|“Doing business with Mongolia”, “UK Investors show” бизнес хөтөлбөр March 27-April 02. 2019 ЛОНДОН ХОТ, ИХ БРИТАНИ||Mongolian Business Database||London UK|
|SYMPOSIUM ON GLOBAL MARKETS Nationalism and Protectionism: The United States in the International Arena June 17-18, 2019 The Center for American and International Law Plano, Texas, USA||The Center for American and International Law (CAILAW)||Plano Texas June 17-18 2019|
|"Open to Export" ICC WTO International business award||ICC WTO||London|
TAIYUAN, Jan. 6 (Xinhua) -- A new railway for coal transport has opened in north China, according to China Railway Taiyuan Group.
The railway runs 214 km between the city of Shuozhou in Shanxi Province and Zhungeer in Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.
It is designed to have an annual transport capability of 5.26 million tonnes to serve as a major coal outlet for the mineral-rich Inner Mongolia.
The Shuozhou-Zhungeer railway is a vital part of northern China's railway network for coal transport and will offer new opportunities for local industries, said an official with China Railway Taiyuan Group.
ULAN BATOR: Mongolia's coal exports hit an all-time high in 2018, the country's finance ministry said Friday.
The landlocked Asian country exported a total of 36.5 million tons of coal in 2018, the ministry said in a statement.
The figure is an increase of 3.2 million tons from the previous year, the added the ministry, reports Xinhua.
The rise was largely attributable to Prime Minister Ukhnaa Khurelsukh's first official visit to China in April since assuming office in 2017, according to the ministry.
The share of renewable energy in Mongolia's total electricity production has reached a record high in 2018, local media reported Monday.
The share of renewable electricity generation rose to 16 percent on average for 2018, the ministry of energy was quoted as saying, Xinhua reported.
A solar power plant with a capacity of 15 megawatts opened in late June in Zamiin-Uud soum in Mongolia's southeastern Dornogovi province, while two other solar power plants with the capacity of producing 30 MW and 20 MW were put into operation recently.
Also, a wind farm with a total capacity of 55 MW was commissioned in late September nearby Sainshand city, capital of the province.
The four energy plants have contributed to renewable energy capacity by 120 MW this year, and the country has a potential wind capacity of 1,100 gigawatts.
The country, which enjoys more than 250 days of sunshine a year, has set a goal to make renewable energy use account for 20% by 2020 and 30% by 2030.
With three million people, the country's installed power generation capacity is 1,500 MW.
A band from Mongolia that blends the screaming guitars of heavy metal and traditional Mongolian guttural singing has picked up 7 million views for its two videos.
Leather jackets, skull rings and bandanas alongside intricately carved Mongolian horsehead fiddles are just some of the images in the first two music videos the Mongolian band The Hu released on YouTube this fall. Excited listeners from around the globe have posted comments like "This makes me want to ride a horse and shoot people with a bow" and "This sounds like ancient mongol rock of 1000 b.c. Really badass!" (sic)
And yet what The Hu is doing, while new, comes out of a tradition that began several decades ago when Mongolia transitioned from a satellite of the Soviet Union to a democracy.
As the Soviet Union crumbled and Western influence flooded in during the late 1980s and early 1990s, Mongolian musicians chose to preserve Mongolian culture while also adapting new influences, explains University of Chicago ethnomusicology Ph.D. student Thalea Stokes.
It is something they continue to do today, says Stokes, who spoke via Skype from Inner Mongolia where she is studying Mongolian hip-hop. The hip-hop scene she studies has a similar background. Although hip-hop is a relatively new import, Mongolians have rapidly adapted it, mixing "fierce ethnic pride and adventurous dancing" with social and political critique, according to Stokes' research.
"Mongolians are not just taking elements from Western music and just copying and pasting," says Stokes. Instead, they're actually using some of these elements and making their own authentic music.
"So it's not rock music performed by Mongolians. It's Mongolian rock music," she says.
To Fight Pollution, He's Reinventing The Mongolian Tent
Mongolian rock combines traditional Mongolian instruments, like a horsehead fiddle (morin khuur), Jew's harp (tumur khuur) and Mongolian guitar (tovshuur) with the pounding bass and drums of rock.
