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http://zgm.mn/post/1282/

President Battulga: Child protection remains inadequate

​President holds the 2nd meeting on child protection with related officials​

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http://zgm.mn/post/1282/


Monitoring the implementation of child protection actions, President of Mongolia Battulga Khaltmaa held the second meeting with the related officials yesterday as scheduled during the previous meeting on August 30. After studying their reports, the President inquired the related agencies for faults and delays.

1335 SIX-YEAR OLDS WERE UNABLE TO ENROLL INTO SCHOOL

President: -I ordered the Ministry of Education, Culture, Science and Sport (MECSS) to prepare the standards for child protection and conduct safety inspections. What has been done in this regard and why hasn’t the standards prepared yet?

MECSS: -We have approved the standards of preschool education institutions in cooperation with the UNICEF. The implementation guidelines have been sent to every kindergartens nationwide. They have started sending their ability to install the standard with their own assets. The study is expected to finalize next month.

President: -11 percent of secondary schools have high risk, 31 percent - medium risk and 57 percent - low risk according to the Environmental Safety Assessment. There are no riskfree schools. The potential victims to the risk is children. Are there any opportunity to make them risk-free?

MECSS: -There are 65 secondary schools under high risk, of which 15 are in the Capital and the rest being in local areas. Majority of the current secondary schools were constructed in the 1970’s. Some buildings are aged over 50 years. We will focus on renovating constructions under the risk assessment.

President: -Enrollment of sixyears olds is becoming a growing problem in local areas. Several parents have already issued complaints on school accessibility. How are you planning on solving this?

MECSS: -As stated by the Law on Education, we are delaying the enrollment of six-year old children by one year. The enrollment of a total of 1335 children were postponed in this regard.

President: -This is not a solution. Every single six-year old child will not live in dormitories. This has to be settled within legal frames. Another problem is daycare centers. Who is responsible for their standards?

MECSS: -There was a decision to operate day-care centers at schools. The ministry cannot monitor private day-care centers. We have submitted a request to the National Authority for Children and the Cabinet and are revising the standards and requirements.

PRIOR NOTICES CAUSE INEFFECTIVE INSPECTIONS

President: -I have received several complaints about retail stores selling expired and/or unidentified products. General Agency for Specialized Investigation (GASI) inspection concluded that they were “unable to settle”. Aren’t there any surprise inspections?

GASI: -Law on State Inspection and Examination identifies planned and unplanned inspections. The planned inspection has to be notified near the end of the previous year, while the unplanned inspections require complaints or requests, as well as five-days of prior notice

President: -Prior notices will result in ineffective inspections. The law has to be reviewed.

GASI: -This is also our facing issue. It is impossible to find any violations with prior notices. Our inspectors are willing to conduct unplanned inspections if the law is revised.

700 PEOPLE BECAME VICTIMS OF CAR ACCIDENTS SINCE JANUARY, OF WHITCH 40 PERCENT WERE CHILDREN

President: -A serious incident occurred on social media last week. How is the action on cybercrime prevention?

National Police Agency (NPA): -The UNFRIEND movement against cybercrime reached over 6.1 million people in a double counting. In cooperation with the Communication and Information Technology Authority, the preparatory works of an influence campaign is currently underway. Also, the NPA has established a unit to fight against cybercrime.

President criticizes Cabinet's lack of response to capital punishment

At the end of the meeting, the President concluded the reports of Ministry of Labor and Social Protection, Authority for Family, Child and Youth Development, MECSS and Education Department of the Capital as inadequate and complimented the GASI, NPA and Traffic Police Authority for their effective actions. He then highlighted the growing numbers of child abuse and its recurrence, which is around 2-3 cases per day, and warned to focus on the issue. He remarked, “I submitted a request to revive capital punishment on child abusers; however, the Cabinet did not respond yet.”

