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Tuesday, January 31, 2017
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Announcement made after Monday close. ERD closed -3.57% Monday to C$0.81
HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA--(Marketwired - Jan. 30, 2017) - Erdene Resource Development Corp. (TSX:ERD) ("Erdene" or "Company") is pleased to announce that it has entered into an agreement whereby Paradigm Capital Inc. as lead underwriter and Canaccord Genuity Group Inc. (collectively, the "Underwriters") have agreed to purchase, on a bought deal basis, 12,988,000 common shares of the Company ("Shares") at a price of C$0.77 per Share for gross proceeds to the Company of C$10,000,760 ("Offering").
The Company has also granted the Underwriters an over-allotment option to increase the size of the Offering by up to an additional 15%, such option being exercisable in whole or in part at any time on or before 48 hours prior to the closing of the Offering ("Closing").
The Company intends to use the net proceeds of the Offering to advance its 100%-owned, high-grade Bayan Khundii and Altan Nar Gold Projects, and to further explore and develop the Company's other gold properties in southwest Mongolia, as well as for working capital and general corporate purposes.
The Closing is expected to occur on or about February 23, 2017 and is subject to certain conditions including, but not limited to, the receipt of all necessary approvals including the approval of the Toronto Stock Exchange.
In consideration for their services, the Underwriters will receive a cash commission of 6% of the gross proceeds of the Offering and shall receive such number of compensation options as is equal to 6% of the Shares issued pursuant to the Offering.
WOF closed +3.45% Monday to A$0.03. Cash at end of quarter A$1.4 million
January 30 -- Wolf Petroleum Limited ('the Company') is pleased to report on its activities for the December 2016 quarter.
Pursuant to the agreement with China SAM Enterprise Group Co., Ltd ('SAM Group'), as announced on 14 June 2016, during the quarter the Company issued a notice for a general meeting of shareholders seeking approval to issue the 243,316,000 Phase 3 Shares and 242,907,013 Options to SAM Group to raise approximately $2,433,160 before costs.
On 19 October 2016, the Company announced that all resolutions contained in the notice of general meeting were approved with the Phase 3 Shares and Options being issued on 11 November 2016.
On 17 November 2016, Ms. Guo Siying, a further nominee of SAM Group, was appointed to the Board.
The Company is currently finalising it's 2017 exploration programmes on its SB block. The initial exploration programmes on SB block include re-interpretation of existing seismic data, revaluation of drilling targets and drilling of first well(s) within this year.
The finalised exploration programme and budget is expected to be approved by the government regulatory agencies and released to the shareholders in late February 2017.
Production sharing contract signing process on BU and Jinst blocks are successfully underway.
On 31 December 2016, 10,000,000 unlisted options with an exercise price of $0.25 expired unexercised.
XAM trading flat at A$0.215 midday today
Xanadu Mines: Quarterly Activities & Cash Flow Report
New gold-rich porphyry identified under shallow cover at Kharmagtai
· Bedrock drilling delivers immediate success at Kharmagtai;
· Bedrock drilling identifies copper and gold mineralisation under shallow (20 to 50m) cover in at least seven new targets;
· First drill hole discovers new gold-rich porphyry under shallow cover at Kharmagtai:
- KHDDH395 intersected 220m grading 0.64g/t Au and 0.15% Cu, including 26m grading 2.27g/t Au from 42m;
· Subsequent drilling underway to delineate the near surface oxide enrichment zone and locate the highest-grade primary mineralisation of this new porphyry discovery;
· New gravity data enhance the prospectivity of the Kharmagtai copper-gold district.
Multiple new targets identified at Oyut Ulaan
· New geochemical survey defines 47 copper-gold and gold targets for exploration;
· Trenching confirms eleven new porphyry targets and nine new epithermal gold targets;
· Trenching returns widespread porphyry mineralisation including:
- OUCS030A intersected 188m grading 0.18g/t Au and 0.24% Cu, including 52m grading 0.22g/t Au and 0.36% Cu;
- OUCS045A intersected 30m @ 1.74g/t Au and 0.34% Cu, including 6m grading 5.72g/t Au and 0.98% Cu;
· Numerous high-grade epithermal gold targets confirmed including:
- OUSC028A intersected 3m grading 13.28g/t Au and 2m @ 7.97g/t Au;
- OUCS028D intersected 14m @ 2.15g/t Au and 1.02% Cu;
· New gravity survey identifies potential large scale porphyry system at depth.
Strong financial position and new personnel changes
· Drilling activities are fully funded from existing cash reserves of $8.3 million;
· Retirement of Mr. Mark Wheatley as Chairman and Non-Executive Director at 2017 AGM;
· Appointment of Mr. Mat Brown as Chief Geologist of Xanadu Mines.
January 31 -- Xanadu Mines Ltd (ASX: XAM – "Xanadu" or "Company") is pleased to provide shareholders with an update of exploration results for the period ending 31 December 2016. The current exploration programs, among the largest to be undertaken by a junior ASX-listed exploration company in the coming year, will target the discovery of additional porphyry copper-gold and shallow high-grade epithermal gold mineralisation on the Company's South Gobi projects at Kharmagtai and Oyut Ulaan (Figure 1).
January 30 (MSE) --
Reds are when MNT fell, greens when it rose. Bold reds are rates that set a new historic high at the time.
USD (blue), CNY (red) vs MNT in last 1 year:
January 30 (Bank of Mongolia) BoM issues 1 week bills worth MNT 173.5 billion at a weighted interest rate of 14.0 percent per annum /For previous auctions click here/
January 30 (Bank of Mongolia) --
January 30 (news.mn) The Mongolian Democratic Party leadership election took place on 29th of January. The clear majority winner was S.Erdene. The counting of votes continued through the night and only this morning, was the election commission able to announce the winner.
As a result of votes from the eight districts of Ulaanbaatar and twenty provinces, S.Erdene won 2714.45 counts, N.Altankhuyag 1640.60, L.Gantumur 1279.43, J.Batzandan 1012.36 and D.Erdenebat 801.31.
