|"Open to Export" ICC WTO International business award||ICC WTO||London|
Kh.Battulga, President of Mongolia has sent an official letter to US President Donald Trump asking support in two things.
Exempting Mongolian sewn and knitted products from taxes and quotas.
To cooperate returning offshore money to Mongolia
Furthermore, Z.Enkhbold, Chief of Staff of Mongolian President has held a meeting with some Congressmen and has discussed exempting Mongolian products from taxes and quotas.
Eleven Asia-Pacific countries have just signed the trade pact formerly known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
Although the US pulled out last year, the deal was salvaged by the remaining members, who signed it at a ceremony in the Chilean city of Santiago.
Chilean foreign minister Heraldo Munoz said the agreement was a strong signal "against protectionist pressures, in favour of a world open to trade".
The deal covers a market of nearly 500 million people, despite the US pullout.
In the absence of the US, it has been renamed the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).
Extraneous adjectives aside, its supporters say it's hugely significant, and could be a model for future trade deals.
What does it do?
Its main purpose is to slash trade tariffs between member countries.
But it also seeks to reduce so-called non-tariff measures, which create obstacles to trade through regulations.
There are chapters which aim to harmonise these regulations, or at least make them transparent and fair.
There are also commitments to enforce minimum labour and environmental standards.
It also includes a controversial Investor-State Dispute Settlement mechanism, which allows companies to sue governments when they believe a change in law has affected their profits.
Who's in it?
In alphabetical order: Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.
The US is conspicuously absent.
President Donald Trump fulfilled an election promise by pulling out in January last year, labelling the deal a disaster for American workers.
In short, the biggest winners are expected to be in Asia, while the wealthier countries, on balance, are not expected to receive as much of a boost.
The Peterson Institute for International Economics says Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei and Vietnam will each receive a bump of more than 2% to their economy by 2030.
New Zealand, Japan, Canada, Mexico, Chile and Australia will all grow by an additional 1% or less.
The same study says the US could be a big loser, foregoing a boost to its Gross Domestic Product of 0.5% (worth $131bn).
What's more, it could lose an additional $2bn because firms in member countries have an incentive to trade with each other instead of with American companies.
Donald Trump isn't the only one who has failed to be convinced of its value, though.
Unions (particularly in wealthier member countries such as Australia and Canada) say the deal could be a job killer or push down wages.
Some economists have also suggested that free trade agreements are rigged by special interests, which makes their economic value far more dubious.
Is there any point without the US?
Yes, but there's no question the deal is diminished without the involvement of the world's largest economy.
The remaining nations' economies account for more than 13% of the global economy - a total of $10 trillion dollars.
Australia's Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, says the deal has been set up to allow it to admit new members, possibly including the US.
However, the revised agreement dropped about 20 of the original provisions (mostly those insisted on by the US), suggesting a US re-entry would require some intense negotiation.
And although Donald Trump is on record saying he'd be open to a substantially better deal, his broader hostility toward trade pacts would suggest it's a remote possibility.
Could the UK join?
Sure, why not? There's nothing banning it, even if most of the members are on the other side of the world.
Australia, at least, has indicated that it's open to the idea, and the UK's International Trade Secretary, Liam Fox, has signalled some interest in joining after the UK completes its departure from the EU.
But it's unlikely that membership would provide an immediate replacement for its EU trading partners after Brexit.
That's because the region isn't a major destination for UK exports.
TPP: Could UK really join Pacific trade group?
Brexit: UK could join Pacific free trade zone, says Liam Fox
And while growing new markets would arguably be the whole point, it's unlikely to happen overnight.
The signatories accounted for less than 8% of UK exports last year, according to research by the Observatory of Economic Complexity at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology....
ULAN BATOR, March 8 (Xinhua) -- The citizens of the capital of Mongolia are allowed to own land in rural areas for free, the Department of Land Privatization Management of the Ulaanbaatar Property Relations Agency said in a statement on Thursday.
The citizens of Ulan Bator will be able to privatize up to 5,000-square meter land in rural areas free of charge.
Since 2013, a total of 191,276 residents of the Mongolian capital privatized 100.872 square km of land for family needs. Therefore, it is now impossible to privatize land in Ulan Bator.
The total land area of Mongolia is 1,564,116 square km. But more than half of its three million population live in the capital.
According to law on land allocation, the size of land parcels allocated for ownership for family needs vary depending on location.
In Ulan Bator and along the national level main roads connecting provinces with Ulan Bator, individuals are entitled to up to 0.07 hectares or 700 square meters, while in the province centers up to 0.35 hectares or 3500 square meters, and in administrative subdivisions centers and villages up to 0.5 hectares or 5,000 square meters, respectively.