It also involves singing in a guttural way known as throat singing while throwing heads back and forth reminiscent of the head banging of '80s heavy metal bands like Metallica. Those who study Mongolian music believe one reason The Hu has proved so popular with outsiders is this combining of modern and historical and Eastern and Western elements.
The Hu call their style "Hunnu rock" — from the Mongolian root word for human being: "Hu." The band spent seven years putting together their first album, which they expect to release this spring. They plan to call it "Gereg," the name for a diplomatic passport used during the time of Genghis Khan. For the album, the idea was to find, study and incorporate as much of Mongolia's musical culture as they could into a rock style, says the band's 52-year-old producer and songwriter, B. Dashdong who goes by "Dashka."
Mongolian musical culture is tied up with their pastoral way of life. The two-stringed horsehead fiddle is shaped to resemble a horse and includes the carving of a horse head and strings and bow made of horsehair. It produces a sound similar to a violin and can be used to imitate the sound of a herd of horses. In throat singing, associated with pastoral herders in Central Asia, the singer produces a low constant sort of drone at the same time as a series of higher tones.
"We wanted to come up with our own thing that we can offer to this big music family. Make something new," says Dashka, who spoke through a translator via Skype.
It is not just their instruments that incorporate traditional elements. In the band's first song, "Yuve Yuve Yu" (What's going on?), they mention Genghis Khan and how he was fated to bring nations together. The video begins with images of people inside playing video games, watching television and looking at their phones. A door is opened and the band's four members step into different natural settings: cliffs, desert, forest and lake. The message they hope to convey through their lyrics and imagery is that people need to pay attention to nature and their history and culture, explains lead singer TS. Galbadrakh, known as "Gala," 29.
It is a familiar message to Kip Hutchins, a Ph.D. student in cultural anthropology at the University of Wisconsin. Lines about neglecting their ancestors — like "taking our great Mongol ancestors names in vain" — are almost exactly what was sung in the late 1980s during the transition to democracy, says Hutchins. It was then that rock became popular as a form of political protest. Soon after, Mongolians started to form folk rock and folk jazz ensembles. Band members tended to be trained in conservatories on traditional instruments.
The four members of The Hu all learned to play traditional Mongolian instruments at the Mongolian State Conservatory. The oldest in the group, G. Nyamjantsan, who goes by "Jaya," 35, still teaches at the conservatory. N. Temuulen aka "Temka," 28, who plays the Mongolian guitar, says their international popularity was something they expected — but not in the millions.
"When we do this, we try to spiritually express this beautiful thing about Mongolian music. We think we will talk to everyone's soul through our music," says Temka through a translator. "But we didn't expect this fast, people just popping up everywhere."
They aren't quite sure how it happened. Hutchins has an idea. He believes part of the appeal of bands like The Hu is the way he believes the story of Mongolia has been written in the West. Nomadism and horse culture has been romanticized, and the emphasis on freedom and heroes tends to appeal to the stereotypical male heavy metal fan.
"There is a kind of exoticism to Mongolia," says Hutchins. Mongolia "is at once a community and a culture that is part of Asia and Europe at the same time."
The Hu is not the only Mongolian band that has attracted recent international attention. There is the folk rock band Altan Urag, whose music was featured in the 2007 film Mongol and in the Netflix show Marco Polo, and the Inner Mongolian Hanggai Band.
Ethnomusicologist Charlotte D'Evelyn sees The Hu as trying to bring back traditions while also modernizing. For her it is as if the band is saying, "We're still modern and we're living in the modern world. But we're using this music to revive some kind of nationalistic cultural identity."
Hutchins puts it another way.
"The Hu is obviously interested in teaching a global community about Mongolian culture as much as they're interested in creating something Mongol."
Katya Cengel is the author of Exiled: From the Killing Fields of Cambodia to California and Back. She reported from Mongolia in 2017 on a fellowship from the International Reporting Project (IRP). You can find her on twitter @kcengel...
