1 US TRADE WAR COULD COST GLOBAL ECONOMY $430 BILLION, IMF WARNS WWW.RT.COM PUBLISHED:2018/07/18      2 US PLANS G7 TALKS ON CHINA WWW.NHK.OR.JP PUBLISHED:2018/07/18      3 GOOGLE HIT WITH RECORD EU FINE OVER SHOPPING SERVICE WWW.BBC.COM PUBLISHED:2018/07/18      4 TURQUOISE HILL ANNOUNCES SECOND QUARTER 2018 PRODUCTION AND COMPLETION OF SHAFT 5 WWW.GOGO.MN PUBLISHED:2018/07/18      5 DEVELOPMENT OF BILL ON CIVIL SERVANT CODE OF CONDUCT FINALIZED WWW.GOGO.MN PUBLISHED:2018/07/18      6 CRUDE OIL EXPORTS GENERATED 94.3 BILLION WWW.GOGO.MN PUBLISHED:2018/07/18      7 MONGOLIAN PRESIDENT SUMMONS IRREGULAR PARLIAMENTARY SESSION WWW.NEWS.MN PUBLISHED:2018/07/18      8 JEFF BEZOS IS NOW WORTH MORE THAN BILL GATES AND LARRY PAGE COMBINED WWW.CNN.COM PUBLISHED:2018/07/17      9 APARTMENT COMPLEX FOR YOUNG FAMILIES UNDER CONSTRUCTION IN ERDENET WWW.MONTSAME.MN PUBLISHED:2018/07/17      10 NUM GRADUATES INVITED TO WORK FOR TOSHIBA CORPORATION WWW.MONTSAME.MN PUBLISHED:2018/07/17      ГЕРМАНЫ “ЧИНГИС ХААН” ХАМТЛАГ ИРЭХ ОНД МОНГОЛД ТОГЛОЛТОО ХИЙНЭ WWW.MONTSAME.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/07/18     АНУ, ОХУ ХҮЙТЭРСЭН ХАРИЛЦААНДАА ЦЭГ ТАВИЛАА WWW.UBINFO.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/07/18     ХУДАЛДААНЫ ДАЙН ХЯТАДЫН КОМПАНИУДАД НӨЛӨӨЛЖ ЭХЭЛЖЭЭ WWW.NEWS.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/07/18     МОНГОЛД 92 ОРНЫ 9.6 МЯНГАН ГАДААДЫН ИРГЭН АЖИЛЛАЖ БАЙНА WWW.EAGLE.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/07/18     ГАДААД ХУДАЛДААНЫ НИЙТ БАРАА ЭРГЭЛТ 6,3 ТЭРБУМ АМ.ДОЛЛАРТ ХҮРЧЭЭ WWW.DNN.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/07/18     ЕВРОПЫН ХОЛБОО ЯПОН УЛСТАЙ ЧӨЛӨӨТ ХУДАЛДААНЫ ГЭРЭЭ БАЙГУУЛАВ WWW.MEDEE.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/07/18     АЖ ҮЙЛДВЭРЖИЛТИЙН ЭРЧ СУЛАРЧЭЭ WWW.ZGM.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/07/18     МӨНГӨНИЙ НИЙЛҮҮЛЭЛТ 3.8 ИХ НАЯД ТӨГРӨГӨӨР НЭМЭГДЖЭЭ WWW.MONTSAME.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/07/18     ОЛОН УЛСЫН ИННОВАЦИЙН ИНДЕКСЭЭР МОНГОЛ УЛС 53-Т ЖАГСЧЭЭ WWW.MONTSAME.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/07/17     ШАДАР САЙД НҮБ-ЫН ӨНДӨР ТҮВШНИЙ УУЛЗАЛТАД ОРОЛЦОЖ БАЙНА WWW.EAGLE.MN НИЙТЭЛСЭН:2018/07/17    

Events

Name organizer Where
"Open to Export" ICC WTO International business award ICC WTO London

NEWS

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Strengthening ruble boosts Russian imports www.rt.com

