Mongolian PM meets Russian defense minister

Ulaanbaatar, Oct 18-Mongolian Prime Minister Ukhnaa Khurelsukh on Thursday met visiting Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu.
Sergei Shoigu arrived here in the morning for this one-day official visit, Xinhua reported, quoting a statement from Mongolian government press office.
“Mongolia attaches great importance to deepending its relations with Russia in all sectors. In this regard, we are ready to continue to expand military-technical cooperation between our two countries,” PM Khurelsukh said.
The PM expressed his gratititude for Russia’s long-standing support to providing training and military-technical equipment to Mongolia.
He also expressed the hope that Russia’s high-level officials will visit Mongolia to jointly celebrate the 80th anniversary of the victory of the battle of Khalkhin Gol in 2019.
Describing their bilateral relationship as traditionally good-neighborly, Shoigu said that Russia will further deepen military-technical cooperation with Mongolia.
Earlier in the day, Mongolian Defense Minister Nyamaa Enkhbold held talks with Shoigu on issues related to bilateral defense cooperation.
During the meeting, the two defense ministers signed a  long-term program for military cooperation to enhance defense ties, under which the two countries will collaborate in areas of armed forces management, military education and joint exercises, according to the Mongolian Defense Ministry.
During the visit, Russian Defense minister also handed over military equipment assistance to the Mongolian air defense forces.
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Mongolia, Vietnam sign agreement on transfer of sentenced persons

ULAN BATOR, Oct. 18 (Xinhua) -- Mongolia and Vietnam have signed an agreement on the transfer of sentenced persons, the Mongolian Foreign Affairs Ministry said Thursday.
A Mongolian delegation led by Minister of Justice and Home Affairs Tsend Nyamdorj visited Vietnam on Oct. 15-17, during which Nyamdorj and Vietnamese Minister of Public Security To Lam signed the agreement, the ministry said in a statement.
"Currently, there are no Mongolian citizens imprisoned in Vietnam. But the number of Mongolian visitors in Vietnam has been growing in recent years," the ministry said, stressing that this kind of agreement is important to protecting the rights of Mongolian citizens abroad.
According to data released by the ministry, a total of 174 Mongolian citizens are serving their prison sentences overseas.
Among the 19 foreign nationals serving sentences in Mongolia, two are Vietnamese. 
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Japan and North Korea intelligence officials held secret meeting in Mongolia in October

A top Japanese intelligence official close to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe had a secret meeting with North Korean counterparts in early October in Mongolia, sources familiar with bilateral ties have said.
The meeting in the Mongolian capital of Ulaanbaatar could be consistent with Abe’s stated desire to arrange a summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un after he received assurances about progress on the long-standing issue of abductions of Japanese nationals by Pyongyang in the 1970s and 1980s.
Among major countries dealing with the North Korean nuclear threat, Japan is the only one to have been kept at arm’s length since Kim began a string of diplomatic engagements this year. In addition to holding talks with Chinese, South Korean and U.S. leaders, Kim plans to hold a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin by the end of the year.
During a visit to Mongolia from around Oct. 6 to 8, Shigeru Kitamura, who heads the Cabinet Intelligence and Research Office, met with North Korean officials including a senior figure from the United Front Department of the Workers’ Party of Korea, sources said Thursday.
The department is an intelligence organ mainly focused on South Korean affairs.
Confirming that the meeting took place, a senior Japanese government official said, “I heard they discussed how the abduction issue should be solved between Japan and North Korea.”
It is believed that the contact between intelligence authorities representing Tokyo and Pyongyang is the first of its type in about three months.
Kitamura previously met with Kim Song Hye, head of the United Front Department’s tactical office, in Vietnam in mid-July.
The latest revelation sheds light on Abe’s increased reliance on behind-the-scenes communications with North Korea, using intelligence authorities rather than the Foreign Ministry.
His approach seems to echo that of U.S. President Donald Trump, who mainly employed the Central Intelligence Agency to set the stage for his first summit with the North Korean leader in Singapore in June.
Japan has sounded out North Korea about Tokyo’s plan to open a liaison office in Pyongyang in the hope of resolving the abduction issue, sources said earlier this month.
The proposed opening of a liaison office is based on a bilateral agreement reached in 2014 in Stockholm that included provisions for Japanese officials to stay in North Korea to check the progress of Pyongyang’s probe into the abduction issue.
Japan officially lists 17 nationals as having been abducted by North Korean agents in the 1970s and 1980s but alleges their involvement in many more disappearances. Five of the 17 were repatriated in 2002.
It has been learned that Pyongyang reversed an earlier claim, unofficially telling Tokyo that one of the 17 abductees, Minoru Tanaka, had actually entered North Korea.
Kitamura, a former head of the National Police Agency’s intelligence department, might have discussed during the October meeting how to confirm the whereabouts of Tanaka and other abductees.
The Japanese government had not disclosed the information about Tanaka entering North Korea or the recent meeting in Mongolia.
Kitamura, seen as a trusted confidant of Abe, gathers and analyses information on both domestic and international affairs and reports to the prime minister, who has said that North Korea’s nuclear, missile and abduction issues should be resolved together.
The United Front Department is headed by Kim Yong Chol, a vice chairman of the ruling party who is a close aide to the North Korean leader. Kim Yong Chol visited the United States in May as the country’s highest-ranking official to do so in nearly two decades.
Abe is scheduled to visit China for three days from Oct. 25 and will hold a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping on Oct. 26 in Beijing. The topic of North Korea is likely to be on the table.
Last month Abe met with Trump in New York, where they had “constructive” talks on North Korea, according to Abe.

