Tuesday, October 25, 2016

[Erdene resigns from HAR; TPO in trading halt; MNT sets 6 straight lows; and MPP wins in local elections]

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Tuesday, October 25, 2016

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Headlines in Italic are ones modified by Cover Mongolia from original


Int'l Market

EGI closed +8.3% Monday to US$0.249, ETG +10% to C$0.33. TRQ -0.32% to US$3.09

Entrée Gold Welcomes Turquoise Hill Release of Preliminary Economic Assessments in Future Oyu Tolgoi Expansion

Technical Report Highlights Potential for Production Expansion

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Oct. 24, 2016) - Entrée Gold Inc. (TSX:ETG)(NYSE:EGI)(FRANKFURT:EKA) ("Entrée" or the "Company") is pleased to announce that on October 21, 2016, Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd. ("Turquoise Hill") filed an updated technical report ("2016 OTTR") under National Instrument 43-101 - Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects relating to the Oyu Tolgoi copper-gold project in Mongolia.

Of significance, in addition to updating the Reserve Case on the open pit and Hugo North (including Hugo North Extension) Lift 1 block cave, 2016 OTTR includes Preliminary Economic Assessments ("PEAs") of potential later phases of the Oyu Tolgoi deposits utilizing four Alternative Production Cases. Two of these deposits, Hugo North (including Hugo North Extension) Lift 2 and Heruga include Entrée/Oyu Tolgoi LLC joint venture resources. The Alternative Production Cases take advantage of productivity improvements in plant throughput that have begun to be recognized in the process plant and evaluate plant capacity expansions as high as 120 million tonnes per annum. Variations in operating and capital costs are also evaluated.

Stephen Scott, Entrée's President and CEO commented, "As noted by Turquoise Hill, Oyu Tolgoi's large resource base provides outstanding opportunities for production expansion. Although project partners Rio Tinto, Turquoise Hill, Oyu Tolgoi LLC and Entrée Gold have for some time had a strategy for the development of all five deposits, this is the first time since 2010 that investors have had access to an early-stage economic analysis that highlights the development flexibility of potential later phases. The clarity provided by inclusion of the PEAs will be of great benefit to all stakeholders, including Entrée. We will be looking carefully at 2016 OTTR in order to develop complementary PEAs for Entrée's interest in the joint venture deposits."

Entrée has a carried interest in two of the Oyu Tolgoi project deposits - the Hugo North Extension copper-gold deposit and the Heruga copper-gold-molybdenum deposit. These deposits are the northern-most and southern-most, respectively, in the 12 kilometre-long Oyu Tolgoi series of deposits. The resources at Hugo North Extension include a Probable reserve, which is included in Lift 1 of underground mine development.

On October 19, 2016, Turquoise Hill announced that work had begun for Shaft 5 sinking and the convey-to-surface box cut excavation, while construction of critical on-site facilities continued. Oyu Tolgoi recently signed an additional underground mining and support services contract with Dayan Contract Mining, a joint venture between Hasu Megawatt and Redpath, for the sinking of Shafts 2 and 5. At the end of the third quarter 2016, the underground workforce was approximately 1,600 people and is expected to reach 2,400 people by the end of 2016.

Turquoise Hill's technical report, titled "2016 Oyu Tolgoi Technical Report", with an effective date of October 14, 2016, is available on SEDAR at under Turquoise Hill's profile.

Link to release


HAR closed flat Monday at A$0.004

Haranga: Erdene Tsengelbayar Resigns as Executive Director

October 24 -- Haranga Resources Limited ('the Company') wishes to advise that Mr Erdene Tsengelbayar has resigned from his position as Executive Director effective immediately. The Board thanks Mr Tsengelbayar for his contribution to the Company.

Link to release

Link to Final Director's Interest Notice


TPO last traded A$0.165 on July 13

Tian Poh in Trading Halt Pending Announcement on Mongolia Projects

October 25 -- Tian Poh Resources Limited (ASX Code: TPO) requests a trading halt from the Australian Securities Exchange effective immediately pending release of an announcement of a development in relation to the Company's projects in Mongolia.

TPO requests the trading halt last from receipt of this request until release of the announcement. In any event, no later than commencement of trading on Thursday the 27th of October 2016.

Link to release


276 closed flat Monday at HK$0.50

Mongolia Energy Corp: Appointment of Directors

October 24 -- The Board is pleased to announce that:

1. Mr. Lo, Rex Cze Kei has been appointed as a non-executive Director, and

2. Mr. Lee Kee Wai, Frank has been appointed as an independent non-executive Director, a member of the Audit Committee and the Remuneration Committee, both with effect from 21 October 2016.

Link to release



WOF last traded A$0.025 on October 14

Wolf Petroleum: Appendix 3B – 10,000 Shares Issued

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Local Market

MSE Trading Report: Top 20 -0.65%, ALL -0.59%, Turnover 18.9 Million Shares

October 24 (MSE) --

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Reds are when MNT fell, greens when it rose. Bold reds are rates that set a new historic high at the time.

