue yuan-denominated bonds.
Allen & Overy acted as international counsel, and MahoneyLiotta acted as Mongolian counsel to the banks on the transaction.
The 1 billion yuan ($161.08 million) sovereign issue shows increasing appetite for yuan assets as countries try to diversify their reserve portfolios, and is another step in the yuan's expedition to become a global reserve currency.
About 93 percent of the bond was allocated to Asian investors and 7 percent to European investors.
The Shearman team was led by Hong Kong capital markets partner Matthew Bersani. The firm previously advised the Government of Mongolia in its debut sovereign bond issuance in December 2012.
Britain became the first Western country to sell an offshore yuan bond in October. Its finance ministry said the yuan proceeds were used to finance the government's reserves of foreign currency.
At the provincial level, Canada's British Columbia and Australia's New South Wales tapped dim sum bonds last year.
Japan, South Korea and Nigeria have also expressed intention to increase their exposure to yuan assets. According to bankers, more than 50 foreign central banks have started using the yuan or keeping it as part of their foreign reserves.
No License Plate Restrictions During Naadam Days, 11-15 July
July 7 (UB Post) ---
During Naadam, public transportation service will be organized as follows:
From July 11 to 15, a total of 725 buses will serve city residents, with 615 buses on 81 routes, 90 small buses in 17 routes, and four buses on routes to camps.
On July 11 and 12, 20 buses to Dunjingarav, Central Stadium, and Misheel Expo will be scheduled with no fare.
Every three minutes, 15 buses will travel from Misheel Expo and Dunjingarav to Central Stadium, and five buses will provide short-circuit service from the Railbus Station to the racing finish line at Khui Doloon Khudag for free, from July 10 to 15.
On July 11 and 12, 20 buses will leave for Khui Doloo Khudag from the bus stop on Gandhi Street in Khan-Uul district, and on July 13 to 14, from the bus stop on the west side of Mongolian National University of Education. Twenty small buses from bus stops in the 3rd and 4th micro district, Doloon Buudal, Tavan Shar, KhMK, and Officer's Palace will take passengers to Khui Doloon Khudag.
Parking stickers for Naadam
The General Police Department reported that seven types of stickers for parking at Central Stadium and Khui Doloon Khudag will be issued with А, Ж, DK, Y, Г, М (blue), and М (red) classifications.
А- for the Governor's Office Authority
Ж – for the City Tourism Authority
DK – for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Y – for purchase by district departments
Г, М (blue), and М (red) stickers are being distributed by district traffic police departments. A limited number of licenses are being issued for each category. The number of parking spaces at Khui Doloon Khudag has not increased since last year, so the number of stickers available has not changed.
Driving restrictions during Naadam
There will be no driving restrictions from July 11 to 15, but the Traffic Police Department of Ulaanbaatar has regulated that unauthorized vehicles cannot enter roads 100 meters from the Central Stadium and the racing finish line at Khui Doloon Khudag.
This is to create green and car-free zones and allow people to walk safely during the festival. Depending on the traffic, two hours before the National Naadam Festival's opening ceremony on July 11, vehicles may be allowed to drive from the western junction of the Traffic Police Department to Bayanmongol khoroolol's western junction.
Closed roads to reopen temporarily during Naadam
July 7 (UB Post) The Ulaanbaatar Mayor's Office reported on Monday that road projects in Ulaanbaatar have been intensified to allow for the smooth flow of traffic during Naadam, with previously closed roads being reopened.
The executors of the city's road expansion and construction projects are currently working at a faster pace with a plan to open the roads before the main celebration events starting on July 11.
A 2.8 kilometer road which is the first part of the 6.75 km road getting upgrades between Shargamorit and Khandgait summer camp sites will reopen today.
Another major road project on the outskirts of the city is underway between Uliastai and Gachuurt village. The project will cover 11 km in total. The first part, which stretches five km, will open tomorrow evening.
The road between Central Post Office and State Department Store (SDS) and the heating pipelines underneath it have been repaired in two shifts, within the project's given deadline, last week.
The project will resume after Naadam and the road between SDS and West Central Intersection will be repaired from July 14 and August 10.
Long queues form for Naadam tickets
July 7 (UB Post) Tickets for the National Naadam opening and closing ceremonies and wrestling tournament at Central Stadium went on sale on Monday. People have been camping out outside the sale locations to purchase tickets, which happens every year.