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Credit Guarantee Fund helps finance 640 SMEs

Credit Guarantee Systeт for Future Development of SME forum held

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Credit Guarantee Fund of Mongolia (CGF), in cooperation with the Bloomberg TV Mongolia and the Asian Development Bank (ADB), held Credit Guarantee System for Future Development of SME forum yesterday to present the outcomes of ADB-supported project “Supporting the Credit Guarantee System for Economic Diversification and Employment Project (SCGS)”. It has been six years since the Parliament approved the Law on CGF. This allowed more access to finance for small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) as CGF has made about MNT 76.8 billion a guarantee to a total of USD 164.4 billion loans of over 640 private entities since 2013. As of today, the repayment rate stands at 68 percent of the total outstanding loans. Last year, the ADB launched a USD 60 million worth loan project SCGS to provide new financing guarantee products for the CGF, making it easier for smaller businesses to source long-term funds from banks.

USD 500 million effective support to be provided for financial sector and SME access to finance

At the forum, Giannetto Giacomo, Project Officer for SCGS at the ADB, addressed “As you know, the economy is very concentrated in Mongolia. Because of that, there are a lot of volatility driven by; for instance, commodity prices. One objective of this project is to support SME finance in order to create diversification and job growth in non-mining sectors. When we did the initial assessment for potential outcome, we estimated that 15,000-16,000 new jobs will be created once the project completes. In terms of financing, the project itself has around USD 60 million in financing and because of the structure of the project, this allows exponential support. We estimate about USD 500 million of effective support to the financial sector and SME access to finance. Also, there are lots of unique and creative aspects to the project, such as risk sharing between banks and placement of time deposits in banks. This is innovative not only in Mongolia, but actually across all projects the ADB implemented in financial support. At the time when the project was approved, because of someone’s innovations and potential impact, it won an award from the ADB for the best financial sector project of 2017.” According to the CGF, MNT 32.8 billion guarantee was issued to MNT 58.1 billion loans of over 160 SMEs via “Mon 33 38” project within the frame of SCGS. 37 percent of the SMEs involved in the guarantee were manufacturers, while 35 percent were service providers and the remaining accounted for trade entities. Furthermore, the fund highlighted that around 1,180 workplaces have been created with the project so far.

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DBM sells USD 500 million bond at 7.25% interest

​DBM transacts a bond offering without government guarantee​

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After five years of absence, the Development Bank of Mongolia (DBM) returned to the international debt markets with a successful USD 500 million benchmark offering yesterday. This was the first time DBM transacted a bond offering without a government guarantee, setting an important price reference for other Mongolian borrowers. The 5-year bond carries a coupon of 7.25 percent and were priced at a spread of only 85 basis points over the interpolated Government of Mongolia curve. This compares very favourably to the most recent bank deal from Mongolia which, despite being guaranteed by the Government, paid a yield spread of 280 basis points over the sovereign curve.

Proceeds are being used to refinance existing short-dated and floating rate debt

The transaction garnered a high quality order book with a "who is who" of international asset and investment managers participating by submitting orders for USD 4.1 billion of bonds, representing an eight times oversubscription. The oversubscription allowed for a final pricing of 75 basis points inside the initial guidance, a strong achievement against an extremely volatile market backdrop. Proceeds are being used to refinance existing short-dated and floating rate debt with the objective to manage assets and liability mismatches by extending duration, eliminating interest rate risk and reducing cost on a duration-adjusted basis. DBM's transaction followed on the back of a comprehensive marketing campaign with fixed income investors in Hong Kong, Singapore, London, Boston and New York. Its success demonstrates the strong perception the Mongolian sovereign and DBM have built with the global investor base over the past few years, as the nation's macroeconomic indicators have rebounded strongly, and a recapitalised DBM has embarked on a profitable and sustainable path, playing an ever more pivotal role in the ongoing diversification of Mongolia's economy, green industries and Mongolia's thriving export sectors.