BoM MNT Rates: Monday, October 24 Close

























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Bank USD rates at time of sending: Khan (Buy ₮2,330 Sell ₮2,340), TDB (Buy ₮2,326 Sell ₮2,340), Golomt (Buy ₮2,330 Sell ₮2,341), XacBank (Buy ₮2,333 Sell ₮2,345), State Bank (Buy ₮2,330 Sell ₮2,340)

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

Link to rates


BoM issues 280 billion 1-week bills, total outstanding +43.5% to ₮508.2 billion

October 24 (Bank of Mongolia) BoM issues 1 week bills worth MNT 280 billion at a weighted interest rate of 15.0 percent per annum /For previous auctions click here/

Link to release


BoM issues 20 billion 12-week bills at 17%, total outstanding +2.8% to 727.5 billion

October 24 (Bank of Mongolia) BoM issues 12 week bills worth MNT 20 billion at a weighted interest rate of 17.0 percent per annum /For previous auctions click here/

Link to release


BoM Monthly Statistical Bulletin, September 2016

October 24 (Bank of Mongolia) --

Link to report


METALS-London copper looks through dollar strength; tight China market supports

* Codelco offers $70 term copper premiums to China - sources

* Copper speculators turn net short for first time in a month-CFTC

* Coming Up: Euro zone Markit mnfg PMI flash Oct at 0800 GMT

MELBOURNE, Oct 24 (Reuters) - London copper edged higher on Monday, rising on tight supply in China's domestic market despite a stronger dollar and expectations of plentiful supply next year.


* Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange edged up by 0.2 percent to $4,644 a tonne by 0104 GMT, after posting a small loss in the previous session. LME copper prices are bumping along close to a one-month low of $4,623.25 a tonne hit on Oct. 14.

* Shanghai Futures Exchange copper traded little changed at 37,160 yuan ($5,493)

* San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank President John Williams on Friday redoubled his call for raising rates soon, telling reporters that "this year would be good" for a rate rise that he had wanted to take effect last month.

* The dollar was close to eight-month highs against a basket of currencies in Asian trade, buoyed by expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve will raise interest rates this year. A stronger dollar erodes the buying power of those paying for commodities with other currencies.

* Hedge funds and money managers swung to a net short position of 13,952 lots in copper, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data showed on Friday. It is the first time the speculator group has been net short in a month.

* The world's biggest copper miner, Codelco, has slashed its 2017 physical copper premium to European buyers to the $80 to $85 per tonne range and is offering Chinese buyers a premium of around $70, three traders told Reuters this week.

* Chinese steel mills are becoming cleaner every month as Beijing pushes to curb its smoke-stack industries. But they're not getting any leaner.

* China's banking regulator has asked lenders to step up risk management of property loans amid record gains in house prices that have raised concerns of price bubbles and ballooning debts.

* For the top stories in metals and other news, click or


* The dollar rose to its highest since early February against a basket of currencies on Friday as investors increased bets on higher U.S. interest rates, while a measure of world stocks posted its first weekly gain in four weeks despite some soft U.S. corporate results.

Link to article


China coking coal futures extend gains on supply shortage

* Coking coal supply shortage fuels prices

* Supply not expected to be boosted in short-term

* Rising raw material costs lift steel prices

SHANGHAI, Oct 24 (Reuters) Chinese coking coal and coke futures extended gains on Monday after capacity cuts in the country hit production, with a severe supply shortage expected to continue in the coming months.

As part of its supply-side reform, China has vowed to slash overcapacity in the coal sector that has dragged miners into severe losses over the last few years.

But measures this year such as shutting down unqualified mines and cutting working days at mines have unexpectedly fueled an extreme shortage of coal supply, in turn raising prices for steel.

"Coking coal supply is extremely short and higher prices have driven steel prices. Steel demand is pretty firm at the moment, so I don't expect steel prices to fall in the near future," said Li Wenjing, an analyst with Industrial Futures in Shanghai.

The most active coking coal futures on the Dalian Commodity Exchange had climbed 1.2 percent to 1,226 yuan ($180.99) a tonne by the midday break. They have surged 43 percent since the end of August.

Dalian coke futures had gained 1.6 percent to 1,561.6 yuan a tonne and iron ore futures had advanced 1.1 percent to 445 yuan a tonne by the midday break. Coke has risen 28 percent since the end of August.

The most active rebar futures on the Shanghai Futures Exchange edged up 0.2 percent to 2,469 yuan a tonne.

Iron ore for delivery to China's Tianjin port .IO62-CNI=SI stood steady at $58.40 a tonne on Friday from the previous session, according to data from The Steel Index.

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Politics & Legal

MPP wins 6 districts, DP wins 3 in Ulaanbaatar after additional polling

October 24 ( Voting for the elections for the people's representatives for the soums and districts of Ulaanbaatar took place on October 19th. However, the election turnout was insufficient at polling stations in seven districts of the Mongolian capital. As a result, citizens of Ulaanbaatar's 79 khoroo voted again on Sunday (23rd of October). As a result, the Mongolian People's Party won in six districts, namely, Baganuur, Bagakhangai, Nalaikh, Songinokhairkhan, Khan-Uul and Chingeltei. The Democratic Party won the remaining three districts; Bayangol, Sukhbaatar and Bayanzurkh, reported the General Election Committee on Monday (24th of October). The turnout on the second voting day reached 54%.

Link to article


Most urban voters favor MPPMontsame, October 24

Voter turnout for additional polling reaches 56 percentGoGo Mongolia, October 24


Additional polling completes in soums with 215 for MPP, 87 for DP

Ulaanbaatar, October 24 (MONTSAME) Candidates from the Mongolian People's Party (MPP) to the khurals citizens' representatives of soums (rural administrative units) are dominating by winning in 215 soums, while the candidates from the Democratic Party (DP) have attained the majority of votes in 87 soums. Mongolia has a total of 331 soums.

