With its wealth of natural resources, Mongolia has the potential for major economic expansion over the coming decades. However, it faces a range of challenges in harnessing this resource wealth for sustainable and equitable development. These challenges include: high levels of poverty (currently around 30 per cent); environmental degradation; and the narrowing of the country’s economic base. The Mongolian Government has identified key areas of need as: improved mining-sector governance; human-resource development to provide qualified employees; and a more inclusive growth model.
Australia's support for the extractives sector in Mongolia includes a groundwater management project, a minerals sector vocational training project and additional assistance to improve the management of resources by the Government of Mongolia ($16 million).
Australia-Mongolia Extractives Program
$15.6 million (total, including activities listed below), 2014–2019
The extractives sector is a focus of Australia's development cooperation with Mongolia, and the Australia-Mongolia Extractives Program (AMEP) is the main vehicle for our engagement. The program uses Australian and global expertise to support the sustainable development of Mongolia's mining sector by assisting Mongolian Government agencies to improve regulation and governance, and includes support for tertiary vocational education and training to strengthen the technical skills of young Mongolians.
AMEP is supporting improved governance and regulation by mining-related government agencies, in areas such as geoscience, gold industry regulation, safety regulations for open pit and other mines, mineral valuation and the communication of key tools and products.
Phase I of AMEP is due to be completed on 31 March 2019. The managing contractor agreement for Phase II is currently being re-tendered and is due to commence on 1 April 2019.
Mongolia Vocational Training in the Minerals Resource Sector
$5.1 million, 2014–2021
Australia contributes funding to the GIZ (German aid agency) Cooperative Vocational Training in the Mineral Resource Sector Project. The project provides institutional support to the Dalanzadgad TVET (Technical Vocational Education and Training) Centre in South Gobi (Omnogovi) province. Our investment builds on GIZ’s model, piloting new approaches to improve the Centre’s capacity to provide demand-driven training (based on industry needs) to the South Gobi community. This will help ensure the local community is better equipped to gain employment in the mining industry and other related industries. The investment will also provide lessons at the national level for scale-up in other areas of the country affected by mining.
GIZ – Cooperative Vocational Training in the Mineral Resource Sector
Groundwater Management in Southern Mongolia
$5 million, 2012–2019
Access to large, reliable quantities of water is important for mining operations and large-scale infrastructure in mining areas such as the southern Gobi region of Mongolia.
Australia provides support to strengthen groundwater management in Mongolia’s south through a partnership with the World Bank. Delivered as part of the World Bank’s Mining Infrastructure Investment Support Project, the investment strengthens the capacity of Mongolian authorities to manage non-renewable groundwater resources. New institutional structures for groundwater management are being piloted in three provincial capitals and by strengthening the Mongolian Water Authority’s ability to monitor groundwater.
World Bank Mongolia – Mining Infrastructure Investment Support Project