Friday, August 12, 2016

[MATD gets $10m; APU reports +67% profit; MNT sets 13th straight low; ousted DP leaders slam MPP; and Tuvshinbayar loses in 1st round]

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Friday, August 12, 2016

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Int'l Market

MATD closed +2.36% Thursday to 3.25p

Petro Matad Announces Receipt of Initial $10 Million Exit Payment from Shell

August 11 -- Further to the Company's announcement of 5th August 2016, Petro Matad confirms that the $10,005,303 exit payment stipulated by the Farmout Agreement has now been received by the Company.  

Upon completion of the reassignment a further $5m payment is due from Shell. 

A further announcement will be made in due course

Link to release


EGI closed -1.4% Thursday to US$0.296, -12.94% in last 3 months

Entree Gold Announces Second Quarter 2016 Results

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Aug. 11, 2016) - Entrée Gold Inc. (TSX:ETG)(NYSE MKT:EGI)(FRANKFURT:EKA) ("Entrée" or the "Company") has today filed its interim operational and financial results for the quarter ended June 30, 2016. All numbers are in U.S. dollars unless otherwise noted.


Underground Development at Oyu Tolgoi Update Provided by Turquoise Hill

On August 2, 2016, Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd. ("Turquoise Hill") released an update on the progress towards the start of underground construction at the Oyu Tolgoi project in Mongolia.

The August 2 release advised that Oyu Tolgoi LLC ("OTLLC") has drawn down approximately $4.3 billion of the $4.4 billion project finance facility that was signed in December 2015. Steps are being taken to finalize the drawdown of the remaining amount. As part of the project finance facility, a debt cap of $6.0 billion for Oyu Tolgoi was agreed, which provides the possibility for an additional $1.6 billion of supplemental debt in the future.

Link to release


VKA closed flat Thursday at A$0.029

Viking Mines: Annual Report 2016

August 11, Viking Mines Ltd. (ASX:VKA) --

Link to report

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Local Market

MSE Trading Report: Top 20 -1.08%, ALL -0.74%, Turnover ₮96.1 Million Shares

August 11 (MSE) --

Link to report


APU Presents 67.2% Higher First Half Profit to Public

August 12 (Mongolian Stock Exchange) On 12 August 2016, "Apu" JSC, listed on classification "I" of MSE, presented its half-year operating report to the public.

In first half-year of 2016, "Apu" JSC operated with MNT9.7 billion net profit which was 67.2 percent more than same period of last year. During the reporting period, low losses of foreign currency exchange affected to the high net profit.

In order to focusing the real value of the company and trading its shares into market freely, "Apu" JSC conducted stock split on 20 June 2016. In future, the company working on to increase net profit by converting foreign currency loan to Mongolian tugrik, issue corporate bonds and make forward trading on raw materials.  

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Reds are rates that set a new record at the time

BoM MNT Rates: Thursday, August 11 Close























































































































































































































































Bank USD rates at time of sending: Khan (Buy ₮2,150 Sell ₮2,165), TDB (Buy ₮2,150 Sell ₮2,165), Golomt (Buy ₮2,152 Sell ₮2,165), XacBank (Buy ₮2,153 Sell ₮2,168), State Bank (Buy ₮2,155 Sell ₮2,170)

MNT vs USD (blue), CNY (red) in last 1 year:

Link to rates


BoM sells US$30m at 2,161.2, CNY11m at 326.41, accepts $47.7m MNT swap offers

August 11 (Bank of Mongolia) Spot trade: Commercial banks bid USD42.0 million and the BOM sold USD30.0 million with a single rate of MNT2161.2 and CNY11.0 million with a rate of MNT326.41

Swap and forward trade: The BOM accepted the bid offers of USD47.7 million and selling bid offers of USD5.0 million swap agreements respectively. The BOM sold USD47.7 million via MNT swap agreement.

Link to release


Financial Stability Council Agrees to Establish Joint Working Group on Economic Action Plan

August 8 (Bank of Mongolia) On 8th of August 2016, Financial Stability Council (FSC) has held its extra ordinary meeting at the Bank of Mongolia. In meeting, Mr. Bayartsaikhan, Governor of the Bank of Mongolia, delivered speech on state of the economy and further action proposal to which the FSC members agreed to establish joint working group. Also, the FSC discussed the draft on the Strategy on developing Mongolian national payment system and agreed to approve it by joint order.