The preliminary results of the polling were announced today by the General Election Committee. The additional polling ended on October 23, with the final voter turnout of 63.2 percent on average for 21 provinces and 60.1 percent on the national level.

Coalitions of DP and the Mongolian People's Revolutionary Party (MPRP) claimed victory in 11 soums of Tov (Central) provinces, while the independent candidates secured seats in the citizens' khurals of nine soums of Dundgovi province.

Link to article


Annual income of President Elbegdorj was 88.2 million

October 24 ( Income declaration of 236 state heads and other senior officials were announced today. 

Annual income of President of Mongolia Ts.Elbegdorj was MNT 88.2 million in 2015 and his family members` annual income was totaled MNT 12.3 million. Also, he owns two houses and shares of six companies. 

Speaker of the Parliament earned MNT 39.5 millions of annual income in 2015. He owns two vehicles worth MNT 145 million and three houses worth MNT 1 billion 108.6 million. 

Prime Minister earned MNT 99.7 millions of annual income last year. He owns four immovable property worth of MNT 141 million. Also, he has three vehicles worth MNT 219.7 million.

Link to article


Mongol Bank responds to MP's currency stabilization proposal

October 24 (UB Post) Member of Parliament T.Ayursaikhan put forward a proposal to President of Mongol Bank N.Bayartsaikhan on October 6, submitting a plan for the central bank to stabilize exchange rate fluctuation and increase the purchasing power of MNT.

MP T.Ayursaikhan's proposals are as follows:

1.    Prohibit entrepreneurs and individuals who are not conducting business in foreign exchange markets from holding foreign currency accounts.

2.    Ban the issuing of foreign currency loans to non-banking financial institutions.

3.    Stop putting the weight of poor state policies on the backs of entrepreneurs and individuals, and transfer their foreign currency loans to MNT.

4.    Ban commercial banks from issuing foreign currency loans unless entrepreneurs and individuals specifically request them.

Mongol Bank responded to the proposal and noted that the foreign exchange market sets currency demands, and the MNT fell into decline against foreign exchange rates because external and foreign currency declined at banks in June.

Mongol Bank said it worked to stop MNT depreciation and avoid financial imbalance after the bank's policy interest was raised by 4.5 percent by the Board of Directors of Mongol Bank in August 18. Central bank officials pointed out that the MNT rate is in decline because of budget deficits, a lack of foreign investment, and demands from the foreign exchange market.

In response to the four points in the MP's proposal, Mongol Bank replied:

1.    Limiting access to foreign currency accounts would probably diminish investor's credibility in Mongolia during challenging economic times, and conflicts with basic legal principles

2.    The Financial Regulatory Commission (FRC) controls the operations of non-banking financial institutions, and they issue issuing foreign currency loans under certificates issued by the FRC.

3.    Entrepreneurs and individuals with foreign currency loans have the option to pursue foreign currency swaps, to transfer their loans, and to reduce their operational risks.

4.    After commercial banks and individuals agree on interest rates, terms, and other conditions for loans, they create loan contracts, so if there is any issue with commercial banks to forcing entrepreneurs and individuals to take out foreign currency loans,  legal authorities should be notified.

Link to article


All new DeFacto Review with Jargal DeFacto, Terrence Edwards and moderator Grace Brown

DeFacto Review, October 23

October 24 (VTV Mongolia) Reviewed topics:

1. Bond or development loan?

2. Ts.Nyamdorj: Mongolian government is mafia

3. Citizen's Representative Council Elections: Low voter turnout

4. 'The Eagle Huntress' premiers

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Speaker Enkhbold meets leaders of North America – Mongolia Business Council

Ulaanbaatar, October 24 (MONTSAME) The Chairman of the State Great Khural, Mr M.Enkhbold received the chairman of Board of Directors of the North America - Mongolia Business Council (NAMBC), Mr Frank H. Herbert and the board member, Mr Christopher Melville.

Mr Herbert thanked the Speaker for his time and said a purpose of his courtesy call is to exchange views on ways of increasing foreign investments in Mongolia. He noted he is grateful to the government for working towards sophisticating the business environment of Mongolia.

Speaker Enkhbold extended gratitude to the council, being operational in Mongolia since 1990, for making its contribution to the country's economic growth.

The NAMBC Chairman Frank Herbert is the President of Centerra Gold. The board includes Jim Wagenlander, Vice Chairman (Founding Principal, Wagenlander & Heisterkamp LLC), Teddy Baldwin, Secretary-Treasurer (Partner, Baker & McKenzie LLP), and the members - Nick Archer — Vice President, Oyu Tolgoi LLC, Ambassador Anna Biolik (Ret.), Scott Grimsby –Director, North Asia Sales, Boeing Corporation, Todd Malan – Vice President, Rio Tinto, Christopher Melville – Managing Partner, Hogan Lovells (Mongolia) LLP, J. Od – President, MCS Holding Company, Ambassador Pamela Slutz (Ret.), Edward T. Story – President & CEO, SOCO International LLC, Jalsa Urubshurow – Founder and CEO, Nomadic Expeditions Inc.
Brian Tripp – Managing Director, Asia Pacific, 5.11 Tactical Inc., Philip Vaughn – Vice President, Fluor Corporation and Bruce Wagner – President & CEO, Wagner Equipment LLC, as well as the honorary member Bob Barrows (Wagner Asia).

Link to article


UNWTO encourages Mongolia to become the heart of world nomadic tourism

Ulaanbaatar, October 24 (MONTSAME) Minister of Environment and Green Development D.Oyunkhorol noted "Mongolia will be the heart of nomadic tourism" at today's press statement in the light of the Government's first 100 days.