Source:Japan Times and Kyodo news agency
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Russia to expand military-technical cooperation with Mongolia

According to the Russian defense minister, Russian-Mongolian relations can be described as traditionally good-neighborly

ULAN BATOR, October 18. /TASS/. Russia will expand military-technical cooperation with Mongolia, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said on Thursday.
He has earlier arrived in Ulan Bator with an official visit. "We value the fact that Mongolia considers developing cooperation with Russia among its most important foreign policy priorities. We confirm our goal to use the accumulated potential in a most effective manner to expand military and military-technical cooperation," Shoigu said at talks with his Mongolian counterpart Nyamaagiin Enkhbold.
According to the Russian defense minister, Russian-Mongolian relations can be described as traditionally good-neighborly. "They [bilateral relations] have a long history and develop consistently in the economic and humanitarian sphere. Our countries have similar approaches to resolving the most pressing issues on the internaitonal agenda," Shoigu added.


He also expressed gratitude for Mongolia's active participation in events organized by the Russian Defense Ministry in 2018. "Among them are celebrations of the 100th anniversary of the Red Army, Moscow Conference on International Security, the session of the Council of Defense Ministers of CIS [Commonwealth of Independent States] countries, International Army Games and International Military-Technical Forum 'Army'," Shoigu said noting that this is already his fourth meeting with Enkhbold this year.

"It is pleasant to note that the agreements reached at our talks in Moscow and Kyzyl are already being implemented. We are ready to exchange opinions on relevant issues of cooperation in the military and military-technical spheres," Shoigu said.

Source:Tass, Russian news agency



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Mongolia invites North Korean premier Kim Jong Un to pay a visit

Mongolia has invited Kim Jong Un to visit the nation's capital, which once hoped to host the historic summit between the North Korean leader and US President Donald Trump, an official said Tuesday.
The invitation comes amid expectations that Kim and Trump, who met in Singapore in June, will hold a second summit -- a time and location for which have yet to be determined.
According to Mongolian President Khaltmaa Battulga's office, the invitation was sent to Kim on October 10, though no specific date was proposed.
The North Korean leader can visit "whenever he feels convenient", an official from the president's office told AFP, confirming a report published Monday by North Korea's KCNA state news service.
Mongolia had offered to host Trump and Kim for their landmark summit in June, but they ended up picking Singapore, where they agreed to a vaguely-worded statement on denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula.
Trump said last week that three or four unspecified locations have been short-listed for their next meeting, but it would "probably" not be in Singapore again, and he did not give a date.
Kim's only other known foreign trips since taking power in 2011 was three visits to China this year.
He has also met South Korean President Moon Jae-in at the Demilitarized Zone separating their countries, where he momentarily crossed into Pyongyang's southern neighbour.
Mongolia, a democratic nation wedged between China and Russia, is one of the few countries that has normal relations with the authoritarian regime in North Korea.
The two countries celebrated 70 years of diplomatic ties this year.
Kim's grandfather, North Korea's founder Kim Il Sung, visited Mongolia when it was still a Soviet state in 1988.
In October 2013, Mongolia's then-president Tsakhia Elbegdorj visited Pyongyang and was the first head of state to meet with Kim since the North Korean leader succeeds his late father, Kim Jong Il, two years prior.
Almost 1,200 North Koreans were living and working in Mongolia at the end of last year before UN sanctions against Pyongyang required them to leave.
(With inputs from agencies.)
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Mongolia, Russia To Hold Joint Military Exercise In Dornod In 2019 - Foreign Minister

SOCHI (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 17th October, 2018) Mongolia and Russia will hold joint military exercises in the Mongolian region of Dornod next year, on the anniversary of the victory in the 1939 Battle of Khalkhin Gol, Mongolian Foreign Minister Damdin Tsogtbaatar told Sputnik on Wednesday.
"It will be held in Dornod next year and next year is the eightieth anniversary of our common victory, joint victory on the river Khalkhin Gol, and this is a very important date for Mongolian independence and sovereignty, and it was a very successful military campaign that both countries had, and we won that war.
Mongolia's independence and sovereignty as a result was secured. Therefore this is a good anniversary for us to have a joint military exercise," Tsogtbaatar said.
The minister added that Russia and Mongolia have a long history of partnership that goes beyond military cooperation.
"We had very longstanding military cooperation and we are strategic partners. Strategic partners means participation in every sector, and military cooperation is one of the important sectors of our cooperation. Therefore, it is a very natural exercise that we will be carrying out together," Tsogtbaatar said.