 
Russian imports surged 36.4 percent year on year in January, as the ruble strengthened significantly, becoming the world’s best-performing currency last year.
In the first month of the year, Russia imported $11.1 billion worth of products from non-CIS countries, by far the biggest amount since the escalation of the economic crisis in the country.
According to Russian customs data, imports of machinery grew by 45 percent to $5.27 billion, chemical products by 35.7 percent to $2.1 billion, and imports of clothing rose 27.8 per cent to $828.1 million.
“The strengthening of the ruble during the year increased the purchasing power of the population and entrepreneurs, who have accumulated a pent-up demand for high-quality imported products,” said Sergey Pukhov from the Russian Higher School of Economics (HSE), as quoted by Finanz.ru.
Year on year, the Russian ruble has gained over 24 percent against the US dollar, the biggest increase among all currencies.
Many Russian exporters, particularly agriculture producers, profit from a weaker ruble, and its strengthening hurts their business. At the same time, the HSE noted that 75 percent of Russian manufacturing depends on imports of machinery and technology, and a weak ruble significantly slashed production and exports. In the manufacture of transportation, electrical equipment, and construction materials there has been a 14-17.5 percent decline, while other industries including furniture saw a 25.7 percent fall.
On Tuesday, the Central Bank of Russia started buying dollars on the Moscow Exchange to replenish the country’s reserve fund, while oil prices are relatively stable at around $55 per barrel. The regulator will have bought about $1.9 billion by March 6.
 
Some analysts have noted this could force the ruble to drop from the current 59 against the dollar to about 63. Others said purchases by the central bank are just a fraction of the daily forex turnover on the Moscow Exchange, and it will not significantly affect the Russian currency.
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Japan's Sharp may break ground on $7 billion U.S. plant in first half: source www.reuters.com

 
Japanese display maker Sharp Corp may start building a $7 billion plant in the United States in the first half of 2017, taking the lead on a project initially outlined by its Taiwanese parent Foxconn, a person with knowledge of the plan said.
A decision by Foxconn to give Sharp the lead would come as Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe prepares to travel to the United States to meet U.S. President Donald Trump, who in his inauguration speech vowed to put "America first".
In a package Tokyo hopes will please Trump, Abe will unveil investments to create as many as 700,000 U.S. jobs, people familiar with the matter told Reuters earlier.
"The investment will be by a Japanese consortium that will also include manufacturing equipment makers," said the person, who was not authorized to speak with media and so declined to be identified.
A spokesman for Sharp said no decision on building a plant had been made. Foxconn, formally Hon Hai Precision Industry Co Ltd, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Terry Gou, the chief executive of Foxconn, the world's largest contract electronics maker, last month said he was considering investing around $7 billion to build a display-making plant in the United States, but did not elaborate on any time frame.
Gou said Foxconn, which operates plants in China that make most of Apple Inc's iPhones, had been considering the plan for years. He said the issue came up when business partner Masayoshi Son, head of Japan's SoftBank Group Corp, talked to Gou before a December meeting Son had with Trump.
Foxconn last year took control of Sharp when it bought two-thirds of the Japanese liquid crystal display pioneer.
Trump has raised concerns in Japan by criticizing the scarcity of U.S. cars in its auto market. He has also accused the Tokyo government of using monetary policy to devalue its currency and has also lumped Japan with China and Mexico as big contributors to the U.S. trade deficit.
Abe will visit Trump at his private Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida over the weekend, where the two leaders will play golf, following a meeting on Friday in Washington.
That would follow a meeting Abe had last week with the head of Toyota Motor Corp, as the government compiled a plan to ward off U.S. criticism of Japanese trade policy before the summit. Abe also said Japan may increase energy imports from the United States.
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Saudi Aramco Said to Pick Moelis to Advise on Biggest IPO www.bloomberg.com

 
Saudi Arabian Oil Co. hired Moelis & Co. to advise on its initial public offering, according to a person familiar with the matter, as it pushes ahead with plans to pursue the world’s biggest share sale.
The New York-based boutique investment bank had been shortlisted as a potential adviser for the deal, people familiar with the matter said last month. Aramco, as the company is known, was seeking an adviser to help it select underwriting banks for the sale, make decisions on potential listing venues and ensure the IPO goes smoothly, the people said at the time.
A representative for Moelis declined to comment. Aramco’s press office in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, didn’t immediately respond to an e-mail seeking comment outside business hours. The Financial Times previously reported that Moelis won an advisory role on Saudi Aramco’s IPO.
Saudi Arabia is aiming to sell less than 5 percent of the company as part of a plan by Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to set up the world’s biggest sovereign wealth fund and reduce the economy’s reliance on hydrocarbons. The sale’s estimated size of $100 billion would make it the largest ever, dwarfing the $25 billion raised by Chinese internet retailer Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. in 2014.
JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Michael Klein, the former Citigroup Inc. investment banker who runs his own advisory firm, have already been selected to advise on the IPO, people familiar with the matter said in April. Klein is providing strategic advice to the government, while JPMorgan is working on preparations for the IPO and may be among the banks that underwrite the listing, the people said.
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Policy Research Center introduce studies on foreign policy www.montsame.mn

Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ On February 8, research teams of the Center for Policy Research presented the results of first two of their studies at the School of International and Relations and Public Administration (SIRPA) of the National University of Mongolia.