One of the key actions, taken in the last three months, is the International Silk Road Conference hosted in Ulaanbaatar, she added. The United Nations World Tourism Organization has pledged its support in establishing a Center for Nomadic Tourism and encouraged Mongolia to become the center of world nomadic tourism and the regional leader.

This is the very time for Mongolia to promote tourism growth, the Minister went on. The government will put more effort to raise the number of employees in tourism - the waste-free industry - from 50 thousand to 100 thousand, she said.

It is of high importance for Mongolia's tourism to foster infrastructural development in Khentii, the birthplace of Chinggis Khaan, she said and added a tourism complex is planned to be built in Dadal soum of Khentii province in this spirit.

She also stated that the Ministry is making endeavors to resume the Air Pollution Fund's function, having this issue and the draft budget of MNT 5.0 billion reflected in the government budget assumptions for 2017.

Working groups have been set up to handle environmental pollution problems around Onon and Balj rivers of Khentii, Orkhon river of Arkhangai and Eroo river of Selenge province, and pertinent decisions have been made to intervene mining operations near these rivers, Ms Oyunkhorol noted.

Regarding the dried up Lake Ganga of Sukhbaatar province, she said the main cause of the incident was connected to the climate change, especially, overheat. The Lake has been recovering thanks to the prompt measures, including the building up of fences around the springs that feed the lake and evacuation of livestock herding families near the lake's water sources.

According to the high-ranking officials, the Ministry has been preparing a bill on environmental rehabilitation for submission to the Parliament.

Link to article


BHS shut up shop on British high street but is open for business in Mongolia

BHS International will launch in 10 new countries to expand its international business.

October 24 (International Business Times) BHS might have disappeared from the British high street, but its international franchise is set to live on in Africa, the Middle East and Europe.

The 88-year-old company entered liquidation in April before eventually folding in June, after owing more than £1.1bn ($1.3bn,) to various creditors, including a £571m pension deficit, £358m to landlords and £48.5m to suppliers.

However, in June, Qatar-based Al Mana purchased the global business and the franchise of BHS International, whose first franchise store opened in 1985.

The business now counts 61 stores in 14 countries, including Mongolia, Malta, Jordan, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Russia, Uzbekistan and the United Arab Emirates, under the control of 11 franchise partners.

BHS was relaunched in September and its website sells a range of lighting and home furnishing products that constituted around 75% of the most popular online items sold by its predecessor before its demise.

Link to article


"Yavuu" for elegant, independent and strong women

October 24 ( Designer B.Yavuutsagaan organized her "Yavuu" 2017 fashion show at Shangri-La Hotel on Oct 21 and presented her spring and summer collection. Her designs are dedicated for elegant, independent and strong women. 

During the fashion show, Japanese Kimono Association held exhibition of shoes and bags matches with kimono. Also, the exhibition featured tea ceremony and flower arts. 

The fashion show has two parts. Daily clothes collection made by silk were presented at the first part while the second part showed the luxury clothes with Mongolian patterns, that made by kimono material. 



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Talk With Me with Laura Monro: Garrett Wilson, CEO of Wagner Asia Automotive

October 10 (Star TV Mongolia) --

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Mongolia celebrates 55 years of UN Membership

Ulaanbaatar, October 24 (MONTSAME) On October 21, a ceremony was held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to celebrate the 55th anniversary of Mongolia's membership in the United Nations. The opening addresses were given by the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, B.Battsetseg and the UN Resident Representative, Beate Trankmann.

The dignitaries stressed their confidence that the 55 years of accomplishments in Mongolia-UN cooperation will strengthen and Mongolia's contribution to the international community efforts will grow.

Mongolia joined the United Nations on October 27 of 1961, as its 101st member.

Link to article


The 55th anniversary of Mongolia's accession to the United NationsUN in Mongolia, October 24


President Tran Dai Quang receives Mongolian Ambassador before end of his term

October 24 (VOVworld) – President Tran Dai Quang received Mongolia's Ambassador Dorj Enkhbat, who came to say farewell before ending his term in Vietnam. 

Mr. Quang said that the Vietnamese-Mongolian relations had been enhanced in various sectors. Both countries have signed agreements on economics, trade, defense, and security. Ambassador Enkhbat pledged that whatever he could do, he would contribute his utmost to Vietnamese-Mongolian relations.

Link to article


Specialized Inspection Agency, US Department of Energy cooperating in nuclear safety

Ulaanbaatar, October 24 (MONTSAME) The Chairman of the General Agency for Specialized Inspection, G.Sugarbat received Friday US Department of Energy delegates. The sides exchanged opinions on the implementation of a project on detection and response to illicit radioactive materials.

The project has been ongoing in Mongolia since 2008 under seven stages of actions, having resulted in 82 radioactive monitoring equipment installations at 15 border checkpoints. The hand gadgets have been supplied for detection of radioactive materials, and about 300 personnel from the General Agency for Specialized Inspection, Border Protection Office of Specialized Inspection, General Authority for Border Protection and the General Authority for Customs, have received training.

Mr Sugarbat made certain requests on supply of apparels and gadgets, and organizing training on safe transport of detected nuclear generator to the headquarters.

The US Energy Department delegates promised to convey his requests to their department and underlined an importance of promptness in information sharing system.