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MET: We chose an option that less affects citizens’ health

​Ministry of Environment comments on air pollution reduction measures​

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Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET) held a press conference on measures against air pollution yesterday, explaining MNT 54 billion installment of stove pipe appliances to over 100,000 households. Minister of Environment and Tourism Minister Tserenbat Namsrai addressed, “Health is our number one priority. Around 52.9 percent of citizens in Ulaanbaatar city have been diagnosed with respiratory diseases. We have to consider the value of citizens’ health. According to an independent study, medical institutions spend over MNT 10 billion on treating the respiratory diseases of children under the age of 18. Another study highlighted that children living in air polluted environment have 40 percent shorter lung capacity than those in the countryside.” “The same study suggests that 80 percent of air pollution in Ulaanbaatar city accounts for 220,000 household stove pipes and the population is increasing with each passing year,” explained Minister Tserenbat. MET estimates the installment of the appliance will drastically reduce air pollution in the capital. Although the cost is enough to construct accommodations for 900 households or finance the prepayment of 4,000 household mortgage loans, these measures will be ineffective in the short-term according to MET. “We chose an option that less affects citizens’ health,” stressed Mr. Tserenbat and added, “This was a mathematical solution to reduce air pollution. Also, we restricted the use of low-pressure stoves and reduced raw coal consumption by around 10 percent.”

HOUSEGOLD ENERGY EXPENSE TO AVERAGE MNT 22,000 WITH THE APPLIANCE

The MET spokesperson provided information on the fully supportive combustion appliance. “The appliance was created by Mongolian engineers and has been studied for 9 months straight by the working group responsible for developing the appliance. This is not a filter. This is an appliance for complete combustion of coal particles and the manufacturer will give 3-years of guarantee on their product,” informed MET spokesperson. The ministry also explained that the installment to 100,000 household is not a test and said, “We are working on installing the appliance only to a short-list of households. Monthly household energy expense will be around MNT 22,000 after installing the appliance and we will try to reduce this cost.”

• Around 52.9 percent of citizens in Ulaanbaatar city have been diagnosed with respiratory diseases.

• 80 percent of air pollution in Ulaanbaatar city accounts for 220,000 household stove pipes.

• This is not a filter. This is an appliance for complete combustion of coal particles.

S.KOREAN SOFT LOAN WILL BE FULLY SPENT ON HOUSING

Minister Tserenbat informed, “The housing policy will be implemented as a long-term solution. The public needs to understand that this measure is an advanced technology to realistically reduce air pollution in the short-term. We are cooperating with the Export-Import Bank of Korea and Mongolian Ministry of Finance to allocate South Korea’s USD 500 million soft loan on housing ger district households.” He then announced that he will take responsibility if the measure fails to reduce air pollution.

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Australian firm acquires Centerra Gold assets in Mongolia

​OZD Capital invests in Mongolia through its subsidiary OZD Asia​

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Brisbane-based Australian firm OZD Capital has announced that the company is investing in Mongolia through its subsidiary OZD Asia PTE Ltd. In other words, the company is investing in Mongolia’s mining projects by acquiring Centerra Netherlands and Centerra Gold Mongolia LLC, which is the 100 percent direct shareholder of Boroo Gold LLC. OZD Capital is the parent company of OZD Asia PTE and focuses on emerging markets, specifically in mining and metal assets by financing and operating them. The company is largely owned by Australian, Singaporean and Mongolian stakeholders.

Centerra Gold assets in Mongolia valued at USD 35 million

A board member of OZD Capital highlighted, “The deal aligns with the company’s core strategy to invest and operate mining and metal assets of emerging markets.” OZD Capital also informed that they have precious metal assets in Asia, South America and West Africa. The company is headquartered in Brisbane, Australia and has branch offices in Singapore and Mongolia. As for OZD Asia, which signed the deal, is registered in Singapore. While Mongolian projects were valued at USD 35 million, the total amount of the agreement totalled USD 90 million according to OZD Capital.