1 US-MONGOLIA 'THIRD NEIGHBOR TRADE ACT' ON THE WAY WWW.THEDIPLOMAT.COM PUBLISHED:2018/11/17      2 CHINA'S FIGHT AGAINST SMOG MAKES PALLADIUM 2018'S BEST METAL WWW.MINING.COM PUBLISHED:2018/11/17      3 MILLENNIUM CHALLENGE CORPORATION PRESENTS GMS LICENSES WWW.MONTSAME.MN PUBLISHED:2018/11/17      4 MONGOLIA CALLS FOR GLOBAL ATTENTION ON CLIMATE CHANGE WWW.NEWS.MN PUBLISHED:2018/11/17      5 ADB OPENS A NEW WASTEWATER TREATMENT PLANT IN ARVAIKHEER, MONGOLIA WWW.AGENPARL.EU PUBLISHED:2018/11/17      6 CHINA TO BOOST COOPERATION WITH INDIA, MONGOLIA: DEFENSE MINISTER WWW.GLOBALTIMES.CN PUBLISHED:2018/11/17      7 DEATH ON MONGOLIA’S ‘COAL ROAD’ WWW.NEWS.MN PUBLISHED:2018/11/17      8 MONGOLIA SHAKEN BY WIDENING LOAN SCANDAL WWW.ASIA.NIKKEI.COM PUBLISHED:2018/11/17      9 MONGOLIA’S UNEMPLOYMENT FALLS BY 2.2 PERCENT WWW.NEWS.MN PUBLISHED:2018/11/16      10 MEETING MEAT DEMAND: MONGOLIA TO TRADE 17.9 PERCENT OF LIVESTOCK WWW.NEWS.MN PUBLISHED:2018/11/16      БНСУ-ЫН АЖ АХУЙН НЭГЖҮҮДИЙН АУТСОРСИНГ ЗАХИАЛГЫГ ГҮЙЦЭТГЭХ ЗАЛУУЧУУДЫГ СОНГОН, ШАЛГАРУУЛНА WWW.UNUUDUR.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/11/17     НҮҮРСНИЙ ЭКСПОРТ 10 ХУВИАР ӨСӨЖ, 31.3 САЯ ТОНН БОЛОВ WWW.GOGO.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/11/17     СУДАЛГААГААР ЖДҮ ЭРХЛЭГЧИД ЗЭЭЛИЙН ХҮҮНИЙ ЗАРДАЛ ХАМГИЙН ИХ ХҮНДРЭЛ УЧРУУЛДАГ ГЭЖ ХАРИУЛЖЭЭ WWW.BLOOMBERGTV.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/11/17     ERDENE RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT: ХАЙГУУЛЫН ЗАРДАЛ III УЛИРАЛД 42 ХУВИАР БУУРСАН WWW.BLOOMBERGTV.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/11/17     ГОРХИ, ТЭРЭЛЖИЙН БАЙГАЛИЙН БОХИРДОЛД АНХААРАЛ ХАНДУУЛЖ ЭХЛЭВ WWW.MONTSAME.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/11/17     ИРЭХ БААСАН ГАРАГТ ХОТЫН ДАРГЫГ ОГЦРУУЛАХ ЭСЭХИЙГ ХЭЛЭЛЦЭНЭ WWW.MONTSAME.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/11/17     “АМГАЛАН” ХОТХОНД БАЙРЛАХ ГЭРТЭЭ КАННАБИС ТАРЬЖ, УРГУУЛЖ БАЙСАН ТУРК ИРГЭНИЙГ БАРИВЧИЛЖЭЭ WWW.MEDEE.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/11/17     ӨНӨӨДӨР АВТОМАШИНЫ ДУГААРЫН ХЯЗГААРЛАЛТ ҮЙЛЧЛЭХГҮЙ WWW.EAGLE.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/11/17     ГАШУУНСУХАЙТЫН НҮҮРСТЭЙ МАШИНЫ ЦУВАА 120 КМ БОЛЖЭЭ WWW.EAGLE.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/11/16     ТАТВАРЫН ОРЛОГО 32.2 ХУВИАР ӨСӨЖ, ТӨСВИЙН ТЭНЦЭЛ 341.9 ТЭРБУМ ТӨГРӨГИЙН АШИГТАЙ ГАРЛАА WWW.BLOOMBERGTV.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/11/16    

