Vancouver, BC – July 29th, 2014 – Kincora Copper Limited (the “Company”, “Kincora”) (TSXV:KCC) provides an update on the 106-license dispute, relating to the revocation of mineral exploration licenses in late 2013. On July 4th, the Mongolian Government approved Resolution #216 and is Appendix (“Resolution #216”) relating to the 106-licenses dispute to “settle in a manner with no damage to the State and the license holder for the purpose of granting a new licenses, in accordance with the Minerals Law to issue through tender”. The Mining Minister, Gankhuyag.D, has been assigned to organize and monitor the tendering for 106-license areas in accordance with relevant laws and regulations. Resolution #216 follows the approval by the Mongolian Parliament of the amendments to the Minerals Law on July 1st.

Under the approved Resolution #216 former license holders and other third parties will re-tender for the previously revoked licenses on a competitive tender basis, where an initial re-tendering price shall be effectively determined by costs incurred by the former license holder(s). Resolution #216 doesn’t differentiate between former license holders and other third parties. Detailed implementation procedures are pending but such a proposed resolution is not in-line with previous guidance from senior Government officials and current public statements. Kincora and the association of active former license holders (Ашигт малтмалын тусгай зөвшөөрөл эзэмшигч хохирогч компаниудын холбоо) continue to seek active dialogue with appropriate Government officials to work towards an outcome in the interests of all stakeholders.

In its September 2013 quarterly accounts, Kincora wrote off C$6,952,000 relating to the 15075X (Tourmaline Hills) and 15076X (North Fox) licenses, which were revoked as part of the 106. Kincora’s two licenses were acquired from a private Canadian group in 2012, following full due diligence, and are lower priority exploration licenses adjacent to our flagship Bronze Fox project. Bronze Fox remains unencumbered and Kincora is currently actively undertaking field season activities including drilling at advance large scale copper porphyry targets that are situated towards the centre of the existing license. We are confident our revoked licenses will be returned.

Commenting on today's announcement, Sam Spring, President and CEO of Kincora, said:

"The ongoing dispute continues to have a significant impact beyond just the 106-licenses and the exploration sector/amended Minerals Law, with security of tenure, a transparent and consistent legal and legislative environment being key cornerstones for all private sector activities. Investors are watching to see what the outcome of this dispute is and, as is, Resolution #216 undermines the relatively limited, and broadly positive, amendments to key items of the existing Mineral Law. The proposed competitive tender process contradicts the positive move toward a direct application, “first come, first served”, approach adopted under the amended Minerals Law and is at odds with recent proposed reform aimed at encouraging private sector activities, reviving the minerals sector and Mongolian economy.

Kincora in conjunction with the association of active former license holders continues to actively lobby and proactively approach the Ministry of Mining and appropriate Government officials to achieve a win-win solution for all stakeholders. The Company’s core focus remains ongoing exploration activities at our flagship Bronze Fox license”.

On another note, Kincora  announced that Jonathan (Sam) Spring, the  Company’s President and CEO, has joined as a member of the Board of Directors  effective immediately.Sam joined the Company in August 2012, and is formerly a Senior Mining Analyst with over 10 years financial services experience across various disciplines within the 

Goldman Sachs Group and Ocean Equities Ltd (now part of Pareto Securities). Sam  has a commerce degree from the University of Melbourne, is a Chartered Accountant  (ICAA) and CFA Charterholder.

Source:Kincora Copper


Mongolia Eases Visa Restrictions

Easing visa restrictions to stimulate travel is one of the UNWTO’s recommendations to promote the growth of the tourism sector and its positive impact on the economy.
A report by UNWTO and the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) on the impact of visa facilitation on job creation through tourism, showed that improving visa processes and entry formalities could generate an extra US$ 206 billion in tourism receipts and create as many as 5.1 million additional jobs between 2012 and 2015 in the G20 economies alone.
 The government of Mongolia is one of the most recent examples of countries advancing travel facilitation by removing visa requirements for citizens of 42 countries.
Facilitation of tourist travel is closely interlinked with tourism development and can contribute in a decisive manner to tourism’s beneficial effects, including economic growth and job creation.
While recent decades have seen great progress in travel facilitation all over the world, UNWTO research shows that important areas for improvement remain, among them facilitating visa procedures and advancing air connectivity.
The government of Mongolia recently granted visa free access to the country for up to 30 days for tourist and short business trips of citizens from 42 countries, in addition to the 20 countries already benefitting from visa free agreements.
 The decision comes at a time when the open skies resolution, passed by the Mongolian parliament in 2013, is also being implemented. The resolution is defined in the State Policy on Civil Aviation Sector up to 2020 and aims to develop a competitive national civil aviation sector, in view of its potential contribution to socio-economic development.
These and other key issues for the country’s tourism development were discussed on the occasion of the visit of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Mongolia, Mr. Luvsanvandan Bold, to UNWTO headquarters where he met Secretary-General, Mr. Taleb Rifai.
“We are very happy to see Mongolia following UNWTO recommendations and taking concrete action in the area of travel facilitation,” said UNWTO Secretary-General, Mr. Taleb Rifai. “With adequate policies, tourism can have an immense impact on GDP, exports and jobs, and visa facilitation and air liberalization are central to maximize tourism’s development potential.”

