|“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|
President of Mongolia Khaltmaa Battulga met President of the Russian Federation Vladimir V.Putin and discussed the cooperation between the two countries.
At the beginning of the meeting President Battulga mentioned his previous proposal on renewing the 1993 Agreement on Friendly Relations and Cooperation between Mongolia and Russia and establishing it without a defined term, and talked about spending the RUB 100 billion soft loan from Russia on the reform of the Ulaanbaatar Railway Joint Venture and in energy sector and deepening the cooperation between the National Security Councils of the two countries and adopting a revised cooperation plan.
Furthermore, President Battulga made a proposal to cooperate on the establishment of the Northeast Asian super grid for energy and handed over an economic feasibility study related to the proposal and the projects to President Vladimir V.Putin.
President Vladimir Putin emphasized his satisfaction with the positive indicators in all areas of bilateral cooperation and economic growth in recent years and expressed interest to further intensify bilateral cooperation in agriculture, railway and defense sectors. President Vladimir V.Putin reiterated his support for the proposal of President Battulga on building the natural gas pipes between Russia and China via Mongolia. President Vladimir V.Putin said that the RUB 100 billion soft loan to Mongolia, which is currently under negotiations, can be used on the reform of the Ulaanbaatar Railway Joint Venture and a thermal power plant.
The sides agreed to jointly celebrate the 80th anniversary of the Khalkha River Battle next year and organize a joint exhibition, produce a feature film and a documentary, and publish a book in the margins of the anniversary. Moreover, President Battulga invited President Vladimir V.Putin to pay a visit to Mongolia to celebrate the anniversary together.
President of Mongolia Khaltmaa Battulga met President of the People’s Republic of China Xi Jinping on Wednesday on the sidelines of the 4th Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok, Russia.
At the beginning of the meeting President Battulga requested President Xi Jinping to support certain matters, including the establishment of the Northeast Asian super grid for energy, construction of gas pipes between China and Russia through the Mongolian territory, cooperation on ranking the projects within the Mongolia-Russia-China Economic Corridor program, and value-added export of agricultural products. Also, President Battulga made certain proposals including on establishing a joint working group to build a highway connecting Zamyn-Uud with Altanbulag.
President Xi Jinping expressed his readiness to cooperate in many areas, including complex reform of the comprehensive strategic partnership relations between the two countries, increase of bilateral trade turnover to USD 10 billion by 2020, railway construction, development of process manufacturing, and regional peace and security. President Xi Jinping supported the joint implementation of President Battulga’s proposals.
The heads of state of Mongolia and China exchanged views on celebration of the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries, which will fall next year, and mutually and economically beneficial development of cross-border cooperation.
Gazprom will soon complete its part of the Power of Siberia gas pipeline to China, the Russian company announced on the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok. The pipeline will be one of the world’s largest.
“We have to weld 40 kilometers,” Gazprom Deputy Chairman of the Management Committee Vitaly Markelov.
Last week, on September 5, Gazprom reported that 2,000 kilometers of pipes were welded and laid from Yakutia, Russia to the Russian-Chinese border, which is 93 percent of its length.
Gazprom and the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) signed an agreement for gas to be supplied via the eastern route (the Power of Siberia gas pipeline) in 2014.
The 30-year agreement provides for Russian gas deliveries to China at 38 billion cubic meters per year. Gas supplies will start in December 2019.
The construction was hardly easy for Gazprom, since the pipeline route passes through swampy, mountainous areas, with the extreme environmental conditions of Siberia. By building it, Gazprom intends not only to supply gas to China, but also contribute to the social and economic development of Russia’s Far East and gasification of the Russian regions.
Pipeline natural gas is not the only fuel that will go from Russia to China. Russian gas producer Novatek, in cooperation with the CNPC, is working on the implementation of Russian-led energy project Yamal LNG. China has purchased the first two batches of liquefied natural gas from Yamal.
Russian and Chinese businesses have agreed to develop trade and economic cooperation as well as increased mutual investments at the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok.
According to a statement from the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), the sides are considering 73 investment projects cumulatively worth more than $100 billion.