Link to release


Mongolia Calls for 'Crisis' Plan

August 11 (Bloomberg) Mongolia says it is creating a task force to deal with what it describes as an economic crisis. The country has been struggling with slowing growth, a declining currency and a soaring budget deficit. Bloomberg's Nick Edwards reports on "Asia Edge."

Link to video


Mongolian assets slump after 'economic crisis' admission

August 11 (Fast FT) The Mongolian tugrik is sliding for the 19th straight day and the country's dollar bonds are nursing heavy losses after the finance minister said the government's fiscal deficit is likely to be 21.1 per cent of GDP this year – somewhat larger than the 3.4 per cent that had previously been predicted.

The country's new finance minister, part of the government that won an election landslide at the end of June, said in a televised address that this it is a "critical goal for government is to avoid default," according to a Bloomberg report. He admitted: "We are in a deep state of economic crisis."

The 5-year bond the mineral rich country sold in March has slumped, with the yield rocketing 1.23 percentage points to 9.16 per cent, writes Joel Lewin.

Mongolia issued the bond earlier this year with a yield of about 11 per cent. But since then the bond had rallied, carried along by the hunt for yield and an upturn in sentiment towards emerging markets.

The yield dropped to a low of 7.90 per cent at the start of this month, underscoring the suddenness of the shift in Mongolia's outlook.

The tugrik is dropping for the 19th consecutive day against the greenback, a slide that has taken it 7.2 per cent lower to a record low 2,140 tugrik per dollar.

At the start of this decade Mongolia's future looked bright. High mineral prices and surging demand from China drove grove of 17.3 per cent in 2011 and 12.3 per cent in 2012.

But under a populist government spending surged and investment suffered as it tried to renegotiate more favourable terms on contracts signed with mining companies.

Avanti Save at Barclays says:

Mongolia's economic situation is clearly challenging, and the government has limited flexibility on both the fiscal and debt fronts.

We do not believe the government wants to default or restructure. However, it recognizes that the total amount of external debt is very large. Therefore, in our view, it is using a public forum to suggest that it needs a multilateral funding program, possibly from the International Monetary Fund.

Link to article


'We are in a deep state of economic crisis'

August 11 (Business Insider) All is not well with Mongolia's finances.

"We are in a deep state of economic crisis," Choijilsuren Battogtokh, the finance minister in Mongolia, said in a nationally televised address on Tuesday, according to Bloomberg.

"We came into a situation where we may not be able to afford to finance salaries and operational costs of government departments, such as the Mongolian military who protect our borders and national security, the social and health employees who are in charge public health, as well as individuals in culture and sport."

He noted that the projected budget deficit is $2.6 billion — or 21% of GDP — and that the country's ratio of government-debt-to-GDP will reach 78% this year, above the target of 55%. Additionally, Mongolia's central bank's foreign reserves are net -$429 million.

The government's "critical goal" is to avoid default, added Battogtokh.

In the aftermath of the finance minister's televised announcement, Mongolian bonds, which are rated five steps below investment grade, fell the most on record, according to Bloomberg's Nick Edwards.

Moreover, the Mongolian tugrik has now weakened against the US dollar for 19 days in a row, which Edwards reported is the longest streak since 1993. The currency is down by 0.4% at 2,147.50 a dollar as of 1:27 p.m. ET.

All of this comes at a time when the country has been dealing with weaker commodity prices and slower growth amid the slump in China, which is one of Mongolia's major export partners.

The economic slowdown is particularly noticeable given that country saw double-digit growth rates in the early 2010s.

As the Globe and Mail's Nathan VanderKlippe described it back in May: "... in a few short years, Mongolia has gone from Asia's golden child to its binge-drinking adolescent, with government borrowing to make payroll, cash-short consumers reduced to bartering for goods, and observers openly talking about the possibility of either a sovereign default – national bankruptcy – or a massive bailout."

Notably, the finance minister's televised announcement follows June elections, in which the main opposition party, the Mongolian People's Party, won an 85% majority by taking 65 seats in the 76-member parliament.