Tackling Mongolian horseback adventure

A lifetime of horsemanship is about to be put to the test for a woman taking part in the longest, toughest horse race in the world.
Michelle Jarvis, along with friend and fellow Clevedon resident Alison Wilson, is riding in the Mongol Derby, a 1000km race across Mongolia on semi-wild horses.
The course recreates Mongolian warrior Genghis Khan's postal system, where riders changed horses every 40km and lived with herders or camped under the stars.
Competitors are allowed just 5kg of supplies for the 10-day adventure and are given a GPS tracking device and rudimentary map to help them find their way.
Jarvis says she took one look at the derby and knew it was something she wanted to do.
"I just love adventure and I like challenging myself," she says.
The veterinary anaesthetist has ridden horses all her life and has been training solidly for the derby for about four months.
She has gone out riding most days and has been mountainbiking, doing yoga and running as well.
Jarvis says the Mongolian horses are going to be a big challenge.
They are not trained or used to being ridden the same way as horses in New Zealand.
She is expecting some sore joints and strains on her body, especially with riding 10 to 12 hours each day across the vast Mongolian terrain. The limited luggage is also a bit of a concern, with only one change of clothes, a water purifier and a sleeping bag among her sparse supplies.
Jarvis says the race will be one of the hardest things she will ever do but she is ready to get going.
"I just want to get over there and experience it," she says.
Forty-six other riders from around the world are taking part and all are fundraising for Cool Earth, a charity that works alongside indigenous villages to stop rainforest destruction.
Each person is also fundraising for their own chosen charities.
Jarvis is raising money for World Animal Protection, formerly the World Society for the Protection of Animals.
The Mongol Derby is from August 3 to 16.
Michelle Jarvis
UNUSUAL ADVENTURE: Clevedon resident Michelle Jarvis is taking part in the Mongol Derby, a 1000km horse ride through Mongolia on wild horses.

Mongolia Seeks China Gas Accord to Boost Foreign Investment

Mongolia is seeking to sign a gas project and supply accord with China next month, in a deal that would help the world’s second-largest economy expand energy supplies and potentially revive foreign investment in Mongolia.
The agreement will cover construction of two coal-to-gas plants with 95 percent of output going to China through pipelines, Erdenebulgan Oyun, Vice Minister for Mining said yesterday in an interview in Ulaanbaatar. Gas production is expected to begin in 2019, he said.
A preliminary contract with China Petrochemical Corp., known as Sinopec Group, may be signed in August during an expected visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping, Chuluunbat Ochirbat, Mongolia’s Vice Minister for Economic Development, said today in an interview in Tokyo. Final details including cost, size and who will mine the coal needed for the plants, are yet to be agreed, he said.
Any deal with Mongolia would come after Russia in May reached a $400 billion deal to supply natural gas to China as the Asian nation secures supplies abroad to meet rising domestic demand. For Mongolia, an accord would come amid slumping foreign investment that’s down 64 percent this year and may help shift the nation’s reliance on the Oyu Tolgoi copper and gold mine.

October MOU

“Sinopec has taken several trips to do due diligence in Mongolia and it is still under way,” Chuluunbat said in Tokyo, where he’s attending an investment summit. “Mongolia has coal reserves which are suitable for gasification.”
Xi will visit Mongolia on Aug. 21 said Chuluunbat. China has not officially confirmed the visit. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Beijing today didn’t reply to a fax about Xi’s trip to Mongolia.
Sinopec Group Chairman Fu Chengyu signed on Oct. 25 a memorandum of understanding for a coal gasification project in Mongolia with Jigjid Rentsendoo, Secretary of State of the Ministry of Mines of Mongolia, according to a statement that month on the Chinese state-controlled group’s website that didn’t give further details.
A Sinopec Group’s Beijing-based spokesman didn’t answer two calls to his office seeking comment today.
About 80 million metric tons of lignite coal will be extracted annually to produce the gas at the plants, Erdenebulgan said. According to both vice ministers, the plants could produce 15 billion cubic meters of gas a year. Chuluunbat estimated the cost of building a project of that size at $3 billion to $5 billion, and said the scale of the development could be increased.
By comparison, China’s gas contract with Russia is for 38 billion cubic meters a year.
“We have an ambition to sell more products to China, other than just raw materials. We want to export finished products like natural gas,” said Erdenebulgan. “Lignite can’t be exported, but we can convert it to gas and export it.”
To contact the reporters on this story: Michael Kohn in Ulaanbaatar at; Yuriy Humber in Tokyo at
To contact the editors responsible for this story: Jason Rogers at jrogers73@bloomberg.netMadelene Pearson


Japan, Mongolia wrap up free trade deal

Japan, Mongolia wrap up free trade deal
TOKYO, July 22 (Xinhua) -- Japan and Mongolia on Tuesday reached a broad agreement on a free trade accord and deal for economic cooperation that will include Ulan Bator scrapping its tariffs on Japanese automobiles and Tokyo abolishing its levies on Mongolian industrial products imports.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe during a summit meeting told visiting Mongolian President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj that Japan will make provisions for Mongolia's exports and contribute to the country's economic progress, in line with commitments made during the pair's summit last year.
Under the free trade agreement, negotiations of which began in 2012, Mongolia will scrap its 5 percent tariff on Japanese automobiles with an engine displacement of 4,500 cc or below, forthwith, and tariffs on other vehicles, including previously owned cars, will be abolished within 10 years, officials here said.
Used passenger vehicles comprise around 45 percent of Japan's total exports to Mongolia, with all-inclusive exports from Japan valued at around 288 million U.S. dollars in 2013. Mongolia's exports to Japan, of mainly natural resources, in the same period, totaled some 21 million U.S. dollars, according to trade statistics.
Japan, for its part, will reduce its 38.5-percent tariff on Mongolian processed beef and introduce a quota-based system, and scrap tariffs on the majority of industrial products imported from Mongolia, within 10 years.
Japan's benignancy towards assisting Mongolia's economic development, comes as Japan and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) have taken significant steps towards resolving the DPRK's abduction of Japanese nationals during the 1970s and 1980s.
Mongolia, with diplomatic ties with the DPRK, has previously assisted Japan with contacting DPRK officials over the abduction issue that has prevented Japan and the DPRK from normalizing relations.
The latest round of bilateral free trade negotiations between trade representatives from Ulan Bator and Tokyo began here on Saturday.
Source:Xinhua news agency