One of the critical decisions made by the 1,210 attendees of the Democratic Party's Sixth Congress held on November, was to elect a new party chairman through votes from all DP members.
S.Erdene elected next chairman of Democratic Party – Montsame, January 30
Mogi: if he had a chance of winning, …
January 30 (news.mn) MP, Z.Enkhbold has officially resigned as leader of the Mongolian Democratic Party (DP) following the election of the new chairman. The DP elected a new party chairman through voting from all members on Saturday (28th of January). The decision to hold the election was taken at the Democratic Party's Sixth Congress which was held in November. As a result of votes from eight districts of Ulaanbaatar and the 20 provinces, S.Erdene won 2714.45 counts.
Former Speaker Z.Enkhbold said, 'I won't be running for President and won't take any job until the 2020 parliamentary election'. He took responsibility for the defeat of the DP in the 2016 parliamentary election. He has resigned as party leader after three years of leadership. The DP retained only nine seats in the 76-seat State Great Hural (Parliament), in the election, which took place on 29th June.
January 30 (news.mn) The National Council of Mongolian Public Radio & Television has conducted and concluded an election to choose its new Director General.
Following the first stage selection, Ninjjamts Luvsandash received the highest score, out of 9 candidates, becoming the new Director General of the Mongolian National Public Radio Television.
Mongolian National Public Radio and Television is the only state-run broadcaster in Mongolia, offering both television and radio services. The television services consist of two channels – Mongolian National Broadcaster (MNB) and MNB News. The radio services include three domestic radio channels and one international channel.
The new Director General holds a Master's degree in law, and has worked in the Mongolian media industry for about 20 years. She worked as Editor-in-Chief of Mongolian 'Mirror' ('Toli') newspaper in 1996-1998, Executive Director of Mongolian Newspapers Association in the years 1998-2006 and 2007-2009, was Head of the Administration of Mongolian National Public Radio Television in 2006-2007, Head of Press Division of the Cabinet Secretariat in 2009-2010, Advisor to the Director of National Development and Innovation Committee in 2010-2011, and was Editor-in-Chief of 'Morning News' newspaper ('Ogloonii sonin') in 2011-2016.
Mongolian National Public Radio Television appoints new director – Montsame, January 30
Ulaanbaatar, January 30 (MONTSAME) Parliamentary Standing committee on Security and Foreign Policy and 'Ulaanbaatar' Policy Research Center are co-organizing a two-day symposium themed 'Industrial reformation of national security and governance: civil organizations", starting today, January 30.
"The rapid changes observed in internal and external situation of Mongolia and ensued circumstances in the last 26 years since Mongolia reformed its polity, state structure and economy are strongly affecting the industrial renovation of national security, bringing not only achievements but also challenges and risks", said J.Enkhbayar, Head of the Standing committee during his opening speech.
Gathering Mongolian scholars, experts and specialists working in the respective areas of security, foreign relations and strategic research, the roundtable meeting aims to facilitate a discussion on the new circumstances arising on the international arena, challenges to Mongolia's state policy to guarantee national security and the role of executive governance and civil organizations in the renovation of national security industry; and frame science-based recommendations on how to improve the functions and policy directed at ensuring national security.
During the symposium, a compilation titled 'National security industry of Mongolia: Almanac 2017' co-published by the Parliamentary Standing committee on Security and Foreign Policy and 'Ulaanbaatar' Policy Research Center was released.
The symposium is attended by a foreign guest, Dr. Philipp Fluri, Assistant Director and Head of Eastern Europe, South Caucasus, Central Asia Division of the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces.
Tomorrow, the symposium will be participated by representatives of army, defense sector and law enforcement organizations.
30th anniversary of U.S.-Mongolia diplomatic relationship celebrated
Summary: An official ceremony was held to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Mongolia and the United States of America. During the ceremony, Minister of Foreign Affairs Ts. Munkh-Orgil stated, "The U.S.A has supported Mongolia's transition to a democracy and a market economy since the beginning. Over the past 30 years, the relationship between the two countries - based on common interests and democratic values - has deeply developed." The U.S. Ambassador to Mongolia, Jennifer Zimdahl Galt, noted that the Mongolia has been a key partner to the U.S. in the Asia-Pacific since Mongolia transitioned to become a democratic country. On January 27, 1987, U.S. Secretary of State George Shultz and G. Nyamdoo, Mongolia's Ambassador to the United Nations, signed documents to establish diplomatic relations between the two countries.
Keywords: bilateral relations, USA | Daily News /page 6/
Parliament members discuss a bill on livestock health
Summary: The proposed Law in Livestock Health aims to improve the overall health of livestock, regulate relations between private and public veterinary hospitals, and to ensure the safety of livestock products. Minister of Food, Agriculture and Light Industry P. Sergelen noted that the ministry has received an offer from Russia to cooperate in four areas: improving the health of livestock, exporting Mongolian meat, supplying grain seed, and exporting other domestic products to Russia. Representatives from Russia are scheduled to visit in the next two weeks to finalize negotiations for 11 cooperative projects focused on improving the health of livestock. MPs highlighted the importance of the livestock industry and the need to improve the health of livestock, and voted to further discuss the concepts behind the Law on a Genetic Livestock Reserve and related laws.
Keywords: Parliament, agriculture | The Century News /page 2/
New steel grinding factory opens in Darkhan
Summary: Darkhan Metallurgical Plant opened a new steel grinding factory, which the company says will be able to fully meet domestic demand for steel grinding balls. The factory will manufacture 25,000 to 40,000 tons of 100-140 mm grinding balls. Next year, another factory utilizing a rolling method of production will be built. Officials note that the plant is the largest automated factory in the region to produce steel balls using environmentally friendly and modern technology. The factory will be able to supply steel balls at prices 5-10 times lower than imports from China and Russia. Officials also note that the establishment of this factory brings Mongolians one step closer to opening a smelting factory.