ULAN BATOR, Jan. 5 (Xinhua) -- The Bank of Mongolia's purchase of gold is expected to decrease in 2019, the central bank's spokesperson said Saturday.
The 2014 amendments to the Minerals Law have played an important role in hiking gold sales to the Treasury Fund over the past five years, but the effective period of the law expired on Jan. 1, Ariun Dagva told Xinhua.
"Thus, gold purchase of the central bank is expected to decline significantly in 2019. The bank has not yet set a goal on the amount of gold to buy this year," Ariun said.
The bank purchased only 12.7 tons of gold in 2014. Thanks to the low royalty taxes on gold with the 2014 amendments, the central bank's annual gold purchase almost doubled in 2018, she said.
The Bank of Mongolia bought a total of 22 tons of gold from legal entities and individuals in 2018, up 9.5 percent from the previous year.
Parliament session was delayed for the eighth week yesterday. While lawmakers are failing to form a quorum, the number of issues that require immediate approval have been piled up, which could potentially have dire consequence if the situation prolongs any further.
A quorum is reached when at least 39 out of 76 parliamentarians attend the session. However, 40 MPs submitted a petition in November to not attend plenary sessions until the Parliament Speaker resigns from his position in November. Continuing on to the next stage of protest, MP Bold Luvsanvandan, Batzandan Jalbasuren, Oyun-Erdene Luvsannamsrai and Ayursaikhan Tumurbaatar staged a sit-in to demand self-resignation of Parliament Speaker Enkhbold Miyegombo on December 6. Overall, the Parliament postponed seven sessions last year. Before the Parliament session got dismissed yesterday, Parliament Speaker remarked, “Self-resignation demand has been submitted to the Standing Committee on State Structure; however, the head of the committee Lundeejantsan Danzan informed that the committee is unable to settle the matter as a Speaker can only be ousted in five instances, which were not met so the demand was rejected.”
Parliament currently has several items on the order paper. These include the appointment of the next Minister of Food, Agriculture and Light Industry, as well as the Minerals Law, which is expected to extend 2.5 percent gold royalties for five years. Furthermore, amendments to the Law on Public Service took effect starting from January 1, 2019. This also requires several Parliamentary resolutions on several items to be effective. Amendments included “progressive advancement” for public servants. For instance, positions for a head of department will require 8-year working experience in the public sector.
As for yesterday, Togtokhsuren Dulamdorj, Chairman of the MPP caucus, requested postponement of Parliament session on the basis that MPP caucus need to convene beforehand.
Hong Kong (CNN Business)From iPhones to autos, global brands rely on China for growth. Now the country's economic slowdown is putting their earnings at risk.
Apple (AAPL) on Wednesday said that it expected a weaker Chinese economy to hurt its holiday sales numbers, prompting its stock to plunge up to 8% in after hours trading. CEO Tim Cook said in a letter to investors that the company had been blindsided by "the magnitude of the economic deceleration" there.
It isn't the only company that could suffer. The slump in China's economy, the second largest in the world, could hit companies like General Motors (GM), Volkswagen (VLKAF) and Starbucks (SBUX), which will report earnings in the coming weeks.
"This year has the potential to be a tough year for western brands," said Benjamin Cavender, a Shanghai-based analyst at consultant China Market Research Group.
The Chinese economy is flagging after decades of expansion. Growth in 2018 is expected to be the weakest since 1990. The outlook for this year is even worse, as the trade war with the United States and government attempts to curb runaway debt take their toll.
That spells trouble for companies that rely on China's enormous market to boost their global sales. Chinese consumers could be less willing to part with their cash for the latest smartphone or luxury handbag as they tighten their belts.
"Brands like Apple will struggle in part because consumers are having to think harder to justify premium products and brands," said Cavender. He points out that China now boasts a number of homegrown smartphone makers, like Huawei and Xiaomi. Many of these offer products that are competitive with the iPhone's capabilities but are substantially cheaper.
China is hugely important to Apple, making up about 15% of the company's global revenues. "When you talk about China and Apple, they're tied at the hip," said Dan Ives, New York-based managing director of equity research at broker Wedbush Securities. China is "the heart and lungs of the Apple growth story."
