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Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ During the plenary meeting of Parliament, convened today, May 31, Member of Parliament Yo.Baatarbileg presented the affiliated Standing committee’s conclusion on the issue of dismissing Minister of Education, Culture, Science and Sports J.Batsuuri. The latter is being condemned for unsatisfactory observance of responsibilities of administering the educational sector, and policy-making and law implementing duties.
After taking comments from several parliament members, the State Great Khural /Parliament/ voted for dismissing J.Batsuuri from the position of Minister of Education, Culture, Science and Sports with 64.3 percent approval.
Parliament Speaker M.Enkhbold reminded the cabinet to appoint an acting minister within this week.
Prime Minister J.Erdenebat submitted a request to dismiss Minister of Education to the Speaker on May 30.
J.Munkhbat, Head of Cabinet Secretariat will serve as acting Minister of Education until the new Minister takes office. Prime Minister J.Erdenebat is expected to introduce his proposal for the Minister of Education, Culture, Science and Sports after he arrives in Mongolia from Russia, attending the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.
Prime Minister departs for Russia to attend St. Petersburg International Economic Forum www.montsame.mn
Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ Prime Minister of Mongolia J.Erdenebat left for Russia today to attend the 21st St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, which will held on June 1-3 in Saint Petersburg, Russia. The annual business event has become a leading global platform for representatives of the business community to meet and discuss the key global economic issues facing Russia, emerging markets, and the world as a whole.
The Premier will deliver remarks at the opening session of the forum, attend an extended meeting and meet with his counterparts from Serbia and India to discuss bilateral ties. Also, chairman of Council of the Eurasian Economic Commission, acting head of the Republic of Buryatia, Russia and other Russian delegates will pay courtesy calls on the Mongolian PM.
Furthermore, Prime Minister J.Erdenebat is set to participate in the signing of bilateral documents between Mongolia and Russia, such as rendering humanitarian assistance from Russia to Mongolia and cooperating in public communications as well as in the energy industry between the energy ministries of Mongolia and Russia.
Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ The 5th Report of Mongolia on the implementation of United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child was discussed at the 75th Session of the Committee on the Rights of the Child on May 26 in Geneva, Switzerland.
Delegates of Mongolia, headed by Deputy Minister of Labor and Social Protection S.Mungunchimeg attended the forum. The Mongolian delegates, composed of representatives from the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection, Ministry Justice and Home Affairs, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education, Culture, Science and Sports and Agency of Family, Children and Youth Development, reported on the Government policy and measures taken in regard to children’s rights protection, strengthening national system, improvement of legal environment, education, health and social welfare of children and answered to questions by the Committee members.
The members appreciated Mongolian efforts in renewing the legal environment by passing new and revised laws on Children’s right, Children’s Protection and Domestic violence as well as having paid attention to realize recommendations on ensuring children’s rights by the committee during the last discussion. Conclusions and recommendations regarding the report of Mongolia will be officially issued by the Committee on June 08.
Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ Cabinet of ministers convened for regular meeting on Wednesday, May 30. Ministers P.Gankhuu and Ts.Dashdorj, and Executive Director of Erdenes Mongol Ts.Tumentsogt were tasked to build sufficient reserve of diesel fuel and petrol to ensure preparedness for the wintering at Baganuur and Shivee Ovoo mines, to organize the stripping and overhaul maintenance works in timely manner and focus on maintaining proper amount of coal reserve of the country.
-Cabinet also discussed the general report of the Government’s Master Budget Performance for 2016 and resolved to submit the draft of parliamentary Resolution on Approving 2016 Budget Performance to the State Great Khural (Parliament). The total amount of budget revenue, expenditure and deficit can be calculated precisely after adopting the above resolution.
-A total of 53,830 petitions and complaints were addressed to ministers and authorities of government bodies in the first quarter of 2017. More than 94 percent were responded within the legal period. Most of the petitions and complaints were about receiving social welfare, cash and other kinds of benefits, land ownership and utilization.
-Cabinet resolved to submit to the parliament a draft law on ratification of the 2015 protocol on amending the Agreement on Establishing the International Investment Bank and its Rule. Mongolia, as a member of IIB, should accept the amendments to the general agreement and rule in order to maintain membership.
-A draft law on ratification of amendments to the Agreement on Establishing the International Bank for Economic Cooperation (IBEC) and its Rule, formed on October 22 of 1963 is being submitted to the State Great Khural, as well.
-A regulation regarding the uniforms of police officers were approved.
-Draft bill on Standardization, Technical Adjustment and Accreditation was discussed during the meeting. The ministers decided to present the bill to parliament.
-Cabinet agreed to initiative of observing a National Day of Labor and Social Welfare Workers on May 31 every year.
A group of global institutions, countries and one central bank have come together with a package to prop up the Mongolian economy while the country's government implements reforms.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank, Asian Development Bank (ADB), Japan, Korea and the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) launched the rescue effort on May 24.
