Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Mongolia Brief September 18, 2014 Part III

Stock exchange news for September 18
By B. Khuder
Ulaanbaatar, September 18 (MONTSAME) At the Stock Exchange trades on Thursday, a total of 2,054 shares of nine JSCs were traded costing MNT four million 505 thousand and 023.00.

"Mongolia Telecom” /1,050 units/, “Sor” /290 units/, “APU” /250/, “State Department Store” /177 units/ and "Mogoin gol” /104 units/ were the most actively traded in terms of trading volume, in terms of trading value were "Mongolia Telecom” (MNT one million and 365 thousand), "Mogoin gol (MNT one million and 144 thousand), “APU” (MNT 915 thousand), "Sor” (MNT 622 thousand and 960) and "Makh impex” (MNT 293 thousand and 250).
The total market capitalization was set at MNT one trillion 617 billion 534 million 331 thousand and 759. The Index of Top-20 JSCs was 16,116.23, decreasing 9.78 units or 0.06% against the previous day.

Minister meets doctors on Infant Health matters
By B. Amarsaikhan
Ulaanbaatar, September 18 (MONTSAME) Minister of Health N.Udval received Thursday Swiss pediatricians Raul Schmidt and Thomas Bauman. The sides discussed the results of Mongolia-Swiss joint project called “Preventive treatment and earlier diagnosis of hip joint hypogenesis of infants”.
The project launched in 2008 at the National Health Center for Mother and Infant (NHCMI).
In the first stage of the project, the center was provided with ultra-sound apparatuses, medical utilities and equipment, and trainings were held for the medical staff in 2010-2011. Also 8544 infants born at the center, had the chance to have ultra-sound examinations of hip joints, within one or two days after their births. The pediatricians of the maternity center have been executing the examination and sending the examination results to the Swiss doctors for reaffirmation, and collaborated throughout the diagnostic processes.
Currently seven aimags (provinces) of Mongolia’s western region are considered as targeted areas of the project, some 200 pediatricians and 20 consulting doctors have been trained in a scope of the project, and the hospitals of the aimags have been facilitated with required equipment.
The results of the project’s first stage show that the hip-joint hypogenesis among infants is not a rare phenomenon in Mongolia. And the infant disorders can now be diagnosed by the trained pediatricians of maternal centers.
The second stage of the project launched in 2014 when the Ministry of Health adopted “Nation-wide programme of Infant Examination” to be realized in first, second and third maternal centers of Ulaanbaatar, and in all 21 aimags.
The pediatricians from Switzerland have visited Bayankhongor aimag, and have held trainings for the doctors and organized facilitation for the maternal center. It is necessary to develop assessment mechanisms for the project implementation and attempts to hold trainings in other aimags where the project actions could not reach, they noted.
 The Health Minister thanked the doctors for the project they started, which have expanded into a nation-wide programme, added that infant examination programme will be kept in the “Earlier diagnosis of infectious diseases programme” to run in 2015, with the Government funding.
In recognition of their valuable contribution to health of Mongolia, especially in health of infants, Dr. Schmidt and Dr. Bauman have received the medals of honor from the Ministry.

About wrestlers, archers and athletes to compete in AG for Mongolia
By B. Khuder
Ulaanbaatar, September 18 (MONTSAME) In times of approaching of the 17th Asian Games opening in Incheon, the national federations for some sports have announced names of athletes to compete in the Asian Games for Mongolia.
In accordance with a decision of the Mongolia’s Freestyle Wrestling Federation, 12 wrestlers will compete in the freestyle and Greco-Roman events of the AG. Thus, the national team has comprised B.Nomin (men’s freestyle 57 kg), T.Tuvshintulga (61 kg), B.Batmagnai, D.Gombodorj (74 kg), P.Osokhbayar (86 kg), D.Khuderbulga (97 kg), J.Chuluunbat (125 kg), E.Narangerel (women’s 48 kg), S.Byambatseren (55 kg), S.Tserenchimed (63 kg), O.Burmaa (75 kg) and P.Erdenebileg (men’s Greco-Roman 52 kg).
The wrestling team is headed by D.Dagvadorj, the president of the Freestyle Wrestling Federation; and O.Bayanmonkh, the federation’s secretary-general. The wrestlers are also coached by five coaches. Two Mongolians have been included in the judges’ panel as well.
The Federation of Archery Sport of Mongolia selected archers to compete in the AG, and the national team has included 14 archers.
The men’s team comprised G.Gan-Erdene, J.Gantogs, G.Myagmardorj, B.Doljinsuren, J.Tulga, N.Olziikhutag, P.Jamyangombo; the women’s team--A.Enkhtuya, D.Miroslova, J.Dagiijanchiv, B.Urantungalag, E.Bolormaa, B.Batdulam and O.Buyanjargal.
13 runners including B.Ser-Od, a State Honored Sportsman and long-distance runner will compete in the athletics events of the Asian Games.
Apart from Ser-Od, the men’s athletics team has comprised G.Shijirbat (100 m running), B.Achitbileg (100 m and 200 m), N.Enkhtor (200 m), A.Akyt (400 m and 800 m), G.Odkhuu (800 m and 1,500 m), N.Monkhbayar (1500 m and 5000 m), B.Dorjpalam (5,000 m and 10,000 m), Ts.Byambajav (10,000 m), D.Gantulga (marathon); the women’s team--M.Shinetseteg (800 m and 1,500 m), B.Monkhzaya (5,000 m and 10,000 m), and P.Maamuu (shot put).

