Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Mongolia Brief May 21, 2014



Minister of Justice Meets President of Federal Criminal Police Office

Ulaanbaatar, May 20 (MONTSAME) The Minister of Justice Kh.Temuujin Tuesday received visiting Mr Jorg Ziercke, the president of the Federal Criminal Police Office of Germany (Bundeskriminalamt).

At the meeting, the Minister introduced to Mr Ziercke legal reforms running in Mongolia, and said the police department of Mongolia has an aspiration to expand the cooperation with its counterpart of Germany. Mongolia wants to study experience of the Federal Criminal Police and to collaborate in improving professional skills of staffers.
In turn, Mr Ziercke highly spoke works done in frames of the legal reforms in Mongolia, and emphasized an importance of enhancing the ties and cooperation between the police departments.  


Mongolia to cut the interest income tax

May 20 (business-mongolia.com) Following the high inflation rate in the country the interest rate of saving account is high in Mongolia around 12%-14% annually. Also, if you save in USD it will be around 4-6% annually. However, there is a high interest income tax for foreigners who save in dollars. Today, Mongolian government and the Central Bank is discussing on removing the tax burden to attract more account holders in Mongolian Banks. Perhaps it is one of the measures the government is taking to attract foreign currency inflows.


Russian servicemen to take part in int'l military drills in Mongolia

May 21 (Voice of Russia) More than 65 units of military hardware belonging to troops of the Russian Eastern military district will take part in the active stage of a drill for liquidation of assumed "illegal armed formations" in the framework of international maneuvers "Selenga-2014", the press service of the Eastern Military District told ITAR-TASS, quoting an agreement reached by Russia and Mongolia in the second round of consultations on the joint maneuvers.
The Russian side is planning to deliver to Mongolia 152mm self-propelled artillery installations Akatsiya, multiple-rocket launch systems Grad, air defense self-propelled installations Shilka, helicopters Mi-24 belonging to an Air Force base of the Eastern military district stationed in the Baikal region, the press service said.
The Russian commanders are planning to reinforce a ground force component of the Russian troops sent to the exercises, employing more than 20 personnel armored carriers, seven T-72 tanks and several 120mm mortar launchers Vasilyok.
All the hardware will be delivered from Russia to Mongolia by a military train. The hardware will be unloaded at Bayan-Tumen railway station in Mongolia from where it will move to the area where a field camp of the joint group of troops will be stationed.
The Russo-Mongolian exercises "Selenga-2014" will be held on a test range in Choybalsan, Mongolia, in the third decade of August. Around 500 Russian servicemen of a motor-rifle regiment, permanently stationed in Buryatia (Baikal region, Russia) will take part in the joint maneuvers with an overall number of around a thousand participants.
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President of Russian Federation Accepts All Initiations

Extended by President of Mongolia to Strengthen Bilateral Cooperation

May 21 (infomongolia.com) On May 20, 2014, President of Mongolia, Mr. Tsakhia ELBEGDORJ held a meeting with the President of the Russian Federation, Mr. Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin in Shanghai during the participation at the Fourth Summit of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA).
The meeting was arranged in a hotel, where President V.V.Putin is staying and at the beginning of meeting, Russian President mentioned long lasting traditionally historical friendly ties between the two countries and expressed optimistic future tendencies. President also emphasized the 75th anniversary of the victory by Soviet-Mongolian Army over the Kwantung Army of Japan in the Battles at the River Khalkh, Mongolia, which will be celebrating in August 2014, is a part of historical relations and stressed, “Nevertheless, our two countries have some issues to communicate, in particular, on how to further expand relations and how to change economic structure in terms of mutually beneficial cooperation”.
At the meeting President Ts.Elbegdorj expressed his willingness to discuss on several topics, for instances, railway transit transportation, celebration of the Khalkh Gol anniversary as well as to abolish visa formalities between citizens of the two countries, and noted, “Mongolia is located between the People’s Republic of China and the Russian Federation, and by the means of this geographical location, the transit by rail and other transport means via Mongolian territory is the shortest way to connect the two neighbors and would be very significant. Therefore, we would like to collaborate in mutually beneficial by choosing most optimal solution to develop railway transportation. In this regard, by organizing Russia-China-Mongolia trilateral and Russia-Mongolia bilateral dialogues would play an important role”.
Mongolian President also proposed to organize trilateral dialogue on railway transit transportation in Ulaanbaatar and added, “Railway and transit transportation issues are related to the interests of both countries and is a strategic issue. In upcoming August, the 75th anniversary of the victory at Khalkh River will be marking, this is our joint victory, therefore, we would like to celebrate this historical event together and please accept our invitation to participate”.
President of the Russian Federation assured all initiations extended by the President of Mongolia and expressed his readiness to revise and collaborate, moreover invited President Ts.Elbegdorj to visit Moscow.
The separate meeting conducted between the Presidents of Mongolia and the Russian Federation was concluded in a friendly atmosphere focused on strengthening bilateral economic traditional cooperation and topics discussed between the two states of head will be considered during the upcoming an official visit of the Prime Minister of Mongolia, N.Altankhuyag to Saint Petersburg, Russia.
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Swedish Ambassador Visits City Library