Source:Sputnik, Russian news agency
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Kim Jong Un Invited To Mongolia In Celebration Of Bilateral Ties - Mongolian Minister

SOCHI (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 17th October, 2018) Mongolia is inviting the North Korean leader, Kim Jong Un, to visit the country to commemorate the anniversary of the establishment of the diplomatic relations between the two states, Mongolian Foreign Minister Damdin Tsogtbaatar told Sputnik on Wednesday.
Earlier this week, media reported that Kim had been invited to visit Mongolia at any date that is convenient for him.
"Indeed our president [Khaltmaagiin Battulga] is inviting the great leader to Mongolia. The thing is that this year we are commemorating jointly the 70th anniversary of our diplomatic relationship ... Our relationship has been a very long, traditionally friendly, mutually understanding relationship.
In the context of this 70th anniversary, we are inviting the great leader," Tsogtbaatar said.
The minister added that the invitation had also been extended in light of the 30-year anniversary of the visit of late North Korean leader Kim Il Sung to the country.
"Besides that, this year we are commemorating the 30th anniversary since Chairman Kim Il Sung [last] visited Mongolia ... That is also a historic event that we also want to remember with North Korean colleagues. From that perspective we extended our invitation. Of course we will be working it out through our diplomatic channels," the minister said.

Source:Sputnik news, Russian news agency
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Mongolia receives 500,000 USD in humanitarian aid from Kazakhstan

ULAN BATOR, Oct. 17 (Xinhua) -- Kazakhstan has provided 500,000 U.S. dollars in humanitarian aid to Mongolia, the Mongolian government press office said Wednesday.
Kazakhstan's ambassador to Mongolia Kalybek Koblandin met with Mongolian Deputy Prime Minister Ulziisaikhan Enkhtuvshin in Ulan Bator and handed over the aid.
The money will be earmarked for the reconstruction work in the western Bayan-Ulgii Province, the statement said.
Downpours from July 14 to 16 triggered massive flooding in Bayan-Ulgii, affecting more than 2,500 people, according to Mongolia's National Emergency Management Agency. Enditem
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Business circles of Azerbaijan, Mongolia reach co-op agreements (PHOTO)

Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 17
By Huseyn Veliyev – Trend:
The preliminary agreements on cooperation between the business circles of Mongolia and Azerbaijan have been reached, the Director of Neuron Technologies company Ismail Alekberov told Trend.
Alekberov noted that about 20 local export companies have taken part in a business forum organized as part of an export mission. The Azerbaijani delegation was led by Deputy Minister of Economy of Azerbaijan Niyazi Safarov, who held meetings with the head of state and with the ministers of Mongolia.
“The business negotiations continue. The held meetings can be called fruitful. The proposed IT solutions have aroused great interest of the Mongolian colleagues. We can definitely say that the digital transformation process in this country is just being established. In Mongolia, many projects are expected to be implemented in the area of construction of “e-government”. It is not improbable that we will be able to introduce the Azerbaijani model of the ASAN Service in this country," Alekberov said.
In addition, the director of the Neuron Technologies company said, the implementation of such major projects as "e-education", "e-health" and "e-agriculture" is also expected in Mongolia.
"Mongolia is a developing country in Central Asia and the Far East. The country pays special attention to the agricultural sector. Despite the fact that the country’s area is about 1.6 million square kilometers, the population of Mongolia slightly exceeds three million people. A lot of infrastructure projects are being implemented in Mongolia, and many countries are interested in being present in this market," Alekberov said.
Alekberov noted that Azerbaijan and Mongolia have established quite fruitful contacts and the meetings held within the framework of the export mission will only serve to strengthen cooperation between the two countries.
“The day before, we held B2B meetings, a business forum, met with state authorities of Mongolia. The Neuron Technologies company offered its solutions in specific areas, in particular for agricultural sectors. For example, there are more than 60 million heads of cattle and small cattle in Mongolia. We proposed to introduce an animal identification system - Personal Identification System of Animals, which aroused the interest of our colleagues. In addition, we also offer solutions for the education sector, and the cooperation issues were discussed with the leadership of the IT association of Mongolia and with large IT companies of this country. We have been offered specific projects that will be implemented jointly," Alekberov said.
The export mission to Mongolia was organized through the Azerbaijan Export & Investment Promotion Foundation (AZPROMO). During the visit of the mission in Ulan Bator, an Azerbaijan-Mongolia business forum was held, the meetings with officials of this country, as well as the B2B meetings between representatives of business entities of the two countries were held.
The parties discussed issues of expanding cooperation between entrepreneurs of Azerbaijan and Mongolia, the possibility of exporting Azerbaijani products to this country.