Keywords: steel, manufacturing | The Official Gazette /page 1,11/
S. Erdene wins the DP chairmanship election
Summary: The Democratic Party announced that S. Erdene received the most votes in the party's election for a new chairman. With votes tallied from 20 provinces and eight districts of Ulaanbaatar, S. Erdene won the election with 2,714.45 points. N. Altankhuyag received 1,640.60, L. Gantumur 1,279.43, J. Batzandan 1,012.36, and D. Erdenebat received 801.31 points. Voter turnout at the national level was 70.5%.
Keywords: Democratic Party, Chairmanship | www.bloombertv.mn
January 30 (gogo.mn) Oyu Tolgoi spent 62 per cent of its total procurement expenditures with Mongolian companies in 2016, equalling to US$279 million.
With a focus on continuously increasing the Mongolian supplier participation in its supply chain, Oyu Tolgoi will host its 2017 Suppliers Forum on 31 January, 2017 in Ulaanbaatar.
The forum is designed to help educate business on working with Oyu Tolgoi, including safety and business integrity principles; and Oyu Tolgoi's focus on a sustainable in-country supply chain for 'Life of Mine' goods and services, covering both operations and underground.
The company invites interested parties to register for the Supplier Forum to be held on 31 January, 2017 in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.
Click HERE to register now.
Ulaanbaatar, January 30 /MONTSAME/ Steel ball manufacturing plant was opened at Darkhan Metallurgical Plant on January 28. The plant manufactures steel balls with 100-140 mm diameter by forging method and within this year, steel balls with 60-80 mm diameter will be manufactured using casting method.
Darkhan Metallurgical Plant used to produce steel ball semis of 300-350 thousand tons and export to China, while some mineral processing companies has imported steel balls of USD180-200 thousand annually from China.
"- We are proud that we now can manufacture value added final product. Our plant is the first biggest steel ball manufacturing plant, using hammering method. It has control system and is fully automated, and eco-friendly. Basic facilities and equipment is supplied from German 'Schuler Group", which has 177 years of history. When plant with casting method starts operating, the two plants will have annual capacity of 55-60 thousand tons and we will provide some 80 per cent of domestic demand. Therefore, money outflow of USD60 million will be stopped and remain in the country. It is estimated that over 100 new jobs will be created. Our high quality products meet euro standard, allow our customers to save their cost by 15-30 per cent" said Executive Director of the plant D.Batjavkhlan.
The plant expects its new product to be used mainly in Oyutolgoi and Erdenet, copper and gold mine and processing plant. Minister of Construction and Urban Development G.Munkhbayar attended the opening ceremony and said that the Government stated in its action plan that it would boost industrialization and job creation, thus, the Government will support and cooperate with Darkhan Metallurgical Plant. "-Job creation and stable employment is vital. I hope we will supply our steel demand in construction sector fully at home very soon".
Darkhan Metallurgical Plant was built in 1990 and it owns the Tumurtolgoi, Tumurtei and Khust iron ore deposits.
Ulaanbaatar, January 30 (MONTSAME) A small enterprise to process sheep and goat has started its operation in a Ger in Bayankhongor aimag.
MP G.Zandanshatar supported some local citizens of his elected constituency to develop SME, providing skin processing machine and organizing training for them. The training involved six soums, namely Shinejins, Jinst, Bayanlig, Bogd, Bayangobi and Ulziit.
"- Herders income and livelihood have worsened last years due to price fall of animal originated raw materials, such as animal skins and hides nationwide. I will do my best to support to expand the SME" said MP G.Zandanshatar.
January 30 (gogo.mn) Second demonstration against air pollution under slogan "We are mad ass hell" was held at Sukhbaatar square on Jan 28th, demanding officials to take immediate actions on reducing air pollution for the well-being of children. Over 10,000 residents have attended the demonstration and signed applications that have submitted to the Application standing committee of State Great Khural.
Air pollution has soared to hazardous levels in the most areas of Ulaanbaatar city, exceeding 120 times the limit, as compared with the World Health Organization safe level of 25. Today levels of PM2.5 particulates, which are the most hazardous to health, are reaching 3000 micrograms per cubic meter in heavily polluted areas of the city.
Ulaanbaatar, the capital city of Mongolia is home to about 1,372,000 residents. Every winter, residents of Ulaanbaatar city are suffering from hazardous levels of air pollution caused by rising ger districts, where people live with no access to central heating system and rely on coal-burning stoves to survive temperatures that fall below minus 35 degrees Celsius.
80 percent of air pollution comes from those ger district households. Result of the study conducted by the end of 2015 reveals that Ulaanbaatar city has 214 thousand ger district households, of which 30 percent of them burn items that are extremely harmful to human health such as, animal fat, plastic ware and old tires. Those are families with low income, fighting with cold to survivie.
Demonstration organizers have promised to demonstrate again if the Government of Mongolia and City Governor`s Office won`t respond to their application.
At the first demonstration that was held on Dec 26th, 2016, over 4000 Mongolian parents gathered at the Sukhbaatar Square to raise their voices against air pollution and collected more than 2700 applications.
Demonstration participants have marched from the West four intersection (Baruun durvun zam) to Sukhbaatar square, holding black balloons that represent our damaged lungs caused by air pollution. Moreover, artists have joined the demonstration and performed concert at Sukhbaatar square.
Researcher Alimaa said: "We breathe polluted air for 120 days in a year. In 2017, the Government has budgeted MNT 5 billion on reducing air pollution. However, total of MNT 13 billion is collected annually from tax on imported vehicles and vehicle payments. We want to get acquaint with the expenditure of this income".
Demonstrators hung the balloons on the fence around the Government House, aiming to show that around 500 children nationwide die annually due to air pollution.
Second protest against smog takes place – Montsame, January 30
January 30 (gogo.mn) 10,000 demonstrators gathered at Sukhbaatar square on Jan 28th, protesting against air pollution and collected signatures for the application that demand President of Mongolia, Speaker of State Great Khural, Government of Mongolia, City Representative Meeting and City Mayor to take following actions immediately.