Ulaanbaatar, May 21 (MONTSAME) The Ambassador of Sweden to Mongolia Mr Lars Freden visited Wednesday the Khan-Uul district library, an affiliated library of the city main library named after Mongolian writer D.Natsagdorj.
The Ambassador is paying a working visit to Ulaanbaatar in connection with the 50th anniversary of the establishment of Mongolia-Sweden diplomatic relationship, which falls on this June 6.
In the  library, Mr Freden gave pupils of the city school no. 4 copies of books by a Swedish writer of fiction and screenplays Astrid Lindgren, best known for children’s book series featuring ‘Pippi Longstocking’, ‘Karlsson-on-the-Roof’ and ‘the Six Bullerby Children’. Astrid Lindgren is well-known here for ‘Karlsson on the Roof’.


Local Health Department to Get New Ambulances

Ulaanbaatar, May 21 (MONTSAME) In frames of a "National Emergency Network" program, a health department of Omnogobi province is to acquire three Germany-made ambulance cars.
They will be supplied by Nordhorn district-headquartered “Was” company. The Mongolian specialists have already got acquainted with the cars and an operation system in Germany.
The ambulances will be put on service to the local inhabitants in near future. 


SUMO/ Hakuho maintains slim lead over Kisenosato, Ikioi on Day 10

May 20 (Asahi Shimbun) Grand champion Hakuho overpowered Tochiozan on May 20 to stay undefeated and in sole possession of the lead with five days remaining in the Summer Grand Sumo Tournament.
In the day's final bout at Tokyo's Ryogoku Kokugikan, Hakuho was given a brief scare when he was knocked off balance by the sekiwake grappler but, showing the poise of a yokozuna, recovered to calmly force down his opponent and improve to a perfect 10-0. Tochiozan fell to 6-4.
Mongolian Hakuho, who is bidding for his 29th Emperor's Cup, maintained his one-win lead over ozeki Kisenosato and No. 5 maegashira Ikioi.
In other major bouts, grand champion Kakuryu, who was handed his third loss on May 19, got back on the winning track when he got a right-hand grip on the belt of Aminishiki and hoisted the No. 3 maegashira out to improve to 7-3. Aminishiki fell to an even 5-5.
It's been a rough debut at sumo's highest rank for the Mongolian Kakuryu, who hasn't looked as sharp as he was in the spring tourney where he went 14-1.
Grand champion Harumafuji of Mongolia improved to 8-2 when he got an armlock on Goeido and shoved the sekiwake out over the edge to his fifth loss.
Kisenosato kept the pressure on Hakuho and improved to 9-1 when he posted a hard-fought win over fellow ozeki Kotoshogiku. Kisenosato was pushed back to the edge by the determined Kotoshogiku, but recovered to shove his opponent out and stay in the title chase. Kotoshogiku, who got a bloody nose at the face-off, dropped to 5-5.
Fifth-ranked maegashira Ikioi also stayed in the title hunt at 9-1 when he used an armlock throw to send No. 8 maegashira Takayasu sprawling to the dirt surface and his fifth loss.
Crowd favorite Endo, a No. 4 maegashira, was handed his fifth straight loss and fell to 4-6 when he was swatted down by No. 2 maegashira Chiyotairyu, who improved to 3-7.
Top maegashira Aoiyama used a series of arm thrusts to send Yoshikaze back at the face-off before swatting the komusubi down to improve to 5-5. Yoshikaze dropped to 3-7.
Komusubi Chiyootori overpowered Takekaze to pick up his third win against seven losses. Top maegashira Takekaze fell to a record of 5-5.
Further down the ranks, No. 17 maegashira Sadanoumi improved to 8-2 when he forced out No. 10 maegashira Tochinowaka, who dropped to 6-4.
Egypt's Osunaarashi, also a No. 10 maegashira, picked up his sixth win against four losses when he swatted down Shohozan, a No. 5 maegashira, who fell to 5-5.