The National Wrestling Palace and Central Cultural Palace box offices are selling tickets. The tickets are usually scalped and long queues are a typical scene during Naadam every year.
Chief of the working group of the Naadam Organization Commission M.Otgonbayar commented on the issue, saying, "Residents queue for a whole day to buy tickets, which results in complaints every year. We made a decision to sell only four tickets per person in order to prevent scalping. Those who wish to sit in covered seats will pay 24,000 MNT, while regular seats cost 16,000 MNT."
One hopeful ticket buyer, B.Yanjinlkham, said while queuing on Tuesday morning, "When I got here [outside Central Cultural Palace] at 4:20 a.m., about 40 people were here, saying they spent the whole night there. Most of them said they are planning to scalp the tickets they will purchase today."
She added, "I'm trying not to give up and putting a wet towel on my head to fight the heat. I wonder every year why such an inconvenience is imposed on people who just want to watch the Naadam ceremonies and celebrate the holiday in high spirits. Organizers could use a more convenient way for ticket sales. They could receive ticket orders in advance, or launch an online ticketing system."
Many residents camped the whole night on Sunday to purchase tickets when they become available on Monday morning. Two people fainted while queuing for the tickets. "I heard two people fainted from unstable blood pressure, as it was 35 degrees Celsius outside. They were taken to the hospital," said B.Yanjinlkham.
"I heard that city administrators have ordered that the box offices sell up to only four tickets per person. This is good to hear and I hope the order will be thoroughly followed. But if the box offices suddenly announce that tickets are sold out and scalpers start offering overpriced tickets, we will not just sit back this time. Last year, scalped ticket prices reached 100,000 MNT. We really wonder why ticket purchase should be this difficult," said another resident, D.Chogsom.
Sukhbaatar District Police Department officers are monitoring the box office areas to prevent pick pocketing and fighting between people queuing.
Naadam Cultural Program Schedule
July 7 (UB Post) The following cultural events have been scheduled under the Friendly Ulaanbaatar Program to celebrate the National Naadam Festival, as well as mark the 2,224th anniversary of the Establishment of the Mongolian State, the 809th anniversary of the Great Mongol Empire, and 94th anniversary of the People's Revolution of Mongolia.
• July 10 – Deeltei Mongol Festival at Chinggis Square
• July 10 – "Uchirtai Girvan Tolgoi" (Three Dramatic Characters) opera at Chinggis Square
• July 10 – "Ulaanbaatar of Good Virtue" musical
• July 11–"Ulaanbaatar Evening" at Chinggis Square
• July 12 – Silence White DJ festival at the National Amusement Park
• July 12 – Mongolian Dance Festival at State Academic Drama Theater, Chinggis Square
• July 13 – International Festival of Morin Khuur at Chinggis Square
Outside of Central Stadium
• July 11 to 12 – Mongol Khuushuur Festival 2015, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
• July 11 to 12 – Special program of cultural performances, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Khui Doloon Khudag
• July 11 – Long distance horse racing from 4:00 p.m. to 7 p.m.
• July 11 – "Moriton Mongolchuud" horse sport performances with circus acts, 2:50 p.m. to 3:20 p.m.
• July 10 to 12 – Sersen Tal (Awakened Steppe) Cultural Festival, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
• July 11 to 12 – Mongol Khuushuur Festival 2015, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Gachuurt residents unite to pave neighborhood road
July 7 (UB Post) Residents of Gachuurt in the 20th khoroo of Bayanzurkh District formed two cooperatives and have started paving a refined dirt road through their own financing and with the financial support of another organization.
Members of the two cooperatives are contributing to the completion of the road project. A total of 20 million MNT has been donated by residents so far.
The majority of the donated money is being spent directly on the project and assisting the day-to-day operations. Some residents are paving the roads, while some others are preparing meals for the workers in shifts.
Some herder families in the area have promised to donate a cow to the project coordinators for food supply. Many are volunteering their time and labor for construction of the road.
A South Korean organization is contributing to the project by donating 30 million KRW. The organization signed a contract with the Bayanzurkh District Mayor's Office and agreed to spend the donation on a one-kilometer road upgrade in Gachuurt.
"We wrote a project draft and planned to at least pick big rocks from the road ourselves, which hinder traffic in the Gachuurt area, as we didn't have any budget for hard paving. But shortly after that, a Korean organization contacted us and suggested cooperation," said Bayanzurkh District Mayor Sh.Batkhishig.
