January 27, 2016 marks the 30th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations between Mongolia and the United States. On the occasion of the 30th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations, an academic conference themed 'US Policy in Northeast Asia and Mongolia-US relations' took place last week. During the event, the advisor at the Center for Policy Research (CPR) of Ulaanbaatar, Ms. Batchimeg gave an interview on the matter to the reporter of the MONTSAME News Agency.
The former Member of Parliament and a leading expert of CPR, Ms. Batchimeg remarked “Mongolian foreign policy includes equal development with its two neighbors. However, the third neighbor policy is crucial for Mongolia. We understand third neighbor policy as a democratic country with a complementary economy. This is why we give importance to our relations with the U.S. The US support for our democratic process and establishment were essential for the last 30 years. Furthermore, they helped develop the Mongolian military to the next stage to participate in international peacekeeping operations. Overall, the US works closely with our security sector”.
In this swing phase of world economy, keeping developing relations with the US is essential. To do this, Ms. Batchimeg considers that Mongolia's political and economical policy have to be stable to find new ways for foreign investment. However, investors lose confidence with the ever-changing policy of the shifting leadership. Therefore, the foundation to effective relations is to improve local governance by ensuring growth with its resource and keeping a stable environment for investors. According to Ms. Batchimeg, “Mongolia received much investment in the past few years, but most of them disappeared because of local instability. Therefore, it’s important that we focus on the economic environment, develop relations with US, and with other countries as well”.
We asked Ms. Batchimeg’s thoughts on whether the two countries relations will change with the new President of the United States. “The relations of the two countries highly depend on where Russia-US and China-US relations lead. It’s too early to know if there will be any acute changes” said Ms. Batchimeg. “We’re in an interesting phase where the international relations stage might shift since Donald Trump took office. Even Mongolians are focusing heavily on the change in US policy in Northeast Asia, especially Mongolia. Donald Trump is now in office but we’re trying to analyze his previous policy and positions. We’ll see the bigger picture as time goes on”, added Ms. Batchimeg.
About ten young researchers gave a presentation on the conference. We asked Ms. Batchimeg’s thoughts on what the younger generation needs to learn.
“Many young people are graduating with impressive backgrounds. We see how many young people are interested in international relations. The government needs to fund research facilities and give significance to the research and use it for their policy. It’s important to encourage and include them in the decision-making process and hear their voices” she said at the end.
The Center for Policy Research (CPR) is the first Mongolian non-governmental policy research institution. CPR undertakes research and development activities independently from any political party or organizations. Established in 1998, the CPR has gained extensive experiences and well known in the areas of rural development, agriculture, land reform, pasture and risk management, herders' community development, rural poverty and social issues and environmental management.
Its expertise also includes ways to address challenges at both the national and local levels of broader issues in a transitional economy like fiscal decentralization, public administration and regional development. In addition, CPR is engaged in extensive training, promotional and advocacy activities in all directions mentioned above. CPR handles projects financed by multilateral and bilateral donors, government agencies and the private sector.
Former Member of Parliament Ms. Batchimeg was head of the Taipei Trade and Economic Representative Office in Ulaanbaatar from 2005 to 2008, and was advisor to the president from 2009-2012. During 1995 and 2005, Ms. Batchimeg worked as a researcher and senior researcher at CPR. Focusing more on China’s policy, Ms. Batchimeg published more than 40 articles in famous research journals including 'Asian Survery', 'China Brief' and 'Global Times', and represented Mongolia in more than 20 international meetings and conferences.
The 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Mongolia and the US falls on January 27, 2016.
The article is featured in the Mongol Messenger's issue No. 4 for January 27, 2016.