"Remote Control" to Participate at SIFF

Ulaanbaatar, May 21 (MONTSAME)  A Mongolian feature film "Remote Control" by S.Byamba is to be screened at the 40th Seattle International Film Festival /SIFF/ on May 22 and 24.
At the SIFF, which is running May 15-June 8, our producer S.Byamba has been nominated for “New Producer Award” together with twelve foreigners.
Previously, it was included in the program of Belgium's "Moovee" international film festival that ran April 27-May 4. After the SIFF, the "Remote Control" is to be presented at international film festivals of Munich (June 27-July 5), London (October 8-19) and Warsaw (October 10-19).
The film revolves around Tsogoo (Enkhtaivan Bassandorj), a young man hailing from a broken rural family -- alcoholic father, cold stepmother, a crooked elder brother who has long bolted to the city -- whose regular milk-selling trips to capital Ulaanbaatar has opened his eyes to a life (possibly) less ordinary. After one bust-up too many with his parents, he leaves for the city and camps atop an apartment block where he surveys everything below and begins to dream of leading the lives he sees.
SIFF is the largest festival in the USA and this year, it will screen 440 films: 198 features (plus 4 secret films), 60 documentaries, 14 archival films, and 168 shorts, representing 83 countries. The films include 44 World premieres (20 features, 24 shorts), 30 North American premieres (22 features, 8 shorts), and 14 US premieres (8 features, 6 shorts); the Shorts Competition section has yet to be announced.


Altanbulag Free Trade Zone 

May 21 (Mongolian Economy) Yesterday, Mongolian officials met to discuss the new Altanbulag Free Trade Zone (AFTZ) on Mongolia’s northern border with Russia. After investing MNT 23 billion for the past 12 years, the opening ceremony will finally be held next month on June 22. This Free Trade Zone opened discussions on how this new development can impact Mongolia’s economy as well as company operations in the near future.
Following the opening ceremony, an exhibition will be held until the end of June in the AFTZ allowing businessmen and all others who are interested in the project to attend. To keep in spirits with celebration, there will be 60 containers that can be filled with products, free of charge, to pass through the Free Trade Zone into Russia. 
This project aims to better improve relations between both Russia and China by allowing the circulation of products between China and Russia through Mongolia. Another Free Trade Zone on the border of Mongolia and China in Manjuur, will further help the transportation of Russian and Chinese products. The distance between Manjuur and Altanbulag is 1320 kilometers, saving both nations lengthy travels by channeling trade within Mongolia’s borders. 
Russia and China previously created a strategic partnership in 2015 that will amount to approximately 100 billion USD in trade. 20% of the profits already pass through the Free Trade Zone of Manjuur, and officials hope to see another 10% run through Altanbulag in the near future. This project is expected to earn Mongolia up to USD 100 million in profits. With this and tax free pressure for the next five years, the project is expected to help the economy grow while improving relations between both Russia and China. 
With its strategic location, Altabulag also boasts ease of travel. Russia residents can enter Altanbulag without a visa and Mongolia residents can enter with a driver’s license or their national ID. Due to this, transportation in and out of the Free Trade Zone will flourish over time. 