To the President of Mongolia Ts.Elbegdorj:
1. Be active and innovative on the improvements of legal framework committed to air pollution.
2. Attend the session of State Great Khural and discuss the issue immediately.
3. Reduce the number of vehicles used for official use of the Office of President by 40 percent prior to presidential election.
To the Speaker of the Parliament M.Enkhbold:
1. Urge the improvements of legal framework committed to air, soil and water pollution.
2. Arrange the meeting of Subcommittee on air pollution within Feb 2nd, 2017 and arrange the meeting monthly.
3. Consolidate multi structures and systems for air pollution and develop comprehensive and long-term sustainable system.
4. Strictly monitor the budget expenditure controlled by the citizens and glass account law enforcement. Charge law violators.
5. Approve Government resolution to establish structure that ensure public involvement in controlling budget expenditure to reduce air pollution.
6. Reduce the number of vehicles used for official use of the Office of the Parliament by 30 percent.
7. Announce irregular session of State Great Khural and approve national program and investment plan to reduce air and environment pollution.
To the Prime Minister of Mongolia, J.Erdenebat:
1. Respond urgently to the requirements submitted by the demonstrators.
2. Hold regular session of the Government at Bayankhoshuu, the most heavily polluted area of Ulaanbaatar city on Feb 1st, 2017 at 10am. Representatives of Parents against air pollution NGO will wait for you there.
3. Report the financial statement and project report implemented for the last 15 years against air pollution to the public within Feb 2nd, 2017.
4. Develop national program and strategic project that aims to reduce air pollution in 2018 by 80 percent and report it to the public within Feb 15, 2017.
5. Report child morbidity and mortality detailed statistics every week.
6. Start the construction of maternal and child health center in each Western and Eastern regions within the first quarter of 2018. The construction should be funded from the Government reserve fund.
7. Create legal environment to provide 50 percent of treatment budget for pregnant woman and children under 3 years with guardian living in the disaster zone in winter.
8. Reduce the number of vehicles used for official use of the Cabinet Office, Ministries, enforcement and regulatory agencies, and other state-owned entities by 15 percent within Oct 2017, by 25 percent within Oct 2018.
9. Report air quality index everyday through Mongolian National Broadcaster.
10. Install air quality stations in center of aimags as well as Darkhan and Erdenet cities by 2018.
Head of City Representative Meeting Ts.Sandui:
1. Oblige city and district representatives to meet residents of their elected districts and khoroos every week.
2. Reduce the number of vehicles used for official use of the UB city administration and community-owned enterprises by 30 percent within Oct 2017.
3. Set certain day to organize car free day in Ulaanbaatar city every month.
4. Approve funds for the improvement on public transportation service.
5. Promote bycicle use in Ulaanbaatar city and implement urban planning solution to ensure safety of bicycle riders.
6. Ensure public participation in the actions taken against air pollution.
7. Develop investment plan to install air purifier in all state-owned kindergartens, schools, and hospitals of Ulaanbaatar city.
8. Regularly report the planned works or implementing works to the public on certain day of every month via the media.
To the City Mayor, Su.Batbold:
1. Lead the campaign to install air purifier in all state-owned kindergartens, schools, and hospitals of Ulaanbaatar city.
2. Install 15 new air quality stations in Ulaanbaatar city.
3. Reduce the number of vehicles used for official use of the Capital City Governor's Office, the district governors and other state authorities and service entities by 15 percent within this year.
4. Regularly report the implementing works on reducing air pollution to the public every two weeks via the media.
The first written response to this demand shall be submitted to the Parents against air pollution NGO within Feb 15th, 2017 and shall be reported to the public via the media.
Hereby, we inform that if the Government does not accept our demands, continuing to carry out the ineffective actions, we will dissolve the Government, considering that the Government is intentionally harming the health of our children
Moreover, demonstration organizers have promised to demonstrate again if the Government of Mongolia and City Governor`s Office won`t respond to their application.
Photograph by Victor A Mirontschuk
January 28 (Your Shot, National Geographic) A small group of people from Mongolia try to bring awareness of the devastating pollution in their home country to the people of New York. Some cities in Mongolia are the most polluted in the world. To keep warn the people of Mongolia burn raw coal, tires in their homes and anything else to keep warm. One in three children die from some sort of respiratory disease.
Ulaanbaatar, January 30 (MONTSAME) On January 27, the Citizen's Representative Khural of Ulaanbaatar held its 7th meeting to address timely matters such as measures taken against air pollution and implementation of a recommendation issued by National Security Council.
The meeting began as Mayor of Ulaanbaatar S.Batbold reported on the past measures he took and his action plan for the near future. For the past 10 years or in 2007-2016, MNT 119 billion 779 million has been allocated from the capital city budget to tackle air pollution, and MNT 87 billion 187 million from foreign aid. In total, MNT 206 billion 964 million has been spent for the last 10 years in an attempt to reduce air pollution in Ulaanbaatar.
Major projects funded by this investment include a project to promote production of eco-friendly fuel, a project to reduce smoke produced by vehicles, 'Coal' program and 97,000 improved stoves project.
The Mayor then introduced the measures he has taken since his appointment such as issuance of face masks to students and air purifiers to kindergartens, a decision to zero night-time electricity charge, and three ordinances directed at reduction of air pollution.
The Mayor's report continued with his upcoming measures against air pollution such as introduction of hybrid buses, banning diesel engines, improving vehicle diagnostic tests, stopping the consumption of raw coal, building new power plant, having a statute of Ulaanbaatar approved, halting coal retail, and increasing renewable energy generation.
The meeting concluded with adoption of a scheme for the next 3 months to be realized by the City Administration.