But he thinks the company has made missteps in this market, such as selling some recent models of the iPhone at a price deemed too expensive by Chinese consumers.
Starbucks feeling the squeeze
It isn't just high-tech names that are likely to feel the squeeze. The cost of a Starbucks latte is substantially less than a new iPhone, but America's biggest coffee chain is unlikely to escape China's economic slowdown. The firm has an ambitious expansion plan for China, Starbucks' second-biggest market after the United States, but sales have been slowing.
The coffee company is considered a luxury brand in the country, said Nick Setyan, another analyst at Wedbush who covers the restaurant business. That makes Starbucks vulnerable if consumers decide to cut back on spending because of the economic downturn.
The problem is magnified because the Seattle-based company is also facing rising competition from local players, like Luckin Coffee, which has been rapidly increasing its number of stores and sells much cheaper coffee.
"We are going to see Starbucks continuing to struggle," added China Market Research's Cavender.
A customer trying a red iPhone 7 in Nanjing, China. Apple on Wednesday said that it expected a weaker Chinese economy to hurt its holiday sales, prompting its stock to plunge.
A customer trying a red iPhone 7 in Nanjing, China. Apple on Wednesday said that it expected a weaker Chinese economy to hurt its holiday sales, prompting its stock to plunge.
Auto market likely to get worse
China has been a source of blockbuster sales for major carmakers for years, as rapid economic growth gave millions of consumers the cash to spend on middle-class status symbols.
For the likes of General Motors and Volkswagen, China brings in more revenue than the United States or Europe. "The China market is extremely important to all carmakers," said Tu Le, Beijing-based founder of research firm Sino Auto Insights.
But GM, Volkswagen, Jaguar Land Rover and Ford (F) are among those companies that reported late last year that their sales in the country were sliding as the economy lost momentum. Some brands blamed the trade war with the United States, which is making drivers think twice before splashing out on a new ride.
Le thinks that Ford, Volkswagen and Tesla (TSLA) are among the Western automakers that are most vulnerable to China's slowdown. Ford has struggled to attract drivers there with its line-up of cars in the country, while Tesla faces huge competition from cheaper, Chinese-made electric vehicles.
Experts think things could get worse before they get better, despite recent moves by Beijing to cut tariffs on US auto imports at the end of last year.
"Regaining the momentum towards growth is going to be very challenging in the next year or two if the overall economy stays weak," said Le.
Shares in companies that provide components for Apple products were among the hardest hit by the fallout from the iPhone maker's warning.
Hon Hai Precision (HNHPD), better known as Foxconn, fell 2% on Thursday in Taipei. Catcher Technology, a Taiwanese company that makes iPhone cases, dropped nearly 4%.
Austria's AMS (AMSSY), which makes light sensors, plunged more than 19%. Shares in European chipmakers Dialog Semiconductors (DLGNF) and STMicroelectronics (STM) dropped 7%.
Danielle Wiener-Bronner contributed to this report.
From coast to coast, American farmers are battling record-setting heat waves, fires, droughts, and excess rain. Partially deployed to calm grazing animals stressed by adverse weather, but also help stop, and even reverse, climate change, some dairy farmers are returning to 100 percent pasture-based diets for their animals by introducing innovative grazing techniques that they believe will help create happy cows and sequester carbon in the process.
Surprisingly, some researchers say the recent fate of nomadic dairy-herders in Mongolia may provide a chilling glimpse into the future of cheese in North America and Europe, if our production and consumption patterns don’t change.
The people of Mongolia have depended on dairy since about 3,000 BCE, when an early shift in the climate transformed the land from forest into grassland and desert, says Paul Kindstedt, author of Cheese and Culture: A History of Cheese and Its Place in Western Civilization, and a professor at the University of Vermont. Mongolia is one of the few pockets of the world that has carried out the same farming and herding practices on a large scale for thousands of years, he says.
Today, about 30 percent of the 3 million people living in Mongolia are nomads. They graze yak, cows, sheep, goats, horses, and camels in the world’s most sparsely populated nation, and they survive on the meat and dairy their herds produce. But their lives and livelihoods are at risk from climate change, compounded by political upheaval from the communist era.
