|Frontier's "Invest Mongolia Tokyo 2018"||Frontier Securities||Tokyo Japan|
|"Open to Export" ICC WTO International business award||ICC WTO||London|
LIMERICK FC has announced an innovative Community Partnership with the Mongolian Football Federation which they believe will be beneficial for both sides.
After year-long discussions, Mongolian Football Federation manager Enkhjin Batsumber arrived in Limerick this week as the deal was formally agreed.
Sixteen-year-old central defender Belgutei Batjargul, who has spent time at the academies of Arsenal and Chelsea is the first player to come to Limerick as part of a planned exchange programme.
Batjargul will spend time training at Limerick FC's Academy as well as beginning education here.
Batsumber and his colleagues had spent time in the UK last year searching for a potential partner with strong community links.
However, Limerick’s community work impressed the Mongolian FF so much that the pair have now linked up. The partnership will see players, coaches and community staff travel from Mongolia to Ireland and vice-versa, with the potential for Mongolian National Team squads to come and train in Limerick.
Limerick FC Chairman Pat O’Sullivan explained: “Football is the fastest-growing sport in Mongolia, and they would address a lot of issues through sport – that was their concept, which is really a lot like what we do.
“The idea is that the Mongolian Football Federation will send people here to look at our community programmes, some will come over to develop coaching techniques and they will also send some young players to train in our Academy.
“On the other side of it, we will look at sending some of our community staff and students to Mongolia.”
O’Sullivan added: “They would like to experience our football culture with the idea that some National Team squads would come to Limerick and base themselves here for a couple of weeks as part of their training and development.
“We’re creating a structure where they will come over here. Bruff becomes very important in that aspect because we’d like to think the cost-base would be low in Bruff and it would be able to facilitate a lot of what is required.
“We discussed the importance of the youth structure we have here now. I explained that we only had a handful of players from Limerick playing with our senior team. We want our whole senior team to be from Limerick. We discussed the initiation of our Academy at the time and the fruits of that now.
“The Mongolian Football Federation want to follow a similar pathway which is great. We are having a very open relationship to see how we can help each other.”
On the partnership, Mongolian Football Federation manager Enkhjin Batsumber said: “What Mr O’Sullivan is doing in Limerick is an ideal model of what we are trying to achieve in Mongolia; basically, bringing football into the community from grassroots level all the way to the top by focussing on and developing young players.
“We want to incorporate football as a social tool to guide youth to a better path and keep them out of trouble. Football is the fastest-growing sport in Mongolia. Mongolians in general are very athletic people – despite our small population we’ve won gold medals in very tough sports like judo and boxing.
“What we need is good management, good investment in infrastructure and to bring people into football at every level, either at grassroots or elite level.
“We are in discussions to bring young Mongolian players to train in Ireland to see if they can go all the way to the top at professional level. Some kids are already signing professional contracts in Europe, so the potential is there.
“This is an amazing opportunity. I can’t thank Limerick FC and Mr. O’Sullivan enough. We are really looking forward to building this relationship and making it long-term.
“We hope to organise a National Team Programme where we can come here, train and stay in Bruff. I’m really happy that I had the opportunity to visit here to see it for myself. It has been an amazing experience already.”
Belgutei Batjargul – known as Billy – has attended the academies of Arsenal and Chelsea as well as the Bobby Charlton Soccer & Sports Academy, and he will now spend time training in Limerick’s Academy.
Batsumber said: “Billy is a young player who wants to develop his football skills. It will be a great experience for his future, not only because of football but learning the western culture and interacting with different people and young players here.
“He can become a proper player, get a proper education and gain invaluable experience at a very important age as he moves towards adulthood.”...
A Mongolian dairy producer has issued the local stock exchange's largest ever corporate bond, testing market appetite following an economic bailout and the potential election of an unpredictable new president.
Suu, which means milk in Mongolian, sold 6 billion tugrik ($2.55 million) of debt as it aims to boost production and refinance dollar-denominated debt accumulated during the country's short-lived economic boom. The one-year bills have an annual interest rate of 17.5 percent.
Investors were drawn to the bond because of the stability brought to the local currency, the tugrik, following a $5.5 billion rescue package from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), said Dashdorj Bilguun, who worked on the underwriting at Golomt Capital.
"It stabilises the currency," said Bilguun of the IMF deal.
The tugrik was in free fall last year, declining by nearly a quarter as a result of falling investment and weak Chinese demand for commodities.
Coal and copper sold to China were leading drivers of Mongolian growth, but the IMF is now encouraging the landlocked Asian nation to diversify and develop agriculture and tourism in order to protect it from boom-bust cycles.
