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Wednesday, July 6, 2011




Mongolia Briefing is a magazine and daily news service about doing business in Mongolia. We cover topics relating to the Mongolian economy, the market in Mongolia, foreign direct investment and Mongolian law and tax. It is written in-house by the foreign investment professionals at Dezan Shira & Associates


Politics

U.S. Could be Mongolia’s Third Neighbor

Sept. 19 – The United States can help Mongolia to balance the pressure from two large authoritarian neighbors, Russia and China, American eminent political scientist, Francis Fukuyama writes in his blog “Mongolia, Mining, and Malfeasance.”

“The country needs support from outside powers and particularly from the United States,” said Fukuyama without going in details about how in particular the United States could help the Northern Asian democracy squeezed between its two massive neighbors.

The American professor and his colleagues Larry Diamond and Steve Krasner from Stanford’s Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law faculty (CDDRL) traveled to Mongolia at the invitation of President Elbegdorj to teach an abridged form of the Draper Hills Summer Fellows program to a group of young Mongolians under the auspices of the Mongolian Institute for Strategic Studies. Continue reading

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Clinton Praises Mongolia, Takes Jab at China

Jul. 16 – U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton suggested that those who doubted Mongolia’s excellent example of freedom and democracy should visit the country while visiting Mongolia on her Asian tour dedicated to broadening the U.S. renewed focus on the region.

She praised Mongolia for its transition from one-party communist rule to a pluralistic political system while addressing the fourth meeting of the Community of Democracies Governing Council and the International Women’s Leadership Forum in Ulaanbaatar.

“Advancing democracy, as all of us who are here at this Governing Council meeting know, is not only the right thing to do, but the smart thing as well. … And although every country’s democratic journey is unique, there are universal principles we share and that’s what I think brings us together – to support each and to help emerging democracies succeed.” Continue reading

Posted in Business, Culture & History, Politics | 1 Comment

Mongolia to Vote for its Parliament

Jun. 28 – Today is the day for Mongolians to vote in the 2012 Parliamentary Election. The Mongolian 76-member legislature – the Grand Khural – is sovereign with ultimate power over laws.

The Parliamentary Election of 2012 is scheduled to be carried out from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. today, June 28. Due to the election, 11 political parties and two coalitions have submitted their platforms and nominated their candidates for new proportional representation party lists and majoritarian electoral ridings. Continue reading

Posted in Mining, Politics | Leave a comment

Mongolia and South Korea to Ease Visa Process

Jun. 6 – Mongolia and South Korea signed an agreement to streamline the visa process for each other’s citizens in a bid to boost people-to-people exchanges and economic cooperation between them, officials said.

The agreement was signed in Seoul last Thursday after talks between Mongolian Foreign and Trade Minister Gombojav Zandanshatar and his South Korean counterpart Kim Sung-Hwan. Continue reading

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Mongolia to Further Develop its Infrastructure

May 18 – Mongolia’s Cabinet identified a list of several “urgent” roads and bridges that need to be built. It also announced that 5,572 kilometers of roads and 900 kilometers of highways connecting Ulaanbaatar with aimags (provinces) would be restored under the umbrella of the country’s US$3.75 billion “New Up Building” program.

While US$3.5 billion will be drawn from the mining sector for the program, US$17.5 million of the funding is expected to come from foreign and domestic investment, according to officials. Continue reading

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Mongolia’s Oyu Tolgoi Copper-Gold Mine on Track for 2012 Start

Apr. 3 – Ivanhoe Mines has reported that construction of the Oyu Tolgoi (OT) copper-gold mining complex is advancing toward its planned start-up in 2012 with commercial production scheduled for the first half of 2013. The project is currently 72.7 percent complete, according to the company.

Ivanhoe, which began investing in the project in April 2011, has spent US$4 billion on the Oyu Tolgoi complex. In total, including drilling exploration and preparation work on the mine, the company has currently spent US$10 billion on the project.

OT – located 550 kilometers south of Ulaanbaatar and 95 kilometers from the China-Mongolia border – has large copper, gold, silver and molybdenum reserves. The mine is subdivided into three sections:

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Mongolia, Japan to Launch Free Trade Talks

Mar. 14 – Japan and Mongolia agreed on Monday to launch talks on a bilateral free trade agreement and to provide Ulaanbaatar with economic aid, officials said.

Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda and his Mongolian counterpart Sukhbaatar Batbold, who is on a six-day visit to Japan from Saturday, also agreed that the two countries will boost cooperation in the development of natural resources and infrastructure, according to a joint announcement released after their meeting in Tokyo.

The matter was on the agenda last year as well, but it was stalled when Japan’s prime minister at the time, Naoto Kan, had to deal with the major crisis triggered by the March 2011 natural disasters. Continue reading

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Mongolia May Face Financial Crisis

Mar. 6 – The European debt crisis may lead to a financial crisis in Mongolia, according to a report released by the World Bank last week.

A global economic slowdown may lead to a sharp drop in mineral prices, which will greatly impact the Mongolian government’s revenue, as it is highly dependent on mineral resources.

“Sharply rising government spending is the root cause of overheating: government spending rose by 56 percent in 2011 and is budgeted to rise by a further 32 percent this year, fueled by sharply rising resource revenues,” the report says. Continue reading

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