Aspire Mining to supply Ovoot coal to Zavkhan power station

Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has demonstrated the quality of its Ovoot Coking Coal Project in Mongolia, reaching a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding to sell up to 250,000 tonnes of oxidised coal per annum to Zavkhan Power Station.
Notably, this provides a potential revenue stream from a product that would otherwise have been considered a waste material.

Small quantities of oxidised (non-coking coal) would have been produced as part of the Ovoot Project mine plan and is not included in its Probable Coal Reserves of 255 million tonnes.

The MoU also covers the supply of 35 megawatts of power per year to the Ovoot Project from Zavkhan.

The Zavkhan Power Station, located 70 kilometres south of Ovoot, is currently been constructed by New Asia Group, which has a concession to build, own and operate this power station to supply northern Mongolia with power.

It is expected to be commissioned in late 2015.

Ovoot Coking Coal Project

Aspire Mining has made considerable progress on its wholly-owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project in north western Mongolia as well as the Northern Line Rail Line (NRL).

Current off take interest in Ovoot coking coal exceeds targeted production and the project is – along with Tavan Tolgoi – recognised as one of the key potential coal suppliers to Mongolia’s Sainshand Industrial Park.

Non-binding MoUs have been reached with four Chinese and two Russian customers for the supply of up to 6.9 million tonnes per annum of coking coal. 

This covers 138% of initial annualised production rate of 5 million tonnes.

The company is currently awaiting approval for construction of the 547 kilometre NRL that will link the project to existing rail infrastructure.

Notably, it has already received financing interest for the US$1.3bn to construct NRL. It may also find funding support from Russian institutional investors for both NRL and Ovoot development.

Ovoot has an Open Pit Probable Reserve of 247 million tonnes of which 182 million tonnes is marketable coal with 9.5% moisture content and a further Underground Reserve of 8 million tonnes of which 6 million tonnes is marketable coal with 9.5% moisture content.

It also includes a 25 kilometre long extension to the east that includes the Hurimt and Zuun Del prospects that are highly prospective for additional coal resources in the Ovoot Lower Seam that sits just above basement rock. 

The Ovoot lower seam represents the largest of the three seam packages that have been identified within the project area.  

Testwork has also confirmed that Ovoot is capable of producing a premium blending coking coal that is classified by Chinese customers as “FM Premium Fat Coal”, and by Russian customers as “Zh Fat Coking Coal”. 

Indicative washed coking coal specification include a moisture content of 9%, ash 9%, volatiles 25 – 28%, sulphur 1.2%, Crucible Swelling Number 9 (highly desirable 9 being maximum rating), Maximum Fluidity Log 3.60, Maximum Dilation +300%, Gray King G11, G Caking Index +26, and RoMax 1.2.  

The high quality of Ovoot coking coal makes it ideal as a blending coal with lower quality or non-caking coals to produce a high quality end coke product. Successful trials have been completed that used a variety of low coking, thermal and oxidised coals derived from Australia, Mongolia and Russia on both a 50% and 25% blend basis.


The agreement with Zavkhan Power Station highlights both the quality and breadth of coal products that could be produced from Aspire Mining’s Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

That oxidised coal, previously considered a waste material and thus excluded from the Probable Reserve of 255Mt, would provide an additional revenue stream is certainly a positive and could be the tip of a large iceberg.

Coupled with existing non-binding offtake agreements for its primary coking coal product, there is clear demand for coal produced from Ovoot.

While coking coal prices remain sluggish, this will have little impact on development of Ovoot as demand will be driven by very long term demand trends emanating out of China, (likely Russia) and the rest of Asia.

Proactive Investors continues to maintain a price target of $0.125 within 6-9 months for Aspire.

Japan, Mongolia set to affirm FTA

RIMMED FORECAST:Japan cut its growth outlook, citing falling exports and rising imports, ahead of the expected signing of a free-trade deal with Mongolia


French Montbeliarde cows graze at the Khishigten Nuudelchin LLC dairy farm in Arkhus, Tuv Province, Mongolia, on June 22. Mongolian agricultural products are expected to be included in a free-trade deal to be signed with Japan.