Suu is eyeing China as a potential customer for its dairy products, but Mongolian agriculture remains underdeveloped because of a lack of infrastructure and the remote location of herders.
About 30 percent of Mongolia's population still practices a traditional nomadic livelihood that can be traced back to the 13th century, when Genghis Khan was building history's largest empire.
Bilguun said the bills were 12.6 percent oversubscribed despite investor concerns about the potential victory of presidential candidate Khaltmaa Battulga from the opposition Democratic Party, who won the most votes in an inconclusive first round of elections this week.
Before the election, Battulga was calling for more state control in mining, including the Oyu Tolgoi copper-gold mine run by Rio Tinto.
Shares in Mongolia-based firms plunged this week after the election, with Turquoise Hill Resources and Aspire Mining falling by around 5 percent and the Mongolian Mining Corp losing 14 percent since Monday.
An analyst with a Hong Kong investment firm familiar with Thursday's bond deal said the government had turned a corner after the IMF agreement was secured.
"The atmosphere has changed," said the analyst, who asked not to be named because he was not authorised to speak to the media. "There will still be pains, but hopefully the worst has passed." (Reporting by Terrence Edwards; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri)
Global debt levels have surged to a record $217 trillion in the first quarter of the year. This is 327 percent of the world's annual economic output (GDP), reports the Institute of International Finance (IIF).
The surging debt was driven by emerging economies, which have increased borrowing by $3 trillion to $56 trillion. This amounts to 218 percent of their combined economic output, five percentage points greater year on year.
The biggest contributor was China with $2 trillion. In June, the International Monetary Fund urged Beijing to tackle its ballooning debt, describing it as unusually high for a developing economy. Some estimates say China’s debt stands at 260 percent of its GDP.
Advanced economies have cut debt levels by $2 trillion over the past year. However, the US is approaching $20 trillion, almost 10 percent of global debt.
"Rising debt may create headwinds for long-term growth and eventually pose risks for financial stability," the report said.
"In some cases, this sharp debt build-up has already started to become a drag on sovereign credit profiles, including in countries such as China and Canada," it added.
Emerging hard currency-denominated debt grew by $200 billion in the past year - growing at its fastest pace since 2014. Seventy percent of the debt is in dollars, the report found.
"Rollover risk is high," the IIF added.
The US and the EU could increase interest rates in the near future, thus making it more expensive for borrowers to repay, the report noted.
On June 26, Mongolians went to the polls to vote for their fifth president since Mongolia’s transition to a democracy in 1990. Despite a high voter turnout of over 66 percent, the General Election Commission officially announced on Tuesday that none of the candidates had received the necessary 51 percent of the vote to declare a winner. As a result, officials have called for the country’s first-ever presidential election run-off to take place on July 7.
Staff prepare ballot boxes ahead of Mongolia’s presidential election.
Mongolians directly elect their president who serves as head of state, commander-in-chief, and head of the National Security Council. Three candidates were on the ballot, representing the Democratic Party, the Mongolian People’s Party, and the Mongolian People’s Revolutionary Party. Mongolia’s somewhat unique semi-parliamentary system has both a prime minister and a president who head the government. While there is clear separation of powers enshrined in the constitution, the president can introduce bills to Parliament, and has the authority to appoint judges, the prosecutor general, and the head of the Independent Authority Against Corruption. The president also symbolizes the unity of the Mongolian people.
So, as the electorate gears up once again to return to the polls, what has been perceived as lacking from the campaign is what the new president is committed to addressing during his four-year term. Here are five critical issues facing the country that will no doubt confront the new president:
1. Grappling with corruption. Following a period of positive economic growth from 2011-2013, corruption has proven to be an entrenched problem that affects ordinary Mongolians on a daily basis. According to The Asia Foundation’s 2016 nationwide Survey on Perceptions of Knowledge of Corruption, 85 percent of respondents agree that “corruption is a common practice in our country.” The president can play a pivotal role in reinforcing zero tolerance toward corruption. While Mongolia’s government has developed a National Action Plan Against Corruption Strategy to 2020, it must be earnestly implemented to make a real difference. The president might consider tasking civil society to help shed light, ask questions, and present data about the progress of the government’s plan and its implementation, which could serve as a pillar of the new president’s agenda. The new president could also convene an annual review to hear from civil society organizations on their proposed solutions to help the government promote increased transparency and accountability.