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Health, Education

High school students simulate mini-UN General Assembly

Ulaanbaatar, October 24 (MONTSAME) In scope of celebrating the 55th anniversary of Mongolia's entry to the United Nations, the Model UN is being organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ulaanbaatar Model United Nations NGO among the high school students. The event commenced on October 22 and is to conclude on the 24th.

The official language of the general debate and sub-conferences is English. About 180 students from 30 general education schools are taking part in the Model UN.

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Culture, Society

DeFacto Interview: Linda Boll, Founder of PawPADs

October 21 (VTV Mongolia) Founder of PawPADs, trainer of service dogs

Link to interview


Young Mongolian eagle huntress named bravest girl of 2016

October 24 ( Young Mongolian eagle huntress is named the bravest girl of 2016. 2016 bravest women list of the American journal "Harper`s Bazaar" includes the name of 13-Year-Old Eagle Huntress of Mongolia Aisholpan Nurgaiv. It is the first time the list includes a Mongolian national.

Aisholpan is trained to become the first female in twelve generations of her Kazakh family to become an eagle hunter. The film about Aisholpan Nurgaiv named "The Eagle Huntress" premiered in February past year. The premier had Aisholpan with her parents. The copyright of the Eagle Huntress is hold by "Sony Pictures" and film now has been screened in Asia, Australia, New Zealand, Latin America, Germany and in the Scandinavian countries.

Link to article


His Holiness Drikung Kyabgön Chetsang Visits Russia and Mongolia

October 24 (Drikung Kagyu) His Holiness and entourages arrived the Moscow airport on August 18, His Holiness was received with warm welcome by the Drikung Sangha and escorted to the Drikung Kagyu center, where H.H. and all had tea and sweet rice organised by the sangha and sponsors. His Holiness shared that it is his second time to visit to Moscow. Then, he told the public about his activities for culture and environmental projects. After the speech, a lunch was served and everyone went for rest.

On August 19th, right after the breakfast His Holiness went for a sightseeing tour in Moscow. He visited the biggest Orthodox church in Moscow – the church of Christ the Saviour, which was recently reconstructed. It is now richly decorated with paintings and golden ornaments, and thereafter he visited the Roerich Museum.

On the last day His Holiness gave an oral transmission on the Lotus Sutra. Many local people, lamas and lamas from Mongolia also came for teachings. They noted that it is very auspicious to hear the words of Lotus Sutra from His Holiness, since that builds connection for the future lives and lays foundation for further study of Lotus Sutra. Then they said good-bye to local hosts and started heading back to the City of Ulan Ude. While on the way back His Holiness also visited the Interregional center of Shamans "Khan – Tengeri", where he was warmly greeted by the Supreme shaman of Buryatia Tsyrendorzhiev Bair Zhambalovich. He highly appreciated the activities of His Holiness and noted common historical connection between Buryat – Mongol and Tibetan people. The two leaders have signed an Agreement on cooperation in matters of promotion of peace and inter-confessional dialogue, as well as preservation of culture. His Holiness gave blessings to the shamans for the meeting and accepted invitation to join an annual gathering of shamans from all over the world on the Island of Olkhon for prayer, peace and prosperity.

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Nature, Environment

Tackling illegal wildlife trafficking in Mongolia

October 24 (UB Post) The Zoological Society of London (ZSL), a reputable science and conservation center founded in 1826, is currently enforcing the Tackling Illegal Wildlife Trade in Mongolia through Improved Law Enforcement Project and Steppe Forward Programme in Mongolia.

Through the project, as part of its mission to achieve and promote the worldwide conservation of wild animals and their habitat, ZSL intends to fight illegal hunting, reduce the illegal trade of wildlife, and improve legal compliance and collaboration with associated government agencies in Mongolia. ZSL operates in over 50 countries across the globe and has been active in Mongolia since 2003.

ZSL Mongolia project coordinator Nathan Conaboy spoke about their operations and the illegal trade of wildlife in Mongolia.

What kind of projects are being implemented in Mongolia by ZSL?

Since 2003, we have focused our operations on three areas in Mongolia. First, we're studying wild animals, their mortality, and population. This year, we will publish a report on this. Before, in 2006, we did similar research to identify which animal Mongolians hunt the most. Second, we conduct public awareness raising activities to promote the conservation of wild animals. We give information and advice on how to protect wildlife. Third, we aim to improve legislation related to the environment by distributing information to government organizations. Within this framework, we developed a website where you can access every law related to the environment, and we're about to hand it over to the Ministry of Environment, Green Development and Tourism. This project was initiated to resolve legislative issues, like laws contradicting one another.

Why did ZSL decide to actively operate in Mongolia?

Mongolian society and culture are changing drastically. During this drastic change, the government is focusing on people more than anything else. Estimates show that the global temperature has increased by two degrees Celsius, but Mongolia's average temperature has risen by four degrees Celsius, meaning that climate change is affecting Mongolia twice as much as other parts of the world. Mongolians aren't aware of this themselves. Another reason is connected to wildlife. For example, the Bactrian camel is found only in Mongolia, so we have to come here to protect it. Mongolia also has the largest population of snow leopards.

Have your projects seen results yet? Are they efficient?

Every project I'm doing in Mongolia is doing well. Only recently, we realized that we must protect Gobi bears, locally known as Mazaalai, and have started  discussing what measures to take. Not only the Mazaalai bear, but also many other animals need protection, as shown in our research.