Source:Trend news agency
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Businessmen of Azerbaijan and Mongolia agree on cooperation

By Abdul Kerimkhanov
The preliminary agreements on cooperation between the business circles of Mongolia and Azerbaijan have been reached, the Director of Neuron Technologies company Ismail Alekberov told Trend.
He stated that about 20 local export companies have taken part in a business forum organized as part of an export mission.
The Azerbaijani delegation was led by Deputy Minister of Economy Niyazi Safarov, who held meetings with the head of state and with the ministers of Mongolia.
“The business negotiations are continuing. The meetings held can be called fruitful. The proposed IT solutions have aroused great interest of the Mongolian colleagues. We can definitely say that the digital transformation process in this country is in its infancy. In Mongolia, many projects are expected to be implemented in the area of construction of “e-government”. It is possible that we will be able to apply the Azerbaijani model of the ASAN Service in this country," said Alekberov.
In addition, the head of the Neuron Technologies company said, the implementation of such major projects as "e-education", "e-health" and "e-agriculture" is also expected in Mongolia.
"Mongolia is a developing country in Central Asia and the Far East. The country pays special attention to the agricultural sector. Despite the fact that the country’s area is about 1.6 million square kilometers, the population of Mongolia slightly exceeds three million people. A lot of infrastructure projects are being implemented in Mongolia, and many countries are interested in being present in this market," Alekberov added.
He noted that Azerbaijan and Mongolia have established quite fruitful contacts and the meetings held within the framework of the export mission will only serve to strengthen cooperation between the two countries.
“The day before, we held B2B meetings, a business forum, met with state authorities of Mongolia. The Neuron Technologies company offered its solutions in specific areas, in particular for agricultural sectors. For example, there are more than 60 million heads of cattle and small cattle in Mongolia. We proposed to introduce an animal identification system - Personal Identification System of Animals, which aroused the interest of our colleagues. In addition, we also offer solutions for the education sector, and the cooperation issues were discussed with the leadership of the IT association of Mongolia and with large IT companies of this country. We have been offered specific projects that will be implemented jointly," Alekberov said.
The export mission to Mongolia was organized through the Azerbaijan Export & Investment Promotion Foundation (AZPROMO). During the visit of the mission to Ulan Bator, an Azerbaijan-Mongolia business forum was held. The meetings with officials of this country, as well as the B2B meetings between representatives of business entities of the two countries took place.
The parties discussed issues of expanding cooperation between entrepreneurs of Azerbaijan and Mongolia, the possibility of exporting Azerbaijani products to this country.
The export missions play an important role in expanding non-oil exports and promoting the domestic made products. To date, Azerbaijan Export and Investment Promotion Foundation (AZPROMO) has organized 13 export missions to 10 foreign countries-Germany, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Qatar, Kazakhstan, Hungary, China, Russia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi Arabia.
Exhibitions, organized by the state bring excellent results. National entrepreneurs took part in different international exhibitions-Gulfood 2017, Prowein, ANUGA, Worldfood Moscow 2017 and the International Exhibition of Wines and Alcoholic Beverages in Hong Kong to promote the brand.
This year the number of export missions that can be organized with the participation of Azerbaijani entrepreneurs in one calendar year has been increased from 10 to 25. Also, the number of international fairs and exhibitions, where a national stand can be presented with the participation of Azerbaijani businessmen was increased from five to ten. 
Diplomatic relations between Azerbaijan and Mongolia were established in 1992. Relations and cooperation between two countries are expanding not only at the bilateral, but also at the international and regional levels.

Source:Azernews
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Rio Tinto delays start of Oyu Tolgoi expansion due to technical issues

By Cecilia Jamasmie, Mining.com

Mining giant Rio Tinto (NYSE: RIO) said Tuesday (October 16) it will likely have to delay first production from the $5.3 billion underground expansion of its Oyu Tolgoi copper-gold-silver mine in Mongolia, originally scheduled for early 2020.
Rio Tinto-controlled Vancouver miner Turquoise Hill (TSX:TRQ) (NYSE:TRQ) owns 66% of the project, and the Mongolian government owns the balance.
Delivering third-quarter results, the miner said that while capital costs for the project remained in line with the overall budget, shaft-sinking challenges were “ultimately expected to result in a revised ramp-up schedule”.