"The economy appears to be a significant factor in the MPP's landslide victory," wrote The Diplomat's Peter Bittner at the time. "The majority Democratic Party has been widely blamed for mishandling the economy after a boom from 2010 to 2012 quickly turned to bust on their watch."

"In our view, Mongolia's economic situation is clearly challenging, and the government has limited flexibility on both the fiscal and debt fronts," argued Barclays' Avanti Save. "However, we also believe the government is engaging in some 'kitchen-sinking,' announcing all possible bad news at once, and blaming the previous government for the country's challenging fiscal and debt dynamics."

So this appears to setting up the stage for addressing some of these financial problems. Already, Bloomberg's Edwards reported that the government is likely looking at austerity measures and will be axing several stimulus programs. But the government may also be toying with the idea of looking for an IMF bailout.

"We do not believe the government wants to default or restructure. However, it recognizes that the total amount of external debt is very large," added Save. "Therefore, in our view, it is using a public forum to suggest that it needs a multilateral funding program, possibly from the International Monetary Fund."

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Politics & Legal

E.Bat-Uul: MPP made the economy worse within two days

August 11 ( Former Democratic Party Leader Mr. Z.Enkhbold and former City Mayor Mr. E.Bat-Uul held press session today. They considered that the Mongolian People's Party made the economy worse and delivered irresponsible statement on foreign exchange reserve. 

President of Bank of Mongolia and Minister of Finance stated that foreign exchange reserve is at negative USD 400 billion. Following the false statement, currency exchange rate has started to rise while the Government bond yield has declined. USD rate increased by MNT 150 within two days and the Government has not found solution, DP representatives said. 

Also, they emphasized that DP left 1.3 billion USD reserve. 

E.Bat-Uul called for ger district residents to fight for implementation of the "Good Fence" program. Ger area households are able to reduce their heat loss within the program. As a result, air pollution of the city will be reduced, considered by the Former City Governors.

Link to article


Three remaining vice ministers appointed

Ulaanbaatar, August 11 (MONTSAME) At the regular meeting of cabinet on Wednesday, the ministers finalized appointment of three vice ministers and of directors of nine agencies.

J.Saule was appointed the Vice Minister of Food, Agriculture and Light Industry, B.Battsetseg- the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Sh.Lkhamsuren- the Vice Minister of Construction and Urban Development. State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs D.Gankhuyag was dismissed in connection with his appointment to a different office.

Acting directors were named for the National Development Agency, The Agency for Policy Management of State Property, the General Taxation Authority, the State Registration and Intellectual Property Authority, the Authority for Physical Culture and Sports, the Minerals and Petroleum Authority, the General Agency for Specialized Inspection, and the General Authority for Labor and Welfare Services.

Link to article


Government stops "Good Fence", "Good Students", "Good Herders" and "Good Shares" programs

August 11 ( The Governments has decided to stop the "Good Fence", "Good Students", "Good Herders" and "Good Shares" programs due to it violates the law on budget stability and law on debt management.

"Good" programs have started to be implemented since Apr, 2016 and its financing sources were not reflected to the State Budget 2016. As of today, total of MNT 596 billion was spent on the programs which had been implemented to win most votes of election. 

Also, the Government has assigned Minister of Finance, Minister of Education, Culture, and Science to draft the Government Action Plan 2016-2020 and State Budget 2016  in accordance with the law of Mongolia. 

"Good Fence" is a program to improve the living conditions of people who live in ger districts and to deal with the infrastructural shortages of ger districts. 

"Good Students" is a program to grant tuition fee loans to students.  

"Good Herders" is a program to grant loans with a 10 percent interest rate to herders.

"Good Shares" is a program to buy back a certain number of public shares of Erdenes Tavan Tolgoi.

Link to article


"Good" programs cancelled by new cabinet, considered illegally financedMontsame, August 11

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Sending Mail in Mongolia? 'Dissident.sloth.ploy' Could Be the Address

August 11 (New York Times) If you happen to be invited to a party at the United States Embassy in Ulan Bator, Mongolia, you might address your R.S.V.P. to "eyebrows.conforms.zebra." Have a care package for a student at the Institute of Finance and Economics of Mongolia? Writing "during.snapper.housework" on the parcel will get it there.

These oddly poetic three-word codes will soon act as a stand-in for the more common addressing convention of house number, street name and postal code, which never quite caught on in Mongolia, one of the world's most sparsely populated countries.