The IMF agreed to disburse around $434 million in funding as part of a three-year programme, while the World Bank, ADB, Japan and Korea also contributed budgetary support, bringing the total financing package to around $5.5 billion. The PBoC agreed to extend a swap arrangement with the Bank of Mongolia.
“The authorities’ programme aims to stabilise the economy, restore confidence, and pave the way to economic recovery,” the IMF said in a statement.
Growth in Mongolia rocketed after 2010, driven by high commodity prices and a mining boom financed in large part by investment from China. The economy became the fastest growing in the world, with GDP growth peaking at 17.3% in 2011.
Since then, falling commodity prices and a slowdown in the Chinese economy have left the economy battered and the government’s budget, which ballooned during the boom, looking seriously overstretched. Growth was just 1% in 2016.
IMF deputy managing director Mitsuhiro Furusawa says fiscal consolidation is a “critical element” of the programme. The IMF is urging the creation of an independent fiscal council and implementation of a “sizeable” fiscal adjustment, targeted to limit the impact on the most vulnerable people.
The government is also working on a new central bank law, which is “envisaged to strengthen the governance and independence of the Bank of Mongolia,” Furusawa says.
The programme aims to lend support to the banking sector, improve the supervisory and regulatory framework, and strengthen anti-money laundering rules. Structural reforms are pitched at improving the “business environment” and helping the economy diversify away from the minerals sector.
The ADB said the outlook for Mongolia is improving, forecasting growth of 2.5% in 2017 and 2% in 2018 as large mining investments come online. “Strengthening the management of natural resources revenue remains a major challenge,” the organisation said in a report in April.
Fitch, the ratings agency, says the financing arrangement should put the economy on a “more stable footing”, though it notes there will be challenges in hitting budget targets, and medium-term debt sustainability is still contingent on the success of the mining projects. Mongolia’s current rating is B– with a stable outlook.
“The support package and stronger market confidence should ensure that Mongolia can meet its external obligations over the next few years, and should support greater stability of the Mongolian tugrik,” Fitch said in a statement on May 28.
Airbus Helicopters is moving forward with its strategic partnership with China, with construction now underway of its first helicopter assembly line in the country.
Guillaume Faury, CEO of Airbus Helicopters, said the new final assembly line for its H135 chopper in Qingdao, Shandong province, is the first for the company in China.
Costing more than 10 million euros ($11.21 million), the plant is expected to be completed by 2018, he said at the weekend groundbreaking ceremony.
Under a framework agreement signed in June last year, 100 Airbus H135s will be assembled over the next 10 years and the first aircraft rollout from Qingdao is planned for mid-2019. The production line will have a total installed annual capacity of 18 helicopters, which can be extended for future growth.
Faury said the project was a "remarkable milestone" for his company's global footprint and demonstrated its commitment to further enhancing industrial cooperation with China's rapidly growing aviation industry.
"We are confident that this project will achieve a win-win solution to fulfill the requirements of local customers while supporting the development of crucial helicopter services," Faury said.
The new facility, located in the Jimo Hi-Tech Industrial Development Zone, will be operated by Airbus Helicopters and Qingdao United General Aviation Co Ltd, a joint venture between China Aviation Supplies Holding Co and Qingdao United General Aviation Industrial Development Co Ltd.
Airbus Helicopters holds a majority share of 51 percent in the joint venture.
"The H135 final assembly line is another strong example of Sino-European cooperation and will play an important role in further promoting the development of China's general aviation industry," said Li Hai, president of CAS.
"We believe in this partnership and are looking forward to seeing the first Airbus helicopter assembled in China."
The H135 is a light twin-engine helicopter, mainly operating in emergency medical services, search and rescue, law enforcement, firefighting and tourism. To date more than 1,200 helicopters in the H135 family have gone into operation internationally.
In 2016, China became Airbus Helicopters' biggest civilian market in terms of annual orders. Given the rapid development of the helicopter emergency medical services, public services and offshore wind industry in the country, a potential demand for 600 light twin-engine helicopters is expected over the next two decades.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has met Saudi Arabia’s Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Moscow. It's the first meeting since the world’s two largest oil producers agreed last week to extend a deal to cut production.
This is very significant and “our coordinated actions helped stabilize the situation on the world hydrocarbons market,” Putin said Tuesday at the Kremlin meeting.
“We’re grateful for your initiative to work together on joint actions between OPEC countries and non-members,” added the Russian President.
Putin said that after a lull in business between the two, this year trade between Russia and Saudi Arabia had grown 130 percent.
The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other oil producers lead by Russia, agreed last week to cut oil production until the end of the first quarter of 2018, nine months longer than originally planned.
However, crude prices have been sliding since the deal was reached as investors were disappointed the meeting did not produce deeper cuts.
Oil prices were significantly down on Tuesday, with Brent crude trading nearly a dollar lower at $51.29 per barrel. US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) was down 63 cents at $49.17.
"Investors haven't made up their minds if OPEC has done enough to balance supply and demand," said Carsten Fritsch, senior commodities analyst at Commerzbank in Frankfurt, as quoted by Reuters.
"Today's losses follow gains yesterday, so overall oil prices have been rather flat this week," he added.