Analyst at BMO Capital Markets said in a note to investors they expected Rio Tinto to achieve first sustainable production at the new section of Oyu Tolgoi not earlier than in the third quarter of 2021.
They also said the delay would hit the mine's free cash flow by about $1 billion between now and 2024, with about $340 million being attributable to Rio Tinto. The company holds a 66% stake in the mine through Turquoise Hill and the Mongolia’s government holds the remainder.
Turquoise Hill (TSE, NSYE: TRQ), the Rio-controlled company that owns 66 percent of the project, confirmed Tuesday that sustainable production at Oyu Tolgoi would be achieved by the end of the third quarter of 2021, rather than in early 2021. The company attributed the nine-month holdup to challenging ground conditions and delays in the completion of Shaft 2.
Until the completion of Shaft 2, Oyu Tolgoi would experience similar, but not increased, development rates as seen in the third quarter, Turquoise Hill said.
Rio has recently stepped up efforts to find new copper deposits worth of being developed into mines. The company’s board of directors approved the underground expansion of the massive Mongolian mine in the Gobi desert two years ago, but progress earlier this year was very slow due to a series of disagreements between Rio and the country’s government, including differences over taxes owed and a power contract.
In an effort to strengthen up ties with Asian country’s authorities, Rio announced in February the opening of the new office in Ulaanbaatar. Copper and diamond chief Arnaud Soirat told Mining.com in May that the team had also been given the task to conduct fresh exploration aimed at finding the “next Oyu Tolgoi.”
He noted that the company is currently Mongolia’s largest foreign investor, having ploughed so far more than $7 billion into the first phase of its Oyu Tolgoi mine. Soirat said the company will continue to invest over $5 billion in the country, tied to the underground expansion of the giant project, at a rate of $1 billion per year.
Oyu Tolgoi was discovered in 2001 and Rio gained control of it in 2012. Once finished, the extension is expected to lift the mine’s production from 125–150kt this year to 560kt of copper concentrate at full tilt from 2025, making it the biggest new copper mine to come on stream in several years.
Mining.com




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Rio Tinto warns of delays at big project in Mongolia

Challenging conditions on the ground and tensions with the government of Mongolia are threatening to cause further delays to Rio Tinto’s $12 billion copper and goldmine being developed in the Gobi Desert.
Production at Oyu Tolgoi was not likely to start until the end of the third quarter of 2021, the FTSE 100 mining group said, about six months later than planned.
The mine is one of Rio Tinto’s most important assets, forecast to produce 560,000 tonnes of copper and gold each year. However, the company has come under mounting pressure from the Mongolian government, which wants to speed up its development.


Source:The Times
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Made in Mongolia: From an artist’s studio to a world-renowned Mongolian brand

We, Mongols, have many things that we must be prideful for. Most importantly, we must discover, preserve, pass onto generations, develop and raise public awareness of these items and fame them as “our and Mongolia’s brands”. Products of Hangain Sor, which laid the cornerstones for such achievement, already gained reputations exceeding their local area and even the country becoming commodities consumed internationally; it is worth being proud for. Hangain Sor is run a family couple N.Bolormaa, university trained theatre artist, and Ts.Bundhorol, head of the family and specialist in Mongolian traditional painting. They established a family-based Hangain Sor LLC that produces unique and peculiar Hangain Sor brand products for domestic and international market.



The couple laid the foundation for their business of yak and sheep wool products as early as 1980ies. At her age of 16, Bolormaa made a bag with yak hair and renowned yak researcher Doyoddorj praised her first product saying “rare item that can be said unique in world”. After that she got a patent #252 from the authority of Mongolian People’s Republic for her products made of yak wool and hair products. Later on, they established “Monso” sole proprietorship in 1994 as a start of their family business engaged in production of different items with yak wool, hair and sheep wool.
Though they were equipped with gifted talent and workmanship, they needed to learn felt crafting, develop their skills to higher professional level. This urged Bolormaa to be involved in training on “Primary level wool processing and felt crafting”. Bolormaa often links her success and achievement to her first trainer Byambaa, consultant of “Wool scientific research and experimental institute”. At that time, the business operators were running small scale, household based production of bags and other petty items with yak wool and hair and their traditional fine-arts work.
Now, they already gained their position and share on the market. They established Hangain Sor LLC in 2007 that produces more than 70 products of 30 types including yak and sheep wool bag, hat, socks, waistcoats and cushion. Their Hangain Sor brand products with Mongolia’s registered trademark are exported to Germany, Japan, US, Belgium and Denmark with further plans to establish an online trading platform for new products in cooperation with a Turkish company that they agreed to work with.
They said their achievement in business, success of marketing its produce on international markets and outcomes of raising public awareness on their brand product was because of the company was selected for OVOP initiative and cooperated with UNDP-funded Enterprise Mongolia project. By getting involved with the project, they were trained in series of business skills including expanding business, marketing and management skills. Moreover, Hangain Sor participated in number of domestic and international trade fairs with support from project resulting in making Hangain Sor products familiar to consumers.
Businesses expressed their gratitude to the project for assisting them on product brochure development, packaging, labeling and introducing bar codes. N.Bolormaa, CEO of Hangain Sor LLC, said, “The key outcome of project intervention is that it supported the work of two businesses that was carried out just by their spirit and interests to the level of a production business, finding markets for supplying our produce and increasing the jobs”.
Currently, the company employs 8 full-time staff and 15 part-time contractors. They provide apprenticeship opportunities for their staff before employment as yak wool crafting requires sense and workmanship. Hangain Sor’s products differ from other felt products with its unique design without sewing, but with wool patterns are made on the product by penetrating it from early stage allowing natural color. 
Obviously, company had to overcome considerable challenges to reach today’s height. Accessing to bank loan was the biggest challenge. Company director N.Bolormaa says that weak link between SMEs support policy and financial policy and lack of flexible and sensible acts obstacles their commitment to expand their operations more.
They have achieved a great deal. Their previous creative arts that gained fame continued with Hangain Sor product brands. For instance, they were awarded several times for their outstanding performance in creating the national brand product i.e. selected as an “Outstanding producer of Uvurhangai aimag” in 2002, awarded with “Outstanding brand product of Hangai region” from Hangai region partnership-2006 trade fair and “Best local yak wool product” from OVOP-2011 national forum, and this list would go further many pages.
They have been overcoming the challenges and working hard to create great deals. “When thinking of physically easy work, we would just sit and paint our pictures, however our heart-full commitment and ambitions to add up Mongolian brand products always prevails”, once said N.Bolormaa, CEO of Hangain Sor. Their willingness of domestic production of environmentally friendly, ecologically pure and healthy products that would take place on the global market as a Mongolia’s brand product will definitely come true.