The group overseeing the potential billions in investment is the Russian-Chinese Business Advisory Committee, which includes more than 150 representatives from “leading Russian and Chinese companies.”
RDIF said that seven projects worth a total of $4.6 billion have already been implemented as a result of work of the China-Russia group.
“While strong economic growth in both countries will certainly produce many domestic opportunities for profitable investments, we believe particularly promising transactions will be found in bilateral deals that capitalize on the Russia-China relationship,” the CEO of RDIF, Kirill Dmitriev, said.
The Russia-China Investment Fund (RCIF), China Investment Corporation, and Tus-Holdings (one of China’s leading innovation companies) also announced on Tuesday the launch of the Russia-China Venture Fund (RCVF).
The RCIF was established in 2012 by China’s state-owned China Investment Corporation and RDIF to focus on projects that foster economic cooperation between Moscow and Beijing.
“The fund has already studied more than 100 potential projects, of which it is currently considering five in detail – in such areas as new materials, information protection technologies, virtual reality, the development of new generation industrial equipment, innovative oilfield services,” said RDIF, adding that the fund plans to announce the first deal by the end of the year. The sides are also considering setting up a Sino-Russian tech innovation park with more than $100 million in investment.
Mongolian President Kh.Battulga is expected to visit Tehran later this year to attend the Asia Cooperation Dialogue Forum. The event will provide a good ground for the expansion of bilateral trade between Iran and Mongolia said, Mojtaba Khosrotaj, Head of Iran’s Trade Promotion Organization (TPO).
The issue was discussed during the visit of Mongolia’s Deputy Foreign Minister B. Battsetseg to Tehran on 4-7 September. She held talks with Iranian officials, including Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and discussed expanding bilateral ties between Iran and Mongolia in various fields.
The Iranian side said logistics and transportation were two main factors hindering expansion of trade relations between the two countries, stressing the need for finding ways to boost trade transactions. Mr Javad Zarif also stressed that visa waiver, reducing customs duties and establishing banking relations would act as incentives for Iranian businesses to have a more active presence in Mongolia’s market.
Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ World Blind Union-Asia Pacific Mid-Term Regional General Assembly kicked off on September 10 in Ulaanbaatar city. The General Assembly gathered more than 100 guests from 18 countries of Asia Pacific region and over 80 Mongolian representatives.
Participants of the assembly are discussing issues, including how Mongolia pays attention on its peoples with disabilities, what are the special services dedicated to the blind people and their pressing issues as well as introduction of good experiences of other countries into the life of visually impaired people of Mongolia.
Minister of Labor and Social Welfare S.Chinzorig said that the Ministry is working for grant welfare allowance which corresponds with living standard by a way of amending the Law on Social Welfare. Moreover, conditions will be provided to involve visually impaired people in loans and assistance granted by SME Development Fund and Employment Promotion Fund. In particular, certain amount of the loans being issued from the funds will be allocated for programs on supporting employment of visually impaired people. However, loan process of the funds is commonly run through the Internet, which makes visually impaired people impossible to participate in the tender. Considering the problem, the Ministry is working to create conditions for these people."
There are about 16 thousand visually impaired people in Mongolia, of whom just 4.6 percent are employed. On this matter, President of the Mongolian National Federation of the Blind D.Gerel said, "Some 320 people studied at vocational training center for the blind, of whom some 70 percent are working as massage therapists. Most of the visually impaired people work in the factory of the blind and as massage therapists." "Two completely blind people were involved in the computer training at the vocational training center. Now, they are successfully working at Call Center of the Social Insurance Department, providing citizens with information and advice," she added.
During the assembly, a handicraft exhibition of the visually impaired people was displayed alongside the presentation of technologies that simplify manual handling.
The general assembly will conclude tomorrow, September 12.
IFC Helps Mongolia Government Facilitate Trade by Enhancing Risk Management of Border Agencies www.webwire.com
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, along with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the General Agency for Specialized Inspection, and the Customs General Administration of Mongolia, hosted an international conference in Ulaanbaatar today (Sep 11). The aim is to help Mongolia develop more efficient border inspection practices.