They are the invention of a British start-up, What3Words, that has mapped the world into 57 trillion patches of nine square meters and given each one a unique three-word identity.

"Words are easier to remember and communicate than GPS or other alphanumeric systems," said Giles Rhys Jones, a What3Words spokesman.

Mongol Post, the country's largest mail provider, has licensed the system from What3Words, and starting in September it will offer customers the option of using the three-word codes. (The company added Mongolian to its first 10 languages; 14 more are coming.)

Mongol Post has long labored to deliver the mail, even in the absence of snow, rain or gloom of night. Many Mongolians still lead nomadic lives, and some have to collect mail from post-office boxes dozens of miles from home. Failed deliveries are common.

"Try to find someone moving around with their animals on a territory the size of Alaska," said Ganhuyag Ch. Hutagt, the chief executive of Ard Financial Group, an owner of Mongol Post.

Even in and around Ulan Bator, the capital, finding a house or a business can depend more on local landmarks than on the often nonexistent street names and numbers: Take a left at the gas station, then go up the hill and look for a yurt with a yellow flag. Envelopes typically include a cellphone number, so postal workers can call for directions.

Under the new system, Mongolians will be able to use a What3Words smartphone app to look up the three-word code for where they are or where they want to send mail, by placing a pointer over a spot on the app's global map or by entering an address if one is available. Postal workers can then use the app to arrive at the location by sending the three words, automatically converted into GPS coordinates, to any navigation system on their phone for turn-by-turn directions.

Link to article


No fixed address: The world as one big gridLive Mint, August 11

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Volunteers Sought for Natsagdorj Library Park Restoration Project

August 11 (UB Post) The American Center for Mongolian Studies and Natsagdorj Library have come up with a plan to convert the wild green space in front of the library into a public garden. The organizers are looking for at least five volunteers to come help them this Saturday with the preliminary site preparation.

Lunch and beverages will be provided.

All tools and equipment needed will be provided.


WhereNatsagdorj Library

When: August 13, 10:00 a.m.

More Information: 77110486

Link to article


Fitness Festival 2016, August 13, National Garden

August 11 (UB Post) Golden Gym will organize the first Fitness Festival of Mongolia at the National Garden Park on August 13.

Over 30 top fitness clubs in Ulaanbaatar will gather together for the festival. The best fitness club will be announced after competitions among clubs.

Mongolian artists who support fitness will participate in the event and perform aconcert.


WhereNational Garden Park

When: August 13, 4:00 p.m.

Admission: 5,000 MNT

More Information: 88113575

Link to post


UB Events during Aug 12-14

August 12 (GoGo Mongolia) --




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Deputy PM receives Turkish Ambassador

Ulaanbaatar, August 11 (MONTSAME) At the meeting, held Thursday, Deputy Prime Minister U.Khurelsukh Thanked the Ambassador for sending a congratulatory note on the occasion of his re-appointment to the office of the Deputy Premier.

He also noted that the Ambassador has made huge contribution in the prosperity of the relations between Mongolia and Turkey. The Deputy PM highlighted the successful implementations of joint projects in infrastructure, the environment and many other sectors, and expressed gratitude for the fact that 300 of the total of some 800 Mongolian students studying in Turkey are living there on Turkish government scholarships.

In the margin of intergovernmental agreement, more than 400 projects have been financed by some USD 30 million from the Turkish International Cooperation and Development Agency (TIKA), underlined Mr Karagoz.

The sides spoke highly of the importance of expanding ties in tourism, trade, agriculture, health and education. They also expressed confidence and expectation for mutually-beneficial decisions in the result of the 7th Meeting of the Intergovernmental Commission, to be held this year in Mongolia.

Link to article


Head of parliament secretariat receives Ambassador Karagoz

Ulaanbaatar, August 11 (MONTSAME) On August 11, Secretary General of the State Great Khural Office Ts.Tsolmon welcomed the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Turkey Murat Karagoz. The latter emphasized Turkey's interest in strengthening the inter-parliamentary relations and multilateral ties.

The offices of the Mongolian State Great Khural and the Turkey's Grand National Assembly have established a cooperation protocol, which of crucial importance in the bilateral ties, underlined the SGK Secretary General Ts.Tsolmon.