January 30 (news.mn) Traffic police in the smog-covered Mongolian capital, are now wearing protective face masks while on duty. Using special equipment, the 'Green Crown' laboratory has examined pollution levels on the clothes of police officers. According to the MNS 4585:2016 standard, the nitrogen dioxide NO2 level should be 50mkg/m3 in the air; however, traffic police officers inhale more than three to four times this amount of NO2.
The Mongolian Traffic Police Department has provided 3000 masks to officers in cooperation with the 'Munkhiin Tsagaan Jim' LLC. The smoke masks can filter pollution for between 48-72 hours.
January 27 (MONTSAME) January 27, 2016 marks the 30th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations between Mongolia and the United States. On the occasion of the 30th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations, an academic conference themed 'US Policy in Northeast Asia and Mongolia-US relations' took place last week. During the event, the advisor at the Center for Policy Research (CPR) of Ulaanbaatar, Ms. Batchimeg gave an interview on the matter to the reporter of the MONTSAME News Agency.
The former Member of Parliament and a leading expert of CPR, Ms. Batchimeg remarked "Mongolian foreign policy includes equal development with its two neighbors. However, the third neighbor policy is crucial for Mongolia. We understand third neighbor policy as a democratic country with a complementary economy. This is why we give importance to our relations with the U.S. The US support for our democratic process and establishment were essential for the last 30 years. Furthermore, they helped develop the Mongolian military to the next stage to participate in international peacekeeping operations. Overall, the US works closely with our security sector".
In this swing phase of world economy, keeping developing relations with the US is essential. To do this, Ms. Batchimeg considers that Mongolia's political and economical policy have to be stable to find new ways for foreign investment. However, investors lose confidence with the ever-changing policy of the shifting leadership. Therefore, the foundation to effective relations is to improve local governance by ensuring growth with its resource and keeping a stable environment for investors. According to Ms. Batchimeg, "Mongolia received much investment in the past few years, but most of them disappeared because of local instability. Therefore, it's important that we focus on the economic environment, develop relations with US, and with other countries as well".
We asked Ms. Batchimeg's thoughts on whether the two countries relations will change with the new President of the United States. "The relations of the two countries highly depend on where Russia-US and China-US relations lead. It's too early to know if there will be any acute changes" said Ms. Batchimeg. "We're in an interesting phase where the international relations stage might shift since Donald Trump took office. Even Mongolians are focusing heavily on the change in US policy in Northeast Asia, especially Mongolia. Donald Trump is now in office but we're trying to analyze his previous policy and positions. We'll see the bigger picture as time goes on", added Ms. Batchimeg.
About ten young researchers gave a presentation on the conference. We asked Ms. Batchimeg's thoughts on what the younger generation needs to learn.
"Many young people are graduating with impressive backgrounds. We see how many young people are interested in international relations. The government needs to fund research facilities and give significance to the research and use it for their policy. It's important to encourage and include them in the decision-making process and hear their voices" she said at the end.
The Center for Policy Research (CPR) is the first Mongolian non-governmental policy research institution. CPR undertakes research and development activities independently from any political party or organizations. Established in 1998, the CPR has gained extensive experiences and well known in the areas of rural development, agriculture, land reform, pasture and risk management, herders' community development, rural poverty and social issues and environmental management.
Its expertise also includes ways to address challenges at both the national and local levels of broader issues in a transitional economy like fiscal decentralization, public administration and regional development. In addition, CPR is engaged in extensive training, promotional and advocacy activities in all directions mentioned above. CPR handles projects financed by multilateral and bilateral donors, government agencies and the private sector.
Former Member of Parliament Ms. Batchimeg was head of the Taipei Trade and Economic Representative Office in Ulaanbaatar from 2005 to 2008, and was advisor to the president from 2009-2012. During 1995 and 2005, Ms. Batchimeg worked as a researcher and senior researcher at CPR. Focusing more on China's policy, Ms. Batchimeg published more than 40 articles in famous research journals including 'Asian Survery', 'China Brief' and 'Global Times', and represented Mongolia in more than 20 international meetings and conferences.
The 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Mongolia and the US falls on January 27, 2016.
The article is featured in the Mongol Messenger's issue No. 4 for January 27, 2016.
Manama, Jan. 30 (BNA): His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa has received a written message from the friendly Republic of Mongolia President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj.
The message was handed to Foreign Affairs Minister Shaikh Khalid bin Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Khalifa by the Mongolian President's Envoy for Foreign Affairs, Lundeg Purevsuren, as he received him today.
During the meeting, they discussed the friendship and cooperation ties and ways of further bolstering them. They also exchanged views on a number of topics and regional and global issues of common concern.
The minister welcomed the Mongolian President's Envoy and took pride in the friendship relations between the Kingdom of Bahrain and the Republic of Mongolia.
They also reviewed ways of bolstering bilateral relations to cater for the interests of the Kingdom of Bahrain and the Republic of Mongolia and coordinate their stances at international gatherings.
January 30 (Belarus MFA) On January 30, 2017 the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Belarus to Mongolia, Stanislav Chepurnoy, met with the Director of Europe Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Mongolia, Mijiddorj Tsengeg.
During the meeting, the sides discussed current issues of bilateral relations, exchange of visits, holding of session of joint Belarusian-Mongolian Commission on trade and economic cooperation, Consultations between the Foreign Ministries of the two countries, as well as Belarusian-Mongolian cooperation within international organizations.
January 30 (MONTSAME) On Monday, Mr Suresh Babu, Ambassador of the Republic of India to Mongolia visited MONTSAME News Agency and met with Ms B.Ganchimeg, Director General of the agency.
At the meeting, the dignitaries exchanged views on issues concerning the traditional bilateral cooperation between the two countries and works planned in frames of the 62th anniversary of diplomatic relations of Mongolia and India.
After expressed her gratitude to the Indian Embassy in Ulaanbaatar for supporting MONTSAME Agency staff to be specialized in India, Director General B.Ganchimeg confirmed that the Agency is ready to make contribution and collaborate for the development of bilateral relations in the future.