Photo: Bloomberg

Japan on Tuesday cut its fiscal year growth forecast for the world’s No. 3 economy, blaming weak exports and rising imports, as well as the impact of April’s sales tax hike on consumer spending and business confidence.
Japan’s Cabinet Office said it now expects expansion of 1.2 percent in the year to March, compared with a previous estimate of 1.4 percent.
The announcement comes a week after the Bank of Japan also lowered its outlook to 1.0 percent from an earlier 1.1 percent.
Japan has seen widening trade imbalances since the Fukushima nuclear crisis in March 2011 forced it to switch off its atomic reactors and turn to pricey fossil-fuel imports to plug the energy gap.
“The latest forecast was based on weak demand overseas and stronger-than-expected imports,” a Cabinet Office official said of the downward revision.
The cut was also “due to weak domestic demand following the consumption tax increase in April,” the official said.
However, the government said growth would bounce back to 1.4 percent in the following fiscal year.
Separately, Japan and Mongolia were expected to sign a free-trade deal when their leaders met in Tokyo yesterday, reports said, as Japan looks to tap the country’s fast-growing economy and huge natural resources.
Tokyo is also hoping the deal will deepen bilateral ties as it tries to resolve cases of Japanese citizens abducted during the Cold War by North Korean agents, according to reports in the Asahi Shimbun and Yomiuri Shimbun reported.
Mongolia is one of the few countries that has formal diplomatic relations with Pyongyang.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Mongolian President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj were due to hold talks on Tuesday evening, with the trade agreement likely to be announced during the summit, the reports said.
Terms of the planned deal include Mongolia scrapping 5 percent of tariffs on Japanese car imports, while Japan would trim its levies on Mongolian beef, the Asahi said.
The agreement is likely to include a so-called investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) clause, which allows firms to pursue compensation claims if they think government policy has damaged their investment, it added.
Japan-Mongolia trade stood at ¥31.20 billion (US$307 million) last year.


Japan and Mongolia prepare to sign free trade deal on Tuesday: reports

TOKYO--Japan and Mongolia will sign a free-trade deal when their leaders hold talks in Tokyo later Tuesday, reports said, as Japan looks to tap the country's fast-growing economy and huge natural resources.
Tokyo is also hoping the deal will deepen ties with Mongolia as it tries to resolve the case of Japanese citizens abducted during the Cold War by North Korean agents, leading dailies the Asahi and Yomiuri reported.
Mongolia is one of the few countries that has formal diplomatic relations with Pyongyang.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Mongolian President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj are due to hold talks on Tuesday evening, with the trade agreement likely to be announced during the summit, according to the reports.
Terms of the planned deal include Mongolia scrapping five percent of tariffs on Japanese car imports, while Japan would trim its levies on Mongolian beef, the Asahi said.
The agreement will also likely include a so-called investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) clause, which allows firms to pursue compensation claims if they think government policy has damaged their investment, it added.
Japan-Mongolia trade stood at 31.20 billion yen (US$307 million) last year.
Resource-rich Mongolia, wedged between Russia and China, has seen big economic growth in recent years as global firms eye its vast natural resources.
In May, Pyongyang agreed to reinvestigate the kidnapping of Japanese citizens during the 1970s and 1980s, in what appeared to be a significant breakthrough on an issue that has long hampered Tokyo's relations with the isolated country. They have no formal diplomatic ties.
Japan earlier this month lifted some of its own sanctions on North Korea following the apparent deal.
North Korean agents kidnapped dozens — and possibly hundreds — of Japanese citizens to help train spies in language and customs. The actual number and fate of some of the abducted remains a point of contention, with Tokyo saying Pyongyang had not come clean on the issue.


Runners raise money for Mongolian students

This is the first year the Windhorse Half Marathon partnered the Blue Sky Education Project with the Bellingham Sister City Association to raise money for education in Mongolia.
The 13.1-mile half marathon, held on Saturday, July 19, began and ended at Fairhaven Park in Bellingham.
“[The Windhorse Half Marathon] is a really low-key race,” race coordinator Cami Ostman said. “It starts at Fairhaven Park. They head out on the trail and they turn around at roughly 6 1/2 miles and come back.”
Mark Cook, a United States Navy Chaplain and University of Washington alumnus, finished first overall with a time of 1:32.49, just 1 minute and 12 seconds off the race record set in 2012 by Bryan Marenstein and Chris Bates.
“I love it when races have charities and raise awareness for good causes,” Cook said. “I was in Afghanistan in March and April and just saw firsthand how other places in the world need all the help they can get.”
This race was designed by the Blue Sky Education Project to raise money for underprivileged children in Tsetserleg, Mongolia to attend school, which is one of Bellingham’s sister cities, Ostman said.
“While education is free for a lot of Mongolians, you have to have uniforms and school supplies,” Ostman said. “Sometimes those kinds of things can actually prevent people from getting an education.”
Iggy Munkhuu, Western alumna and former resident of Mongolia, said the money the BSEP raises even the smallest amount helps the kids get supplies needed for their education.
“If they don’t have those supplies they’re not going to school and they won’t have an education,” Munkhuu said. “Enabling their future, that’s an amazing thing.”
To participate in the race, runners paid a $30 fee or $35 if they signed up on race day, Ostman said.
This year was the first year that the Blue Sky Education Project officially partnered with the Bellingham Sister City Association to host the race, Ostman said.
“In the past they were definitely there supporting us,” Ostman said. “This year we are actually splitting the funds between them and the Blue Sky Education Project.”
The BSCA promotes understanding between international cultures and develops grassroots relationships between individuals at the municipal level, race coordinator Ross Grier said.
Grier said that the BSCA is essentially a world peace movement, events like the Windhorse Half Marathon move us closer to world peace.
The two main projects that the BSEP runs are the student sponsorship program and the teacher education program, Smith said.
Through the teacher education program, BSEP gives students full ride scholarships to attend college for a teaching degree, Smith said.
“I was born and raised in Mongolia and I can see that’s one of the main things that can stop poverty and help people to change their lives—education,” Smith said.
Currently, there are approximately 120 children in Mongolia benefiting from the student sponsorship program in five rural towns, Smith said.
This year’s half marathon was a success, despite the rainy weather, Ostman said.
“We had several first time half mar athon runners,” Ostman said. “That is always very fun to see people finish their first ever half marathon.”
Seventy-four runners and two dogs completed the 4th annual Windhorse Half Marathon. The groups are still raising funds and discussing where exactly the money will go, Ostman said.