In accordance of the protocol established in 2009, the Turkish International Cooperation and Development Agency (TIKA) have successfully implemented the projects "SGK E-Library" and "Renovation on Publishing Section". Mr Ts.Tsolmon extended heartfelt gratitude for this.

Mentioning that many important visit have been exchanged between the two countries in the past trhee years, the Ambassador noted that TIKA is willing to maintain close cooperation with Mongolia for deepening the inter-parliamentary relations.

He presented a proposal on forming a Mongolia-Turkey friendship group in the State Great Khural, and conveyed the greetings of the Secretary General of the Grand National Assembly Office of Turkey to Mr Tsolmon.

Link to article


Day of Japanese Pop Culture, August 13, National Amusement Park

August 11 (UB Post) The Embassy of Japan in Mongolia and Japanese Culture Amateurs' Union are jointly organizing the Day of Japanese Pop Culture on August 13 at the National Amusement Park.

During the event, cosplay, manga drawing, and singing competitions will be organized. Winners of the competitions will win a right to travel around Japan for seven days under Jenesys program.


WhereNational Amusement Park

When: August 13, 11:00 a.m.

Admission: Free

More Information: 88661138

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Culture, Society

Korean parish raises funds for Salesian nuns in Mongolia

Money will be used to repair and expand school buildings

August 11 (UCA News) A Seoul parish has created a fund to help improve education initiatives by the Catholic Church in Mongolia.

Daech2-dong Catholic Church of  Seoul Archdiocese donated 50 million won (US$45,000) to Peace Makers, a social welfare arm of the Catholic Education Foundation, on Aug. 11 to support ongoing work in Mongolia.

Peace Maker will send the funds to Korean Salesian nuns working in the Mongolian education ministry. The money will be used to repair and expand school buildings run by the Salesian nunss and to provide student scholarships.

Currently, the nuns are running an elementary school with 40 students and a kindergarten that has 135 children attending.

Link to article


Postage stamps symbolize Mongolia's cultural identity

August 11 (Montsame) There are about 4050 types of postage stamps on over 1000 topics are available for public display at the Museum of Postage Stamps of the Mongol Post Company.  The stamps ranging from the first ever Mongolian stamp named 'Eldev-Ochir', which was issued in 1924 to the latest issue are on exhibit in chronological order at the Museum.

Namely, 70 first day covers (an envelope with the date of the stamp's first day of issue), 35 types of old envelopes, an envelope with a signature of the Dalai Lama, the first day postcards, maximum cards, and several other rare envelopes are on display at the museum.

In particular, 4 postage stamps issued on the occasion of the 800 birth anniversary of Chinggis Khaan created by late Tumur-Ochir in 1962 are among the most interesting stamps.  Despite the fact that the series of stamps was sold-out within the 3 days after release, selling them was banned due to ideological reasons during the socialist times.  However, the postage stamps had been preserved until today without being destroyed as it keeps security features.  The postage stamp was revised in 1990 for the reason that it became available for purchase again in that year.

Interestingly, the Mongol Post Company printed 40 thousand packs of postage stamps showing the twin towers of the World Trade Center giving support to counter-terrorism actions and donating the sales revenue to the US Embassy in Ulaanbaatar for restoration of the World Trade Center site.

Also, the Company issued the first stamp of the XXI century on January 1, 2001 dedicated to the historical moment of humanity transferring to a new century.  The 4-colored and gold foil postage stamp is pictured with animal signs in Mongolian astrology yearning for a peaceful life to Mongolians and humanity.

Link to full article

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Government to pay MNT1.7 billion owed to athletes

August 11 ( According to Mongolian law, athletes who have won medals from the Olympics and major international and regional sporting events are entitled to receive a cash prize. In recent years, however, monetary awards for athletes and coaches has stopped. Last year, in total 2069 athletes and coaches in 13 sports categories met the requirements of monetary awards - but received nothing. Subsequently, the Mongolian Government must  pay them MNT1.7 billion owed. The Cabinet, therefore, has decided that this amount should be reflected in the Mongolian State Budget Clarifications.