Events

Name organizer Where
Frontier's "Invest Mongolia Tokyo 2018" Frontier Securities Tokyo Japan
"Open to Export" ICC WTO International business award ICC WTO London

NEWS

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Bank of Mongolia makes selling gold items easy www.news.mn

On 13 April, the President of the Bank of Mongolia issued a decree to establish a simplified ‘single window service’ for the purchase of gold items from locals across the provinces. The Bank of Mongolia purchased 2.3 tons of gold from legal entities and individuals in the first quarter of 2018, up 2.1 percent on the same period last year.

As of March, the central bank's average gold purchase rate (gold price) was 101.822.3 tugrik (42.56 U.S. dollars) per gram, which corresponds to a low rate on the London Metal Exchange, according to Bank of Mongolia experts.

It is expected that the gold purchase will increase with the start of the peak of gold mining period in August, September and October.

The gold producers in cooperation with the government of Mongolia have carried out a number of measures directed at enriching the treasury fund and improving the legal environment on foreign exchange over the past five years. As a result, gold miners provided 20.01 tons of gold to the central bank in 2017, contributing 800 million dollars to the state treasury.

Annual gold production had not surpassed 20 tons since 2005 when it reached its record high of 25 tons.

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Mongolia to construct world standard football field www.news.mn

A new world standard football field worth MNT 800 million will be constructed in the slopes of Bogd Khan Mountain. Located south of Ulaanbaatar, the site is surrounded by beautiful scenery and is practically untouched by the air pollution which plagues the capital during the winter months.

Mongolia has national football teams in nine age categories and taking part in international matches. However weather and environmental conditions cause difficulties for trainings. To tackle this issue, a project on establishment of a training centre for the national teams has been initiated by the Mongolian Football Federation (MFF) and is being implemented in Tuv province, said Sh.Jargalsaikhan, Head of Technical Department of the MFF.

The three year project is being financed from the International Football Federation and the ‘Greenfield’ company of Holland will work as general contractor and ‘Derennaran’ as sub-contractor.

An additional football field with retractable roof is planned to be built. Therefore the new training centre will help Mongolia's national teams save their time and expenses training abroad and will create favorable condition to develop football sport locally, said G.Lkhagvasuren, Provincial Director of Physical Culture and Sports Office.

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Panasonic hit with $280m corruption fine www.bbc.com

Japanese electronics giant Panasonic has agreed to pay more than $280m (£203m) to resolve charges brought under US anti-corruption law.

The US said the firm's in-flight entertainment division hired consultants for "improper" purposes and concealed payments to sales agents in China and elsewhere in Asia.

The US said the acts violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

Panasonic did not respond to a request for comment.

The payments were made by US-based subsidiary, Panasonic Avionics Corp, between 2007 and 2016, the US said.

In one case, the firm hired a foreign official as a consultant at the same time that the official was negotiating a contract between Panasonic and a government-owned airline in the Middle East.

The official was paid $875,000 over a six-year period, despite doing "little work", according to US documents.

In other cases, Panasonic determined that sales agents in China and elsewhere did not pass anti-bribery certification, but executives "secretly" rehired them as subcontractors, the US said.

Through that process, the employees shielded more than $7m in payments to at least 13 people, the US said.

The US Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) said Panasonic also overstated profits in one quarter in 2012 by backdating an agreement with an airline.

The firm has since "separated" several executives involved in or aware of the "misconduct", according to the US Justice Department. It has also improved its internal controls.

The fine includes $143m to resolve the charges from the SEC, a financial regulator, as well as $137.4m for the charges brought by the US Justice Department.