Source:UNDP
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Mongolia Links Gas Transit Pipeline to Asian Super Grid Negotiations

Eurasia Daily Monitor

Publication: Eurasia Daily Monitor Volume: 15 Issue: 145


During the September 12 meeting of the Eastern Economic Forum (EEF), in Vladivostok, Russia and Mongolia, together with China, Japan, and South Korea, signed a number of hydrocarbon production and supply agreements designed to accelerate development of regional energy supply infrastructure in Northeast Asia. Mongolian President Khaltmaa Battulga proposed, as part of Mongolia’s overarching trilateral “Economic Corridor” policy, that Russia build a natural gas pipeline to China via Mongolia as well as construct an Asian Super Grid to help balance the regional electricity peak load (Montsame.mn, September 12). For the past two decades, Ulaanbaatar has advocated for a Russian-Mongolian-Chinese transit pipeline at trilateral summits and in other forums. Thus, in a breakthrough for the Mongolian government, Russian President Vladimir Putin in Vladivostok supported this transit pipeline, saying, “This is all in the works.” Hints of this change in attitude for Putin could be first glimpsed months earlier, during a June 9 trilateral meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Battulga in Qingdao, China, when he openly supported the building of oil and gas pipelines from Russia to China via Mongolia after conducting a thorough feasibility study (TASS, June 9).
Russia has about 25 percent of hydrocarbons reserves located in its east, and the imposition of sanctions by Western countries has forced it to shift to greater cooperation with Asian countries to develop them. In five years, Russia has doubled crude oil supplies to Asia to 80 million metric tons (1.6 million barrels) from around 40 million metric tons per year in 2012 (Spglobal.com, September 12). Russian energy supplies to China have significantly increased as Chinese gas consumption grew by 15 percent in 2017. Russia and China understand that construction of a gas pipeline across Mongolia that avoids the Chinese Xinjiang region will be faster and easier than a planned 2,800-kilometer western route through the Altai Mountains; but so far they have preferred this Altai route, which avoids transit states (Realnoevremya.com, October 5).
The Chinese, who voiced support for the Mongolian “Economic Corridor” in the Qingdao summit, in fact still may not be amenable to the Mongolian pipeline. During the same Vladivostok meeting, President Xi ordered companies to finalize talks on the Altai gas route. This project between Gazprom and China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) will deliver its first gas from East Siberia in December 2019 and add 30 billion cubic meters (bcm) per year in production to supplement the Power of Siberia pipeline’s 38 bcm. A report on the Russian-Mongolian vector of the eastern energy strategy of Russia stated that Siberian natural gas production increased to 2.2 bcm in 2015 and oil production in the Irkutsk oblast reached 15.8 million tons in 2015. (E3s-conferences.org, February 2018). During the September EEF, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe and South Korean Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon supported plans to link the economies in the region through growing shipments of Russian liquefied natural gas (LNG).
A major roadblock to constructing a transit pipeline through Mongolia has been the lack of a destination port. In Vladivostok, President Battulga mentioned that Mongolia has examined the feasibility of building a Far Eastern port as part of preparing proposals regarding the creation of a joint working group to implement the “Economic Corridor.” While attention of the previous Mongolian administration was centered on North Korea’s Ranjin Sonbong port, Battulga may have been referring to Mongolia’s Institute for Strategic Studies research on utilizing Zarubino, an ice-free Russian port located on the southern end of Primorsky Krai, in Trinity Bay, 18 kilometers from the China-Russia border (Erina.or.jp, December 2015). A railway route connects the port with Hunchun, a major city within the Yanbian Korean Autonomous Prefecture, in Northeast China’s Jilin province, close to North Korea (Ecns.cn, September 9, 2014).
Chinese shippers in northwest and central China are increasingly relying on Russia’s Far East ports to reach international markets. The Russians are supportive of constructing a $3.3 billion large container terminal that could handle 60 million tons of cargo at Zarubino, but there are other choices. China Merchants Group agreed in 2017 to develop and operate a container terminal in Posyet (Khasansky District, Primorsky Krai), but implementation has not yet begun (Joc.com, September 7, 2017). Additionally, according to media reports, a cooperation agreement has been signed for a trans-Mongolian gas pipeline project by China Railway’s 25th Bureau Group Co., Ltd. and a Chinese investment company to an unspecified destination (Rfa.org, October 1).
Since 1999, Russia has supplied Mongolia with LNG, and its 560,000–580,000 tons of annual oil products provide 92 percent of Mongolia’s demand. Currently, Russia’s NK Rosneft has indicated interest in increasing its oil products to the small-scale wholesale and retail segments of Mongolia’s market through the creation of a network of refueling stations and creating a joint venture on production and distribution of products from a new Darkhan oil refinery now under construction in eastern Mongolia (E3s-conferences.org, February 2018). Rosneft officials met with the chief of staff to the Mongolian president, Zandaakhuu Enkhbold, on October 2, to discuss such oil-related matters (Mongol Messenger, October 5). The current oil pipeline system “East Siberia–Pacific Ocean” (ESPO) is basically for Russian oil exports from the Angarsk oil refinery to consumers in the Baikal region and 14 countries, including China, Mongolia, and other Northeast Asian states (E3s-conferences.org, February 2018).
It appears that in its negotiations with Russia, Mongolia is linking the development of an Asian electrical super grid to the transit pipeline issue. Its government is under great domestic pressure to find cleaner power because 95 percent of its domestic energy output is coal-derived, which has caused high pollution levels in the Mongolian capital of Ulaanbaatar. Russia annually supplies Mongolia with 25 percent of its electric power (140–150 million kilowatt hours), with deliveries rising 21.2 percent to 288,000 megawatt (MW) hours in the first nine months of 2017. In response to Mongolian plans to build three mid-sized hydroelectric plants (HPP) along the Selenga River with capacities of 315 MW, 245 MW and 100 MW, Moscow in early 2018 drafted a proposal for a cheaper solution that would increase power deliveries from existing HPPs in eastern Siberia. The new agreement includes a long-term contract for greater volumes at a tariff 3.5 times lower than the expected hydropower price. Russian power grid operator Rosseti has proposed a 500-kilovolt cross-border power link at a cost of 55 billion rubles ($972 million), with Russia, Mongolia, and China jointly financing the project. Rosseti’s subsidiary, transmission system operator (TSO) Federal Grid Co. is now preparing an initial feasibility study to be published later this year (Newsbase.com, February 8).

