Sunday, June 8, 2014

Mongolia Brief June 6, 2014 Part III

‘Open Purchase’ hosted today

June 8 (UB Post) In the framework of the 100 day effort to intensity the economy, the State Procurement Office and City Procurement Office will host an “Open Purchase” event at Chinggis Square today.

During the event, the progress and results of state-funded projects conducted in 2013 and 2014, state policy and the revised steps for purchasing being introduced by professional organizations, will be reported to the public.
The event gives tender bid participants the opportunity to consult with professional organizations, an updated handbook, information about investment projects being implemented in rural areas, registration for new A3 training at a 50 percent discount, access to classification codes to participate in online bid, and it will provide advice from the General Department of Taxation and the Agency for Fair Competition and Consumer Rights.
According to the City Procurement Office, the public will be able to get information about purchasing activity and gain access to the purchasing list of participating companies and investment projects being implemented in districts and micro districts.

Mongolia hosts workshop for landlocked developing countries

June 8 (UB Post) The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Mongolia, in cooperation with the Office of the High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States (OHRLLS), hosted a high-level international workshop on “WTO Agreement on Trade Facilitation: Implications for LLDCs” in Ulaanbaatar, on June 2 and 3.
According to the Foreign Affairs Ministry of Mongolia, the meeting reviewed the progress made in improving trade facilitation and capacity-building in the fields of trade facilitation and trade negotiations in LLDCs, examined the major achievements and constraints experienced, and identified the opportunities presented, with a view to further advance the goal of fully integrating LLDCs into the multilateral trading system.
The main objective of the meeting, attended by over 100 delegates representing the Government of Mongolia, landlocked developing countries, partners, transit countries and international organizations, was to provide LLDCs with a better understanding of the provisions in the Trade Facilitation Agreement and its consequences for LLDCs, and to equip them with the necessary knowledge for designing LLDC country or group positions on trade facilitation and action plans for implementation; implementing the commitments resulting from the trade facilitation agreement, including financing, capacity-building and technical assistance provisions and how to effectively take advantage of the trade facilitation provisions available to them.
The event was also important for introducing the International Think Tank for LLDCs, the first international organization to be set up in Mongolia, and its research papers and compiled background documents for future research on identifying the challenges and barriers LLDCs face and listening to their positions.

Ambassador of Turkey visits Khentii Province

June 8 (UB Post) Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary from Turkey to Mongolia Murat Karagoz visited Khentii Province from May 30 through June 1, leading a group of representatives to attend economic and cultural meetings and events.
The Turkish delegates were welcomed by authorities of Khentii Province’s Dadal, Bayan-Undur, and Umnudelger soums. During the official visit Karagoz was introduced to the construction and infrastructure projects and programs being implemented in the province. The Ambassador emphasized that there are wide opportunities to cooperate in the trade and tourism sectors of Khentii Province.
Ambassador Karagoz stated the importance for Republic of Turkey of maintaining friendly relationships and cooperation at both the rural and provincial levels. He also expressed his gratitude for visiting the birth place of Chinggis Khaan. He noted that Khentii Province has a rich population, with Khalkhas, Buriyats and Kazakhs.
A festival was organized for the Ambassador’s visit, where the Ambassador tried on Mongolian national clothing (deel) and awarded the winners of horse racing, wrestling and archery competitions – the three manly games.
The Attaché of Commerce of the Republic of Turkey, Oguz Kuyumcu, and authorities from the Turkish-Mongolia Business and Industrial Union (TÜMOSİAD) accompanied the Ambassador on his second visit to the countryside. He visited Bayan-Ulgii Province last March on an official trip.

Japan to issue grant-aid for human resource development

June 8 (UB Post) An agreement between the governments of Mongolia and Japan to carry out the 242 million JPY “Scholarship program to develop human resources ”project, to be financed by grant aid from the Japanese government, was signed by Foreign Affairs Minister of Mongolia L.Bold and Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary from Japan to Mongolia Takenori Shimizu on Wednesday.
In 1999, the Government of Japan began the “Program to develop human resources” to promote and support human resources in developing countries. Mongolia joined the program in 2001. So far, a total of 12 projects have been implemented in Mongolia, and 277 young Mongolians have enrolled in masters degree programs in Japanese universities and institutes.
With the goal to prepare administrative servants with the skills and capacity to make positive contributions to state policy, the Government of Japan annually grants scholarships to 18 to 20 Mongolian students to pursue MA degrees in law, economics, state management, business management, international relations and information technology in Japan.