The studies considered the decision-making mechanism of Mongolia’s foreign policy and the coordination between Mongolia’s geo-economic interests and the implementation of the Programme on Establishing Mongolia-China-Russia Economic Corridor. 
The Center was established last year under the SIRPA, with a general objective to help make the policies more research-based, far-sighted and effective through presenting policy studies and recommendations.

At today’s meeting, M.Batchimeg MP, Director of the Diplomatic Academy of Mongolia Kh.Bekhbat, members of the research teams, SIRPA professors and officials from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Finance and the National Development Department.

The study on “Improving the Decision making Mechanism of Foreign Policy of Mongolia” was led by the State Honored Lawyer J.Enkhsaikhan, former Permanent Representative of Mongolia to the United Nations. The research team has been working with the lawmakers since 2014 and has successfully submitted a recommendation, which the lawmakers accepted and proceeded with, to prepare and present a draft law on Foreign Relations.

“The bill was included in the list of agendas to be discussed by the Parliament’s Autumn Session. However, the parliament postponed the reading of the foreign relations bill until the next session. I believe the bill will be discussed thoroughly and passed at the spring session”, M.Batchimeg MP told MONTSAME. According to her, the law, if adopted, will fill the gap of regulations on accountability system for foreign policy administrators.

Afterwards, the research team leader Ambassador J.Gulguu gave a presentation on the findings of study on economic corridor. Establishing the Mongolia-China-Russia economic corridor will help Mongolia to become an active participant in the regional economic integration, as the corridor will also serve the interests of China to build the shortest cut to Russia and Europe and Russia’s interest to activate the Trans-Siberian railroad usage.

The Program on Establishing Mongolia-China-Russia Economic Corridor reflects 32 major projects, the complete studies on which will be conducted throughout 2016-2020.

 
 
 
 
 
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Indian IT sector alarm over US work visa threat www.ft.com

 
Indian executives are warning that a move by the US to limit visas for skilled workers would strike at the heart of the countries’ trade relations, sharply increasing costs for India’s $146bn IT services industry in a crucial market.
The industry is planning to send a delegation to the US this month to argue against the changes, which have prompted widespread alarm in India.
“Despite the importance that has been attributed to the Indian relationship, despite the warm words from Trump, there may be measures that are taken that are seriously damaging,” said R Chandrasekhar, president of India’s National Association of Software and Services Companies.
“If the US was to curb the number of people that are taken in on H-1B visas in the area, two things can happen: either those jobs remain unfilled in the US or the job goes out of the US.”
Last month legislation was introduced to the House of Representatives that would require companies to pay H-1B immigrants at least $130,000 — more than double their previous minimum salary — unless they can prove that they were unable to find a US worker to do the same job. This effective wage floor currently stands at $60,000 and would be increased in order “to protect American workers”.
Sean Spicer, President Donald Trump’s press secretary, has said the White House will also consider reforming H-1B visas through an executive order, such as the one used to ban travellers from seven majority-Muslim countries.
The move has prompted a public outcry in India — two-thirds of the H-1B visas issued by the US in the 2015 fiscal year were granted to Indians, according to US state department figures. The concern is that an increase would make it too costly for Indian contractors to recruit Indian workers for jobs in the US — and would sharply constrain an industry that has become an engine of skilled job growth in the country.
The IT sector in India is still heavily reliant on its traditional, labour-intensive sources of revenue despite efforts to shift to more cutting-edge areas such as data analytics. Although they can provide some services remotely, the companies rely on sending their best employees to work directly with clients in the US.
The industry last year generated 60 per cent — or $64.8bn — of its revenues in the US, where it employed 155,000 people in 2015, according to Nasscom. After Mr Trump was elected in November, the association cut its growth outlook for the industry this financial year from 10-12 per cent to 8-10 per cent, citing “domestic and global factors impacting its performance”.
Vineet Nayar, former chief executive of HCL Technologies, the fourth-largest Indian IT services company by revenue, said US companies would also be hit: “Facebook, Microsoft — everybody applies for H-1B.”
US-based companies such as IBM, Cognizant and Accenture are among the largest applicants for H-1B visas, according to My Visa Jobs, an immigration consultancy which compiles data on applications.
India’s ministry of external affairs was forced to complain to the Trump administration after news about the new bill caused a slump in IT stocks last month. Sector leader Tata Consultancy Services lost more than 7 per cent of its market value. “India’s interests and concerns have been conveyed both to the US administration and the US Congress at senior levels,” the ministry said.
Companies have begun to take pre-emptive steps, according to placement advisers on college campuses. “[Trump] will impact the employment opportunity for Indian students,” said Kanwal Kapil, chairperson of placements at the Management Development Institute in Gurgaon, which has seen IT hiring fall by 26 per cent compared with last year.
“We cannot rule out the fact that the scepticism has some [relation] to Mr Trump’s future policies,” said Saveeta Mohanty, placements adviser at the Xavier Institute of Management and Entrepreneurship, which expects a 40 per cent fall in IT hiring this season.
Welingkar Institute of Management Development & Research said hiring had fallen 30-40 per cent. All three institutions claimed there was less take-up from TCS and Infosys, which filed the most applications for H-1B visas last year, according to My Visa Jobs. The average salaries for applicants were significantly below the new proposed $130,000 mark — at $79,201 for Infosys and $69,648 for TCS.
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Mongolia takes part in Erasmus+ project www.en.montsame.mn