Windhorse Marathon
Water cup grab: Brian Barry grabs a cup of water without stopping at the halfway point, approximately 7 miles from the starting line. The Windhorse Half Marathon's course begins and ends at Fairhaven Park, with the turnaround point in the Clayton Beach parking lot. // Photo by Melissa McDonough

Changes to Mongolia’s mining law will boost investment

The Mongolian parliament has passed a series of changes to the country’s 2006 Minerals Law in an effort to boost investment in its flagging mining sector. The changes include increasing the proportion of land available for exploration and the time available to complete exploration, as well as the possible reversing of the 2010 cancellation of 106 mining licenses.
The changes were made as part of a push by prime minister Altankhuyag Norov to revive investment in the country’s mining industry after two years of slowing growth and waning foreign investments. The push aims to attract US$ 1 billion of investment in the country’s resources industries by the end of this year, particularly in the coal and other energy resources exploration sector.
Under the amendments to the 2006 legislation, the amount of land available for exploration will rise from 8% – 20%, while the period of exploration will be extended to 12 years. “We expect more miners to undertake exploration projects in Mongolia over the coming quarters,” commented Business Monitor International in response to the changes.
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Mongolian-inspired Devon band releases full-length album

Mongol, a folk death metal band made up of Devon-based youth, is releasing its first full length album this month.
Mongol, a folk death metal band made up of Devon-based youth, is releasing its first full length album this month.

Andrew Hoshkiw

There’s a new kind of folk music in Devon — folk death metal.
Mongol, a Devon-based band consisting of local youth, is debuting its first full-length album Saturday, July 26.
The event takes place at the Studio Music Foundation in Edmonton, 10940 166A St. Doors open at 8 p.m., music starts at 8:30 p.m. and tickets are $25. It is an 18+ only event. Groups Nekrogoblikon, Wolfrik and Valyria will also perform during the evening.
The band consists of Tev Tegri (vocals), Zelme (rhythm guitar, backup vocals), Zev (lead guitar, folk instruments), Sorkhon Sharr (bass), Sche-khe (folk instruments, keyboards) and Bourchi (drums). Tev and Zev spoke about the band, its origins and the new album.
“We started in 2009, and at the time we ranged in age from 12 to 17,” said Tev. “Luke and his two brothers are in the band, and I was friends with Luke in high school, and it just started there and we’ve been together ever since.”
This first full-length album, titled Chosen by Tengri, will be available for download and hardcopy purchase through the band’s website – – after July 26, while the album will begin streaming on the site next week.
“Folk metal for the most part is pretty cultural-based, and most choose to go with a Scandinavian Pagan theme,” said Tev. “We figured that was pretty saturated, and we wanted to do something that was a little different, so we’ve been doing the Mongolian theme.”
“It was an empire that was bigger then the Roman Empire, and not very well known.”
Going with an Asian folklore theme seemed to be a more interesting route to follow, explained Zev.
“A popular metal theme is battles, and Genghis Khan is pretty well known for what he’s done conquering,” he said. “A lot of bands we listen to are talking about the Vikings and what they’ve done conquering, and about the Greeks and their conquests, but you don’t hear a lot about Genghis Khan. It’s an unexplored theme and we’ve taken advantage of that.”
“Our styles grew together,” said Tev. “The choice to play our type of metal at the time was unheard of, so for the area we were into band as nobody had really heard of. For us it was a completely original idea, until we met other bands from other places.”
Death metal is a genre of loud rock music, characterized very heavy, distorted guitars, unrelentingly loud drums and deep, guttural vocals. Folk death metal takes the genre one step further by incorporating folklore themes into the lyrics and sometimes folk instrumentation into the music.
“With folk metal, it’s not just brutal all the time,” stressed Tev. “We’ve played acoustic shows where it’s just folk music, and there’s that aspect that also draws people in. It’s not only for metalheads, but also for people who are wondering what the hell is it we’re doing.”
“We dress up in Mongolian stuff and we play mandolin, and people are wanting to see what’s going on, and there are other aspects for people to enjoy that don’t like the harshness of it – there’s lots of melody. There’s a banjo and lots of catchy stuff.”
In a way, the band has largely been responsible for making the genre popular among Devon youth, said Zev.
“We’ve turned a lot of people towards metal that never would have considered it before, a lot of kids,” he said. “It’s a completely different fan base here. It’s not just friends, it’s all kinds of kids that come out to the shows and do crazy stuff. It’s lots of fun playing in Devon.”
After the album release, the band’s next big event is to head overseas for a music festival.
“We’re striving towards making the band more and more serious,” said Tev. “In August we’re going to play a festival in Mongolia, and then we’re going to try to play more and more shows outside of our range and try to get it out there.”
A major roadblock currently faced by Mongol is that two of the members are still aged 17 and in high school, limiting which venues they can play.
“We have two underage members, so it’s pretty inhibiting,” said Tev. “They turn 18 next year, so we’ll be getting to that point where we’ll be touring around Canada. This year Alberta, next year Canada, the year after that the world.”


American MIlitary's Civil Affairs Team trains Mongolian forces

JOINT BASE LEWIS MCCHORD, Wash. - It’s not every day you would expect to see American Soldiers in Mongolia, but members of the 84th Civil Affairs Battalion from Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., conducted a three-week training mission there in June.