SDC Director-General Visits Ulaanbaatar to Celebrate Switzerland-Mongolia 50 Years of Diplomatic Relations and

10 Years of Cooperation

May 21 (infomongolia.com) In 2014, the Swiss Confederation and Mongolia are celebrating the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations and the 10th anniversary of Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) in Mongolia.
To mark this occasion, the SDC Director-General Mr. Martin Dahinden is visiting Ulaanbaatar from May 20 to 22, where he will meet high-level government representatives and represent Switzerland at the official celebrations.
The Swiss Confederation and Mongolia have established diplomatic relations on May 22, 1964. In his capacity as representative of the Swiss Government at the 50th anniversary celebrations, SDC Director-General and Ambassador Martin Dahinden is meeting with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Luvsanvandan BOLD, the Deputy Minister of Industry and Agriculture Mr. Tsevegdorj TUVAAN, Minister of Labor Mr. Yadamsuren SANJMYATAV and the Head of the “Justice” Coalition Mr. Namdag BATTSEREG respectively in Ulaanbaatar on May 21, 2014. The talks will focus on bilateral relations and Switzerland's activities in the context of development cooperation. Other subjects of discussion will be cooperation on migration, the fight against human trafficking and the Swiss Chairmanship of the OSCE, where Mongolia is the most recent state joined the OSCE as the 57th participating State.
Since establishing diplomatic relations, Switzerland and Mongolia have maintained friendly contacts and, since 2008, political consultations have taken place at a two-yearly rhythm, most recently was held in Bern on March 24, 2014. Switzerland has an excellent reputation in Mongolia. In particular, Switzerland's model of direct democracy is highly regarded in Mongolian Government circles.
Decentralizing the system of the Government is a priority of Swiss Development Cooperation in Mongolia. In addition, the SDC supports Mongolia in promoting civil society. Other thematic priorities of Swiss development cooperation over the past ten years, during which the countries' bilateral relations have been considerably expanded, are agriculture and food security as well as vocational education and training and small-scale mining.
In agriculture, the SDC is currently involved in potato and vegetable growing (improved varieties, seed and storage), providing support for herders’ cooperatives for the purpose of improving use of pasture land, wool marketing, building up veterinary facilities and introducing a national livestock insurance scheme.
In the field of vocational education and training, the SDC focuses on the employability of young people and adults, and supports the Mongolian government among other things in developing short-term professional training programs and advisory services. 
The SDC cooperation office in Ulaanbaatar was opened in 2004 and has been implementing timely projects such as Pasture Management Project and Fighting Against Desertification Project, and the Swiss Humanitarian Aid was provided to Mongolia since 2001 during severe winter periods called “zud” or “dzud“.
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Anniversary of Mongolia-Sweden Diplomatic Relations Begins

Ulaanbaatar, May 21 (MONTSAME) A ceremony took place Tuesday in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to start the 50th anniversary of the Mongolia-Sweden diplomatic relations.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs L.Bold addressed the gathered among whom were L.Tsog, a Vice Speaker of parliament; Yo.Otgonbayar, a head of the Mongolia-Sweden inter-parliamentary group; heads of the diplomatic missions and international organizations’ offices in Ulaanbaatar, and Honorary Consul of Sweden.
The FM said the Mongolia-Sweden friendly relations and cooperation have been intensively developing, high-level visits have been running, and the two countries can expand the cooperation in the energy, mining, environment and other areas.
Concurrent Non-Resident Ambassador of the Kingdom of Sweden to Mongolia Mr Lars Freden underlined that an official visit of the Mongolian President to Sweden in 2012 forwarded a development of the relations and cooperation and fortified their basis.
Mongolia and Sweden established diplomatic relations on June 30 of 1964. 