 
Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ The European Region Action Scheme for the Mobility of University Students (ERASMUS) announced a project themed ‘Promoting internationalization of research through establishment of Cycle 3 Quality Assurance System in line with the European Agenda’ last year, and 4 Mongolian institutions were chosen as participants, reports the Ministry of Education, Culture, Science and Sports.
The Mongolian participants of the project are the Ministry of Education, Culture, Science and Sports, Mongolian National Council for Education Accreditation, National University of Mongolia and Otgontenger University.
On February 3, a meeting was held among the project participants in Yerevan, capital city of Armenia, gathering representatives of the Education Ministries, accreditation institutions and universities of Mongolia, France, Spain, Poland, Kazakhstan, Armenia and Ukraine. During the meeting, the participants discussed future activities and expected outcome of the project.
The project aims for quality assurance system development, third cycle implementation and higher education internationalization in its participant countries by establishing Internal Quality Assurance (IQA) mechanisms and tools within higher education institutions assuring quality of Cycle 3 programs (leading to a PhD degree), and an External Quality Assurance (EQA) system to validate and promote quality of Cycle 3 programs.
The project will be implemented for three years, and the National University of Mongolia and Otgontenger University will upgrade their PhD programs.
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Billion-dollar Alberta coal company goes bankrupt www.mining.com

 
A coal company in west-central Alberta that in 2011 sold for $1-billion is bankrupt, killing hopes that its mine might re-open in the first quarter.
 
The Calgary Herald reported that Grande Cache Coal sent a letter to the town bearing the same name, warning that the company is heading into receivership, thus allowing it to restructure. The letter also said the metallurgical coal mine would re-open in July. According to the newspaper, Grande Cache Coal was forced into bankruptcy last week after the mining company's owner, Chinese coal producer Up Energy Development Group Ltd., defaulted on debt payments in 2016, having owed hundreds of millions of dollars.
 
About 220 employees lost their jobs in 2015 when the mine shut down, a victim of low met-coal prices. But it looked like the mine was going to enjoy a phoenix-like rise, when in November 2016 Grande Cache Coal and Up Energy said that surface-mine operations were expected to restart in Q1 2017. The restart – no doubt prompted by rocketing coal prices – would however depend on "shareholders' approval and the negotiation of key contracts," Grande Cache Coal said at the time. Steelmaking coal prices reached a multi-year high of $308.80 per tonne in November, but have since been in freefall. They settled at $167.80 on Friday, which is still better than 2016, when coking coal averaged $143 a tonne.
 
The bankruptcy is devastating for the small town town of 4,000 northwest of Edmonton, where Grande Cache Coal is the main employer; a year before it closed, the mine had a payroll of 500.
 
It's an unfortunate end to what looked like a bright future for Grande Cache Coal, which in 2011 was purchased for a whopping $1-billion by two Asian companies: Winsway, a Hong Kong-listed public company which imports coking coal for the Chinese steel industry, and Marubeni, a large Japanese trading house.The company was later purchased by Up Energy. At the time, met-coal prices had not yet been crushed by oversupply, waning demand and increasing regulatory burdens which threw the market into disarray. Most of the coal mined by Grande Cache was exported to Asia, where it was used for making steel.
 
According to the Herald a court-appointed receiver will put its Alberta mining assets up for sale, which include leases covering over 29,000 hectares, with an estimated 346 million tonnes of coal resources in the Smoky River Coalfield of west-central Alberta.
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Draft agenda for Parliament spring session approved www.montsame.mn

Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ During its meeting on February 7, Tuesday, Parliamentary Standing committee on State Structure discussed and decided to submit to Parliament a draft resolution on ‘Agenda for Parliament spring session of 2017’.