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Student exchange program to be implemented with Ireland www.montsame.mn

Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ Chairman of Lower House of the Irish Parliament Seán Ó Fearghaíl met with the Minister of Education, Culture, Science and Sports Ts.Tsogzolmaa and exchanged views on bilateral cooperation and discussed on expanding cooperation in education, culture, science and sports sector.

Ireland ranks high with its education quality and curriculum among the European countries and students from Mongolia study in Ireland with their own expenses. Minister of Education, Culture, Science and Sports Ts.Tsogzolmaa proposed Irish side to cooperate in student exchange at government level and the sides agreed to sign a memorandum of cooperation on student exchange within this year. They also talked about possibilities on co-organizing cultural events with Irish cultural agency, exchanging professors in science sector especially in IT field and enriching contents of curriculum.

Ireland has developed equestrian sports highly and this has become the major part of the country's tourism industry. The sides exchanged views on sharing experiences and improving a legal environment for equestrian sports as suggested by the Speaker of the Mongolian Parliament M.Enkhbold.

G.Tuguldur

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Kim Jong Un agrees to meet Donald Trump at DMZ, source says www.cnn.com

Seoul, South Korea (CNN)South Korean President Moon Jae-in has convinced North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to hold his upcoming meeting with US President Donald Trump at the demilitarized zone separating the two Koreas, a source tells CNN.

Moon and Kim met at the same location in Panmunjom last Friday, a historically significant event that was televised worldwide and led to an agreement to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula and formally end the Korean War.
There is a "strong possibility" the summit will be held at the site, with some events possibly scheduled on the northern side of the military demarcation line separating the two countries, according to an official with deep knowledge of North Korea's thinking on the matter.

The venue makes the most sense logistically for Kim, the source said, because media facilities and equipment are already in place, which could the allow the summit to take place "in late May."
Traveling to the northern side of the demilitarized zone (DMZ) would also provide a historic opportunity for Trump, the source said, adding that Moon may be involved in the summit in some capacity.
A spokesperson for the South Korean president appeared to endorse the venue choice when asked about the proposal, Tuesday.
"(We) think Panmunjom is quite meaningful as a place to erode the divide and establish a new milestone for peace," the spokesperson told reporters. "Wouldn't Panmunjom be the most symbolic place?"

The idea of meeting at the DMZ wasn't a complete surprise to Trump's aides, since the president has been talking about it all weekend and raised it in his Sunday phone call with Moon, a senior US official and a person familiar with the conversations told CNN.
Trump loved the images from the inter-Korean summit and the fact the entire meeting was televised, those sources said.
Speaking to reporters Monday, Trump said he was enthusiastic about the idea of holding the summit in the DMZ. "There's something I like about it, because you're there, if things work out, there's a great celebration to be had on the site, not in a third party country," he said.
Millions watched Moon's meeting with Kim last Friday, the first meeting between two leaders of North and South Korea in a decade.
Cameras followed the leaders' movements throughout the day, from Moon's departure from Seoul to the moment Kim crossed the demarcation line into the South -- and encouraged Moon to cross to the North.
The US President wants to be involved in similar scenes when he becomes the first sitting US President to meet a North Korean leader, the source said. He's keen to take part in a cross-border handshake, but also wants photos to document the moment if he decides to stand up and walk out of talks, added the source.
The Singapore option
However, concerns remain inside the administration that Trump may be too eager for a deal. Those same skeptics worry holding the meeting at the DMZ will appear conciliatory toward Kim.
As a result, US officials are still arguing for Singapore as a possible location for the talks, telling Trump it presents a more neutral option, the source told CNN.
The wealthy and glamorous city-state sits on the end of the Malay Peninsula and has often been seen as a gateway between Asia and the West.
A close ally to the United States during the Cold War and currently host to a US military presence, Singapore also has a diplomatic relationship with North Korea. It is one of only 47 countries to feature a North Korean embassy.
Additionally, Singapore has previously held other historic events -- in 2015, Chinese President Xi Jinping met with then-Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou in Singapore, the first and only time the leaders of the two Chinas have met since they split in 1949.
But one senior official conceded the symbolism wouldn't be there, and noted there are still logistical considerations to worry about with Singapore.
Singapore also raises problems for Kim. Similar to his father before him, the North Korean leader is reluctant to travel long distances by plane, partly due to security issues -- a plane is vulnerable to attack -- but also due to practical considerations.
"(Kim's) fleet of aircraft are very old and (we're) just honestly not sure if he can physically get to where he needs to go if its further than a certain number of miles away," Jenna Gibson, director of communications at the Korea Economic Institute, told CNN.
Faced with a similar dilemma, Kim Jong Il, Kim's father and previous ruler of North Korea, opted to travel in a custom built armored train, rather than moving around the world by air.
The wild card choice
Another option previously suggested by both sides was Ulaanbaatar, the sparsely-populated capital of Mongolia to the northwest of North Korea.
It might seem like an unusual choice of location but North Korean experts maintain it makes sense to both sides for a number of reasons.
Firstly, the Mongolian government has diplomatic ties with both Pyongyang and Washington, leaving it as a neutral ground for the two leaders.
Additionally from North Korea's perspective, Ulaanbaatar is much closer to North Korea and Kim could likely travel to the summit in comfort on his father's armored train.
"Mongolia is very eager to host this summit, they have come out and said they will host it ... They want to be the Switzerland of Asia, they want to be seen as a partner that can have good ties with everybody," Gibson said.
But it also is not a perfect choice either, as it would require Trump to travel a lot further than Kim, which may be seen as a concession to North Korea from the outset.
Speaking to CNN, Jean Lee, a North Korea expert at the Wilson Center, said a number of other potential options, such as Beijing, Pynongyang and Washington, were eliminated early on due to their political implications or logistical difficulties.
"Ultimately, they need a country where both leaders have the security they need, to have a country where they can meet in common ground ... it's a small number of countries to be honest" said Lee.