Foreign Minister Meets Swedish Ambassador

Ulaanbaatar, May 21 (MONTSAME) The Minister of Foreign Affairs L.Bold Tuesday received Mr Lars Freden, the Concurrent Non-Resident Ambassador of the Kingdom of Sweden to Mongolia Tuesday.
Mr Bold emphasized the 50th anniversary of the bilateral diplomatic relations establishment, and expressed a satisfaction with an intensive development of the bilateral relations and cooperation. He also affirmed that the Royal family members of the Kingdom of Sweden have been invited to Mongolia, and then shared views with the Ambassador on the cooperation in politics, economy, energy and mining sectors.
The sides also exchanged views on setting up an intergovernmental commission with a purpose of widening the cooperation, and said it must have concrete directions.


Minister of Economic Development Submits Bills

Ulaanbaatar, May 21 (MONTSAME) The Minister of Economic Development N.Batbayar Tuesday submitted to the Speaker Z.Enkhbold bills on ratifying two credit agreements for a programme on higher education and for a nutrition project, and one financing agreement for developing ger areas.
A middle-term programme for the Mongolia-Japan strategic partnership, approved during the official visit of the Mongolian Premier to Japan, reflects an implementation of a project on higher education of engineering and technology. Accordingly, this project will be realized with a soft-loan from the Japanese side.
The credit and financing agreements for the “Nutrition and social welfare project: Additional financing” and for the programme on developing ger areas and investment promotion must be ratified by parliament because they are considered as documents on the credit from foreign country and international organization by the law on international deals, Batbayar said.


N.Batbayar: Law on Purchasing Products and Services Must Be Amended

Ulaanbaatar, May 21 (MONTSAME) The Minister of Economic Development N.Batbayar Tuesday submitted to parliament a draft new wording of the law on purchasing products, works and services. "This should be urgently discussed," he emphasized.
The economic growth of Mongolia is increasing recent years thanks to a boost in the mining sector, but projects financed by the state budget are not being implemented on time, showing thus less effectiveness under the current tender system. It causes troubles in implementation of a development policy, "so the current law on purchasing products, works and services with capitals of state and localities budgets must be altered," the Minister said.
One of the main objectives of the new wording is to abolish a delay in any project, program or measure, Batbayar added.


Ulaanbaatar Mayor Works at ‘11 11’ Center

Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ During his interview given to the Cabinet’s "11 11" center on Wednesday, Ulaanbaatar Mayor informed the city people on some actions.
In the city, he said, people can own now lands in 52 areas, according to the City General Planning dating February 2013. Today, 93 thousand out of 1.3 million people living in the city have been given lands in the territories of Ulaanbaatar. In order to avoid any burdens, software for land ownership application has become available for the remaining 40 thousand, but applicants must be registered as Ulaanbaatar residents earlier than the date of a relevant decision to allot lands, he said.
This year, projects on waste treatment, road building and crossroad extension will be implemented under the city’s planned budget of 230 billion togrog, said the Governor, referring a road building project to take place north of the Bogd Khan Mountain, and the Yarmag road paving project in western Ulaanbaatar. Yarmag road paving is expected to be completed before the Naadam festival (July 11), facilitating travels from the city to the horse race areas.
The City Mayor also talked about ongoing projects in urban areas, which include sidewalks building and extending, increasing green facilities and planning of tour areas by the Tuul River. The ger (national dwelling) re-planning is continuing persistent with the plans, he noted. Proper infrastructural development will reach every corner of the city by 2030, with 80-100 thousand apartments to shelter the city residents.
Reforms will begin in the urban public transports this fall, he said. The city buses will not be allowed to carry more than ten standing passengers.


Delegation of Nepalese Government Visiting

Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ A delegation of Nepal’s Ministries for Children, Women and Social Welfare and of Justice, Domestic Affairs and Labour are paying a visit here.
The delegation is getting familiarized with some state organizations who focuses on combating against human trafficking. About this and more has told the guests State Secretary of the Ministry of Justice J.Bayartsetseg.
Our parliament passed the law on combating human trafficking in 2012, making a vital step in creating a legal environment for fighting against this crime. The law aims to put control over the crime, to increase participation of state organizations, NGOs and citizens in combating, to ensure rights of victims, to rehabilitate their health, help them get socialized, to save their reputation, freedom and personal security, Bayartsetseg said.
The delegation will be here until Friday.