This will, subsequently, accelerate collaboration of border agencies to implement the country’s commitments under the World Trade Organization’s Trade Facilitation Agreement reducing cost for trade — especially for emerging agriproducts exports.
At the conference — ‘Trade Facilitation: Roles of Customs and Inspection Agencies’ — Mongolian and international experts shared their learning and experience with regards to implementation of the WTO TFA in countries such as Mongolia, China, the Philippines, Korea, and the United Kingdom. More than 180 officials from the central and border units of GASI and Customs discussed how agencies could enhance practices to help Mongolia become more competitive in trade.
“Mongolian Customs, a member of the World Customs Organization, has set objectives to secure international trade, improve trader compliance, and to facilitate legitimate trade in its near-term strategy,” said Bat-Erdene Yo, Deputy Director General of the Customs General Administration of Mongolia. “We are implementing customs control risk management by collaborating with customs stakeholders as well as international partners. The Authorized Economic Operator program, too, has been introduced. The international conference was timely and enhanced the knowledge and experience of our customs officials.”
“GASI’s collaboration with international partners such as IFC has resulted in notable achievements to reduce trade barriers and ensure trade security in recent years. These include reducing the number of days required for import and export certificate issuance by three to five days, using inspection check lists at border crossing points, and slashing inspection by 26 per cent,” said D. Enkhsaikhan, Deputy Chairman of GASI. “Going forward, GASI aims to play a significant role in the trade facilitation agenda by enhancing infrastructure of border posts, quarantine facilities, warehouses, and IT systems.”
The World Bank Group is taking a holistic approach to support Mongolia’s export diversification. The World Bank is assisting exporters by providing export insurance and capacity-building grants through its Export Development Program. In March, IFC launched the Mongolia Trade Facilitation and Agricultural Exports Competitiveness Project to help streamline trade and customs regulations, simplify border inspection practices, and enhance private sector capacity to meet export requirements in the next five years. The conference marks an important milestone of the project.
“Developing countries — especially those that are landlocked — face considerable challenges when it comes to tackling trade facilitation issues. Recognizing this, the World Bank Group invests heavily in trade facilitation programs,” said Dahlia Khalifa, Senior Manager, WBG Investment Climate Advisory Services. “We are committed to promoting Mongolia’s trade and exports by providing hands-on advice and technical assistance in areas of risk management, Authorized Operators scheme, access to information, and capacity building.”
This project is co-funded by the Trade Facilitation Support Program, a multidonor program hosted by the WBG that helps developing countries align border processes and procedures with the WTO TFA.
IFC—a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. We work with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in the toughest areas of the world. In fiscal year 2018, we delivered more than $23 billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.
The Government of Mongolia intends to open a trade mission in Primorsky Krai. This was announced during the meeting of the head of the region Andrei Tarasenko with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Mongolia Damdin Tsogtbaatar on the margins of the fourth Eastern Economic Forum.
According to the press service of the Governor of Primorye, Mongolia expects to cooperate with the Far East in the field of trade and investment. During the recent visit of the Vice-Premier of the Government - Plenipotentiary Representative of the President of Russia in the Far Eastern Federal District Yuri Trutnev to Mongolia, the parties agreed to increase the trade turnover between the territories almost in 10 times. Today there is already an agreement between the leaders of the two countries, Vladimir Putin and Haltmagiin Battulga, about work in this direction.
The foreign partner stressed that Mongolia is interested in supplying its products to the countries of the Asia-Pacific region through South-Eastern ports - South Korea and Japan. Andrei Tarasenko noted that the region is ready to interact with Mongolia not only in the delivery of goods, but also to cooperate in the creation of various productions. For example, learn from the Mongols skin treatment.
Following the meeting, the parties agreed to continue work on developing a strategic partnership.
VLADIVOSTOK, Russia (Kyodo) -- Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Mongolian President Khaltmaa Battulga agreed Tuesday to closely cooperate in settling the issue of North Korea's past abductions of Japanese nationals, with Ulan Bator maintaining diplomatic ties with Pyongyang.
