July 2020 \ News \ Mongolia—column

2020 Parliamentary Elections in Mongolia ...

By Chanravyn Burenbayar

                                        Ballot marking. Photo source: Unoodur agency

What next?

The MPP Government, under the MPP Chairperson Ukhnaagiin Khurselsukh, who also served as the country’s Prime Minister, has now been given the chance to continue with the policy of taking the economy to the next level by implementing mega-projects, which were either shelved or lay fallow for many years under different governments. Significant actions have been already taken and now MPP has only to ensure their completion and exploitation.

'The COVID-19 pandemic is crippling the economy, and unless the new Government, without losing any more time, draws a strategic blue-print for the revival of the economy in the post-pandemic period, it would encounter insurmountable challenges, starting with the huge foreign debt that the country is burdened under – 30.4 billion US dollar foreign debt.

Export from the mining sector has not been very promising in the past period, since the onset of the pandemic, as this sector accounts for the largest chunk of foreign exchange revenue. It is unsure when countries, major importers of mining products from Mongolia, would be actually bringing back their fluttering economy back to normal. Hence, the new Government must try, at least and to begin with, to cut down on its spending and implement tailor-made social protection policies, at least to protect that segment of the population that has the lowest rate of income, for this could prevent further unemployment and increase in the rate of poverty.

However, the good news is that the re-election of the MPP Government into a second term, will help in the continuity of the policy of strategic partnership with India, which has extended an LOC of more than one billion US dollars for the construction of an oil refinery, that will, at the least, make Mongolia self-dependent in the energy sector, which is a locomotive force behind economic growth.

—The author is Minister Counsellor, Embassy of Mongolia in India

Related News.