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Cabinet submits 2019 General Guidelines and State Budget statement to Parliament www.montsame.mn

Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ At its irregular meeting on April 30, the Cabinet approved to submit draft bill on the 2019 General Guidelines on Social and Economic Development of Mongolia, the 2019 State Budget statement and the 2020-2021 State Budget assumption to the Parliament.

More than MNT 8 trillion and 780 billion has been estimated to be spent on realizing the objectives and actions reflected in the general guideline. Out of which MNT 5 trillion and 170 billion planned to be financed with public and private sector partnership and private investment.

The general guideline contains a total of 123 policy actions with 20 objectives to be implemented through policies including macroeconomic, sectors’ policy to support economic growth, regional and rural development and environmental, social policy on human development, governance, legal reform, foreign policy and defense sector policy.

Furthermore, the Cabinet supported the appointment of Ambassadors of Mongolia to some countries and decided to submit the proposal to the President. The Government agreed to appoint Enkhtsetseg Ochir as an Ambassador to the Kingdom of Sweden, Batjargal Dambadarjaa as an Ambassador to Japan, Ariunbold Yadmaa as an Ambassador to Canada, Tulga Narankhuu, as an Ambassador to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Tenger Gonchigzeveg as an Ambassador to the Commonwealth of Australia and Chimguundari Navaan-Yunden as an Ambassador to the Kingdom of Thailand.

B.Batchimeg

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Heavy-duty road to establish in Tavantolgoi-Gashuunsukhait route www.ubinfo.mn

According to Bold Tsegmed, CEO of Gashuunsukhait Avto Road LLC, the establishment of a road parallel to the Tavantolgoi-Gashuunsukhait road that runs 247 kilometer is currently in discussion.

“Tender bid for the heavy-duty highway under a concession agreement has been announced recently,” informed Mr. Bold. In addition, it was reported that Erdenes Mongol JSC and Erdenes Tavan Tolgoi JSC are studying the feasibility study of the road to Khangi-Mandal border checkpoints.

The annual capacity of coal transport in the Gashuunsukhait route is 21-22 million tons and a total of 17.1 million tons of coal was transported in this route as of the end of 2017. “In the future, there is a possibility to transport 30 million tons of coal a year through Gashuunsukhait checkpoint and thus, the establishment of twin roads is necessary,” Mr. Bold highlighted.