The first monetary awards for athletes were issued in 1997 by Decree No.252, and then were renewed in the recent years.  According to a presidential decree, each athlete who wins a gold medal in the Olympics will be awarded 4 million MNT per month for their lifetimes, while silver medalists will receive 3 million MNT, and bronze medalists will receive 2 million MNT per month. Athletes who win gold medals in World Championships, with the same weight or distance category as the Olympics, will receive 2 million MNT every month for their lifetime, while athletes who win silver will receive 1 million MNT, and bronze medalists will get 500,000 MNT per month.

Link to article


Government in debt to 2,069 successful athletesMontsame, August 11


Rio 2016: Olympic gold, silver medalist N.Tuvshinbayar defeated by yuko in first round

August 11 (GoGo Mongolia) Olympic champion N.Tuvshinbayar defeated by Cuban Judoka Jose Armenteros in the -100kg first round with a yuko score. 

Thus, N.Tuvshinbayar, qualified in the finals of both Beijing 2008 and London 2012 Olympics, ended his Olympic career.

Link to article


Boxers in 56kg, 64kg claim their first victories

Ulaanbaatar, August 11 (MONTSAME) In Rio 2016 Men's Boxing (56kg), International Master of Sports E.Tsendbaatar won the his first fight in the summer Olympics with Benson Gicharu Njangiru of Kenya on August 10.

Our boxer took the advantage throughout the whole three rounds of this match, and made it to the final 16.

On the same day, Mongolian boxer B.Chinzorig (men's 64 kg) also claimed a victory in a fight with Tharumalingam Thulasi of Qatar. He will be facing the world champion Vitaly Danaitsev of Russia on August 14.

Link to article


Gicharu admits he was outclassed by MongolianThe Star, August 12


History of Mongolia at the Olympic Games

August 11 (UB Post) A team of 43 Mongolian athletes are competing in the Rio 2016 Summer Olympic Games. Mongolians have been competing in the Summer and Winter Olympics since 1964, except in the 1976 and 1984 Summer Olympics.

In 1964, a Mongolian team of 21 athletes competed in the nation's first Summer Olympics, held in Tokyo. Mongolia didn't win any medals in Tokyo but it was an important beginning.

In Mexico City's 1968 Summer Olympic Games, Mongolia seized one silver and three bronze medals in freestyle wrestling. Until Beijing 2008, Mongolia had no gold medals in its Olympic history.

Mongolia's first-ever gold medal was won by judoka N.Tuvshinbayar in the men's 100 kg category. After N.Tuvshinbayar had his win, boxer E.Badar-Uugan secured another gold medal for Mongolia in Beijing.

The victories were a memorable moment for Mongolians. Even the President of Mongolia, Ts.Elbegdorj, enjoyed the first-ever gold medal win at a public celebration at Chinggis Square.

Photographs documenting the history of Mongolian athletes at the Olympic Games are kept at the Olympic Museum at the Mongolian National Olympic Committee's headquarters.

The Mongolian National Olympic Committee (MNOC) was established on February 26, 1956. The Olympic Museum opened in 1997, and the number of domestic and foreign visitors to the museum is growing year by year.

The Olympic Museum aims to teach visitors about the Olympic Games, the Mongolian athletes who have participated in the Olympics, and the nation's athletic achievements.

During this year's Games in Rio, visit the Olympic Museum and learn about Mongolia's Olympic legacy. Mongolian athletes have earned 25 medals over the past 48 years, and more medals are expected to be brought home from Rio 2016.

Link to article


Nepal's Three Star gearing up for AFC Cup, eye glory in Mongolia

Kathmandu, August 11 (The Himalayan News Service) National league champions Three Star Club are gearing up their preparations for the Qualifying Play-off of the AFC Cup 2017 with eyes firmly set on to finishing as the league-round winners.

The Patan-based club are in Group B along with hosts Erchim FC and Nagaworld FC of Cambodia in the qualifying play-off to be held in Mongolia from August 21-25. Three Star are scheduled to play Erchim on 21 before playing against Nagaworld two days later.

They will leave for Mongolia on August 16.

Link to article


"A warrior of a car": Two men drove a €500 hatchback from Dublin to Mongolia for charity

August 11 ( Available for free: 1992 Toyota Starlet, several previous owners, 15,000 fresh miles on the clock and the smell of two very tired Irish men who drove all the way from Dublin to Mongolia.

What car would you choose if you were taking on 'the greatest motoring adventure on the planet?'