The seven-man Civil Affairs Team from 3rd Team, Alpha Company, 84th Civil Affairs Battalion, known as CAT 8413, trained and worked 20 miles west of Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, with Mongolian forces for Khaan Quest 2014.

The exercise originally began in 2003 between the United States and Mongolia, said Capt. Jeffrey Y. Cho, team leader for CAT 8413. It now has increased to a multilateral exercise with 22 nations. The team worked with many other nations including the United Kingdom, South Korea and Singapore.

Khaan Quest is a part of the I Corps Pacific Rebalance mission under the U.S. Pacific Command to enhance security and integrate other service components to create unified land operations within the Pacific Rim.

CAT 8413 provided assistance to the Mongolian Armed Forces, or MAF, during the peacekeeping practice drill. The 1st Mongolian Battalion of the MAF is preparing for a United Nations peacekeeping mission in Sudan later this year. CAT 8413 assisted in teaching members of the MAF the Military Decision Making Process, or MDMP, used by the United States Army.

“The Mongolians before were using a Russian form of decision making process and recently they decided to adopt the U.S. form of MDMP,” said Sgt. 1st Class Anthony R. Medina, team sergeant for CAT 8413.

Along with practicing peacekeeping scenarios the team also performed veterinary assistance to livestock and provided routine medical aid for Mongolian civilians. Approximately 7,000 locals received dental work and other treatments during the course of Khaan Quest.

Cho and Medina spent long days training soldiers sometimes lasting from early morning to late in the night.

Despite the language barrier between American and Mongolian soldiers, the MAF personnel were eager to learn and hardworking from their battalion commander down to the lowest staff member, Cho said.

Besides concentrating on humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, the team members were able to experience Mongolian culture. A few team members were able to participate in cultural ceremonies, traditional herding practices and ate authentic Mongolian meals.

Through working together and immersing themselves in the culture, a brotherhood formed. Friendships grew within the three weeks and a few team members learned some Mongolian words and phrases to better communicate with MAF soldiers.

There was camaraderie among them, Medina said. “I think the most important point of Khaan Quest was the camaraderie built between all of the countries involved.”

The mission created a better understanding of Mongolian culture for the team and taught them more about standard operating procedures for foreign militaries. Working in Civil Affairs provides Cho and Medina the opportunity to travel to Mongolia and other places many people have never been to build bonds with all types of people.

After completing Khaan Quest successfully, leaders of CAT 8413 left Mongolia with confidence knowing that they are well-prepared to accomplish any mission they are tasked with.

Italian textile machinery sector to develop cashmere processing in Mongolia Italian textile machinery sector to develop cashmere processing in Mongolia

Meetings of ACIMIT with the local authorities, held during the recent trade industry mission organised by the Association and the ICE- Italian Trade Agency in Mongolia, have confirmed the need for modernising existing technology for the processing of cashmere.
ACIMIT President Raffaella Carabelli said: “Mongolia is a market in which Italian machinery manufacturers can find excellent opportunities, thanks to the expertise they have developed in the technology required for the production of this raw material.”

Presenting technology

An institutional trade mission in Mongolia, organised by ACIMIT (the Association of Italian Textile Machinery Manufacturers) and Italian Trade Agency, took place from 7-9 July in Ulaanbaatar.
ACIMIT President Raffaella Carabelli said Mongolia is a market in which Italian machinery manufacturers can find excellent opportunities. © ACIMIT
A total of nine Italian machinery manufacturers, among which ACIMIT’s affiliated members, presented their latest and most suitable technology for the processing of cashmere during the course of the symposium ‘Italian advanced textile technology and Mongolian cashmere sector: a winning partnership’.
The companies included Bellini, Bianco, Bigagli-Proxima, Cormatex, Fadis, Stalam and Sant'Andrea Novara. The Italian contingent declared themselves satisfied with the proceedings, as they were also permitted to visit some important local manufacturers, eliciting interest among local businesses.

Developing textile industry

The three-day mission on Mongolian soil also served to strengthen ties between the local authorities and ACIMIT’s management. The Vice-Minister for Industry and Agriculture, B. Tsogtgerel, presented a Mongolian project to develop the textile industry in the country, processing the majority of the raw cashmere wool currently exported.
The three-day mission on Mongolian soil served to strengthen ties between the local authorities and ACIMIT’s management. © ACIMIT
Within five years, the quantity of unprocessed raw material shipped out to foreign markets is essentially expected to disappear, compared to the current 6,300 tons exported.

Trade possibilities

Raffaella Carabelli commented: “Local processing of cashmere will broaden possibilities for trade within Mongolia for Italian manufacturers, who for years have been at the forefront in supplying suitable technologies for the processing of this prestigious raw material.”
ACIMIT represents an industrial sector comprising around 300 companies and producing machinery for an overall value of EUR 2.3 billion, with exports amounting to 84% of total sales. © ACIMIT
In 2013 alone, 68 million euros in investments were set aside for the development of new production technologies, and another 145 million euros are expected for a further increase in production capacity.
Carabelli added: “We are looking at numbers that will provide a healthy boost for the cashmere industry in Mongolia, beginning with the spinning sector, and subsequently the knitting, weaving and finishing sectors.”