Source:Jamestown.org
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Vietnamese Deputy PM calls for stronger Vietnam-Mongolia ties across multiple fields

NDO/VNA – Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh received Mongolian Minister of Justice and Home Affairs Tsend Nyamdorj, who is on a working visit to Vietnam, in Hanoi on October 15.

Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh (R) meets with Mongolian Minister of Justice and Home Affairs Tsend Nyamdorj in Hanoi on October 15 (Photo: VNA)

Noting the recent strides in the two countries’ traditional friendship and cooperation, Deputy PM Binh said that during the Mongolian official’s trip, the two sides will sign an agreement on the transfer of sentenced persons and negotiate another on extradition. He expressed his hope that both will finalise negotiations soon so as to sign the extradition deal in the near future.
He also called for stronger cooperation in security, defence, and the defence industry, while encouraging the speeding up of talks on and the signing of an agreement on the protection and exchange of classified information.
The host reiterated Vietnam’s foreign policy of enhancing bilateral and multilateral relations, as well as reinforcing the friendship and win-win cooperation with traditional friends, including Mongolia. He also expressed the country’s wish to tap into their time-tested friendship and cooperation potential so as to serve each side’s development and contribute to peace, stability, and development in the region and the world.
The Deputy PM asked both countries to strengthen political trust through high-level visits and meetings as well as delegation exchanges between ministries and sectors to boost collaboration in all spheres.
They should also boost the sharing of information and experience in crime fighting; cooperate in enhancing the capacity of law enforcement; and actively work together to soon sign an agreement on classified information protection and exchange and another on extradition, he said, asking Mongolia to admit Vietnamese officers to training courses within the framework of the Khaan Quest exercise.
At the meeting, Deputy PM Binh noted that while economic and trade ties have recorded encouraging improvements, they still remain modest. He asked the two sides to promote economic-trade links on par with the sound political relations, in particular by importing goods their partner holds strengths in and creating optimal conditions for each other’s enterprises to make investments and do business.
He also called on Mongolia to facilitate Vietnamese companies’ formation of joint ventures and investment in both wool and leather production, and mineral and petroleum mining.
People-to-people exchange – especially in terms of cultural, educational, and sports activities – should be increased as the two countries mark 65 years of diplomatic ties in 2019, he added, asking Mongolia to create favourable conditions for Vietnamese people in the country. He also said Vietnam is ready to send high-quality workers and experts to work in fields that Mongolia has demand in.
At the event, Deputy PM Binh urged the two countries to foster coordination and mutual support at regional and international forums, including the United Nations, the Non-Aligned Movements, the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM), the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), as well as in global issues of shared concern.
He also thanked Mongolia for supporting Vietnam’s candidacy for a non-permanent membership of the UN Security Council for 2020-2021, as well as in Vietnam and ASEAN’s stance on maintaining peace, security, stability, and the settlement of East Sea disputes in line with international law.
For his part, Minister Tsend Nyamdorj stated that the two sides are negotiating the extradition agreement and agreed to sign this deal soon. The countries will celebrate 65 years of their diplomatic ties in 2019, so they will be paying close attention to activities marking this anniversary.
He added that Vietnam’s Ministry of Justice and Ministry of Public Security have enhanced cooperation with the Mongolian Ministry of Justice and Home Affairs to bring bilateral relations to a new height.
His country wishes to continue to solidify these connections, especially in mutual legal assistance to create a favourable legal environment for the two countries’ citizens.