The effect of the OPEC deal has also been mitigated by increased US production.
US drillers have added rigs for 19 straight weeks, and the total number is now 722, the highest since April 2015, according to services firm Baker Hughes.
China manufacturing sector grew faster than expected in May as activity in the steel industry rebounded sharply, an official survey showed on Wednesday, allaying concerns of slowing economic momentum as Beijing cracks down on financial risks.
The National Bureau of Statistics' official Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) held up at 51.2 in May, in line with April's number, which was the lowest in six months.
Analysts polled by Reuters had predicted a reading of 51.0, the tenth straight month above the 50-point mark that separates growth from contraction on a monthly basis.
New orders kept pace with April at 52.3, with export orders firming a touch by 0.1 percent point to 50.7, suggesting external demand held up.
Production in the month stayed within the expansionary territory, though growth eased to 53.4 compared to last month's 53.8.
Activity in China's steel industry expanded at the fastest pace in a year in May, supported by an increase in new orders, a separate survey showed, suggesting still-solid demand in the construction sector.
The overall results of the survey should soothe concerns of slowing momentum in the world's second-biggest economy as authorities crack down risky lending to curb financial risks. Official data showed on Saturday profits earned by Chinese industrial firms slowed to its weakest in four months in April.
Businesses attributed the slowing profit growth to falling prices of finished product and raw material costs, the stats bureau said.
Those worries were inflamed last week when Moody's Investors Service downgraded China's credit ratings for the first time in nearly 30 years, saying it expects the financial strength of the economy will erode in coming years as growth slows and debt continues to rise.
China's economy grew a faster-than-expected 6.9 percent in the first quarter, boosted by higher government infrastructure spending and a gravity-defying property boom.
But property sales growth slipped in April and a strong rebound in commodity prices appears to have peaked, pointing to a continued slowdown in the industrial sector.
China steel PMI rises to one-year high in May on new orders
China May official services PMI rises to 54.5 vs. 54.0 in April
The PMI survey showed the employment sub-index rose to 49.4 from 49.2 in April, while the raw materials inventories sub-index was 48.5, compared to April's 48.3.
However, the input price sub-index fell to 49.5, after falling to 51.8 in April, as the tailwind from a commodities boom weakens. Output prices also slipped to 47.6 from April's 48.7.
Growth in China's services sector also accelerated to 54.5 in May, compared with the previous month's reading of 54.0.
Beijing has been treading cautiously to contain financial risks and a buildup in debt while maintaining economic growth, but analysts are skeptical other sectors of the economy will be able to pick up the slack if the property market slows.
On whole, however, they don't expect GDP growth to slow sharply this year, noting the government is keen to maintain stable economic and financial conditions heading into a key political leadership reshuffle later in the year.
(Reporting by Elias Glenn and Yawen Chen; Editing by Shri Navaratnam)
Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ During the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Budget’s meeting on May 30, a discussion was held on the Parliament’s draft resolution of the “Basic Guidelines for 2018 socio-economic development”.
MP O.Batnasan said during the discussion, “The guidelines must be approved under valid grounds. Constructing hydropower plant in Erdeneburen soum of Khovd aimag is the main focus for the western aimags. Hydropower plant is a self-funding industry. Presently, we are buying 1 kWh energy for MNT 280 from China. According to the feasibility study, 1 kWh energy will be MNT 37 with the hydropower plant. Therefore, we need to focus more on this project. Also, how much fund is expected for the development of border checkpoint operations?”
B.Choijilsuren, the Minister of Finance responded to the question “The People’s Republic of China will be depositing CNY 350 million of non-refundable aid. And most of the fund will be used for the development of the border checkpoints and infrastructures in the southern region. The procurement will be announced in the third or fourth quarter of this year. This will settle the issues of border checkpoints near China.
Also, a negotiation has started with Asian Development Bank to settle the issues concerning the development of border checkpoints near the Russian Federation.
The Standing Committee has decided to submit the guidelines for 2018 to Parliamentary Standing Committee on Economy.
Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ Within the implementation of the Government action plan in 2016-2020, preparation works for starting projects of Tavantolgoi, Gatsuurt and Bagakhangai power plant have completed, said Finance Minister B.Choijilsuren.
Today, Budgetary standing committee of Parliament held the first hearing of Parliamentary resolution draft on adaptation of Basic guidelines of social and economic development of Mongolia in 2018. The Finance Minister and other officials answered questions of parliament members during the discussion.
“- We are working to create as many jobs as possible with a view to reduce poverty. Moreover, there are 1 million 750 thousand people who should pay social insurance premium, however, by now, 950 thousand people are paying it. Therefore, we are working to increase the number” said the Finance Minister.
Issues regarding a new railway construction was also raised by MPs. According to State Secretary of Ministry of Road and Transport Development J.Bat-Erdene, plans of railways of Bichigt-Khoot, Nariin Sukhait-Shivee khuren, Zuunbayan-Khangi, Erdenet-Ovoot and Mandal-Bagakhangai are ready.