MP B.Bat-Erdene sends the President a letter to review granting mineral licenses

June 8 (UB Post) Member of Parliament B.Bat-Erdene sent President Ts.Elbegdorj a letter asking him to review the issue of granting minerals exploration and exploitation licenses stated in the Minerals Law. In his letter, MP B.Bat-Erdene also stated that draft amendments made to the Minerals Law should be discussed through the Civil Hall, hearing the views and opinions of scholars and ordinary citizens.
MP B.Bat-Erdene highlighted that the draft bill to make amendments to the Law on Minerals calls for the re-issue of minerals licenses terminated by the President of Mongolia, and does not mention anything about supporting the participation and control of policy by citizens, local governing bodies and state administrative organizations in the issuing of the licenses, which conflicts with the stated meaning and intentions of the draft bill initiated by the President.
He wanted the President to pay more attention to this issue as the authorities are going to allow mineral exploitation in national parks and borders, and mines included in list of the “Law on Prohibition of Minerals Exploitation and Exploration Near Water Sources, Protected Areas and Forests” will now be identified as strategic mines.

Wheat planting completed

June 8 (UB Post) Crop farmers have completed wheat sowing, which will supply next year’s flour demand, at 315,000 hectares of land.
Flour produced from harvested wheat last year didn’t meet domestic demands, therefore Mongolia planted wheat on additional 15,000 hectares of land this spring. A total of 426,400 tons of wheat is expected to be harvested this fall.
Crop farmers are sowing seed potatoes at 15,500 hectares, vegetables at 8,300 hectares, livestock fodder at 10,000 hectares and rapeseed at 24,000 hectares of land nationwide this spring.
Vegetable sowing is at 70 percent completion as of Wednesday.

Border guards arrest three drug smugglers

June 8 (UB Post) Zamiin Uud soum border guards arrested three Mongolian citizens at Zamiin Uud-Erenhot border checkpoint who were smuggling ice and hashish from China to Mongolia in the morning of June 4.
A large quantity of illegal drugs were hidden inside the suspects’ vehicle.
The smugglers are currently under interrogation at the Authority Against Organized Crimes (AAOC) in Ulaanbaatar.
Drug smuggling cases have been rising in recent years, reported officials of the Border Guard Unit 0108.
A case where a son of an official who works at the General Authority for Border Protection was caught carrying illegal drugs was exposed last winter, while a tradesman was caught smuggle illegal drugs to Mongolia recently. The resolutions of the cases still remain unclear as authorities have yet to release reports on the cases.
According to a study by the AAOC, cases surrounding drug smuggling, dealing, consuming and storing have risen by 60 percent this year as of May compared to 2013.

Provincial authorities visit development projects

June 8 (UB Post) On May 30, provincial authorities conducted an onsite visit to newly built development projects in provinces to review construction work.
This year, an Ulias-styled standard district for 400 households is being built in Ulaangom soum of Uvs Province through a financing from the Local Development Fund. From six companies that submitted bids for the project, Suvarga Bulan LLC and Tavan Goliin Shim Cooperative were chosen. Two sided jointly owned boundary fences of the standard district for 400 households will be sold for 2.5 million MNT, three sided jointly owned boundary fences for 3.25 million MNT and fences that aren’t jointly owned will be sold for 3.5 million MNT.
For starters, two wells will be drilled; electricity and road issues will be resolved; outdoor toilets will be built inside the fences and a bench outside the fences, and ten trees will be planted.
Furthermore, proposal selection for building houses for the first 100 households of ger district styled private houses for 200 households in Ulaangom soum is underway. These houses will be built in 60 to 80 square meter areas. As for hardware engineering, houses will be fully equipped with internal power connections and water, sewage and heating installations. Buyers can choose to opt for a floor-heating system. Fences, pedestrian paths and roads for car access will be built as part of the project.
Provincial authorities also reviewed the construction work of the stadium for Naadam Festival.
Aside from these development works, the Governor’s Office of Ulaangom commenced a green facility project. The green facilities will be established in nine locations with around 30 million MNT from the Local Development Fund. Uvs Green Movement nongovernmental organization was selected to undertake the project and the work is currently in progress.

Tuberculosis to be diagnosed in under two hours

June 8 (UB Post) Darkhan-Uul Province Health Center received GeneXpert automated diagnostic test device, laptop and related tuberculosis software as part of Mongolia’s central tuberculosis project, with the support of the Global Fund earlier this week. The equipment were purchased at the total cost of 32 million MNT.
Minister of Health N.Udval said that early tuberculosis diagnosis has increased 13 percent which is a sign that more people are gaining a chance to be treated and cured.
“Previously, it took 76 days to diagnose tuberculosis, while it is now available in only two hours with the device,” she added.
The medical staff that will utilize the equipment will be trained and the equipment will be installed according to standards at the center by professionals.
Once the device is fully operational, the province residents will be able to receive diagnosis for early stages of tuberculosis, HIV, and other illnesses that are caused by tuberculosis.