Source:Nhan Dan, The central organ of the Communist party of Vietnam, the voice of the party, state and people of  Vietnam
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Mongolian President invites Kim Jong Un to Ulaanbaatar

Message comes as two countries mark 70 years of diplomatic relations

Mongolian President Khaltmaagiin Battulga has invited North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to follow in the footsteps of his grandfather and make an official visit to Mongolia, the DPRK’s Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported on Sunday.
“Considering the historic significance towards DPRK-Mongolia relations of DPRK President Kim Il Sung’s official visit to Mongolia, I take this opportunity to express my hope that you visit our country,” President Battulga wrote, in a October 10-dated letter republished on the front page of Monday’s Rodong Sinmun.
The message, sent on occasion of the 70th anniversary of relations between the two countries, emphasized their “long and friendly ties” and ongoing “expanding development in various sectors.”
The DPRK is yet to publicly respond to the invitation.
North Korea’s founding president Kim Il Sung visited Mongolia twice, in 1956 and 1988.
Mongolia was previously touted earlier this year as a host nation for the first DPRK-U.S. summit, with former President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj saying via Twitter: “Here is an offer: US President Trump and NK leader Kim meet in (Ulaanbaatar). Mongolia is the most suitable, neutral territory.”
A week later, current President Battulga’s chief of staff received DPRK Ambassador O Sung Ho in Ulaanbaatar to discuss the proposal, though the Kim-Trump summit ultimately took place in Singapore.
Then-President Elbegdorj visited North Korea in October 2013, but he notably did not meet Kim Jong Un during the trip.

President Battulga also has extensive experience dealing with North Korea on both diplomatic and economic issues, having visited Pyongyang at least three times in the past.
His first visit came accompanying then-President Elbegdorj in 2013 while serving as Minister of Industry and Agriculture.
He carried the title “chairman of the Mongolian side to the Inter-governmental Committee for Consultation in Economy, Trade, Science and Technology between the DPRK and Mongolia” in his next visit in March 2014, and as “special envoy of the president” while in Pyongyang again just five months later.
He is not believed to have met Kim Jong Un during those visits.
The two countries most recently held high-level discussions during this year’s UN General Assembly in New York, where DPRK foreign minister Ri Yong Ho was reported by state media to have met Mongolian counterpart Damdin Tsogtbaatar
Tsogtbaatar also traveled to Pyongyang in February this year, where the two sides discussed “continuing to develop” their “long-standing friendly and cooperative relations.”
Elsewhere in Monday’s Rodong Sinmun, Mongolia garnered praise for its economic development in the livestock, mining, tourism, logging, and energy sectors.
Another article report on the arrival in Pyongyang Sunday of Mongolian Food, Agriculture and Environment Workers Trade Unions President Gantuya Ochirjantsan.
The two countries maintain ongoing economic ties: North Korean companies continue to reference Mongolia as a trade parties, even holding company-level talks in May this year over exporting mining explosives technologies.
Mongolia, however, continues to claim strict adherence with UN Security Council sanctions against the North, saying in its latest implementation report from May that the “agreement on the exchange of labour between the Government of Mongolia and the Government of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea will expire” on June 3.
It also claimed to have expelled 445 workers as of March and that it was working to “organize an orderly withdrawal” of North Korean workers in line with Resolution 2397 requiring all workers leave by December 2019.
Monday’s message is not the first invitation to Kim Jong Un to appear on the frontpage of the Rodong, with Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad in June reported to have expressed a hope to visit Pyongyang, and Russian President Vladimir Putin in August invited the DPRK leader to Moscow.
Though there is as yet no sign that Assad will visit the DPRK anytime soon, Russia and North Korea are reportedly preparing for Kim’s first trip to Moscow.
Edited by Oliver Hotham

Source:NK News Org
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