A luxurious jeep or perhaps a fancy sports car... or, if you're anything like Craig O'Rourke and Ronan O'Neill from Wicklow, you'd choose a tiny Toyota Starlet you bought for just €500.

The two men took on the Mongol Rally, where you drive all the way from London to Mongolia, in a hatchback normally reserved for quick jaunts to the shops.

They left Dublin on July 16 and finished the race on Thursday, August 11. They travelled over 15,00km and were driving approximately 228 hours before they passed the finishing line.

Mongol Rally cry

This crazy endurance adventure only has a couple of rules - 1. You must complete the journey in a farcically small car and 2. You must raise at least €1,000 for charity.

These rules were no issue for the lads.

They bought a Toyota Starlet for just €500 from DoneDeal and have already raised over €8,000 for Aoibheann's Pink Tie, a charity which help families who have been affected by cancer.

Sent by a loved one

Link to article


These Irish lads conquered the 15,000km Mongol Rally in a '92 Toyota Starlet -, August 11


Two Blessington lads just completed the road trip of a lifetime from Dublin to Mongolia

And it looks amazing.

August 11 (The Daily Edge) NOW THIS BRINGS a whole new meaning to the term 'road trip'.

This morning, two Wicklow lads completed the road trip of a lifetime having crossed the finish line of the Mongol Rally in Ulan-Ude, Russia, after travelling over 15,000km in 228 hours.

Craig O'Rourke and Ronan O'Neill, who hail from Blessington, set off from Dublin on July 16th to participate in the Mongol Rally, which bills itself as "the greatest motoring adventure on the planet" and takes drivers across thousands of miles of treacherous roads in Europe and Asia.

These are the rules, per the website:

Link to article

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Art, Entertainment

Let's help others while having fun

August 11 (UB Post) The lives of 640 people have been impacted by the flood that hit Ulgii soum of Bayan-Ulgii Province on July 10. MGVolunteer Club will hold a two-day fundraising event for the families affected by the flood at the National Garden Park on August 13 and 14.

During the event, calligraphy, DIY accessories, face art, henna, sketch services, and a water balloon fight will be organized.


WhereNational Garden Park

When: August 13 and 14, 3:00 p.m.

More Information: 99175590, 94094848

Link to post


Government to support craft culture

August 11 ( Mongolian President Ts.Elbegdorj has issued a decree to support traditional craft culture. Entitled 'Mongolian craftsman', an exhibition will take place early July. The exhibition will be held once every three years.  The Government is to be tasked with maintaining and promoting  Mongolian traditional craft culture and to producing a national craft programme and reward scheme for craftsmen.

Any consideration of Mongolian nomadic homes, clothes, weapons and living conditions must include crafts and embroidery. The applied arts of Mongolia have developed from common things used in the everyday life of nomads over thousands of years.

Link to article


Mongolian artist L.Ganbold pursues his true self

August 11 (UB Post) lying 8,565 kilometers from Australia to Mongolia, artist L.Ganbold returned to his home country to promote his artwork. He's known as Gawaa among his peers.

Notable Mongolian artist S.Zayasaikhan, who has known Gawaa since high school, commended Gawaa, saying, "We draw what we see. Gawaa draws what's in his mind."

Gawaa is viewed by many as an interesting artist who emits mysteriousness and expresses his unique mindset through art. Learn more about Gawaa and his artwork through the interview below.

2016 has been a busy but productive year for Mongolia. Aside from important events such as the parliamentary election and ASEM Summit, many Mongolian artists living abroad came to Mongolia to launch a joint exhibition during the National Naadam. Did you participate in this?

This year, I came after celebrating the Naadam Festival in Australia. Mongolians living there traditionally celebrate Tsagaan Sar and Naadam Festival. I've been living in Australia for 13 years, but I return to Mongolia every summer.

Link to report

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30-day visa-waivers to Malta and Croatia approved for diplomatic and official passports

Ulaanbaatar, August 11 (MONTSAME) The Intergovernmental Agreements of Mongolia with the Republic of Malta and the Republic of Croatia was approved by the cabinet on August 10. In the accordance, holders of diplomatic and official passports will enjoy visa-free travels between Mongolia and Malta and Mongolia and Croatia within 30 days.

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