"The remaining 2.8 km of road will be paved with the money donated by Gachuurt residents. Every day, and average of 20 people and 10 road-paving machines are working on the road," he added.
PM Saikhanbileg concludes working visit to UK on Friday
Prime Minister Ch.Saikhanbileg meets Prime Minister of the United Kingdom David Cameron
Prime Minister meets Secretary of the State for Foreign and Commonwealth Philip Hammond
Prime Minister of Mongolia has opened trading on London's market at LSE Group
Prime Minister meets Chief Executive Helge Lund of BG Group
Prime Minister meets John Frederick Nelson, the Chairman of Lloyd's of London
Director of IMA S.Javkhlanbaatar signs Memorandum of Cooperation with the Asia House
Prime Minister Ch.Saikhanbileg delivered a speech at business meeting jointly held with the Asia House
Prime Minister meets Minister of State for Trade and Investment Francis Maude, The Lord Maude of Horsham
Annual Consultation of Heads of Diplomatic Missions Held
Ulaanbaatar, July 7 (MONTSAME) A consultation of heads of diplomatic missions of Mongolia abroad kicked off Monday in Ulaanbaatar with participation of 41 Ambassadors and General Consuls.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr L.Purevsuren made the opening remarks at the consultation, emphasizing that the foreign policy is an external expression of any country's internal policy, and added the Mongolian Foreign Ministry is focusing a special attention to the One-window policy.
"In a scope of this policy, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the main implementing body of foreign policy, Ambassadors, General Consuls and heads of the diplomatic missions have to be dynamic for realize principles of the one-window foreign policy," he said.
At the consultation, the participants made presentations and exchanged views on a process of working out a draft law on external relations and a draft amendment to the law on diplomatic service, a general regulation of the foreign relations, directions of policy and action of the Foreign Ministry, a trilateral meeting and the Economic Partnership Agreement. They also discussed a policy on the foreign propaganda, a program on propagandizing Mongolia abroad, the 11th ASEM Summit, the 2015 election of the United Nations Council for Human Rights (UNHRC) and interests of Mongolian people abroad.
Within the consultation, the participants will hold meetings with leaders of the Mongolian National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MNCCI) and the sectors of construction, wool, cashmere and foods. In addition, they will get acquainted with activities of the Oyu Tolgoi and Tavantolgoi mines and visit Darkhan and Erdenet cities.
New ambassadors of New Zealand, Ecuador, Singapore, Poland present credentials to Mongolia President
July 7 (news.mn) Today (7th July), the New Zealand Ambassador John McKinnon, the Ecuadorian Ambassador Jose Maria Borja Lopez, the Singaporean Ambassador Yip Wei Kiat, and the Polish Ambassador Michal Labenda presented their credentials to Mongolian President Ts.Elbegdorj. After the presentation ceremony each had a separate meeting with the President.
During the meeting, New Zealand Ambassador H.E. John McKinnon said –Diplomatic relations have been developing between our countries over the last 40 years. Last year, Mongolian and New Zealand Foreign Affairs Ministers discussed the deepening and development of relationships between the two countries.
H.E. Jose Maria Borja Lopez, the new Ecuadorian Ambassador said –Mongolia has always paid attention to developing co-operation with Latin American and Caribbean countries. One example of this was the Mongolian initiative to open an embassy in the capital of Brazil last year. Commercial relations are deepening as time goes by.
Singaporean Ambassador H.E. Yip Wei Kiat said – This year marks the 45th Anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations. President Ts.Elbegdorj officially visited Singapore in 2013.
H.E Michal Labenda, Poland's Ambassador to Mongolia said – This year is the 65th Anniversary of diplomatic relations between our two countries. Our country has invited Lech Walesa the leader of our Democratic Revolution for the 25th Anniversary of Mongolia's first democratic election.
President Receives Credentials from Ambassadors of Peru, Ghana, Thailand, Malaysia, Serbia
Ulaanbaatar, July 7 (MONTSAME) The Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Peru, Ghana, Thailand, Malaysia and Serbia to Mongolia Tuesday presented their diplomatic credentials to the President of Mongolia Mr Elbegdorj.
After the presentation ceremony, the President held individual meetings with the newly appointed Ambassadors to Mongolia.
At the meeting with Mr Juan Carlos Capunay, the Ambassador of the Republic of Peru, Mr Elbegdorj expressed a hope that the new Ambassador of Peru will make big efforts to boost the Mongolia-Peru relations, and wished him success.
