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http://zgm.mn/post/1956/

From Homo Sovieticus to Homo Postsovieticus (Part-II)

Democratic revolution let loose of Homo Sovieticus that were unprepared for the new society

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http://zgm.mn/post/1956/


Homo Post-Sovieticus

The collapse of communism in 1990 put an end to the Homo Sovieticus. The massive prison that ran  across three continents was finally liberated. This included about 40 countries restrained in an ideology. Millions of people got acquainted with the world for the first time. While these people were locked up in a closed society, the XX century has fundamentally changed the entire world in terms of technology, ideology, politics, economy, law, and regulations. Thus, these are the uncivilized people who have walked into a new world after a long period of incarceration. For them, the toughest challenge was to socialize and adapt to the new society.

The Homo Sovieticus that peeked through the window into the free world was, first of all, shocked by the technological advancement and wealthy society. Squeezing into Western Berlin at the Brandenburg Gate, millions of Eastern Germans who have been gifted a 100 Deutsche Mark each, despised communism with each passing moment. Polish pedlars, who are considered the founders of traveling sales, began cursing the social system that they lived in for over four decades.

But this admiration of early days did not last long. The social revolution transformed the living environment with each step on the way and let loose of individuals that were unprepared for the new society. This is the downside of a revolution. After the French revolution, the “Escape from Freedom” progress took place as a certain group of people failed to adapt to the free society. The October Revolution was turning the lower social-class people into “Sharikovs”.

In all honesty, the Homo Sovieticus did not meet the standard requirements of an already established free society. Surprised by this strange phenomenon, Milton Friedman wrote about this back in the 80s that the Chinese refugees in Hong Kong, who had the same ethnicity, were incompetent, unemployed, unaccountable, lazy and non-initiative compared to Hong Kong people that grew up in a free society. Over 20,000 North Koreans migrated to the South via China and Mongolia. In order to socialize them, they were granted citizenship, accommodation, incentives, and jobs; however, it was common for them to be rejected by social life and end up doing illegal activities. They preferred to settle in the northern part of China and earn easy money by intermediating refugees seeking to enter South Korea. The average wage of eastern Germans stood at around 60 percent of westerns in western firms at first. This particular wage gap still exists after almost three decades. They are not discriminated for their origin of being eastern. It is simply the measurement of their working ability, discipline, and accountability. During these years, about 4 million people fled to the west from Poland alone. Although the value of their labor diminished significantly compared to their home country, they were attracted by higher salaries. Recently, the British Parliament released a statement saying, “We do not have to employ people with high education from Lithuania as cleaners”.
As such, the evolution from Homo Sovieticus to Homo Post-Sovieticus took place. The transition progressed in various ways. From a primitive state to technology, politics, mafia, law, and conspiracies, these people thought of multiple options to improve their social status, becoming an industrial worker from a herder, a free agent from a public servant, a politician from a party member. There were many cases were ministry staff or political party members would become monks. But no matter how they adapted to the new environment, none of them succeeded in meeting the new social requirements. The years of experiment to create a Soviet person only pushed propagandas and failed to nourish a “normal” socialized person.

A certain group of society immediately turned into an “activist” of crime and illegal activities. While Mongolian burglars were infamous in France and Switzerland, Polish and Yugoslavians were notorious for their scammers and Russians  were frightening everyone with their mobsters. On the other hand, Albanians were ill-famed for human-trafficking and forced prostitution of women and Romanians started to be known for illegal merchandise and beggars. Over two million refugees migrated to the United States over these years and created a terrifying image called “Russian mafia”. They were all normally disciplined Homo Sovieticus that lived under Socialist norms.

The neo-nazi hysteria of eastern Germans, Russians’ hate towards the west, and Ukrainians’ pride that led to an attack on Russia clearly show how the idea of internationalism installed in Homo Sovieticus was false. Internationalist hostility, such as Kyrgyz people against Uzbeks, Mongolians against China, Azerbaijanis against Armenia and Chinese against Japan, etc, has already overwhelmed rational thinking.

• Socializing and adapting to open society was the toughest challenge for the Homo Sovieticus, the unfortunate bunch of the Soviet era. 

• The years of experiment to create a Soviet person only pushed propagandas and failed to nourish a “normal” socialized person. 

• As a result, the weak and vulnerable Homo Sovieticus turned into a ferocious, impatient, hectic and barbaric Homo Post-Sovieticus.