Italian textile machinery industry

ACIMIT represents an industrial sector comprising around 300 companies and producing machinery for an overall value of EUR 2.3 billion, with exports amounting to 84% of total sales.
Italian textile machinery is sold in around 130 countries worldwide.
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Moody's downgrades three Mongolian banks following sovereign downgrade

Global Credit Research - 18 Jul 2014

Hong Kong, July 18, 2014 -- Moody's Investors Service has downgraded the local currency long-term deposit ratings for Khan Bank LLC, XacBank LLC, and Trade and Development Bank of Mongolia LLC (TDBM) to B2 from B1. At the same time, Moody's has downgraded the foreign currency long-term senior unsecured debt ratings for TDBM to B3 from B1.
The outlook for all the ratings is negative.
See below for a full list of the ratings, both downgraded and affirmed.
The rating action follows Moody's downgrade of Mongolia's sovereign ratings to B2 from B1 on 17 July 2014. Please see the related press release on
The rating action on the three banks' ratings is based on the consideration that the creditworthiness of the Mongolian banking system is highly correlated to the sovereign. The sovereign downgrade was driven by its strained external liquidity position, as reflected by a sharp loss in foreign-exchange reserves.
Furthermore, expansionary monetary and fiscal policies have added to demand pressures, fuelled inflation, and heightened spillover risks to the banking system and the balance of payments. Accompanied by a continued rise in the external debt burden, these factors increase the country's vulnerability to external and domestic shocks relative to rating peers.
Separately, Moody's rating action on the three banks also takes into account the risks to the banks stemming from the Mongolian government's pump-priming measures, some of which are heavily credit-driven.
Specifically, the Bank of Mongolia -- in addition to policy-rate reductions and fiscal spending -- provided MNT4.3 trillion ($2.6 billion) in loans to the banking system as of end-2013, representing about 40% of total credit for the banking system.
The banks on-lent these loans to targeted industries and their assets accordingly grew by 74% and loans by 54% during 2013.
These developments -- against the current backdrop of macro-economic and export deterioration -- have increased the risks to the banks' liquidity, profitability, asset quality and ultimately -- their capital adequacy.
Liquidity conditions for the banks continue to tighten as loan growth exceeds deposit growth. The system's loan-to-deposit ratio jumped to 97% at end-2013 from 85% a year ago.
Meanwhile, profitability is shrinking, as the banks lower lending rates to support the government's accommodative policies, while maintaining relatively high deposit rates to stem the deterioration in their funding profiles.
Moody's expects the banks' asset quality performance to deteriorate further during the rest of 2014 and into 2015, as the economy remains under pressure, and as loans booked during the continuing credit boom season.
For example, asset quality has deteriorated in the mining and manufacturing sectors, whose NPL ratios stood at 17.9% and 6.4% at end-March 2014, compared to 12.2% and 3.3% a year ago.
The construction sector has not shown a material deterioration and the NPL ratio for the sector stood at 2.9% at end-March 2014. However, loans to the sector grew by 123.7% year-on-year at end-March 2014, twice as fast as systemic loan growth at 54.5%. Once the loans season, we expect substantial asset quality deterioration.
Moreover, the mining sector remains vulnerable to continued slides in commodity prices and demand, while the manufacturing and construction sectors remain exposed to the subdued state of domestic economic growth.
Below we discuss each individual bank.
Trade and Development Bank of Mongolia
Moody's has lowered TDBM's baseline credit assessment (BCA) to b3 from b2. TDBM's BCA of b3 reflects its: (1) solid market position as a leading corporate lender in foreign exchange and trade-related businesses; and (2) diversified funding sources from both domestic depositors and foreign financial institutions.
However, the ratings are constrained by the bank's vulnerability to a deterioration in asset quality, given its high loan concentration and portfolio of corporate loans.
TDBM's top 20 group borrower exposures were equivalent to 366% of its Tier 1 capital, two times higher than those of Khan Bank and XacBank at end-March 2014. More than 50% of these borrowers are also in risky sectors, such as mining and construction. These sectors accounted for 19.4% and 18.1% of its total loans, respectively, at end-March 2014.
TDBM's BCA of b3 also reflects potential challenges related to corporate governance that could arise from its narrow shareholding structure.
Moody's has not incorporated any systemic support notching uplift to TDBM's B3 foreign currency unsecured debt rating, given its assessment of limited foreign currency support capacity of the Mongolia government. This is despite the systemic importance of TDBM -- as the second-largest lender in terms of loans -- in the Mongolian banking system.
However, Moody's has incorporated one notch of systemic support to its local currency deposit rating of B2, given the proven track record of the Mongolian government of providing support to depositors of failed banks such as Anod Bank (unrated), Zoos Bank (unrated) and Savings Bank (unrated). Moody's expects the government to support deposits at banks that are considered to be of high systemic importance to the economy.
Khan Bank
Moody's has lowered Khan Bank's BCA to b2 from b1. Its BCA of b2 reflects its (1) strong franchise in Mongolia as the largest bank in terms of loans, as well as its extensive nationwide branch network, the largest among all domestic banks; and (2) relatively granular loan book given that retail borrowers accounted for over 60% of its total loan portfolio at end-March 2014.
The ratings do not incorporate any uplift for systemic support because Mongolia's sovereign rating is also B2.
Moody's has lowered XacBank's BCA to b2 from b1. The bank's b2 BCA reflects its (1) growing franchise and well-established expertise in micro-finance; and (2) relatively low credit concentration risk.
The bank's local currency deposit rating does not incorporate any uplift for systemic support because the sovereign rating for the Mongolian government is the same as the bank's standalone rating of B2.