"We would like to realize peace and stability in the region by responding to various challenges, including the North Korea issue, hand in hand (with Mongolia)," Abe said at the outset of their meeting on the sidelines of a regional economic forum in Vladivostok in the Russian Far East.
Tokyo expects Ulan Bator to play a role as a mediator in resolving the abductions by North Korean agents in the 1970s and 1980s.
In June, shortly after a historic U.S.-North Korea summit in Singapore, Japanese and North Korean officials made informal contact at a security forum in Ulan Bator.
Abe and Battulga confirmed the significance of implementing U.N. Security Council resolutions to press North Korea to dismantle its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs, Japanese Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Kotaro Nogami told reporters.
The two leaders also agreed on the need to provide support for nuclear negotiations between the United States and North Korea, Nogami added.
Battulga explained recent relations between Mongolia and North Korea to Abe, according to Nogami, who declined to elaborate.
Abe also said Japan will continue its economic assistance to Mongolia, including support for infrastructure development, the spokesman said. Mongolia will soon open a new airport in Ulan Bator, which was built with Japanese official development assistance.
Abe and Battulga, who assumed office in July last year, also met in Vladivostok last year.
Dolgorsurengiin Dagvadorj, a Mongolian former sumo grand champion known as Asashoryu, was also present at the meeting in the Russian port city. He has been appointed by the president as a special envoy to promote cooperative ties with Japan.
ULAANBAATAR — When Sodnomsengee Ulziitogtork, 42, returned home to Mongolia after spending several years working as a construction laborer in South Korea, the first thing that caught his attention was the lack of parks and public spaces in his home country.
“In Korea, there are many parks and children play in safe, clean, beautiful areas,” Ulziitogtork, who is locally known by the nickname “Ulzii,” said. “I came back to Ulaanbaatar and saw that children didn’t have parks. Instead, they were playing around rubbish. It broke my heart.”
Ulziitogtork is compassionately considered an eccentric in his community — a man of big and bold ideas that some might find unconceivable. He resides in the northern outskirts of Ulaanbaatar, surrounded by the informal yurt dwellings known as gers. The Mongolian capital’s ger districts are often homes to some of the most impoverished communities in the city, if not the country.
Sodnomsengee Ulziitogtork, 42, spent several years working as a construction laborer in South Korea,. When he returned to Mongolia, he noted the lack of parks for children. Photo by Didem Tali.
Climate change in Mongolia has manifested as harsher winters, causing a natural disaster known as dzud, in which a large number of animals starve or freeze to death. In 2018 alone, dzud killed 700,000 livestock animals, making it impossible for thousands of traditional nomadic families to survive in the countryside.
Due to dzuds, a rising number of formerly nomadic families have moved to the outskirts of Ulaanbaatar to live in gers, as they cannot afford modern apartments. There are currently over 800,000 people living in the ger districts in Ulaanbaatar, a city of 1.3 million, which is also the world’s coldest capital. Temperatures can drop to as low as minus 40 degrees Celsius in winter. These urban poor communities often lack access to many basic services and breathe some of the world’s most polluted air as they burn cheap coal to deal with the harsh winter conditions.
According to Enkhnasan Nasan-Ulzii, chief of social policy at UNICEF Mongolia, infrastructural challenges and pollution in ger districts cast a dark shadow over the childhood experience for the urban poor families in Ulaanbaatar.
“Child poverty is significantly overrepresented in ger communities,” Nasan-Ulzii said, explaining that by UNICEF’s estimates approximately 140,000 children live in poverty. “Ger districts aren’t great places to be a child and they are disconnected from the central systems. There are no facilities or infrastructure for a healthy childhood.”
Rachel Machefsky, an early childhood development specialist at Bernard Van Leer Foundation, says pollution is a “silent killer” for children. The physical trauma of exposure to pollution can severely hinder their development and brain health.
“Children are much more vulnerable to all types of pollution,” she said. “Playing in polluted places can expose children to potentially lethal bacteria and illnesses.”