In the majority of post-communist countries, the state and public organizations, with the exception of military and homeland security, are non-institutionalized and the institutionalized ones are either incompatible in open society or vulnerable, which ultimately spreads corruption, bribery, embezzlement, and theft in the society. This, in turn, stirs up public distress and separation. Frankly, the majority of Homo Post-Sovieticus thinks about how they are left out of these opportune chances and considers themselves as victims instead of considering the misdeeds of these crimes. It is forbidden to have personal thoughts, express discontent, suggest new ideas, and since there was a heavy sentence in place, they were “well-mannered” in a closed society. There are not many penalty-driven, illogical and wayward protesters in open society. They look for blames in everything and eventually reach to a conclusion that the old communism was better than the current society. They never acknowledge the simple fact that every post-communist country, in its worst state, is clearly better than the old days. An evident indication was that the public voted Joseph Stalin as the best leaders of all times in Russia and Nicolae Ceausescu in Romania. Especially the elders, who had a content life in communism and seek “vengeance”, heavily affect the younger generation. Although the times have changed, the young people that never witnessed the “greatness”  of the previous society are having misleading ideas and undervaluing their home country thanks to the privilege of comparing their country with developed countries.

Therefore, a nationalist idea called “pseudo patriotism” is dominating among the public, installing public suspicion, doubt, and paranoia for an enemy. It is maybe related to the fact that everyone regardless of their social classes instinctively longs for the past, their younger and sexually capable self. Karl Marx categorized social development into five formations depending on who is holding the labor instrument. It is not rare for Homo Sovieticus, who have memorized this “theory” without critical thoughts, to think they have taken a step back from socialism and communism, the peak of development, into outdated capitalism, or even feudalism and slavery.

Thus, the weak, vulnerable and loyal to the State and community, Homo Sovieticus with their identical political, artistic and literary views, turned into a Homo Post-Sovieticus, who are ferocious, impatient, hectic, barbaric in terms of morality and ethics, cannot properly assess the environment, think they are above the law, and prefer to live outside the law. It will take a long time for them to become normal civilized citizens of the XXI century. It may require another two to three generations. Homo Post-Sovieticus may just be another phase of the transition.2016.06.01

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Naadam opening to be performed for foreign visitors

The standard ticket price is MNT 16,000-24,000

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Naadam Festival 2019 will be held at the National Amusement Park at 21.00 pm for foreign visitors. The official opening ceremony of the Naadam Festival takes place at the National Sports Stadium in Mongolian. Therefore, foreign tourists cannot fully understand the meaning of content. This year, the Ministry of Environment and Tourism decided to re-organize the opening as Naadam Night show in English.

Also, there is a problem of lack of opening ceremony ticket. National Sports Stadium has only 12,300  seats and finding tickets is a big problem tourists face every year. A total of 15,000 tourists submitted a request to watch Mongolia’s traditional festival opening ceremony. However, around 1500 tickets were allowed to the tourists. This year, the standard ticket price is MNT 16,000-24,000 the same as the last year.

“The Stadium has 13,500 seats, and tourists can receive 3500 of it. This is our capability. If we allow all the tourists who want to attend the opening of the Naadam Festival to enter the Central Stadium, Mongolians cannot watch their traditional festivals. We are aiming to receive one million foreign tourists in 2020, making an effort to improve sanitation standards in tourism zones,” the Minister of Environment and Tourism Tseerenbat Namsrai said to the press.

In Mongolia, the tourism season starts in May, and travelers tend to attracted by Naadam Festival. There is statistical data on an average of 450,000 tourists visit Mongolia annually. However, according to the officials, the number of tourists visiting Mongolia only exceeds 90,000 per year.

Tourists came to Mongolia decreased by 4.8 percent last year

During Naadam, National Sports Stadium become extremely crowded, due to the centralized trade and trade services. “730 organizations, which include food, souvenirs, handicrafts, and other trading will work in the stadium and Khui Doloon Khudag. Under General Manager of Ulaanbaatar’s order related to Naadam, the Metropolitan Professional Inspection Department, Police Department of Ulaanbaatar city, and the Mayor’s office of all districts will jointly work in maintaining security,” said the spokesman.

The number of tourists came to Mongolia last year decreased by 4.8 percent. The decline in tourists from China and Australia was the key factor to it. Although the total number of tourists has dropped, tourists from Ukraine and Hong Kong have risen. In particular, the tourists from Ukraine increased by 37.2 percent compared to last year. Traveling flow between the two countries has doubled since the adoption of the non-visa law to Russia.

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Mongolia faces needs to boost budget revenue

Experts see possibilities to increase tax income

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Budget revenue of Mongolia is at risk due to tax deficit, deduction, and discounts for mining investors. Furthermore, the Extended Fund Facility program will expire in the coming year, threatening the budget decrease. As a result of the need, officials propose the possibility to increase budget revenue by setting up the right tax policy.

