Last Friday at the Steppe Inne of British Embassy, three very talented and good looking Mongolian young ladies played some great music.
Mongolian President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj speaks about Mongolia’s mining situation on Bloomberg. President Ts. Elbegdorj says he expects a deal on Oyu Tolgoi within a week (video posted on September 25, 2009).
Of course, we have since learned that an agreement was reached on September 30th with the official signing for the Oyu Tolgoi investment agreement to take place on October 6, 2009, a “baljnyam” and “dashnyam” day which is considered an exceptional day according to horoscope and only occurs once a year or so.
In any case, here is the Mongolian President’s interview with Bloomberg. On a side note, if he carries through everything or at least half of what he has been saying, Mongolia will be an awesome place to live and to do business. Enjoy the video!
Please feel free to comment below. Cheers!
On a sunny morning on Tuesday, May 5th 2009, I noticed some green leaves on trees for the first time this year. Finally, Ulaanbaatar is seeing vegetation and green for the first time since fall. Winter is usually filled with white, brown, and grey colors. And, early part of spring is usually filled with brown, the color of dirt. Needless to say dirt is everywhere
Then on Saturday May 9th, it is snowing…
The dust storms this year have been few and far between. Thank you the gods of weather!
NOTE: This was in my draft folder for at least four months now. I have to publish it now. Otherwise, I should just delete it. If you are interested, I will post more information next Spring. Cheers!
While talking to a friend today, I visited Google Maps, a function within Google that I used to use back when I was in US daily. I had stopped using it in Mongolia because there really is not much to show for… But guess what I found?!
Mongolia IS on the Map!
I could not believe it, but I am very happy about this. Finding places is always a pain, especially for tourists, foreigners, and Mongolians like me who don’t always know where everything is located. The thing is… in Mongolia, people don’t use street names. No one knows street names here. Everyone goes by places… as in where something is located next to some place that people know. Often, those places don’t even exist anymore, but the name remained.
In any case, the Google Maps has the names of places on the map. How cool is that?
ULAANBAATAR, MONGOLIA – Starting tonight at 24:00 clock, Peace Avenue will be closed in portions for construction from West 4-way intersection (baruun durvun zam) to East 4-way intersection (zuun durvun zam). The purpose of the construction project is to expand Peace Avenue and to add underground pedestrian crossing in an area near a hospital named “Iontsei”.
The first part of the project will involve section of Peace Avenue from West 4-way to State Department store and will take roughly 15 days to complete. The section of the road from Mongolian State University of Education to the Wrestlers Palace is expected to take 28 days to complete.
FYI: Peace Avenue is the main road connecting Ulaanbaatar and is the longest stretch of road in the city. It runs West to East.
To NY Times: On August 3, 2009, you published a story about Genghis Khan’s 131-foot statue in Mongolia. The story was written by a journalist named Dan Levin and was well written overall. The only real issue is that your journalist had the audacity to end his post with something along the lines of Genghis Khan and Hitler being the same thing!!
This is totally unacceptable.
First, Chinggis Khaan, the correct spelling for Genghis Khan, is Mongolia’s beloved hero and the founding father of our nation. He is beloved and respected above anything else in Mongolia. To us, he is like Abraham Lincoln, God, and Chuck Norris put together. All jokes aside, your journalist and your post is no laughing matter.
This is how your post ended:
“Mongolian tradition respects our grand ancestors’ names,” she said. “To really honor him, it’s much better to use his name on only premium merchandise.”
Other Mongolians skew a bit more toward realpolitik in their devotion to Genghis Khan, even if they are happy to drink to his memory.
“He was a cruel man but he led our country to greatness,” said Toguldur Munkochir, 25, a bank teller unwinding at the Chinggis Khaan bar later that night. “If you look at Lincoln, Hitler and Julius Caesar, it’s kind of the same thing.”
99.99999% of Mongolians do not feel the same way as this guy “Toguldur”. Chinggis Khaan is NOT the same thing as Hitler.
On Wednesday July 29, 2009, Tim Cope gave a presentation at Cafe Amsterdam in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia on his horseback trekking adventure across the steppes and grasslands of Mongolia to Hungary. Tim spoke of the challenges and issues he faced while traveling during zud (extreme cold winter) and deserts (up to 50C high) from Mongolia through Kazakhtsan, Russia, and Ukraine on the way to Hungary following in the footsteps of Chinggis Khaan, the correct spelling of Genghis Khan.
Here are some highlights of interesting notes and things of which he spoke.
Lately, it has been raining nearly every day here in Mongolia. And, it has been pouring.
Throughout history, Mongolians are known to have worshiped the eternal blue sky during times of the great Chinggis Khaan (often known as Genghis Khan) and before/after that. Maybe we have maddened the skies, but it has been opened as it’s just been pouring.
The rains of July 17, 2009
This rain was highly destructive. 29 people died from the ensuing floods. Eleven were from Ulaanbaatar, the capital city of Mongolia. More than 130 families have been displaced from their homes as their gers (traditional Mongolian yurts) were washed away in the floods.
This was a very sad day, but I hope we, Mongolians, will learn from this. I hope we will learn to respect our mother nature and re-learn and re-live at least some of our past traditions. I hope we will not be cutting down trees so much. If we do, at least plant trees for every tree cut. It seems that the international industry wide practice that is used in the lumber and wood industry worldwide is to plant two baby trees per every tree cut. I hope that we will not be throwing all of our trash everywhere. I hope that we will respect our waters and rivers and do our best to keep them clean and running freely. I hope that we will not be building our gers and homes in the flood plains or near the river basin.
There also was another damage that I should mention: the collapsed bridge in Zaisan.
North America Mongolia Business Council’s (NAMBC) 12th Annual Investor Conference & Prime Minister’s Roundtable will be held in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia on September 14-16, 2009. Registration is discounted for Mongolian businesses, NGO’s, and professors/students with USAM.
About NAMBC & Investors Conference
North America Mongolia Business Council and the Investors Conference are two of the longest running organizations and events promoting business and trade with/in Mongolia. The nice caveat about the Investors Conference is the opportunity to hear from the Prime Minister directly and to have the opportunity to have your question answered.
Discounted Registration Ends Soon
Additional discounted registration of 5% is available until July 24th, 2009. After September 1, there will be a $50 surcharge. Hotel group discount at the Kempinsky Khan Palace Hotel ends August 26th.
To learn more about NAMBC and about registering for the Annual Investors Conference, please visit: North America Mongolia Business Council website.
On Fourth of July, 2009, America’s 233rd Independence Day celebration took place in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. The event took place at the Star Apartments in the Embassy district from noon to 4pm and was open to Americans and locals alike. The cover was 7,000 tugrugs (aka tugriks), which equate to about five US dollars. Locals and non-Americans also had to have an American friend or acquintance in order to enter and enjoy the American Independence Day celebrations. The cover included two drinks and a fair-style menu that consisted of bratwurst or burger with side potato salad and pork ‘n beans. There were heavy dose of security around the perimeter.
Shortly after purchasing the ticket and walking in with an American friend (if you/visitor were not an American) and navigating through the secure pathway to enter the mini park / community lawn of the Star Apartments, the visitor was greeted with an “All-American” muscle car that is the Carol Shelby Ford Mustang. I must say that it did look quite nice.