We launched the Tackling Illegal Wildlife Trade in Mongolia through Improved Law Enforcement Project with financing from the British government. We surveyed a total of 5,000 families on which animal raw material Mongolians use the most. In this way, we were able to determine where to talk about fighting the illegal wildlife trade. Experienced research organizations such as the Legal Atlas and IRIM helped us with studies locating animals facing the risk of extinction, heavily populated areas, and other things. We signed a cooperation memorandum with Mobicom Corporation to distribute information via mobile phones.

How has the situation in Mongolia changed since 2006?

People's attitudes have changed a lot. Ten years ago, people actively participated in surveys, but now they hardly participate. I assume it's connected to the increasing illegal trade of wild animals. I guess this happens when society becomes too orderly, with many new laws and regulations, but Mongolians are people who are able to fight for the environment. People from other countries hardly care about wildlife. Most importantly, it's necessary to teach and provide the correct knowledge about protecting the environment and wildlife.

Which animal is hunted the most in Mongolia

The list of the top 10 animals hunted has changed. In 2006, mostly mammals and one or two species of birds were hunted the most. Now, nine types of fish and marmots are the top 10 animals hunted in Mongolia. This can be explained by the growing popularity of fishing in recent years. It's an indication of cultural and social change. Before, hunters used to have guns at home, but now you'll only see fishing nets and rods. On the other hand, this could be an indication that people openly fish but hide other forms of hunting. Very well organized networks that illegally trade wild animals have already been formed over the borders of Mongolia and China.

What is the most illegally trafficked animal?

Mongolia has rare animals like falcons, gazelle, and Saiga antelopes. Yet, these animals are illegally hunted and trafficked to other countries. Herders are too affectionate with their livestock, and they instead hunt wild animals and sell the meat to restaurants. The population of Saiga antelope has decreased by 85 percent within the last 20 years. If animals continue to become extinct, on top of Mongolia's temperature rising by four degrees, ultimately, Mongolia will become uninhabitable.

The wild camel is close to extinction now, there are merely 600 to 630 wild camels living in Mongolia today. For their conservation, we're studying their habitats and planning to start a project. It's only in the initial phases right now. The first thing to do to conserve and protect animals is to improve their habitats and living conditions.

Link to article


Dinosaurs of a feather flock and die together?

Findings heighten simultaneous awareness of gregarious bird-like dinosaur sociality and fossil poaching

October 24 (EurekAlert!) In the paleontology popularity contest, studying the social life of dinosaurs is on the rise.

A new publication on the bird-like dinosaurAvimimus, from the late-Cretaceous suggests they were gregarious, social animals--evidence that flies in the face of the long-held mysticism surrounding dinosaurs as solo creatures.

"The common mythology of dinosaurs depicts solitary, vicious monsters running around eating everything," explains Gregory Funston, PhD student and Vanier scholar at the University of Alberta. "Our discovery demonstrates that dinosaurs are more similar to modern animals than people appreciate. Although the players are different, this evidence shows that dinosaurs were social beings with gregarious behaviour who lived and died together in groups."

The discovery comes from a site in Mongolia, first encountered by paleontologists a decade ago. The site contained thousands of shards of destroyed bone, belying the telltale evidence of a previous discovery by fossil poachers. After conducting additional field work, scientists discovered a bonebed with an assemblage of Avimimus dinosaurs, who were extremely rare prior to this discovery.

Funston, who has traveled to Mongolia several times to work on the material, explains that though it is common knowledge that modern birds form flocks, this is the first evidence of flocking behavior in bird-like dinosaurs.

"With an assemblage like this, you can't really understand why the dinosaurs died together unless you see the field site," says Funston. "We can tell that they were living together around the time of death, but the mystery still remains as to why."

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Internationals hydrologists arrive in Ulaanbaatar

October 24 ( The 24th Meeting of the International Hydrological Programme's (IHP) Regional Steering Committee for Southeast Asia and the Pacific is taking place in Ulaanbaatar from 23rd to 27th of October. The meeting's main agenda is finding potential solutions to pressing issues of sources of drinking water, especially in urban areas.

More than 40 experts from Mongolia, Japan, China, South Korea, Vietnam and other countries in Southeast Asia and the Pacific are presenting their ideas, practical experience and feasible solutions to the problems their own countries are confronted with.

In the Asia and Pacific region, coordination and implementation of the programme has been actively supported through the IHP Regional Steering Committee (RSC) established in 1993 and currently counting 17 IHP National Committees members and Category 2 water centres from the region.  Meetings take place every year with the strong support of the Japan Funds in Trust (JFIT, MEXT).

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What is the Leading Cause of Snow Leopard Killings?

Experts say more than 50 percent of snow leopard killings are retaliation for attacks on livestock.

October 24 (The Diplomat) There's something especially sad about a solitary animal dwindling into extinction. Will the last snow leopard know it's the last? There have been various efforts across the 12 countries which make up the snow leopard's remaining habitat — Afghanistan, Bhutan, China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan — to save the endangered cat. How many snow leopards remain in the wild is unknown, though most estimates range between 4,000 and 6,000. A firm number is as elusive as a lone white cat in the mountains.

A recent report from TRAFFIC, a wildlife trade monitoring network established as a joint program between the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and the World Conservation Union (IUCN), revisits the case of the snow leopard, examining patterns over the last 13 years since the program first studied snow leopard poaching and trafficking (referred to in the report as snow leopard crime.)

The report is based on two data sets. One comes from a database of government seizure records and observations. To account for the fact that countries which have made greater efforts to observe and deal with poaching may skew that data set, the study also builds on a survey of 42 experts across the 12 range countries. The survey asked experts to detail "total number of known cases, case outcomes, and reasons for killing Snow Leopards."