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And Energy increases dividends www.ubinfo.mn

MSE-listed And Energy JSC held its shareholders’ regular meeting on April 25 and approved the Board of Directors’ review to the 2017 operational and financial statements of the company. Last year, the sales revenue of And Energy totalled MNT 944.12 million and net profit - MNT 133.75 million. The profit saw MNT 261.7 million increase, which is 38 percent higher compared to the previous year and its profitability tripled year-over-year.

Thus, the company has decided to distribute dividend of 29 percent of its net profit or MNT 50 per share. However, the founders of the company, four major shareholders, announced that they have decided to distribute 80 percent of their dividend to other shareholders during the meeting, the Market info highlighted. According to the decision, MNT 33.88 million or MNT 127 per share will be distributed to other shareholders who hold a total of 26,544,058 shares.

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BDSec’s profit reaches MNT 1.1 billion www.ubinfo.mn

MSE-listed BDSec JSC, which operates as an intermediary in the stock market, held its shareholders’ regular meeting on April 23. During the meeting, several issues, such as board selection and approval of 2018 budget were discussed.

Last year, the company conducted 16.6 percent of stock trades and 29 percent of bond trades that took place at the MSE, the company’s management reported. In addition, the management team highlighted that the company served as the underwriter for APU JSC’s M&A with Heineken, which was a significant task for the company.

From its financial outcomes, it is seen that the company earned MNT 2.24 billion revenue and net profit of MNT 1.1 billion or MNT 80.2 per share.

Although the profit indicators are positive, the Board of Directors decided not to distribute dividend to its shareholders as the company is requiring more investment. Currently, BDSec is working on a dual registration of TSX-listed Erdene Resources Development Corp and IPO of Ard Daatgal LLC.

Oyunbayar.N

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Transparency International urges President to ‘stop undermining anti-corruption efforts nationwide’ www.theubpost.mn

Transparency International, an international non-governmental organization whose purpose is to take action to combat global corruption urged President Kh.Battulga to stop undermining anti-corruption efforts through his involvement in the Independent Authority Against Corruption (IAAC).

The NGO, based in Berlin, Germany, has over 100 chapters worldwide, including Mongolia. The Secretariat of the NGO urged Kh.Battulga to cease threats to fire the country’s top watchdog.

The president has recently called for the resignation current IAAC Commissioner General Kh.Enkhjargal as the six-year term of his predecessor concludes. Kh.Enkhjargal became the acting Commissioner General, taking over for his predecessor. Even though the current commissioner is slated to serve until 2022, the president argues that since he is an acting commissioner, he must be replaced.

“Mongolia’s poor score on this year’s Corruption Perception Index (CPI) underlines the need to strengthen anti-corruption efforts nationwide, not weaken them,” said Delia Ferreira Rubio, chair of Transparency International. “The CPI should not be used as a bargaining chip by the president to undercut the authority of national, independent anti-corruption agencies.”

The president used Mongolia’s slipping CPI score as one of the reasons to fire and replace the current commissioner.

The NGO underlined in the statement that a well-financed and independent anti-corruption agencies, like the IAAC, can be strong weapons in the fight against corruption. However, these agencies need support from national governments, including the judiciary and law enforcement systems in order to be successful, it stated.

Earlier this year, Transparency International released the 2017 CPI, which scores and ranks 180 countries and territories by their perceived levels of public sector corruption on a scale of zero (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean). Mongolia had a score of 36, highlighting the corruption problem in the country.

“The CPI has been criticized in Mongolia as a reflection of the poor performance of the IAAC. However, the CPI is not an adequate tool to measure the performance of any institution in a country, including the IAAC. Instead, the CPI looks at the general perceptions in a country,” the statement by the NGO’s Secretariat read.

According to the NGO, any interference with the proceedings of autonomous anti-corruption agencies could potentially backfire, resulting in additional negative perceptions and even lower CPI scores.

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