Unprecedented program launched in UB to safeguard drinking water sources
By M. Zoljargal
September 18 (UB Post) Ulaanbaatar City administrators put together the first-ever program on protecting drinking water for the Mongolian population, with the assistance of the World Health Organization (WHO).
WHO estimates that 74 possible risks face the nation’s drinking water sources and raised 168 solutions which have been included in the program.
The completed program was supported by Ulaanbaatar City Council’s (UCC) Commission for Environment and Ecology and it will be discussed in the regular meeting of the UCC next Monday.
If approved, households and businesses located near drinking-water sources (artesian wells and rivers) will be relocated with the cooperation of land management authorities; bacteria research will be conducted at several locations; solid waste disposal sites will be eradicated; and leather and cashmere factories, which are common sources of river pollution, will be relocated to the outskirts of the city as part of the program.
Approximately 1.2 million people live in the Tuul River basin area, where 170 artesian wells are located, while over 20,000 factories and businesses are operating along the river. Farms covering 400 hectares of land constantly take water from the Tuul for their irrigation systems, in addition to river water used for 330,000 livestock and three thermal power plants.
Ulaanbaatar residents use 150,000 to 160,000 cubic meters of drinking water per day, while offices use another daily 150,000 cubic meters of water from central water distribution lines. All the drinking water is taken from public and private wells in ger areas, according to the Office of the Ulaanbaatar City Governor.
Yet, water demands are increasing day by day, in relation to flourishing industries and a rising population in the city, while the safety of the 170 primary wells remains questionable due to widespread illegal construction and gravel mining, and general human interference.
A lack of water treatment plants, increasing outdoor toilets and the open disposal of greywater are all affecting not only water sources, but also soil pollution. The polluted soil runs into the Tuul River during heavy rain and pollutes the water, according to many years of study, reported the program coordinators.
Both the organizers and WHO aim to minimize pollution and prevent threats facing drinking water sources as soon as possible.

PM receives ILO’s Asia-Pacific Regional Director
By Ch. Khaliun
September 18 (UB Post) Prime Minister N.Altankhuyag called on representatives led by the Regional Director of the International Labour Organization (ILO) for Asia and the Pacific region, Yoshiteru Uramoto, and exchanged views on opportunities to implement projects in Mongolia.
The ILO officials expressed that they can contribute to improving the entrepreneurial skills of Mongolian SMEs, and regulating employer and employee relations. They mentioned the possibility of implementing projects in sectors like Mongolian cashmere and leather processing, agricultural food products processing and tourism.
During the ILO’s summit organized in Geneva, Switzerland, in June, N.Altankhuyag attended the introductory meeting for developing the skills required for diversification of competitive and responsible industry, economy and trade, and discussed involving Mongolia in those programs.
The Office of the Media and Public Relations reports that PM N.Altankhuyag said that implementing projects on developing SMEs will be important for diversifying the economy, and Mongolia will support the ILO’s initiatives and cooperate with trade unions and employer organizations to encourage participation in Mongolia.