Mr Elbegdorj underlined that Mongolia and Ghana have a great chance to develop the bilateral relations, at the meeting with Mr Kodzo Kloku Alabo, the Ambassador of the Republic of Ghana to Mongolia.
At the meeting with Mr Teerakun Niiom, the Ambassador of the Kingdom of Thailand to Mongolia, the President emphasized that the Mongolia-Thailand friendly relations and cooperation has developed in many directions, and high-level mutual visits have been implemented successfully. The two countries are possible to expand their cooperation in the tourism and cultural spheres, he added.
Mentioning that Mongolia and Malaysia established the diplomatic relations in 1971, the President of Mongolia said the countries have been developing in many spheres, at the meeting with Mr Zainudin Bi Yaya, the Ambassador of Malaysia to Mongolia.
During the meeting with the Ambassador of Serbia Mr Milan Bacevic, the President said the countries are possible to bring the ties into a new volume.
Mongolia Looks to Increase Scholarships to South Korea
Ulaanbaatar, July 7 (MONTSAME) The Minister of Education, Culture and Science L.Gantomor Tuesday received Mr Sul Hoon MP, chairman of the Standing committee on education, culture, sport and tourism at the National Assembly (parliament) of the Republic of Korea.
They have exchanged views on the bilateral cooperation in the spheres of education, culture and science.
The Minister Mr Gantomor asked the South Korean side to augment the quota for Mongolian students to study in South Korean universities with governmental scholarships, to introduce the progressive technology-based "smart classes" in Mongolian secondary schools with a financing from South Korea and to support an expanding of the teacher exchange program.
Mr Sul Hoon supported the Minister's proposals, and said he will convey these proposals to his country's Minister of Education, hoping that these matters will be resolved positively during a forthcoming visit of the Education Minister to Mongolia.
The parliament member Mr Sul Hoon invited Mr Gantomor to make a working visit to the Republic of Korea.
Deputy Speaker Gonchigdorj Receives Parliamentary Delegation from Kyrgyzstan
Ulaanbaatar, July 7 (MONTSAME) A Vice Speaker of parliament R.Gonchigdorj Tuesday met Ms N.N.Badykeeva and Ms E.A.Kochkarova, members of the Supreme Council (parliament) of Kyrgyzstan.
Underlining that Mongolia and Kyrgyzstan have long-year friendly ties, the Vice Speaker said the bilateral relations and cooperation have been boosting recent years, especially a frequency of mutual visits and meetings of MPs and friendship groups has increased thanks to widening of the inter-parliamentary ties.
The Kyrgyz parliamentarians thanked the Vice Speaker for an audience, and expressed their satisfaction with having opportunities for getting familiarized with Mongolian parliament, meeting with members of the State Great Khural and learning experiences.
"We are very happy because our visit is also coincided with the National Great Festival of Mongolia," they added.
Present at the meeting were A.Bakei, head of the Standing committee on state structure; and G.Sumya, Deputy Consul of Mongolia at the General Consulate in the Republic of Kyrgyzstan.
General Agency for Specialized Inspection to ensure safety of child jockeys
July 7 (infomongolia.com) Mongolia will celebrate its traditional celebration the Naadam Festival on July 11, 2015, it will continue 5 days.
On occasion of the celebration, Sh.Radnaased, the Chairman of General Agency for Specialized Inspection (GASI) has ordered the Heads of Agencies for Special Inspection (ASI) of aimags and the capital city to ensure safety of child jockeys participating in a horse race, one of three main events of the Naadam Festival.
According to instruction on safety measures for child jockeys issued by GASI, children above 7 years of age allowed to be a jockey and have accident insurance, and local ASI must make sure that all child jockeys race with standard safety equipment. In case of accident, the compensation and other related issues must be solved through local ASI jointly with other organizations responsible for child jockeys.
Child jockeys in Mongolia take part not only in state Naadam Festival also other local Naadam Festival and other minor activities held throughout summer. It is important to ensure the safety of children during these events as lots of accidents occur during the race.
Aimag, Soum Naadam Schedules
July 7 (UB Post) Arkhangai Province: Arkhangai will be holding Naadam celebrations from July 10 to 11. Khangai and Erdenemandal soums will celebrate their 90th anniversaries from July 15 to 17.