“They also breathe faster and have smaller, shorter bodies, which means they take in much more of the polluted air than adults,” Machefsky added. She said that lack of clean and safe play areas during childhood can continue to follow children for decades in the form of poorer economic prospects due to missed school days and developmental delays, chronic diseases, and even lower IQs.
Living among thousands of poor children, one day in 2011, as Ulziitogtork was walking in his neighborhood, he came across a particularly upsetting sight.
There was a former granite mine in his neighborhood, which according to Ulziitogtork the Mongolian government used to build modern Ulaanbaatar in the 1940s, exploiting the labor of Japanese war prisoners.
The Mongolian capital acquired formidable granite squares, statues, and buildings thanks to the stones extracted from mines in northern Ulaanbaatar. After a peace agreement between countries, Japanese war prisoners who survived the difficult conditions in Mongolia were sent back home in the late 1940s. With time, mining activity gradually stopped and all that was left of a mine that helped to build modern Ulaanbaatar was an empty ditch.
However, as the ger district became more crowded with people migrating to the city’s outskirts from the countryside every year, many households didn’t have access to waste management networks. The ditch gradually filled with rubbish.
“It wasn’t an officially designated landfill,” Ulziitogtork said. “But people didn’t have anywhere else to dispose their waste. So [the former granite mine] was full of rubbish and children were playing there.”
When Ulziitogtork saw children in the mine-turned-landfill, he had an epiphany: During his years as a construction laborer in South Korea, he had saved some money and acquired exactly the right skills to help his community. After he came back home, he built an apartment building, which gave him some rental income. This meant that Ulziitogtork wasn’t in a bad place financially for a ger district-dweller and he realized he could help his neighborhood’s children.
He decided to clean the unofficial landfill, and then turn it into a beautiful park — like the ones he had seen in South Korea. He would use his own savings to do this and consider it a gift to the children of his community.
Feeling energized by this plan, Ulziitogtork immediately got to work. He first cleared out 300 bags of trash, each of which, he estimates, weighed around 60 to 70 kilograms (132 to 154 pounds). Once all the rubbish was cleared out, he found a nice surprise from nature: Rainwater had collected in the bottom of the ditch that was dug by the miners. This meant there was a small artificial lake which had remained hidden for decades under the rubbish.
It took Ulziitogtork two years to clear the landfill and construct a children’s park surrounding the small lake. Nowadays, the small lake that he discovered harbors small boats in summers and functions as an ice skating rink in winters. It’s still a work-in-progress: He keeps tweaking the park with new ideas and plans.
The park also acts as a community and learning center for children. There, they can participate in ice skating activities, watch open-air cinema over the small lake in summers, and learn about Mongolian culture.
After Ulziitogtork’s efforts, the local government not only gifted him the permanent rights to use the former granite mine, but they also honored him with an award for his services to the community.
Ulziitogtork has had a lifelong passion for cinema, arts, and culture, despite no formal training and having been a blue collar worker most of his life. He also dabbles in filmmaking and hopes to screen more films and host filmmaking workshops in the future. The park currently serves 6,000 children in the area. The children keep coming back for various activities, as Ulziitogtork keeps working on transforming his park into a better community and cultural center every year.
Nasan-Ulzii of UNICEF says community centers for children are key elements in ger districts to improve children’s lives and healths. However, she warns that exposure to air pollution in the winter can still have devastating health consequences for young children.
“There is no escape from pollution and bad infrastructure for children,” she adds. Unless the government finds a holistic solution to fight these issues in a long-term and sustainable way, Nasan-Ulzii fears that pollution will continue to devastate the lives of thousands of poor children in the ger districts of Ulaanbaatar.
Nevertheless, Ulziitogtork is determined to keep improving his park and he finds fulfillment in putting a smile on 6,000 faces every year. Even though he is also worried about the pollution, he keeps an optimistic attitude for change. The joyful squeals of children that he hears in a former landfill that used to exploit war prisoners is proof of change and a testament to the future’s possibilities.
Didem Tali is a multimedia journalist covering global economy, gender, environment and displacement issues from around the world....