2. Addressing environmental degradation. There is a common understanding in Mongolia that while a clean environment is a right of all Mongolians, it comes with important responsibilities. Several years ago, with the passage of freedom of information legislation as well as the increased focus on citizen participation in local decision-making, communities started to become more vocal about environmental issues that affected them. In nearly any community in Mongolia, citizens can tell you what pressing environmental issues affect them and what ideas they have on how to address them. However, often missing are the committed resources and technical know-how to address these problems. Furthermore, many environmental issues, such as clean water and air, are not confined to one country but are international transboundary concerns. Mongolia has created a national green development strategy as well as an urban strategy for its capital of Ulaanbaatar. Drawing on best practices from Asia and beyond, the president can be a catalyst and a convener for introducing environmental best practices from beyond Mongolia’s borders and be a positive force in the region in combatting environmental challenges. Within the president’s office, a forward-thinking, credentialed advisor to support the president to focus on environmental concerns will enable Mongolia to play a more prominent role in debating and resolving environmental issues.
3. Tackling unemployment and underemployment. Mongolia’s current unemployment rate is 9.1 percent. A steady movement away from traditional herding practices has resulted in both a loss of livelihoods and a shift of population from rural to urban settings. Women are often disproportionately affected by these strains. As Ulaanbaatar is already overstretched in its ability to provide basic public services, migration from rural communities has been halted until January 2018. Women make up 46 percent of the workforce, yet often their contributions are not seen or considered part of the formal workforce. The president can help draw critical attention to the government’s National Program on Gender Equality approved by the cabinet on April 26, 2017. The national strategy emphasizes women’s equal participation in all sectors, and this, coupled with the capital city’s action plan to increase women’s participation in SMEs, could be a strong foundation to see advancements in gender equality. Mongolia’s gender strategy also sites poor indicators for men, including alcoholism, low graduation rates, and poor health outcomes that consequently impact men’s full and meaningful participation in the economy. Addressing these long-running challenges will also be critical to addressing unemployment and a lagging economy.
4. Ensuring equitable access to justice. Mongolia prides itself on having a robust legal framework and a comprehensive set of laws. Despite this, the effective implementation of laws remains a significant hurdle. The next president will play an important role in ensuring that the Judiciary has judges that are appointed based on merit and the strength of their legal knowledge. The recent creation in 2016 of a nine-member Judicial Ethics Committee has helped to ensure that grievances from citizens are listened to and dealt with in the most appropriate and expedient manner. The president would be wise to continue to demand that key judicial reform legislation put into effect is maintained, implemented, and that there is not any backsliding on progress.
5. Enhancing Northeast Asian regional cooperation. Mongolia’s unique and positive diplomatic relations with all countries in Northeast Asia enable it to play a role in providing an open and neutral space for dialogue and opening new avenues for engagement. For example, Mongolia has been able to bring together countries in the region that might not otherwise sit together, due to regional or political differences, to discuss areas of mutual concern on the environment. The new president has a strong role in carrying forward global foreign policy aims, as Mongolia holds deep and longstanding bilateral relationships with countries not only in the region, but also through the region’s “third-neighbor” policy which brings Mongolia closer to countries beyond its direct neighbors, Russia and China.
Whoever emerges as Mongolia’s new president on July 7 will hold enormous influence at a critical time in Mongolia’s history, and how the president addresses these critical issues will decide which direction the country turns.
Cathay Pacific targets Mongolia with new MIAT Mongolian Airlines codeshare www.businesstraveller.com
Cathay Pacific and MIAT Mongolian Airlines are looking to improve links between the Mongolian capital Ulaanbaatar, and Southeast Asia and Australia, with a new codeshare agreement between the two carriers set to kick off from July 12 this year.
Under the arrangement, Cathay Pacific’s CX code will feature on MIAT’s four-times-weekly service between Hong Kong and Ulaanbaatar, which it launched back in 2012, while MIAT’s OM code will appear on Cathay’s flights between Hong Kong and Singapore, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney. Cathay Pacific deploys its A350 on flights to Melbourne and Brisbane, with Perth set to join in October this year.
The codeshare provides Cathay with a new, growing market that it can feed travellers into via its Hong Kong hub. Speaking about the agreement, Cathay Pacific’s chief customer and commercial officer, Paul Loo, said: “Mongolia is an attractive destination in that it appeals to both tourists and business travellers alike thanks to its pristine natural landscapes, rich culture and rapid development. Ulaanbaatar is quickly making a name for itself as an important business hub, one which we expect to grow on the back of this new agreement.”
MIAT, meanwhile, will now get improved access to two key markets in Asia-Pacific, and travellers on these codeshare services will have their luggage through-checked in Hong Kong. Eligible MIAT customers will also be able to make use of Cathay Pacific’s Terminal 1 lounges at Hong Kong International Airport.