More than 90 percent of snow leopard poaching occurs in five countries: China, Mongolia, Pakistan, India and Tajikistan. This list is somewhat misleading. While China has the highest poaching estimate, it also has the largest share of the snow leopard's territory. Afghanistan, Russia, Nepal and Pakistan all had disproportionate shares of crimes.

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128 wrestlers to compete on Mongolian Pride Day

Ulaanbaatar, October 24 (MONTSAME) On the occasion of the birth of 854th anniversary of Chinggis Khaan and Mongolian Pride Day to be marked on October 31, national wrestling competition will be organized in the Mongolian Wrestling Palace. 

128 wrestlers will participate in the upcoming event.

Based on a proposal submitted by the Academy of Sciences, a decree was issued by the President of Mongolia on declaring that Chinggis Khaan was born on the 1st day of the first winter month of the lunar Year of Water Horse or 1162.

The Mongolians have been celebrating the Great Khaan's birthday as Mongolian Pride Day in traditional manner since 2012.

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Urantsetseg to challenge herself at Abu Dhabi Grand Slam

Ulaanbaatar, October 24 (MONTSAME) The top-rank judoka of her weight (-48kg) Urantsetseg Munkhbat is representing Mongolia at the IJF's next Grand Slam, to take place in Abu Dhabi on October 28. The competition will bring together 184 athletes from 33 countries.

Her strongest rivals are supposed to be the Olympic bronze medalist G.Otgontsetseg, a Mongolian national representing Kazakhstan at international tournaments, and Julia Figueroa of Spain.

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Mongolian boxers claim 6 gold medals at Chinggis Khaan-Ulaanbaatar Cup

Ulaanbaatar, October 24 (MONTSAME) The Chinggis Khaan – Ulaanbaatar Cup boxing competition completed on October 22, after five days of fierce fights at the Central Palace of Sports of Ulaanbaatar. The Mongolian boxers have showed a brilliant success by claiming six gold medals from this AIBA-approved event.

The representatives of AIBA have been overwhelmed with impressions encouraging the organizers to the make the competition an annual event. The Chinggis Khaan-Ulaanbaatar Cup has officially launched the Tokyo-2020 boxing match cycle. Boxers from Mongolia, Hungary, Singapore, Uzbekistan, Russia and China attended the competition.

In women's 54 kg weight category, Mongolian boxers M.Gundegmaa, D.Shinetsetseg and D.Nandinsuvd claimed gold, silver and bronze medals, while, in women's 51 kg, L.Altantsetseg and M.Nandintsetseg of Mongolia claimed silver and bronze medals, and N.Oyun-Erdene and U.Shinetsetseg became the first and second runner-ups of women's 60 kg.

Also in women's 69 kg, M.Myagmarjargal of Mongolia won the gold, followed by Shahnoza Nizamova of Uzbekistan, and O.Gerelgua and E.Erdenetuya of Mongolia.

Meanwhile, Mongolian Kh.Enkhmandakh led the men's 49 kg category, followed by Nordirzhon Mirzakhmedov from Uzbekistan, G.Ariunbold from Mongolia and Bator Gomboev from Russia.

A.Nurlan from Mongolia claimed the gold medal in men's 52 kg, followed by silver medalist Abrorzhon Kodirov from Uzbekistan, and bronze medalists Mohamed Hamid from Singapore and M.Gandulam from Mongolia.

Abdulhaya Sahrahmatov won the gold medal in men's 56 kg, followed by Mongolians O.Munkhsaikhan and E.Gansukh, and a Russian Chingiz Sharipov.

In men's 60 kg, our Mongolian boxer E.Tsendbaatar won the gold medal, also followed by his fellow Mongolian O.Batsukh and B.Misheelt, and Khanhaev Bimba Valyerievich of Russia.

The two top place of men's 64 kg also went to Mongolians B.Chinzorig and G.Bayarkhuu, succeeded by Milan Fodor of Hungary and the world championship's silver medalist Elnur Avdulaimov of Uzbekistan.

O.Batzorig and B.Mun-Ireedui grabbed bronze medals in men's 69 kg, after the winners of gold and silver Hu Richabilige of China and Fazliddin Meliboev of Uzbekistan.

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Mongolian cyclists hit the road for Bike Korea 2016

October 24 (UB Post) A group of Mongolian cyclists are challenging themselves to a 660 kilometer- tour across the Korean Peninsula for the first Bike Korea tour.

A total of 43 Mongolian cyclists took off on Saturday from the ride's starting point in Paju, near the Demilitarized Zone. Reportedly, 20 of the challengers traveled to the Republic of Korea from Mongolia for the tour, and were joined by 23 more Mongolians living in South Korea. Ten of the resident cyclists are from Seoul, five from Paju, and eight are from Daegu.

Bike Korea 2016 was initiated by Ulaanbaatar and Busan city representatives to promote Ulaanbaatar and improve the health of Mongolians. The two cities have been engaging in many cooperation efforts since June 2016. The tour was organized by the MB (Mongolian Bike) International Bike Tour Association and Merida Mongolia bicycle shop, and sponsored by Air Busan LLC, Shimano Mongolia, Khuns Complex LLC, Khuvsgul Lake Hotel, and the Merida Mongolia Cycling Club.

On the first day of the tour, the cyclists traveled 104 kilometers, reaching Namyangju, where the local Mongolian Cultural Center welcomed them with circus and cultural performances. Their next stop is Cheongju, the capital of North Chungcheong Province, located 124 kilometers from Namyangju.