One out of every MNT 10 of Mongolia’s tax revenue goes to discounts and exemptions. In the last four years, tax deduction and exemptions to citizens and entities of Mongolia equal to nearly four trillion tugriks. The volume has increased, and exceeded one trillion tugriks this year. This number is expected to reach MNT 1.2 trillion next year, according to the 2019 budget. Currently, there are over 40 discounts and 180 exemptions nationwide.

As of 2018, there are 1.2 million working population in Mongolia

Taxes are the main source of Mongolia’s budget revenue, which accounts for 80 percent of it. However, the country can not fully obtain its tax. The tax deficit equals MNT 800 billion. As of 2018, there are 1.2 million people, who are working in Mongolia of which 650,000 are paying social insurance. The rest of the working people are receiving social and civil services without paying social insurance. This may lead the country to inequality of social allocation.

More specifically, government revenues are mainly generated from taxation and royalties from the mining industry, but the country provides benefits to direct mining investors by showing VAT and profit discounts. International organizations have also warned the need to organize such tax breaks. According to the World Bank, the detailed study of these preferences, goals, and economic feasibility is required.

In 2017, Mongolia received an extensive bailout package from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) under its Extended Fund Facility (EFF). Since taking the IMF loan, Mongolia has had a good economic situation. When the three-year financial program expires in 2020, the revenue sources will decrease gradually and spell risk to the budget.

In order to expand budget revenue, Mongolia needs the policy which enables the government to identify unregistered and potential taxpayers and enhance accountability in tax administration. The experts also underscored the importance of simplifying tax payments, using electronic invoices, improving taxation and information strategies.

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BoM’s gold purchase falls short of previous records

Annual gold purchase almost doubled in 2018, reaching 22 tons

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The Bank of Mongolia (BoM) purchased 6 tons of precious metals in the first of 2019, down 846 kg or 12 percent from the same period last year. The decline was mainly due to the expiration of the productive period of low royalty taxes on gold with the 2014 amendments to the Minerals Law, according to the officials. The average price of 1 gram gold at the BoM was MNT 658.22 as of June 28.

The 2.5 percent of discounted royalty on gold mining expired on Jan 1. From then on, 5 to 10 percent royalty taxes on gold mining have been imposed on miners, driving in the central bank’s gold purchase down 71.6 percent yearon-year from January to March.

Mongolia‘s parliament has set the gold royalty at a 5 percent rate to recover the BoM’s gold purchases.

Gold purchase by the Bank of Mongolia has been increasing sharply thanks to the discounted royalty on gold mining, the central bank said in a statement, noting that it has purchased a total of 5.2 tons of gold since the new rate came into force on April 8.

Purchasing gold is said to be one of the key instruments for the Mongolian central bank to increase its official foreign exchange reserves. The central bank of Mongolia purchased only 12.7 tons of gold in 2014. Thanks to the low royalty taxes on gold with the 2014 amendments, its annual gold purchase almost doubled in 2018, reaching 22 tons, according to the BoM.

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Mongolia may miss out on 2019 coal export target

Coal export of Mongolia remained 20-30 percent behind plan

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China's coal import, which accounts for most of Mongolia’s coal exports and a substantial proportion of world coal consumption, increased 30 percent, reaching 29.6 million tons in the last five months, according to China’s General Administration of Customs. However, the country’s coking coal import has declined 2.4 percent to 5.92 million tons in May compared to the same period of the previous year.

As a result, Mongolia’s coal export to China dropped 8.9 percent to 3.68 million tons. Mongolia exported a total of 15 million tons of coal earning USD 1.2 billion in the first five months of 2019, which is only equal to 35 percent of 2019 export target of 42 million tons.

Australia’s coal export also slumped by 5.5 percent to 5.25 million tons, due to the relationship between the two countries. Australian coal exports have faced border crossing bans, after the country refused to use Huawei’s 5G service. Coking coal accounted for 26 percent or 1.38 million tons, which is the poorest performance since February 2019.

In the meantime, the coal export of Russia to China, the world's sixth largest coal producer ranked after China, the United States, India, Australia, and Indonesia, rose 64 percent to 3.93 million tons. 15 percent of it or 596,000 tons were coking coal. Indonesia also saw 46 percent of growth in its export selling 13.2 million tons of coal.

According to the Ministry of Mining and Heavy Industry (MMHI), the export of Gashuunsukhait port is in the range of previous years and coal export from Shiveekhuren port reached 50 percent of the estimated amount. As a result, Mongolia’s coal export remained 20-30 percent behind plan. In the second quarter of last year, the country lost its opportunity to export two million tons of coal, due to the C lisence at ports between China and Mongolia.

Experts predict China’s demand to stay at last year’s level. The second biggest economy of the world’s coal imports declined in the second half of the last two years, signalling concerns that Mongolia may fall short of its ambitious goal.