“This is a winning step for both airlines and will provide our passengers with convenient access to Singapore and Australia via the super hub in Hong Kong,” said MIAT president and CEO, Tamir Tumurbaatar. “The codeshare and interline agreement brings advantages for the passengers of both MIAT Mongolian Airlines and Cathay Pacific because our route networks complement each other perfectly. This cooperation is very significant for our landlocked country’s national flag carrier.”
These new codeshare flights are currently available for booking....
LONDON, June 28 (Reuters) – Ghana has signed a $10 billion memorandum of understanding (MOU) with China to develop its bauxite industry, the country's Senior Minister Yaw Osafo-Maafo said on Wednesday.
Growth in the West African country slowed sharply in 2014 due to a fiscal crisis and tumbling commodity prices following years of economic expansion at around 8 percent on the back of gold, cocoa and oil exports.
Taking office in January, President Nana Akufo-Addo has outlined a programme of job creation through the private sector and rural development.
"To develop the bauxite project with its railway and converting bauxite into aluminium we will need about $10 billion … we signed an MOU," Osafo-Maafo told reporters at a conference in London after arriving from China.
"The money will come from the Chinese Development Bank, the implementation of the project will come from other agencies, infrastructure agencies in China, like China Railway," he said.
The funds from Beijing would contribute towards building 1,400 km of a planned 4,000 km railway network, which would connect bauxite mines and production sites as well as establish a rail link into neighbouring Burkina Faso.
Details such as interest rates and terms had yet to be decided, he said, speaking on the sidelines of an investor conference organised by Developing Market Associates.
During his China visit, a second MOU had been signed between China and the Association of Ghana Industries which could lead to some $2 billion being invested in agricultural projects and industries, Osafo-Maafo said.
This was part of a government pledge to "build a dam in every village and a factory in every district", he said.
Asked about the government's plan to issue a 10 billion cedi ($2.25 billion) bond, Osafo-Maafo said he expected the debt to be issued towards the end of the year, and with maturities ranging from 5-15 years.
Earlier in June, Ghana had named Standard Chartered Bank and local lender Fidelity as lead managers for the issue expected to clear debts owed by public sector energy utilities.
Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ During its regular meeting on June 28, Wednesday, the Cabinet authorized Finance Minister B.Choijilsuren to sign a financing agreement on ‘Second Energy Sector Project’.
The agreement is established between the World Bank’s International Development Association and the Mongolian Government.
The USD 42 million loan from the World Bank will be used on projects – ‘Baganuur-Southeastern Region Electricity Distribution Network’, ‘Erdenet-Bulgan Electricity Distribution Network’ and expansion of ‘National Electricity Transmission Grid’. In addition, the government plans to set up a 10MW solar power plant in western region.
World Bank`s USD 25 million soft loan will be spent on the employment promotion project.
Within the framework of the project, job seekers, self-employed people, and young people aged 15-34 years will be employed, trained and provided with an opportunity to get loans.
At first stage, the project will provide long-term job to 128 thousand people (of which 60 thousand of them are women) as well as it has planning to train and grant financial support to 10 thousand people.
The Government of Mongolia`s Action Plan for 2016-2020 projected to train and employ the young people and reduce the number of foreign workers by more than 50 percent.
Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ During its regular meeting on June 28, Wednesday, the Cabinet advised Energy Regulatory Commission chief A.Tleikhan to take measures concerning coal prices.
The measures will aim to adjust the prices of coal mined for energy use by ‘Baganuur’ and ‘Shivee Ovoo’ companies, and bring closer to a realistic rate.
The Cabinet ordered corresponding Ministers and authorities to study the possibilities of releasing the two companies from debt obligations from Japan.
Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ During its regular meeting on June 28, Wednesday, the Cabinet resolved to discuss with corresponding Parliamentary standing committees a draft ‘General Financing Program’ to be established between Asian Development Bank and the Mongolian Government.
As a result of discussion of cooperation strategy in 2017-2020, sides identified finance, agriculture, education, health, employment, environmental preservation and social spheres for cooperation.
In this regard, Asian Development Bank allocated USD 468 million fund for Mongolia in 2017-2018, which allows USD 404 million loan from its Ordinary Capital Resources (OCR) and USD 64 million Concessional OCR lending.
The Concessional OCR lending has 2 percent interest, 25-year term, 5-year moratorium whereas the OCR loan has an average 20-year term.
The ADB loans will be spent on supporting access to quality education; enhancing services for the disabled and increasing their participation; developing regional road; increasing renewable energy; improving transparency and efficiency of budget administration; and improving air quality in the capital city.