N.Altankhuyag: 50 thousand MNT banknotes will not be introduced


Prime Minister of Mongolia N.Altnakhuyag held his weekly “30 Minutes with the Prime Minister” meeting yesterday and made statements to the press regarding the nation’s current issues. According to news.mn, Finance Minister Ch.Ulaan announced during his working hours at the governmental 11-11 hotline center, that the issue of introducing a 50 thousand MNT banknote is under review, but the Prime Minister refuted that information and said it was a rumor.

N.Altankhuyag also stated that a resolution on measures to be taken for the current economic situation in Mongolia will be submitted to the Parliament. 

The following are responses by the Prime Minister to journalists’ questions.

The opposition force has been reporting that the performance of the government’s action plan is only at 30 percent. Is it true that the performance is so low?

Is it necessary to go after a number? The administration has had only 1.7 years since its establishment. The results of the government’s performance are measured by the facts, and the fact is that people’s living standards have been improved. Actually, the performance of the government’s actions were measured at 42.6 percent and will be soon discussed through the parliament.

When will measures be taken against officials who developed the corrupt budget?

Officials of the General Audit Office have visited every province and conducted investigations, as Parliament has frozen the investments of 234 construction projects. The results will be discussed by parliament, then submitted to the government. By that time, it will become clear who to take relevant measures against.

The Mongolian People’s Party has warned that Mongolia’s economy is facing difficult conditions and has reached a decision to hold a consultation to determine ways to get out of the current economic situation. Has Mongolia’s economy really worsened or is the opposition party just playing political games? Can you please name positive indicators in the current economy? If the economy really has deteriorated, are ways to get over it being determined?

I won’t lie and say that the current Mongolian economy is in good condition. Mongolia’s income has been reduced. The world economy this year has worsened compared to previous years and this is also influencing our economy. When the global economy declines, it impacts the price of Mongolian export products. For instance, the price of coal is lower than last year. However, instead of blaming the drop in the price of coal, the government and central bank are starting to implement certain projects around it, such as seeking ways to increase the amount of exported coal. Also, the policy to support the construction sector will start being carried out this spring. We are focusing on making cashmere a VAT product.

It is right to hold meetings and consultations focusing on the economy. There is nothing like the economic policy of government. Thus, it is important to determine ways to get over bad economic situations with cooperation. The government is working on certain suggestions. The spring session is to start next week.

What happened to the New Government for Changes’ claim that it will operate without any breaks or holidays? It has started to take breaks on Saturdays in addition to the Fall Session break.

The New Government for Changes has 1.7 years behind it. During this period, it worked nonstop for the majority of its time. But after the Fall Session break, the ministers started seeking treatment in hospitals for exhaustion. That’s why the decision was made to hold weekly governmental meetings on Friday instead of Saturday during the Parliamentary Fall Session break. The decision was not made to avoid working without a break, it was decided for the sake of the chamber members’ health. Starting next Saturday, the government will hold its regular meetings. Also, the governors are introduced to the sectors they are in charge of on weekends. It will continue regularly.

The political parties outside of parliament are starting to demand the resignations of Minister of Economy Development N.Batbayar and Mining Minister D.Gankhuyag. What is your position on this issue?

Is it right or wrong to blame D.Gankhuyag when coal price has fallen in the global market? It is an issue to discuss.

When Finance Minister Ch.Ulaan worked at the 11-11 governmetnal center and responded to citizens’ questions he announced that an appointed working group is studying the printing of a 50 thousand MNT banknote. But you refuted this. Who should we believe? 

Today (April 3) I asked President of Mongolbank N.Zoljargal if it is going to introduce a 50 thousand MNT banknote and he responded, “No”. So, it is a rumor.

Will heating fees be doubled?

There is no discussion at all for fees for heating to double.

Economists are advising that the Oyu Tolgoi project needs to be intensified in order to recover the economy. Is the government discussing that issue with the investor side?

The New Government for Changes has always expressed our position and willingness to exploit Oyu Tolgoi’s underground mine. Last week, a letter was sent to the Director of Rio Tinto stating that Mongolia is ready to exploit the underground mine. The reason why the investors are staying still is that the global economy has worsened and the price of copper has declined for a while. That’s why investors are not rushing.

Development Bank still hasn’t issued financing for the new railway project. What about that?

It is the issue of the two ministries in charge of the project.

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