Bayan-Ulgii Province: This province will also join the festivities from July 10 to 11, and Altantsugts and Tsengel soums will celebrate their 90th anniversaries together. Ulgii will mark its 75th anniversary this year too.
Bayankhongor Province: Bayankhongor locals are organizing their Naadam Festival from July 8 to 10. Bayanlig and Bogd soums will be celebrating their 90th anniversaries from July 29 to August 1.
Bulgan Province: Naadam celebrations have been scheduled for July 9 to 10. Saikhan soum will hold its traditional 4,000 Horse Festival from July 18 to 19, while Bayan-Agt soum is commemorating its 90th anniversary and Khyalganat soum its 40th anniversary from July 29 to 31.
Govi-Altai Province: Locals of the Altai region are celebrating its 90th anniversary and organizing a Naadam Festival early, from July 7 to 9. Soums of this province will not be holding any anniversaries because most soum anniversaries were held last year.
Govisumber Province: Naadam celebrations will be held in conjunction with the Eastern Borjigon Festival from August 8 to 9.
Darkhan-Uul Province: The province will mark its 55th anniversary next year, but this year they will organize the local Naadam Festival from July 9 to 11.
Dornogovi Province: Dornogovi locals will organize festivities from July 10 to 11. Shortly after, Ulaanbadrakh soum will commemorate its 90th anniversary from July 16 to 17.
Dornod Province: This province will be brimming with celebrations this year, as Tsagaan-Ovoo, Bayandun and Dashbalbar soums will be marking their 90th anniversaries, and Khulunbuir soum its 60th anniversary. Soums celebrating their anniversaries have scheduled Naadam celebrations from July 15 to 17, but other soums will hold celebrations from July 10 to 11.
Dundgovi Province: Locals will enjoy celebrations from July 26 to 27. Bayanjargal soum will observe its 90th anniversary on July 23 to 25. This year is also the 50th anniversary of Mandalgovi.
Zavkhan Province: Naadam Festival will be held from July 10 to 11. No soums will be marking anniversaries.
Orkhon Province: Orkhon residents celebrating the province's 40th anniversary are organizing Naadam celebrations from July 10 to 11.
Uvurkhangai Province: Like many other provinces, Uvurkhangai Province will be joining the festivities from July 10 to 11. The 380th anniversary of Undur Gegeen Danshig Naadam, for the three main sports of archery, horse racing and wrestling, has been planned at Mongolia's former capital, Kharkhorin soum, from July 24 to 26. The Yak Festival is going to be organized in Bat-Ulzii soum.
Umnugovi Province: Southerners will enjoy the Govi Shankhiin Khurd Horse Race from July 25 to 26.
Sukhbaatar Province: This province will have plentiful celebrations, considering that six of its soums will be marking their 90th anniversaries this year. Khalzan, Ongon, Naran, Dariganga, Asgat, and Bayandelger soums will be celebrating anniversaries from July 17 to 19. Eastern horse racing will be organized in Sukhbaatar Province so locals will be able to celebrate Naadam Festival with exciting horse races from July 25 to 26.
Selenge Province: Naadam celebrations will be organized from July 9 to 11. The 50th anniversary of Tunkhel in Mandal soum was held from July 4 to 6.
Tuv Province: The province festival has been scheduled for July 8 to 10.
Uvs Province: Most soums of Uvs Province will be celebrating 90th anniversaries this year. Zavkhan, Malchin, Sagil, Turgen, Tarialan and Davs soums are marking anniversaries from July 18 to 19, and Uvs Province will hold its own 90th anniversary celebrations from July 22 to 25.
Khovd Province: The 330th anniversary of Khovd in Khovd Province will be observed from July 10 to 11. Buyant soum will celebrate its 90th anniversary from September 4 to 6, and Chandmani soum will celebrate it earlier, from July 25 to 26.
Khuvsgul Province: Khuvsgul residents will enjoy their Naadam Festival from July 10 to 11. Tumurbulag soum is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year, with its anniversary Naadam being held from July 19 to 20. Tsagaannuur soum is marking its 30th anniversary form July 10 to 11.
Khentii Province: Tsenkhermandal and Dadal soums are commemorating their 90th anniversaries this year, from July 8 to 9, and Naadam celebrations will be organized from July 8 to 9.