In turn, Ambassador Suresh Babu noted that the media industry plays a crucial role in strengthening friendly relations between Mongolia and India and that it is important to expand cooperation in the fields of trade, economy and tourism.
At the end of the meeting, the sides agreed to make efforts directed at intensifying the present relationship and bringing Mongolia and India closer through media collaboration.
Tribute to the National Hero of Cuba in Mongolia
January 30 (Cuba MFA) MONGOLIA, January 28, 2017.- In the Public School No. 52 "José Martí" of Ulaanbaatar, a homage was paid to the 164th anniversary of the birth of the national hero of Cuba, José Martí, with a cultural activity in which the Cuban Ambassador Raúl Delgado Concepción was present. The celebration was attended by students and teachers at the primary and secondary school, who recalled the passages of the life of the Cuban apostle, with music, dances and declamations that recalled the significance he had for Cubans and for the world The life of such a distinguished Latin American Fighter.
In an atmosphere of joy and remembrance, the students of the center emphasized the pride that this institution bears the name of the national hero of Cuba. Since 1973 students have celebrated every January 28th this important date for the Cuban people. This school was selected among the top 10 of Mongolia because of the academic results and the quality of the graduates.
The students and the Cuban ambassador deposited a floral tribute at the bust of José Martí which is proudly showed at the entrance of the school as the continuity of the ideology of Marti.
Ulaanbaatar, January 30 (MONTSAME) State clinical hospitals will work between 08:30 am and 08:00 p.m, starting February 1, according to an ordinance of Health Minister.
Hospitals to work extended hours include the First Central Hospital, the Third Central Hospital named after P.N.Shastin, the National Cancer Centre and the National Center for Maternal and Child Health. The National Traumatology Center will work extended hours starting March 01, as its ambulatory is under renovation.
The Minister's ordinance issued due to outbreak of influenza and it is not yet clear for how long time the extended hours will be followed. However, the hospitals are expected to work in regular schedule by mid or late of March, depending on influenza outbreak situation, reported the Health Ministry.
Ulaanbaatar, January 30 (MONTSAME) On January 23-24, a conference of Mongolian camel herders in the Gobi region was co-organized by the Governor's Office in Bayangobi soum of Bayankhongor aimag, Department of Food and Agriculture of the aimag, and the Association of Pasture users in Bayankhongor aimag.
The conference aims at bringing camel herders in the Gobi region together and giving opportunities for young herders to learn experiences of grazing method as well as protection and use of pasture lands from seasoned camel herders.
On the second day of the conference, competitions of "Race of Young camels", "Couple with Beautiful Camel" and "Beautiful male camel" were organized among the camel herders. The participants of the conference exchanged views and released recommendation on issues faced by herder communities, such as preparation of combed wool, putting them on the market, preserving pasturelands and supporting dairy farmers.
The conference was attended by representatives of 'Pasture-Green Gold" project by Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, Association of Pasture Users, researchers and about 60 camel herders from Bayankhongor province.
Mongolian Yak Genomes Reveal Cattle Mixing History
NEW YORK, January 30 (GenomeWeb) – Mongolian yaks carry a small but significant proportion of bovine cattle DNA in their genomes, reflecting past efforts to breed yak and cattle at low altitudes in Asia.
An international team led by investigators in Germany and France used a combination of array-based genotyping and whole-genome sequencing to assess ancestry patterns across stretches of sequence inherited together in 76 Mongolian yaks. Their analyses, outlined today in Nature Genetics, indicated that around 1.3 percent of sequences in the yak genome came from bovine cattle, despite the sterility that's been documented in male yak-bovine hybrids.
"The introgressed regions are enriched in genes involved in nervous system development and function, and particularly in glutamate metabolism and neurotransmission," first author Ivica Medugorac, an animal genetics and husbandry researcher at Ludwig Maximilians University Munich, and his co-authors wrote. "We also identified a novel mutation associated with a polled (hornless) phenotype originating from Mongolian Turano cattle."
The Mongolian yak is known for adaptations that make it adept at surviving in high-altitude environments. And while it belongs to a lineage that diverged from the bovine lineage some 4.9 million years ago, the team explained, the yak is raised and sometimes bred with cattle at lower altitudes.
Moreover, the researchers reasoned that "analysis of bovine introgression in Mongolian yaks represents an appealing model to identify exchange of traits of interest between domesticated species."
They used Illumina HiSeq 1500 or 2000 instruments to sequence the genomes of two Mongolian yaks — one yak carrying two copies of polled locus mutations associated with the hornless phenotype and one horned yak — as well as a Turano cow with mutations affecting one copy of the Polled locus.
Using allele-frequency patterns in the genomes, along with available bovine sequence data, the team searched for yak-specific SNPs and began teasing out potential bovine sequences in the yak genomes. With Illumina BovineHD BeadChip genotyping arrays, the group went on to consider introgression patterns in another 40 yaks with horns and 36 without.
Bovine cattle ancestry turned up across 0.67 percent to 2.82 percent of the yak genomes, the researchers reported, spanning 1.3 percent of the sequences in the yak genome, on average. And roughly one-third of cattle genome sequences turned up in at least one of the yaks.
Their results hinted that the Turano cattle from Mongolia are related to bovines behind the yak-cattle mixing. Such admixture stretched back at least 1,500 years and appeared to peak in around the 10th and 11th centuries and again in the 18thcentury.
When the team took a look at cattle sequence introgression patterns, it identified cattle genes involved in nervous system function and domestication. From these and other findings, the authors concluded that "introgressive hybridization contributed to the improvement of yak management and breeding."
Ulaanbaatar, January 30 (MONTSAME) Minister of Environment and Tourism D.Oyunkhorol, Chief of Interpretation, Education and Volunteers at the US National Park Service Tom Medema and the consultant to the Lake Khuvsgul National Park of Mongolia Robert Mcintosh along with representatives of some NGOs worked in Khuvsgul province on January 27-29. They organized a discussion on the pressing issues facing the area around Lake Khuvsgul.