While many of the details differ, the U.S. dairy industry is undergoing an its own upheaval. Since 1991, small farms have been crowded out by large-scale producers, and a combination of politics, economics, and climate change is putting the future of small-scale U.S. dairy at risk.
What Mongolia Teaches Us About Climate Change
“Climate change has reshaped the Eurasian steppes repeatedly, and the people who lived there learned to adapt in a symbiotic fashion that benefited the landscape and the people,” Kindstedt says. “It’s a delicate dance, because if people use too many resources too quickly in an environment like that, it means certain death. Living nomadically with a limited number of animals on the grasslands was their only choice.”
While communism drove Mongolian people to the cities, its fall sent them back to their herding lifestyles. In the meantime, grazing had become much more intensified. Now, more than 65 million livestock graze the steppes of Mongolia, compared to about 23 million in the communist era. “Overgrazing has caused the degradation of pastureland, especially by goats, which have exploded in number because of the price goat cashmere brings abroad,” Kindstedt says.
With a stacked deck, re-minted nomads are playing against record-breaking extreme weather. This winter, temperatures dropped to -50º C, and hundreds of thousands of grazing animals died. (Known as Dzud, the lethal Mongolian winters have wiped out more than 20 million animals since the early 2000s). Despite extreme cold spells, average temperatures in Mongolia have climbed 2.2ºC since 1880, leading the nation’s environmental ministry to report that hundreds of rivers, lakes, and springs have dried up in recent years.
As a result, nomads have flooded back into Mongolia’s jam-packed capital of Ulaanbaatar, while Nomads who continue to herd and live on the steppes are facing drought, hunger, and even starvation.
Incredibly, most of the cheese available in Ulaanbaatar is still imported. “Requirements for sanitation, safety, and traceability creates steep barriers for many of these producers,” Kindstedt explains. “Think of how hard it is for an artisanal cheesemaker in Vermont to get distribution in metropolitan areas, and multiply that by a thousand.”
Until there’s a viable avenue for herders to get sustainably produced traditional Mongolian milk products to market, there’s no motivation to stay and battle the harsh elements of the steppes.
“The government is taking the crisis seriously, and working to establish a market for cheese, which they believe will help stabilize the grazing practices,” Kindstedt says. A planned cheese-making facility in the northern Mongolian village of Khatgal seeks to meet international standards for food safety and hygiene in order to send traditional Mongolian milk products into the global market. By making exports possible, Mongolian dairy farming could become a viable livelihood again, reversing the trend of urban migration.
Environmental groups have long warned consumers about the sizable carbon footprint of this popular food. And because it requires so much milk to make, and cows release methane into the atmosphere, cheese ranks just below meat from ruminant animals such as beef and lamb.
But there’s a growing consensus among farmers and scientists that cheese (and meat) production, managed responsibly, can be a part of the solution to the climate crisis.
Climate change is decimating soil fertility around the world, and especially in the American West, UNESCO warns. But sustainable farming methods, including responsible grazing practices, can dramatically increase soil fertility, declares a recent study published in Agricultural Systems.
This year is on pace to be the fourth-hottest on record, after 2015, 2016, and 2017. This summer has been nicknamed “the summer of fire” as flames raged across the country. This extreme weather is having a huge impact on dairy farmers, says Guy Jodarski, the supervising veterinarian for Organic Valley Co-Op.
“[Last summer] we had an extreme drought in the Pacific Northwest, and extreme heat in the Northeast. Cows are happy at 50 and 60 degrees. Ninety and 100, not so much,” Jodarski says. “I’m on the phone with farmers regularly discussing how to keep the animals healthy, unstressed, and cool.”
In his work with dairy farmers in 35 states, Jodarski has a bird’s-eye view of America’s rural landscape. And what he sees—in addition to the weather challenges—isn’t pretty.
“The upheaval I’m seeing in rural America sounds somewhat similar to what’s happening in Mongolia, to be honest,” says Jodarski. “In my lifetime, I’ve seen more than 90 percent of the dairies in Wisconsin shut down; people are just streaming out of towns to cities; high schools can’t field football teams; there are empty storefronts on our main streets.”