Mongolian LGBTs to Hold Gay Pride Days This Week
July 7 (news.mn) A few days ago the USA approved the same-sex marriage law. In any society homosexuals exist only as a small part of population. In Mongolia they have a very difficult time and are accused of being a bad influence on the young. Therefore Mongolian LGBT (lesbian, homo-sexual, bisexual and transgender) organization is standing up for their rights. From this week, the LGBT is going to organize "Equal Rights- Gay Pride Days-2015". They are trying to send a message to society, because they are always victims of discrimination and suffer from physical and emotional harassment.
Mongolia's NSO & NEMA sign MoU on ensuring most vulnerable population identified & protected during emergency
Vulnerable Populations in Emergencies
ULAANBAATAR, Mongolia, July 7 (UNFPA Mongolia) – On 11 July, as communities everywhere will be observing World Population Day, UNFPA will focus its attention on the urgency and importance of population issues, particularly "Vulnerable Populations in Emergencies".
A recent United Nations report warns that the number of forcibly displaced people has risen to a record number –almost 60 million at the end of 2014. Among these, most women and adolescent girls face particular threats as a result of the absence of health and other essential services that they need.
Recognizing the urgent need for preparedness in disaster risk reduction, specifically for the most vulnerable, his Excellency Deputy Prime Minister of Mongolia Ukhnaagiin Khurelsukh, Chairman of the National Statistical Office of Mongolia Sonomtseren Mensaikhan, Deputy Chief of the National Emergency Management Agency of Mongolia Colonel Gombojav Ariunbuyan and UNFPA Representative Naomi Kitahara held a joint press conference at the Government House on July 7th.
By the initiative of Deputy Prime Minister Ukhnaagiin Khurelsukh, the National Statistical Office /NSO/ and the National Emergency Management Agency /NEMA/ signed a Memorandum of Understanding that enables cooperation of NSO and NEMA on development and exchange of statistical data on emergencies. This partnership will ensure that the most vulnerable populations, especially women and girls, are quickly identified and protected in the unfortunate aftermath of an emergency.
Girls and women in crisis situations face much greater risk of abuse, sexual exploitation, violence, reproductive health-related illnesses, and death due to a lack of protection and an absence of aid that addresses their needs. With or without disaster, human life will continue. Pregnancies do not stop because of a disaster and we must reflect the special needs of women, particularly pregnant women, in disaster settings.
On this World Population Day, UNFPA is pleased to see the Government of Mongolia taking proactive steps to support the most vulnerable populations in emergencies.
"When a crisis strikes, humanitarian response must be swift and adaptable to the needs of affected populations. Women and young people may especially require targeted support, and aid must be sustained from the onset of an emergency until recovery," stated UNFPA Executive Director, Dr Babatunde Osotimehin.
3.6 Magnitude Earthquake Recorded in Dundgobi, No Damages Reported
July 7 (gogo.mn) Yesterday, magnitude 3.6 earthquake was occurred at Khoot which is 36 km W away from center of Bayanjargal soum of Dundgobi aimag.
The earthquake was recorded at 08:47AM, reported by the Astronomy and Geophysics Research Center.
There were no destruction and fatalities reported.
Tchaikovsky winner Ariunbaatar to receive ₮80 million, Cardiff runner-up E.Amartuvshin ₮20 million
July 7 (gogo.mn) Today, Minister of Education, Culture and Science L.Gantumur proposed to award the first place winner of Tchaikovsky Competition, G.ARIUNBAATAR with MNT 80 million and got approved the proposal by the plenary session of the Government.
Moreover, winner of Audience prize from BBC Cardiff Singer of the World E.Amartuvshin to be awarded with prize worth MNT 20 million from the Government.
Previously decision to grant MNT 24 million to the winner of second place of Asia`s Got Talent Show, Khusugtun group were made.
Tomorrow, the Prime Minister Ch.Saikhanbileg is to present the awards to the singers who introduced Mongolian talent to the world at 12.30PM.
Ariunbaatar to Receive 80 Million Togrog Prize – Montsame, July 7
Two Honorary Singers become Chevaliers of Labor – news.mn, July 7
Four leading contemporary painters hold exhibition at 976 Art Gallery
July 7 (gogo.mn) On 6 July, 976 Art Gallery is opening group exhibition of four leading artists of contemporary Mongol zurag painting - Baatarzorig Batjargal, Nomin Bold, Uuriintuya Dagvasambuu and Gerelkhuu Ganbold each of whom, has developed his/her own unique language of artistic expression, with recognizable motifs, strong elements of social criticism, using traditional techniques of Mongol zurag, which shares a heritage with Persian miniature and Tibetan Buddhist thangka painting and characterized by ultra-fine brushwork, bright colours and themes from the everyday.