Prime Minister to Visit Russia

Ulaanbaatar, May 21 (MONTSAME) The Prime Minister N.Altankhuyag will head to the Russian Federation on Thursday.
The Premier will take part in international economic forum that will run at initiative of the Russian President Vladimir Putin. He has been invited by the Russian side.
Some sources say the Premier is expected to meet with Mr Putin. The two countries plan to exchange views on building the Russia-China gas pipelines and other five pipes through Mongolian territory, and on the Mongolia-Russia relations.
The Premier's visit will last until May 25.


"Consult Expo-2014" Fair Opens

Ulaanbaatar, May 21 (MONTSAME) With a financial support of the Business Advisory Service /BAS/ of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development /EBRD/, the “Consult Expo-2014”  fair opened at the National Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Wednesday.
This two-day action has been organized by the Institute of Mongolian Management Consultants. It has  brought together 50 private and non-government consulting organizations that offer advisory services in marketing, management, research, human resources, business planning, finance, audit, insurance, investment, IT, engineering and mining.
During the fair, specialized consultants are giving professional service to businessmen and entrepreneurs.
The opening ceremony was attended by Ts.Javsanjav, a deputy director of the Chamber, N.Battogtokh, a head of Small and Medium Enterprise Development Department at the Ministry of Labor, and Mr Matthieu Le Blan, the Permanent Representative of the EBRD in Mongolia.  
The EBRD's Business Advisory Services in Mongolia was established in 2008 with an aim to support small- and medium-sized business people and to connect them to foreign and domestic consultants.


Uvs Province Receives Wheat Grain

Ulaanbaatar, May 21 (MONTSAME) As a result of earlier-established cooperation memorandum between the provincial administration and the Russian importers, farmers of the northern Uvs province have received two sorts of high quality wheat grain imported from Russia.
The provincial administration spent 110 million togrog from the Province Development Fund to improve the quality of the wheat sown by the locals. The aimag imported 125 ton of wheat grain of so-called Altaisky-70 and Cantigersky-89 sorts to give the farmers.


US Basketball Team to Have Friendly Matches Here

Ulaanbaatar, May 21 (MONTSAME) In celebration of the 10th anniversary, SBL Khasyn Khulguud, Mongolian basketball club has invited to Mongolia the U.S. Eagles basketball team playing in the US National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Men’s Division I.
As a pleasant surprise to the Mongolian basketball lovers, USA Eagles are to arrive in Ulaanbaatar on May 23 to have friendly matches with SBL Khasyn Khulguud club May 25, and with the national basketball team of Mongolia on May 26.


Boys’ Basketball Team Defeats Polish Rivals

Ulaanbaatar, May 21 (MONTSAME) A boys’ team for basketball from the city’s 33rd secondary school has defeated the Polish junior team from Plotzk city at a friendly match on Monday.
The Mongolian team gained more scores at every stage of the match. They are qualified to compete in the friendly match in the Polish school from the junior league championship of Ulaanbaatar which ran from February to April this year.
Meanwhile, a girls’ team from the city’s 87th secondary school lost to the selected team of Plotzk.
Following the friendly matches, a head of the Plotzk-based “Mon-Pol” club granted the “Silver Wolf” and “Bronze Wolf” cups to Mr T.Bayasakh, a deputy governor of Bayanzurkh district, and to directors of the schools.  


Provincial Artists to Perform in Europe

Ulaanbaatar, May 21 (MONTSAME) Artists of musical drama theatre of Khovsgol province is to tour European countries from May 28.
Aimed to promote Mongolia abroad, this tour has been co-organized by the Mongolia-France cultural center and “Uurdiin Mongol” non-government organization.
The artists are planning their best performances in some 40 European countries within three months. On May 24, they will give this concert at the Trade Union Cultural Palace in the UB city. 

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