Maple Hill Creamery, an organic grass-fed dairy company founded in 2009 currently works with 199 farms grazing 8,860 cows on 22,700 acres of land. Grass-fed dairy and beef bring home more bacon to the small farmers Maple Hill works with, and co-founder Tim Joseph says it goes deeper than that.
“Grass-fed organic dairy is inherently regenerative,” says Joseph, “because cows grazed on perennial pasture put the organic matter they produce—carbon—back in the soil.” Managed grazing can also help retain more water in the soil, making the land more resilient in the changing climate.
Here’s where herding, grazing, and cheesemaking close the climate loop, says Kindstedt.
“Cheese was essentially created thousands of years ago in part as a response to … over-intensive agricultural practices,” says Kindstedt. “Neolithic humans began herding goats and sheep more intensely as they could survive on land unfit for crops. At the same time, we invented pottery, which we used to store milk and eventually, yogurt and cheese.”
The culture of cheese-making was created by a man-made climate disaster, and now may be contributing to a second, potentially more catastrophic event. Unless we reverse course, Kindsted says.
“Masses of humanity in Western and sub-Saharan Africa have already been made desperate by climate change,” Kindstedt says. “Italy has shut its doors to the flow of migrants desperately fleeing their homes, and now they’re knocking on Spain’s door. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg if climate change continues.”
Cheese has a notoriously large carbon footprint, but it can be significantly offset by grass-fed, organic farming practices, Organic Valley’s Jodarksi explains.
“Grazing not only prevents soil erosion, but by walking around and tamping down dirt, the cows essentially sequester the carbon they emit through their burps back into the soil,” Jodarski says. “Their manure also gets spread across fields. You can get a net positive, especially when what they’re foraging on is high- quality grass.”
Milk and cheese from grass-fed cattle fetch higher prices that can keep family farmers afloat who have been squeezed out by the rise of Big Milk. And while a recent study found that sales of grass-fed dairy climbed 38 percent, stronger sales will accelerate the benefits.
In both countries, pasture-based practices might ensure a brighter future for cheese....
ULAN BATOR, Jan. 3 (Xinhua) -- Mongolia's capital Ulan Bator started on Thursday a new phase of an air pollution control project supported by the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA), according to the mayor's press office.
The third phase of the project, called Capacity Development Project for Air Pollution Control in Ulan Bator, focuses on providing processed fuel for low-income households in the capital's highly polluted areas and continuing efforts to reduce car emissions, as well as the accreditation of water heaters, according to a statement by the mayor's office.
The two sides will continue to improve the monitoring of data in environmental measurement, the statement said.
Ulan Bator, home to more than half of the country's 3.2-million population, suffers from one of the world's worst air pollutions in winter.
More than 800,000 residents, half of Ulan Bator's population, live in slums, also known as ger districts. They burn raw coal and other flammable materials to keep warm and cook meals during the six-month-long winter season.
It is estimated that 80 percent of air pollution in the city is caused by ger stoves.
Since the early 2000s, the Mongolian government in cooperation with international organizations has carried out a number of measures aimed at reducing air pollution in Ulan Bator. However, the city has not seen a significant reduction in air pollution levels.
Ulan Bator's air pollution on Jan. 3 exceeded by over 20 times the safety level set by the World Health Organization, according to the National Agency for Meteorology and Environment Monitoring.
HOHHOT -- Three suspects were returned to China as part of the Fox Hunt campaign against economic fugitives, police in northern China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region said on Thursday.
The Fox Hunt campaign targets economic crime suspects who have fled overseas.
According to the police in the city of Ordos, the three suspects committed fraud and scammed more than 300 million yuan ($43.6 million) from the public by crowdfunding and promising high returns. The head of the ring surnamed Wang fled abroad after they failed to pay back the high returns to those who invest with them.
The other two suspects fled overseas soon after.
Police investigation showed that Wang has very complicated social connections and used several identities.
The three were seized after six months of investigation, local police said.
No further detail of the case was disclosed, and the case is still under investigation.