Artist Baatarzorig's paintings distinguish in their use of recognizable historical figures and combination of traditional and consumer imagery. He is particularly concerned with the loss of Mongolian heritage through a succession of outside influences, including the ascetic culture of Soviet-style communism and the consumerism of American-style capitalism. In his addressing of serious social concerns, Baatarzorig also brings epic composition and satirical humour. Symbol-heavy colors and figures in Nomin's works comment on contemporary issues; wealth, politics, nature, and human relationships by placing people from secular society in the world of gods. Nomin's goal is to displace current conventions and encourage viewers to evaluate cultural norms from the point of view of Mongolia's ancient history. Particularly notable is her use of gold leaf and collaged pages from Mongolian scriptures. Uuriintuya Dagvasambuu creates dream-like works characterised by fine brushwork, innovative composition and an elegant use of colour, reflecting the experiences of Mongolian women as well as psychologically charged imagery of contemporary life. Her paintings incorporate both poetic and everyday imagery, creating subtle contrasts between the manufactured and the natural or organic, and between intense, massed detail and flat planes of colour. Gerelkhuu describes life in present-day Mongolia as an eternal battle, a daily struggle for money and food while the powerful fight among themselves for influence. His work addresses this situation through particular reference to the famed mounted warriors of the Mongol empire, drawing as much on comics and science fiction cinema as it does on Mongolian epic painting and the local genre of equestrian painting.
From November 2015 to April 2016, artists will present Mongolia first time in the 8th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art at QAGOMA, Queensland Australia.
N.Anu crowned Miss World Mongolia 2015
July 7 (UB Post) The winner of the 2015 Miss World Mongolia competition to select contestants to compete in Miss World 2015 for Mongolia, was announced on July 5. N.Anu, 24, received the pageant crown.
Final selection for Miss World Mongolia took place at the State Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet on July 5. The first runner-up was A.Bayartsetseg, and E.Azbileg was second runner-up.
Miss World 2015 will be held in Sanya, China, on December 19.
N.Anu is the winner of Miss Mongolia 2013. She has successfully participated in international beauty pageant competitions. She won a first place at the 11th China-Russia-Mongolia International Beauty Pageant, which took place in Manzhouli, China, in December 2014.
19 Przewalski horses reintroduced from Prague to Mongolia since 2011
July 7 (gogo.mn) Within the framework of Development Cooperation of the Czech Republic and "Przewalski's Horse Reintroduction to Mongolia Project" which was initiated by the Prague Zoo, regular four Przewalski's horses (mares) released into Takhiin Tal of Khovd aimag on July 6, 2015.
These four Przewalski's horses were airlifted from Czech Republic on July 4, 2015 and the journey for the Przewalski's horses lasted for 30 hours.
In scope of Development Cooperation of Czech Republic, "Przewalski's Horse Reintroduction to Mongolia Project" initiated by the Prague Zoo has been implementing in Mongolia since 2011 and total of 19 Przewalski's horses were reintroduced into Takhiin Tal and Khomiin Tal of Mongolia.
Go Mongolia Part 1 of 11: From Skyscrapers to Gers | Ulan Bator | Black Market | Gobi Desert
June 21 (Because We Camp) --
Go Mongolia Part 2: Mud Pies and Camel's Milk | White Stupa | Tsagaan Suvarga | Gobi Desert
Go Mongolia Part 3: Canyons and Death Worms | Yolyn Am Canyon | Gobi Desert
Go Mongolia Part 4: Camels and Dunes | Khongor Sand Dunes | Gobi Desert
Go Mongolia Part 5: Skinned Sheep and Fossils | Bayanzag | Flaming Cliffs | Gobi
Go Mongolia Part 6: Monastery and Vodka Surprise | Ongi | Orkhon Valley | Central
Go Mongolia Part 7: 4 Days of Horseback Riding | Central Mongolia
Go Mongolia Part 8: Khorkhog BBQ and Hot Springs | Tsenkher Hot Springs | Central
Go Mongolia Part 9: Lakes and Volcanos | Great White Lake | Terkhiin Tsagaan
Go Mongolia Part 10: Communism and The Legend of the Phallus Stone | Erdene Zuu
Go Mongolia Part 11: Breakdowns and Goodbyes | Hustai National Park | Przewalski Horses | Takhi
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