Foreign citizens and companies can only use land under definite conditions and terms. They are not permitted to own land.
Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has issued a statement, appreciating the high-level dialogue between the Republic of Korea (ROK) and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK).
“Mongolia appreciates the agreement to hold a high-level meeting between the ROK and the DPRK, reached during a meeting between Kim Jong-un, Chairman of the Workers’ Party of Korea and the State Affairs Commission of the DPRK and members of the ROK delegation including a special envoy of President Moon Jae-in on March 5. Mongolia is confident that the high-level meeting will give stimulus to the strengthening of trust in the Korean Peninsula, and furthermore ensuring peace and security in the Northeast Asian region,” the statement says.
Several potential IPOs were disclosed during the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) 2018 convention. Mongolian Metals Corporation and Steppe Gold have expressed their interests in launching IPOs at the mining-focused Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX). Steppe Gold has started a talk for an IPO in the early 2017. The company intensified its exploration projects in Mongolia last year. For instance, they purchased gold exploration permit in Altan Tsagaan Ovoo with USD 9.8 million from Centerra Gold and conducted 4 thousand meter drilling in the area, as well as purchasing Uudam Khundii exploration project in Bayankhongor aimag.
The company announced that it finished the first stage exploration and discovered four new gold occurrences in Bayankhongor. Simultaneously with these projects, the company attracted CAD 45 million (USD 35 million) and commenced the IPO issuance at TSX.
As for Mongolian Metals Corporation, the company purchased a total of 13 exploration licenses in the last 12 years, of which two licenses remaining in effect. It has been actively exploring a 75 thousand hectare in Bayankhongor aimag for the last 8-9 years. Last year, the company announced that it discovered large gold, copper and silver deposit. Presently, the company is raising USD 1 million for its preparation works and exploration projects, and expects to raise USD 3-5 million from the IPO at TSX.
In addition, Xanadu Mines is seeking a dual-listing at TSX. The main deposit of Xanadu is the Kharmagtai project in Umnugobi aimag, which was launched in 2015. Xanadu have cash reserves of AUD 9.1 million (USD 7 million) necessary for the continuation of this project, of which AUD 3.4 million (USD 2.6 million) is allocated for the first quarter of this year.
Mongolian Stock Exchange (MSE) has recently finalized the regulation for dual-listing. In relations to the decision, some sources reported that TSX-listed Erdene Resource Development (ERD) may be seeking an IPO at MSE; however, no official announcement has been made yet.
ERD is actively conducting exploration in Bayan Khunduu, Altan Arrow and Altan Nar deposits and announced that the exploration had high results.
“We will put an end to the scenario where entities' bank accounts close due to unpaid taxes, which puts their businesses to a standstill and force them to go bankrupt, further increasing unemployment,” resolutely noted Khurelsukh Ukhnaa, Prime Minister of Mongolia, in a discussion on the tax revision held at Mongolian Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Monday, March 5.
For 30 days starting from February 23, Ministry of Finance is conducting a public discussion on revising 24 tax-related laws, including General Taxation Law of Mongolia, Laws on Corporate Tax, Personal Income Tax and Value Added Tax, in order to hear voices of taxpayers and collect best proposals from the relevant parties. No fundamental changes and revisions were made to tax laws in the last decade.
“Due to economic difficulties and unfavourable business environment in recent years, thousands of companies have closed their businesses. As of third quarter of 2017, about 50 percent of entities had inactive operations, while 20 percent of them reported a loss. This shows that our entrepreneurs and taxpayers are still facing financial difficulties.
Since 2006, Mongolia’s economy grew six-fold. In last December, Mongolia was included on the first ever tax haven blacklist of European Union and immediately got delisted after giving promises to enable its tax environment to meet the EU standards.
In addition, 57.5 percent of all companies that took part in Mongolian Business Environment Survey evaluated the tax environment as “unfavourable” and 28 percent of the surveyors answered that the tax pressure reduction and clear tax policies are the foremost priority.
The draft revision is also simplifying the submission of financial statements of private entities. For instance, entities with less than MNT 50 million annual sales income will be required to submit only annual financial reports, and pay one percent of total revenue to tax, reducing frequency of financial report submission by four times and cutting tax 10 times.
In addition, entities with over MNT 3 billion revenue shall quarterly submit financial statements a year and entities with up to MNT 3 billion income shall submit halfyear reports.
The current Law on Corporate Tax requires all entities to prepare quarterly statements regardless of its scale, deduct 10 percent tax from their sales, and entities with over MNT 2.5 billion revenue to pay 25 percent tax. Furthermore, the draft revisions also dictate to cut 20 percent dividend distribution tax of foreign investors to 5 percent.