Parliament autumn session will close on February 10, Friday, and the Parliament must approve its agenda for the spring session.

As a result of a poll on the spring session agenda, 99 draft laws and legislations were collected, and 34 drafts have been selected. The selected draft legislations include important documents such as 2018 national budget framework paper, 2019-2020 budget assumption, Cabinet financial report of 2016, draft resolution on 2018 scheme for social and economic development of Mongolia, draft bill on amendment to the Constitution, draft resolution on medium term program for development of statistical sector in 2016-2020, draft bill on Mongolia’s foreign policy, draft bill on accountability of government higher officials either elected or appointed, revised bill on public service and others.

The Standing committee thus agreed to submit the list of 34 proposed draft bills and regulations to Parliament.  

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State Commission on new airport meets www.montsame.mn

Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ On February 7, Tuesday, State Commission to inspect the construction and equipment of new Ulaanbaatar International Airport (NUBIA) project held a meeting, and agreed that violations detected during the inspections are being corrected.

The 85-member commission led by B.Tsogtgerel, Deputy Minister of Road and Transport Development worked at the airport on January 2-17. The State Commission was divided into 11 sub-working groups assigned on different fields such as air navigation service, aerodrome, road facility, customs inspection, architecture, energy supply, communications, fuel supply and others.

Totally, 31 buildings, facilities and equipment at the airport were under inspection, and minor violations were detected.

Main contractor, prime sub-contractor, project unit and sub-contractors were instructed to correct the violations. An administrative division of the pre-operational NUBIA is currently in charge of monitoring the correction.

The State Commission resolved during its meeting that about 60 percent of the total violations have been corrected. However, after all the violations are corrected, the Commission will organize a re-inspection within the first season of this year.

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Chinese investment targets trade routes www.chinadaily.com

Belt and Road areas will be 'hot places' this year, analyst says
China's overseas acquisitions may press on this year, with new impetus from the Belt and Road Initiative and international expansion of major Chinese companies, analysts said.

"As China has tightened its foreign exchange controls to tackle illegal and reckless activities in overseas markets, the development in countries and regions along the Belt and Road Initiative will become hot places for Chinese investment this year," said Zhang Jianping, director of the Commerce Ministry's research center for regional economic cooperation.

A number of big-ticket infrastructure projects have been launched on the two trading routes, including Sri Lanka's Colombo International Financial City project, the 40 billion yuan ($5.8 billion) China-Laos railway construction project that kicked off in December and the China-Thailand railroad project to be carried out later this year.

Zhang's comments follow a Financial Times report that said $75 billion in overseas mergers and acquisitions involving Chinese enterprises were called off last year. The United States led, with $59 billion in deals scrapped.

Although China's overseas investment hit a record high last year, the total number of mergers and acquisitions that fell through also surged. More than 30 in the US and Europe were halted as a result of regulatory clampdowns. The total value of the canceled deals increased by more than sevenfold from 2015, the report said.

The ministry's Department of Outward Investment and Economic Cooperation said on Tuesday that the $75 billion cited by the Financial Times was much too high and added that it will clarify the situation this week.

Wang Zhile, a senior researcher at the Beijing-based Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation, said many Chinese companies will have advantages in conducting finance and investment activities in global markets this year. The country's overseas direct investment volume will remain stable and diversify this year, Wang said.

"Chinese conglomerates such as Shanghai-based Fosun Group, Dalian Wanda Group and Haikou-based HNA Group have already built financing platforms including an insurance company in the United States and listed companies in Hong Kong's stock exchange via merger and acquisition," said Wang.

Chinese outbound mergers and acquisitions rose globally by 114 percent to $208.6 billion last year compared with 2015. Chinese investment surged by 201 percent in Europe and 412 percent in North America, according to the annual M&A Trends report by the London-based law firm Clifford Chance.

Elaine Lo, head of China practice at Mayer Brown JSM, a global law firm, said the US has already showed its concern about China's rapidly growing investment momentum in overseas markets, especially in the high-end technology and military-related sectors.

"The Trump administration may be even more conservative on China's ODI activities. It won't be changed within a short period," said Lo. "It will also lead to trade protectionism measures. The United Kingdom and Germany may also follow the step of the US government."

Peter Batey, chairman of Vermilion Partners, a global investment bank, said, "As the volume of Chinese outbound acquisitions rises to record heights, it is inevitable that some foreign governments will eventually begin to feel obliged to likewise raise their own levels of scrutiny of such deals."

Ren Xiaojin contributed to this story.

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