What Could Change the Rating - Up
Given that the B2 issuer ratings assigned to Khan Bank and XacBank are the same as the sovereign rating, an upgrade of the banks' ratings is unlikely. A return to a stable outlook would require a return to a stable outlook on the sovereign rating, as well as evidence that asset quality pressures can be contained as loan books season.
Upward pressure on the B3 issuer rating of TDBM could occur if it substantially reduces its borrower concentration and exposure to risky sectors.
What Could Change the Rating - Down
The following factors could exert negative pressure on the three banks' ratings: (1) corporate governance-related problems that cause a loss of depositor confidence, therefore increasing the threat of a deposit flight; (2) a significant deterioration in asset quality; for example new NPLs to gross loans exceeding 4.0%; (3) a rise in concentrations, or a rise in exposures to risky sectors, in particular construction; (4) the Tier 1 ratio falling below 9%; or (5) a significant deterioration in profitability, such that net income is less than 1.4% of average risk weighted assets.
The resultant ratings and actions are listed below:
Trade Development Bank of Mongolia --
• baseline credit assessment of b2 lowered to b3;
• local currency bank deposits rating of B1 downgraded to B2;
• foreign currency bank deposits rating of B2 downgraded to B3;
• issuer rating of B1 downgraded to B3;
• local currency long-term senior unsecured of B1 downgraded to B3;
• foreign currency long-term senior unsecured debt/subordinated debt of B1/B2 downgraded to B3/Caa1; and
• foreign currency long-term senior unsecured MTN/subordinated MTN of (P)B1/(P)B2 downgraded to (P)B3/(P)Caa1.
The revised ratings all carry negative outlooks.
All other ratings were affirmed: Bank Financial Strength of E+; local currency/foreign currency short-term deposits rating of NP; local currency/foreign currency short-term issuer rating of NP; and ST MTN program rating of (P)NP.
Khan Bank --
• baseline credit assessment of b1 lowered to b2;
• local currency bank deposits rating of B1 downgraded to B2;
• foreign currency bank deposits rating of B2 downgraded to B3;
• issuer rating of B1 downgraded to B2; and
• local currency/foreign currency long-term senior unsecured
MTN/subordinated MTN of (P)B1/(P)B2 downgraded to (P)B2/(P)B3.
The revised ratings all carry negative outlooks.
All other ratings were affirmed: Bank Financial Strength of E+; and local currency/foreign currency short-term deposits rating of NP.
XacBank --
• baseline credit assessment of b1 lowered to b2;
• local currency bank deposits rating of B1 downgraded to B2;
• foreign currency bank deposits rating of B2 downgraded to B3;
• issuer rating of B1 downgraded to B2; and
• foreign currency long-term senior unsecured MTN of (P)B1 downgraded to (P)B2.
The revised ratings all carry negative outlooks.
All other ratings were affirmed: Bank Financial Strength of E+; local currency/foreign currency short-term deposit rating of NP; local currency/foreign currency short-term issuer rating of NP; and ST MTN program rating of (P)NP.
The principal methodology used in these ratings was Global Banks published in May 2013. Please see the Credit Policy page on for a copy of this methodology.
Trade and Development Bank of Mongolia LLC, based in Ulaanbaatar, reported total assets of MNT5.1 trillion (US$3.1 billion) as of end-2013.
Khan Bank LLC, based in Ulaanbaatar, reported total assets of MNT4.8 trillion (US$2.9 billion) as of end-2013
XacBank LLC, headquartered in Ulaanbaatar, reported total assets of MNT1.8 trillion (US$1.1 million) as of end-2013.
For ratings issued on a program, series or category/class of debt, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to each rating of a subsequently issued bond or note of the same series or category/class of debt or pursuant to a program for which the ratings are derived exclusively from existing ratings in accordance with Moody's rating practices. For ratings issued on a support provider, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to the rating action on the support provider and in relation to each particular rating action for securities that derive their credit ratings from the support provider's credit rating. For provisional ratings, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to the provisional rating assigned, and in relation to a definitive rating that may be assigned subsequent to the final issuance of the debt, in each case where the transaction structure and terms have not changed prior to the assignment of the definitive rating in a manner that would have affected the rating. For further information please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page for the respective issuer on
For any affected securities or rated entities receiving direct credit support from the primary entity(ies) of this rating action, and whose ratings may change as a result of this rating action, the associated regulatory disclosures will be those of the guarantor entity. Exceptions to this approach exist for the following disclosures, if applicable to jurisdiction: Ancillary Services, Disclosure to rated entity, Disclosure from rated entity.
Regulatory disclosures contained in this press release apply to the credit rating and, if applicable, the related rating outlook or rating review.
Please see for any updates on changes to the lead rating analyst and to the Moody's legal entity that has issued the rating.
Please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page on for additional regulatory disclosures for each credit rating.
The first name below is the lead rating analyst for this Credit Rating and the last name below is the person primarily responsible for approving this Credit Rating.
Hyun Hee Park
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service Hong Kong Ltd.
24/F One Pacific Place
88 Queensway
Hong Kong
China (Hong Kong S.A.R.)
JOURNALISTS: (852) 3758 -1350
SUBSCRIBERS: (852) 3551-3077
Stephen Long
MD - Financial Institutions
Financial Institutions Group
JOURNALISTS: (852) 3758 -1350
SUBSCRIBERS: (852) 3551-3077
Releasing Office:
Moody's Investors Service Hong Kong Ltd.
24/F One Pacific Place
88 Queensway
Hong Kong
China (Hong Kong S.A.R.)
JOURNALISTS: (852) 3758 -1350
SUBSCRIBERS: (852) 3551-3077

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