State provides 14 ambulances for Children’s Emergency Medical Center

June 8 (UB Post) The Office of the Ulaanbaatar City Governor handed over 14 new ambulances to the city’s Children’s Emergency Medical Center this week. The ambulances have been purchased through the city budget.
The ambulances have been purchased as part of Governor E.Bat-Uul’s Ordinance A/1055, issued in 2013, to improve emergency medical services in the city. Especially the children’s emergency service operates under a very high load with an average of 70 to 80 emergency calls a day.

Mongolia signs on for 125 million USD loan with ADB

June 8 (UB Post) Minister of Economic Development N.Batbayar on Monday signed a 125 million USD loan agreement with Asian Development Bank (ADB) Country Director Robert Schoellhammer to finance the second phase of the Western Regional Road Corridor Development plan.
The loan is expected to finance the construction of a 189.7 km road forming a western corridor. The road project travels from Khovd Province to Khashaat Davaa-Tolbo soum of Bayan Ulgii Province, and from Nogoonnuur soum of Bayan Ulgii Province to the Ulaanbaishint border port in Tsagaannuur soum of Bayan Ulgii.
The road project, which is part of a 743.1 km road project from Yarant port of Khovd Province to Ulaanbaishint border port, is expected to be complete by 2016.
The 125 million USD agreement was signed under a 15 year term with a five year grace period.

Mongolian Academy Awards 2014 to be organized on June 13

June 8 (UB Post) The highest movie awards of the Mongolian National Film Academy, the Academy Awards, is scheduled to take place at Mongol Shiltgeen on June 13.
Mongolian films produced and screened between June of 2013 to June 8 of 2014 will compete in this year’s Academy Awards.
The Mongolian National Film Academy was founded in 2008 with the purpose to select best artists, to introduce newly screened works and to register movies, documentary films and short films in the Mongolian film archive.
This year’s Academy Awards will award artists and film makers in 18 categories:
• Best picture
• Best male protagonist
• Best supporting actor
• Best female protagonist
• Best supporting actress
• Best director
• Best cameraman
• Best art director
• Best music
• Best song
• Best montage
• Best sound engineer
• Best writer
• Best visual effect
• Best make-up
• Best documentary film
• Best investor
• Best short film

Dog Exhibition to take place

June 8 (UB Post) The Mongolian Kynological Federation and Misheel Group announced that they will jointly organize the Dog Exhibition 2014 for the first time at Misheel Expo Center on June 7 and 8.
During the exhibition, dog food and dog accessory sales will be held. Dog breeding centers and veterinarians will participate in exhibition.

Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism to hold Open Day

June 8 (UB Post) The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism will hold its Open Day at the Chinggis Square on June 8.
Organizations related to culture, sports and tourism sectors will participate in the event and residents are able to gain insight into their operations and services.
Mongolian cultural heritages registered in UNESCO will be introduced at the Open Day, and fitness and health advices.

Visually impaired students compete in international arts competition

June 8 (UB Post) The 17th Radost Tvorit international arts competition for visually impaired children was organized recently.
Children of School No. 116 for visually impaired children participated in the competition for the first time.
Students B.Sumiyabazar, 15, and U.Khongor, 19, have been awarded special prizes.
The representatives of the Mongolian Embassy to Czech represented the children at the award ceremony in Prague.
Vice-President of the Senate of Parliament of Czech Alena Gajduskova and Governor of Zlin region Misak Stanislav took part in the ceremony.
The competition was held as one of the events for children within the 54th international Zlin Film Festival for Children and Youth, held annually from May 30 to June 5 in the city.

Mongolia wins two gold at International Freestyle Wrestling Open

June 8 (UB Post) The International Freestyle Wrestling Open Tournament was held in Yakutsk, Russia.
Twelve Mongolian wrestlers competed in the tournament under the guidance of coach O.Purevbaatar.
Mongolian wrestlers B.Nemekhbayar won a gold medal in the men’s 65 kg contest and E.Iderkhuu won gold in the men’s 74 kg event.

Mongolian judokas won five medals from Krasnoyarsk

June 8 (UB Post) The International Judo Tournament for Men took place in Krasnoyarsk, Russia this month.
Mongolian judokas captured two gold, a silver and two bronze medals at the International Judo Tournament.
Judokas from Russia, Mongolia, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Kazakhstan competed in the tournament.
International Sports Master D.Altansukh won gold in the 66 kg contest and International Sports Master B.Janchivdorj won gold in the 100 kg contest. Sports Master N.Khadbaatar won silver in the 73 kg contest, and International Sports Master B.Khishigbayar and Sports Master N.Ser-Od won bronze medals.
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