According to the information given by Khurelbaatar Chimed, Minister of Finance, no-risk bearing companies will not be a subject to financial inspections. Risk assessment will be done based on financial statements of companies and the inspection will be conducted afterwards. As he highlighted, another major change proposed by the laws is the protection of taxpayers’ interest. “If a taxpayer suffers as a result of errors made by a tax inspector, the inspector will be responsible for his action by not serving for 10 years in the public service,” noted Mr Khurelbaatar.
The Ministry of Finance considers that the revisions to tax laws will bring more favourable and healthy tax environment in the country.
In the beginning of this year, the International Monetary Fund’s staff team worked together for two weeks on formulating the draft of the Revision to the General Taxation Law. The Ministry of Finance believes that the bills will be presented to the Parliament by April and take effect starting from January 2019.
Prime Minister Khurelsukh Ukhnaa is planning an official visit to People’s Republic of China (PRC) between April 10 and 13. Mongolia’s key gateway of raw materials export, Gashuunsukhait- Gantsmod border checkpoint, has been operating on half-capacity since last July, drastically reducing coal sales of Mongolia. As for June 2017, the coal export reached 3.9 million tons, which went down to 2.2 million tons in July due to implicit sanction.
In October 2017, Prime Minister Khurelsukh has received Ambassador of PRC to Mongolia Xing Haiming and requested to focus on settling the implicit economic sanction. Thus, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Mongolia Tsogtbaatar Damdin paid a visit to PRC in early-December, which helped reduce inspection to coal and increase exports amount. As a result, the coal export has reached 3.2 million tons in November and December respectively. During the visit, the Foreign Minister signified the importance of frequent high-level visits and agreed on organizing the PM’s visit to PRC.
Mongolia-China business forum on trade and economic cooperation to take place
Whether to reconcile the unsettling relations between the two countries and expand comprehensive strategic partnership will be decided during this visit. In addition, President of PRC Xi Jinping has agreed to provide USD 1 billion soft loan during his visit to Mongolia in 2014. If Mongolia finalizes the investment plans, USD 1 billion worth investment will be released. Furthermore, within the frame of PM’s visit, Mongolian National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MNCCI) will co-organize Mongolia- PRC business forum on trade and economic cooperation with China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission. Representatives of private entities willing to participate in the forum can register at MNCCI until March 10.
On the side note, Minister of Road and Transport Development Bat-Erdene Jadamba paid a visit to PRC in February, and negotiated on settling the finances of Tavan tolgoi-Gashuunsukhait railroad development within the frames of increasing mining exports and supporting economic development of Mongolia. Sides also agreed on establishing new airway in the second half of 2018. As for actions on reducing loads at Zamiin-Uud- Erlian border crossing, sides touched upon the issues of implementing Zuunbayan-Khangi route railroad project and establishing Khangi-Mandal border crossing.
PM’s first visit to the PRC may settle the above-mentioned issues and the PM will sign the Agreement on Transport of Freight to Pacific Ports in the PRC through the Zamiin-Uud-Erlian port.
Mongolia’s air pollution level is 6-10 times higher than those considered safe by the World Health Organization (WHO) air quality guidelines. According to WHO, the data from 2011 to 2015 shows that annual mean concentrations of PM has been decreasing, however, annual mean concentrations are around 2-3 folds higher than the national guideline values. Other pollutants such as SO2 have progressively augmented in the last twenty years and NO2 values have remained high.
Last decade, a couple of surveys on ambient and household air pollution and its impact were locally conducted and findings of these surveys have been used for evidence-informed decision making. A joint research team of Mongolia and Canada estimated in 2011 that 29 percent of cardiopulmonary deaths and 40 percent of lung cancer deaths in Ulaanbaatar city are attributable to ambient air pollution.
The 2017 National Program on Reduction of Air and Environmental Pollution provides a roadmap to decrease air pollutants by 80 percent, prohibit the use of unprocessed coal anywhere except for thermal power plants in Ulaanbaatar, and reduce air and environmental pollution by at least 50 percent by 2025. WHO reviewed that it is crucial to conduct systematic assessment of the sources of air pollution, and identify the most effective interventions to eliminate or control them.
Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ On March 7, in its regular meeting the Cabinet decided to delist Project on 204.6 km Road Renovation in route Ulaanbaatar and Darkhan from the List of State Property Concession and overrule the concession selection.
According to general financing agreement between Government of Mongolia and Asian Development Bank, renovation works of 204 km road in route Ulaanbaatar and Darkhan and 113 km road in route Darkhan-Altanbulag will be made within the framework of projects and programs to be implemented with allocated loan capital in 2017-2018. Therefore the concession selection has been overruled. Ulaanbaatar-Darkhan road will be first class road with cement concrete paving and having 4 lanes.