MEDIA RELEASE: Opportunities rife for SMEs in Mongolia

HE Saikhanbileg Chimed, Prime Minister of Mongolia addresses conference attendees at Asia House. Image copyright Andy Tyler Photography

HE Saikhanbileg Chimed, Prime Minister of Mongolia, addresses conference attendees at Asia House. Image copyright Andy Tyler Photography

MEDIA RELEASE: Opportunities rife for SMEs in Mongolia


Media release

London UK: HE Saikhanbileg Chimed, Prime Minister of Mongolia, and the Rt Hon Hugo Swire MP, Minister of State at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, spoke at a conference at Asia House in London about the new and growing opportunities in Mongolia. HE Saikhanbileg Chimed, who was appointed Prime Minister of Mongolia in November 2014, was in the UK to re-engage with existing and potential foreign investment partners.

Mr Saikhanbileg urged UK companies of all sizes to invest in Mongolia, with key areas of opportunity including mining, power projects and infrastructure. He said that “the government of Mongolia is talking about much more than just mega projects” with Mongolian companies searching for partners in the SME field.

Mr Swire discussed his enthusiasm for the UK’s relationship with Mongolia, stating that the country is a trusted partner to the UK. Mr Swire highlighted how “Mongolia’s GDP has the potential to become one of the fastest growing economies in the world” with the country’s economic progression “being a testament to the Prime Minister’s vision to his country’s future.” He spoke about Mongolia’s extensive resources which alongside its natural resources include its young demographic.

Mongolia is working to show the world that it is serious about attracting inward investment, a point that remained at the top of the agenda throughout the conference. Following Mr Swire’s statement that Mongolia is “an increasingly attractive partner for trade and investment”, Jean-Sébastien Jacques, Chief Executive, Copper & Coal, Rio Tinto supported this point, stating “Mongolia is very much open for business.” Mr Jacques discussed the recent agreement signed by the Mongolian government with Rio Tinto and Turquoise Hill Resources on the pathway for the development of the underground mine at Oyu Tolgoi. He said: “less than six weeks ago, the Prime Minister and I agreed on a pathway to develop the second phase of the operation. This is a critical step forward in the evolution of Oyu Tolgoi.”

Mr Saikhanbileg and Mr Swire both expressed the benefits that investing in Mongolia could offer to UK companies. Mongolia is estimated to hold more than USD1.3 trillion in mineral deposits however to date, only 25% of the country has been geographically surveyed. This offers a huge selection of opportunities for UK companies operating in the mining exploration, extraction and production industries, as well as those supplying mining equipment and technologies.

In addition, the lack of infrastructure continues to be the biggest challenge in terms of conducting business in Mongolia. However it also offers huge investment potential to international companies looking to invest in the country.

Mr Swire noted that the UK was the first western country to form relationships with Mongolia, forming ties in 1963.

Further speakers at the conference include Gankhuyag Chuluun, General Director, Ard Holdings Group; Masaru Honma Director for Central Asia and Mongolia, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD); Gordon Turley, Development Director – Major Projects, Mott MacDonald and Byambasaikhan Bayanjargal, CEO, Erdenes Mongol.

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To read Web Editor Naomi Canton’s coverage of the conference click here.