Presentations were given at the discussion about implementation of the project assisted by the Asian Development Bank, and the operations of the National Park Authority of Mongolia and the Information and Research Institute of Hydrology, Meteorology and Environment at the national park.
Also, the Minister held a meeting with citizens of Khatgal settlement and gave insight to government policies toward the local development, environment protection and tourism. The citizens also sounded their opinions. The local administrators noted that, although the local administration has been trying its best to contribute to the development of one of the main tourist attractions of Mongolia, the finance and budget issues are not in its favor. Therefore, the leaders have been working to solve the problem by collaborating with international projects, being realized in the area.
Minister D.Oyunkhorol emphasized the importance of coherence of actions and collaboration of government, local management and international partners in preserving the pristinity of Lake Khuvsgul, hailed as the Switzerland of Mongolia.
Tourists are mainly attracted to Lake Khuvsgul for the unique landscape and the extraordinary nomadic lifestyle and traditions, the lake offers. As of today, a total of 118 individuals and companies are granted special permits from the government to run tour operations in 561.74 ha area within the Lake Khuvsgul National Park. A study shows that 38 companies out of the above have been operating actively and accumulating approximately MNT 7.0 million to the local budget per year.
Citizens of Khatgal settlement put forward requests on upgrading Khatgal's status from settlement to soum, mobilizing the international tourism and waste management standards, and improving working conditions of gamekeepers and park rangers.
The Minister pledged to submit the request on upgrading Khatgal's status to the cabinet, and resolved to allocate MNT 10.0 million for re-decoration of the Cultural Centre of Khatgal and undefined amount of financing for eco-system research to reduce desertification and climate change.
Minister D.Oyunkhorol applauded the activities, run by Mongolian Ecology Center NGO among the pupils of Khatgal to train future gamekeepers, and handed presents to the organizers and donated MNT 3.0 million in support of continuation of their programme.
January 30 (New Scientist) Save the saiga. Hundreds of Mongolia's iconic antelopes have died after contracting a deadly virus that normally affects sheep and goats.
Saiga antelopes (Saiga tatarica) were once widespread across the grasslands of Europe and Asia. But hunting and disease have reduced their numbers from 1.25 million to 50,000 over the last four decades.
Now, a further 900 saiga – almost 10 per cent of the endangered Mongolian subspecies (Saiga tatarica mongolica) – have perished in the country's Khovd province, and thousands more are at risk.
The carcasses tested positive for Peste des Petits Ruminants (PPR), a highly contagious virus that usually affects sheep and goats, also known as goat plague. Symptoms of the disease, which kills up to 90 per cent of infected animals, are severe diarrhoea, fever, pneumonia and mouth sores.
First reported in Côte d'Ivoire in 1942, PPR has since spread between domestic sheep and goats across Africa, the Middle East and Asia. But outbreaks in wild animals are rare, and have never before been seen in free-ranging antelopes.
Mongolia had its first ever outbreak of PPR in sheep and goats in September 2016 after the virus spread from China. It may then have crossed to saiga during close contact at shared grazing grounds, says the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO).
Further tests are being carried out to confirm that PPR is responsible for the deaths. Other possible causes need to be ruled out, including the Pasteurella multocida bacteria that wiped out 200,000 saiga antelopes in Kazakhstan in 2015.
"If PPR is confirmed to be the main cause, the saiga death toll is likely to reach into the thousands in the next three months," says Bouna Diop at FAO.
The worst-case scenario would be if the disease spreads among different saiga herds throughout the winter. Seasonal migration and mixing of the antelopes could then mean an upsurge in fatalities in the spring.
There is no effective treatment for the disease in saiga. "The best strategy is to vaccinate domestic sheep and goats and prevent further spill over to saiga," says Diop.
FAO and the World Organisation for Animal Health launched a PPR eradication programme in 2016, which aims to wipe out the disease worldwide by 2030 using measures such as vaccination, movement control and quarantine.
The virus does not affect humans.
Ulaanbaatar, January 30 (MONTSAME) 34th "Bolor tsom" poetry competition was held in Dornod aimag on January 25. The winning poet B.Batsaikhan, native of Ongon soum, Sukhbaatar aimag has brought the cup for the very first time to Sukhbaatar aimag.
B.Batsaikhan has won the second stage of the competition with his "Unchin ayalguu/Orphaned Melody" poem and third stage with his "That woman" poem. From his variety of heart-warming poetry, "Sun rising land", "Loving country", "My homeland", "Sun never sets in my country" have become a proud song for the natives of Sukhbaatar and for Mongolians.
Among the top 30 poets in 34th "Bolor tsom", three of them were from Sukhbaatar aimag.
Ulaanbaatar, January 30 (MONTSAME) A team of Mongolian ice-carving artists led by G.Mukh-Erdene won third place from the 27th annual "Breckenridge International Snow Sculpture Championships" taking place in Colorado, US.
Two teams from Mongolia are attending successfully and both of them awarded "Artist choice awards" at the championships. The Team Mongolia led by Munkh-Erdene placed at third with their "We are One Family," a piece that reflected the idea of animals coexisting with humans and nature.
The competition is being attended by ice sculptors from the US, China, India, Sweden, Great Britain, Turkey, Mexico, Italy, Ireland, German, Finland and Mongolia and their artworks will be displayed until February 5 to the public.
Previously, the team of Mongolian ice sculptors earned one silver and three bronze medals from the 31st Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival held from December 31 to January 4 in China. The Mongolian sculptures displayed Mongolian traditional culture and heritages through their artworks addressing the issue of environmental protection.
Ulaanbaatar, January 30 (MONTSAME) Minister of Road and Transport Development D.Ganbat and relevant officials got acquainted with situation of paved-road en route Ulaanbaatar-Darkhan. The minister D.Ganbat stated that the road would be renovated soon, as it has a high risk of traffic accident.
