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Opinion

  • The list above is of the main laws that govern the mineral sector. They will soon receive a thorough clean-up to remove contradictions and conflicts between them, and to make them more coherent and complementary. The work has been entrusted to a working group set up jointly by the Ministries of  Justice and Internal Affairs, and of Mining and Heavy Industry, in pursuance of the Government’s declared intention to make 2017 the year when the overall and total legal environment in the mineral sector would be streamlined.
  • The first five months of the year saw Mongolia exporting 15 million tonnes of coal and earning $1 billion from it, taking us back to the heady days of 2011 when more coal than ever before was exported. Then, as now, the export success gave a big boost to a national economy in crisis.
  • ALL eyes will be on the Presidential election until voting day on 26 June, and maybe for some time even after that. This is the seventh such direct election and the winner will be the fifth president of the country. Unfortunately, the billions of MNT that the contestants will spend on their campaign is unlikely to make voters forget that Kh. Battulga failed to retain his seat in the last Parliamentary elections, that S.Ganbaatar has been disowned by his own party, and that M.Enkhbold’s record as Mayor of Ulaanbaatar was not so clean. 
  • The map  shows the places where exploration licences will be allocated. They total up to 20.1 million hectares or 12.8% of Mongolia’s total territory.
    The mining ministry is following a policy of increasing national wealth by discovering new mineral deposits that can then be developed. Exploration is also the sector to attract the most foreign investment, which had earlier poured in, only to almost dry up in the past seven years, following the blanket ban on issue of new licences and cancellation of existing ones, leading to confusion among investors who preferred to step back. Domestic companies had carried on exploration work, however, as S.Bold-Erdene’s article in this issue details.
  • This is our magazine’s 100th issue, and we thank all our readers, advertisers and well-wishers for being with us over these 100 months on the development path.
  • Boloroo, you are no longer in our living world, but we at the MMJ still think of you as our editor, and believe that you are still writing your incisive articles in your special style. You have gone to another world and will not return, but your presence at the office is still vivid and active.
  • As part of the GIZ’s Integrated Mineral Resources Initiative program, MMJ journalists have for some time now been working on preparing a simplified version of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) reports on four selected aimags, to make them more interesting and easier of access. Last year we completed work on the 2013 reports for Bayankhongor and Selenge aimags, and so far this year we are finished with the 2014 reports on Bayankhongor, Uvurkhangai, Uvs and Selenge aimags. A feature of this year’s work has been the adoption of new methods and a revised format.
  • In a big boost to the drooping morale of the mining sector, Mongolia is all set to become a uranium extractor country again. The Executive Director of Mon-Atom LLC, E.Galbadral, told MMJ in April that talks with the French company Areva to  put two deposits into the economic cycle were at an advanced stage.
  • Producers and sellers find today’s mineral commodity market dismal, with prices falling all the time. This started back in 2012, and no respite seems in sight. Some studies and analysts predict a recovery in mid-2016, but not many companies share their optimism and most are looking for a viable survival strategy. The going is tough, with conditions actually worse than they were last year. 
  • Mongolian babies have their first ritual haircut around when they are three years old. This time has now come for a national baby brought to the world in the hot September of 2012, which the Mongolian Government named after Chinggis. The original Chinggis made his own laws, but this poor bond received all its international mercantile authority and validity from Parliament’s Resolution 52 of October of that year.
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