Ulaanbaatar forecasts 2.5 percent GDP increase from tourism by 2030
By M. Zoljargal
September 18 (UB Post) Five percent of state budget to be used for entertainment and sports events
“Friendly Ulaanbaatar” project’s consultation took place on Wednesday, which is expected to elevate tourism in Mongolia and increase Mongolia’s GDP in the long-term.
During the event, Ulaanbaatar City Governor E.Bat-Uul highlighted, “Ulaanbaatar city will be able to receive two million tourists per year by 2020 and five million tourists by 2030, if the Friendly Ulaanbaatar program is properly coordinated.”
Mongolia’s GDP is expected to see a 2.5 percent increase if five million tourists visit Ulaanbaatar and spend approximately five billion MNT per year by 2030, according to the governor.
Another objective of the program is to issue five percent of the state budget, approximately 35 billion MNT, for arts, cultural and sports facilities, and events in order to attract more tourists.
One billion MNT was dedicated for such events from the state budget before 2012.
“The Mongolian economy is in a critical condition due to poor tourism development in our country. In 2013, around 1,600,000 people went abroad from Mongolia, while only 410,000 tourists and officials visited Mongolia in total. It means we are losing economic resources to other countries. Friendly Ulaanbaatar program is designed to bring tourism in Mongolia to a new stage of development in general,” explained Governor E.Bat-Uul.
The organizers called on tour agencies, as well as sports and entertainment-based organizations to improve and form closer cooperation in order to bring out the best possible results of the program.
The program was based on development programs for Ulaanbaatar through 2020 and 2030, which were approved by Parliament.
The Ulaanbaatar City Tourism Department and Department of Arts and Culture organized the consultation, which was attended by more than 600 city officials, tourism businesses and NGOs.
Minister of Culture, Sport and Tourism (MCST) Ts.Oyungerel, State Secretary General of the MCST P.Altangerel, Deputy Governor in charge of social development Ts.Enkhtsengel and Ulaanbaatar City General Manager B.Badral attended the consultation and delivered speeches.
The Ulaanbaatar City Council will discuss the program on September 22, during its regular meeting, and will deliver its views and suggestions to the coordinators.

MED partners with JICA to develop state-private sector partnership policy
By B. Mendbayar
September 18 (UB Post) The Ministry of Economic Development organized the “Mongolian State-Private Sector Partnership, Today and Future” conference in association with a team of experts from the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA), on September 16.
Principles of state-private partnership and the Law on Concession were introduced at the conference. Over 50 delegates from the Ministry of Economic Development, private sector, and JICA attended the conference.
Below are opinions from Chief of Innovation at the State-Private Partnership Department of the Economic Development Ministry S.Bekhbat and CEO of NTB LLC S.Sainbayar.
S.Bekhbat: Six projects are being implemented under concession agreements.
The conference was attended mainly by private sector entrepreneurs. Information about concession agreements ought to be imparted not only to the state, but also companies executing projects. This conference was significant for discussing international and domestic experiences. Currently, six projects are being implemented under concession agreement. The Law on Concession was approved in 2010. Therefore, projects are being carried out in the framework of a law that has been in effect for four years. We have learned certain lessons and warnings throughout these years. So, improving the legal environment and working on implementation mechanisms and methods are crucial. Prior to the introduction of concessions, projects were funded by the state budget. But now, companies carry out projects with their own funds. Once projects are implemented, companies have two alternatives to see return on their investments: either payment from the state budget or by charging consumers with fees. This year, the participating companies were invited to the conference. In general, more so than state companies, the increased capacity of private sector companies positively affects the economy.
B.Sainbayar: The first project under a concession agreement has been successfully implemented.
RDCC LLC is the owner of a concession on construction of the Nariin Sukhait – Shivee Khuren road designed for heavy haul trucks. Our company is working as the general executor. The road has been worked on for three years and will open on September 27. The validity term of the road is 15 years.
This project is the first project successfully implemented under concession agreement in Mongolia.
Implementing a project with state budget funds poses considerable difficulty for the budget itself.
Concession agreements may have become an internationally adopted method of implementing projects because of this. We built a 43.2 kilometer long, 12.4 meter wide and 24 cm thick cement-paved road with a reinforced embankment of 25 cm thick cement for heavy haul trucks. A total of 110 billion MNT was invested in the construction work. This investment was funded by Monnis Group and SouthGobi Sands LLC. Obviously, the investors would earn back their investment from fees on coal transportation, but coal transportation rates were high at the time the concession agreement was established. For instance, over 1,000 vehicles a day used to pass through the southern border at the time. But now, the number has decreased to 200. So, circumstances became totally different from how we estimated. Accordingly, if circumstances stay constant, the investors can earn back their initial investment. So, we are waiting for an increase in coal transportation. This is a risk a project carried out under concession agreement faces.
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