The team hopes to reach their final destination in Busan within four days.

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Art, Entertainment

A.Bayartsetseg to represent Mongolia at Miss World 2016

October 24 (UB Post) A.Bayartsetseg was named the winner of the Miss World Mongolia 2016 competition on October 22, held to select contestants to represent Mongolia at Miss World 2016.

Miss World 2016 will be held in Maryland, USA, from November 29 to December 18.

A.Bayartsetseg was the first runner-up of Miss World Mongolia 2015. Miss World Mongolia 2015 N.Anu passed her crown on to A.Bayartsetseg during the winner's ceremony.

After successfully competing in Miss Earth 2016, A.Bayartsetseg was selected as one of the top 16 contestants. She won a medal in a cooking challenge, was named Miss Photogenic, and won the evening gown and cocktail wear competitions of the international pageant.

A.Bayartsetseg graduated from the Mongolian University of Science and Technology's School of Business Administration and Humanities and also holds a degree from Mancosa Management College in South Africa. She speaks English and Spanish.

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A.Bayartsetseg crowned 'Miss World Mongolia 2016', October 24                  


E.Azbileg to represent Mongolia at Miss Earth 2016

October 24 ( Beauty queen and contortionist E.Azbileg is representing the Mongolia at the 'Miss Earth 2016' pageant. Named the 2nd runner-up at the Miss World Mongolia 2015 pageant, E.Azbileg has been nominated as Miss Earth Mongolia 2016 by the Miss Mongolia Tourism Association. Beauty contestants from more than 80 countries are participating in the competition. The final selection will be held in 29th of October in Manila, the capital of the Philippines.

Miss Earth is an annual international environmental-themed beauty pageant promoting environmental awareness. Along with its rivals Miss Universe and Miss World, Miss Earth is one of the three largest beauty pageants in the world. The reigning titleholders dedicate their year to promote specific projects and often address issues concerning the environment and other global issues. The Miss Earth winner is the spokesperson for the Miss Earth Foundation, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and other environmental organizations.

Mongolia first joined Miss Earth in 2005 and has twice received placements, the highest coming from I.Tugsuu in 2014 putting the country in the top eight.

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Model S.Sarnai crowned Mrs. Asia Noble Queen International 2016

October 24 (UB Post) Mongolian model S.Sarnai took home the Mrs crown on October 21, after competing in the Miss & Mrs Asia Noble Queen International beauty pageant held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

S.Sarnai will represent the Asiaa region in an international pageant in Los Angeles, California, the Miss Hollywood pageant in November.

She received 10,000 MYR as a cash prize for her win in Malaysia, and also earned the Miss Popularity crown.

After being crowned Mrs Asian Noble Queen International, S.Sarnai said, "I won. I want to express my gratitude to my family, friends, designers, and all the Mongolians who supported me. I am competing in beauty pageants for the first time. I was very nervous. I will try hard at the Miss Hollywood pageant."

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Talk With Me with Laura Monro: Amai

October 24 (Star TV Mongolia) --

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Traffic Police warns slippery roads after snow covers Mongolia

Ulaanbaatar, October 24 (MONTSAME) The most part of the territory of Mongolia is covered by snow. Roads in rural areas are slippery and muddy, and visibility is limited. 

The Tsagaan pass in Arkhangai aimag which was closed yesterday has been opened this morning only for small cars. Drivers of large-sized vehicles are recommended to avoid the pass.

Several roads in Selenge, Tuv and Uvs aimags are icy. Officials warn to care about technical safety and replace summer tires with winter ones.

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Ben Fogle: "It was unlike anywhere I'd ever been before."

October 24 (Wanderlust Magazine) Adventurer and TV presenter Ben Fogle on exploring Mongolia and Tanzania, the perils of technology, living in the wild and his toughest ever challenge

The people in your TV series New Lives In The Wild give up who give up 'civilization' to live in the wild. What do they all have in common?

They're like extreme Wanderlust readers. They've been on the holidays, they've experienced something exciting, they might have been on a six-month trip, but they have finally decided to give up their comfy urban life to go and live in a wilderness.

They're all quite brave souls. There's usually something that's happened in their lives that has instigated their decision-making, whether they've had a bereavement, they've split up from someone or they've had a 'calling'. 

You normally see some sort of psychological need that's pushed them into it?

Yes, it's more than a wanderlust because a wanderlust can be itched and it can be sated with a couple of weeks away or a challenge. But to do it as a lifestyle, these people feel a need to take it to the next level.

Which place from the new series left the biggest mark on you?

Mongolia. I'd never been to Mongolia before. Because I do so much travel, it's quite unusual to go to a brand new country, and Mongolia definitely delivered on expectation. It's wild, it's bleak, it's different, it's tough, it's beautiful. It's gone into my Top 5 countries to return to. 

What did you do there?

I went to live in a very remote corner of Outer Mongolia ,close to the Russian border, on the shores of a frozen lake. It was unlike anywhere I'd ever been to or visited before. I was living with a family of American missionaries who live in a simple yurt on the shores of this frozen lake, so a lot of the travel involved driving around in tiny little Russian vehicles on the ice.

We joined a local wolf hunt. Wolves were stealing livestock, so we went out on horseback, racing across the frozen Mongolian tundra, trying to get these wolves that were obviously decimating the livestock. The culture is so very different to anywhere I've ever been before. The food they eat, the lifestyle, weather... Everything there is an assault on the senses.

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