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Western companies suspend operations in Mongolia after presidential elections

June 26, 2013, 12:16 UTC+3
Russian companies prefer to watch and wait for the time being
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ULAN BATOR, June 26 (Itar-Tass) - Foreign investors, including Russian ones, are hoping for an improvement of the investment environment in Mongolia after the presidential election, Russia’s ambassador Viktor Samoilenko told Itar-Tass in an interview.

“At the moment private Russian businesses are very cautious about the situation in Mongolia for a variety of reasons. Firstly, although Russia and Mongolia have an effective declaration on the development of strategic partnership there has been no real progress so far,” Samoilenko said. “Nobody will be eager to launch new projects before it becomes clear that the previously agreed plans are being implemented successfully.”

Samoilenko said that Mongolia in 2012 and 2013 adopted quite a few decisions that make foreign investors cautious. These decisions, aimed at putting them in a rather vulnerable position, concern not so much Russian businesses and Chinese and Western ones, he said.

The Russian ambassador believes that as a result of “ill-considered actions by the previous government and the current one” many Western companies have “suspended operations in Mongolia, frozen their activity or even left for good.”

Russian companies prefer to watch and wait for the time being.

Bilateral trade turnover between Mongolia and Russia in 2012 totaled 1.9 billion dollars. Samoilenko believes that this figure is not very impressive.

“There is a great imbalance. We sell to Mongolia a great deal more than we buy from it,” he said.

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