"- There are two high-traffic roads en routes Ulaanbaatar-Nalaikh and Ulaanbaatar-Darkhan. 230 km Ulaanbaatar-Darkhan road is in situation that it has critical traffic overload. Traffic accident rate is high in the area. Therefore, we plan to immediately renovate this road by extending its lanes to four and paving with cement concrete. National cement product will be used for the refurbishment" said the Minister. The current road belongs to fourth class road and the renewed road would be first class.
Some 3500-3800 vehicles cross through the road a day, while it has a daily capacity of 600. The road has several point areas, including Bornuur Bridge, Tahilt Mountainpass, Seterhiin Hotol passage, where visible environment is poor and areas around Tsaidam Valley or at the point of 200 km from Ulaanbaatar the road are seriously broken due to soil texture of that area.
Preparations including approval of standard of cement concrete pavement in cold seasons and making blueprint of the road will be made from now to make it ready to start the road renovation work as soon as weather gets warmer. All possible resources will be used to finance the renovation in addition to looking for domestic and foreign investment.
PRZEWALSKI'S HORSES, HUSTAI NATIONAL PARK, MONGOLIA
By Michael Turtle
January 23 (Time Travel Turtle) Drive west for a couple of hours through the semi-mountainous and barren land outside the Mongolian capital, Ulaanbaatar, and eventually you'll hit Hustai National Park. At first the border between the park and the surrounding land isn't clear – the yellow grasslands flow across it with no regard. But you don't have to go too far within the national park to realise you're somewhere special. It won't take too long until you come face to face with the Przewalski's horse – the only wild horse left on the planet.
There was a time when it would have been nearly impossible to see a Przewalski's horse (named after Russian geographer and explorer Nikolay Przhevalsky). They had become extinct in the wild in the 1960s because of hunting, expanding agricultural land, and harsh winters. Only two captive groups remained in the world – in zoos in Munich and Prague. In 1992, some of these horses were reintroduced into the wild at Mongolia's Hustai National Park and the herd has been carefully monitored since. Now, there are more than 350 living here.
Not long after arriving, I set out from the main camp in a car being driven by the park's director, Dashpurev Tserendeleg. The camp is at the entrance to Hustai National Park and from here are dirt roads that head throughout the area. You are allowed to drive on some of them yourself but it's much better to go with the local guides who can take you to different areas to get better views of the horses, other wildlife, and landscapes.
It doesn't take too long until we see our first group of Przewalski's horses. Standing on the slope of a hill, they are almost silhouetted by the afternoon sun. I can make out the shape of them – different from domestic horses. They are stockier, with shorter legs. From the top of their head, down to the middle of their back, is a short bristly mane that looks like a mohawk. Their heads seem bigger, rounder and, dare I say, cuter.
After having a good look at them, we drive on and find some more down by a river around the bend. They are in full sunshine and I can now see their colourings. They are pale brown and the tone gets slightly lighter the lower down it goes until a sudden black tinting just above their hooves. Around their muzzle is distinctly white, making them almost look like a cartoon drawing.
As Dashpurev drives around, he points out animals as he sees them – although another guide in the car who doesn't have to concentrate on the driving sees most things first. Although the horses are the highlight here, we also spot deer, gazelles, and eagles. In the park but hidden from view today are marmots, wolves, lynxes, foxes, badgers and owls (and more, of course).
VISITING HUSTAI NATIONAL PARK
Hustai National Park is one of the best protected areas in Mongolia and has a unique situation because it is managed by a non-government conservation organisation, rather than by a government authority. I'll write another post soon that explains a bit more about that because it's a very interesting story.
One of the effects of this style of management is that the NGO needs to raise a lot of money to pay for its work. Tourism is one of the main sources of income. Luckily for visitors like me, it's being done very well at the moment.
The main camp is the base for tourists who come for more than a day trip (which you should do if you have time). The accommodation is obvious as soon as you arrive – rows of white gers (traditional Mongolian tents) which have beds inside and are incredibly warm. They each have a stove in the middle and during the night a staff member will come in and add some more fuel. Only one of the gers has a bathroom attached (it was added when the Dutch Crown Prince Willem Alexander and Crown Princess Maxima stayed) so it can be a chilly run to the toilet in the middle of the night.
If that's not your style, there is some more accommodation in the main building. This building is also where all the meals are served and there is a good hearty and authentic selection of Mongolian food on offer. There's also a bar to relax in the evening.
Also at the main camp is an information centre that has very good displays about the park, the wildlife you can find, and the history of the Przewalski's horse.
It's learning this information about the horse – and then seeing them for myself – that is such a special experience. To think that an animal could be almost extinct and then, within a few decades, I am in a national park where there are no other humans outside our group and the horses wander happily around us in herds. And they're such beautiful animals with an air of nobility that, to my mind, comes from being the only horse species never domesticated by man.
There are still threats to the species and the harsh Mongolian conditions are not always kind. But at least these Przewalski's horses are back where they belong and they've got excellent people watching over them. The Mongolian landscape is a little less barren here.
How do you get to Hustai National Park?
To get to Hustai National Park, you drive along the main highway leaving Ulaanbaatar to the west until you reach Khustai Mountains Road after about 90 minutes. You'll then turn left onto an unpaved road for another 10 kilometres until you reach the main camp. Click here to see it on a map.
Public transportation is difficult and it is better to hire a car or go with a tour. However, if you would prefer to do it by bus, I would suggest getting in contact directly with the national park (details below) and asking them for the latest information.
Can you visit Hustai National Park as a day trip?
Yes. I think staying overnight is the best option so you can make the most of your visit and enjoy the ger experience. However, I know people are often short of time so it is possible to see the horses on a day trip. I would suggest using this tour from Ulaanbaatar.
Need more information?
If you would like to book accommodation directly through the park or ask about tour options, you can contact the managers at this official website.
Suite 303, Level 3, Elite Complex
14 Chinggis Avenue, Sukhbaatar District 1
Ulaanbaatar 14251, Mongolia
Office: +976 7711 6779
P Please consider the environment before printing this e-mail.