News Mongolia Business News

Erdenes TT Seeks to Repay Chalco Amid Low Coal Prices

Source: Bloomberg
Erdenes Tavan Tolgoi LLC has trimmed its debt to a Chinese customer to USD 130 million from USD 350 million, and aims to pay the remaining amount due this year.
Erdenes TT pays its debt to the Aluminum Corp. of China Ltd., also known as Chalco, in coal. It will need to deliver an additional 2.5 million metric tons to 3.5 million tons of the fuel to fully settle the advance payment, Chief Executive Officer Batsuuri Yaichil said in an interview in Mongolia’s capital. The price of coal has declined over the past two years, increasing the amount of coal the company needs to ship to pay creditors. The mounting debts delay income the government needs to plug budget holes caused by declining foreign investment, which fell 54 percent last year, and reduced GDP growth, which slowed to 11.7 percent last year from 12.4 percent in 2012.

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SouthGobi Resources repeats warning that it needs additional financing

Source: Times Colonist
SouthGobi Resources Ltd. has repeated a warning that it's in dire need of additional financing to relieve a cash shortage and help it keep operating through a period of low coal prices.
The company, part of the Rio Tinto group of companies, says it has USD 15.8 million of cash as of April 21, including USD 8 million from a prepayment for future coal deliveries. It also has a USD 7.9 million cash payment due on 19 May, to pay for interest on a debt owed to China Investment Corp.

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Mongolia pays $83m of interest on sovereign debt

Source: Zuunii Medee
Mongolia paid in USD 83.3 million in interest last year for its sovereign debt. Mongolia paid USD 63.3 million for the 2012 Chinggis bond and USD 20 million for the USD 580 million bond issued by the Development Bank of Mongolia earlier that same year.

"Double Deel" Law will not scrap the government, says premier

Source: Info Mongolia
Prime Minister Norov Althankhuyag denied that the passage of the so-called “Double Deel” law that prohibits parliamentarians from participating in the Cabinet Secretariat would result in the dissolution of the government, speaking at his weekly press conference on 17 April.
“The voting does not mean to dissolve the government, because many discussions and processes are awaited further,” said Altankhuayg. “Probably, following the ratification of this amendment, it looks like and is understood that the government would be suspended at any time for those who are in a hurry to do so, but this will not happen.”
The law, which was originally initiated by the president, is to take effect 1 July—two years ahead of what had been originally scheduled.

Leaked letter shows premier ready to accept OT phase II financing

Source: Mongolia Mining Journal
The Mongolian government has blinked and taken a step to resolve the impasse over the second phase of the Oyu Tolgoi project. Expressing the hope that this will “open a new chapter in our relationship,” Prime Minister Altankhuyag wrote a letter to Rio Tinto Chief Executive Officer Sam Walsh on 27 March, saying talks on financing the mine’s further development can be resumed without waiting for the completion of the feasibility study.

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OT helps boost Mongolia copper concentrate exports by 53%

Source: Bloomberg, Cover Mongolia
Mongolia’s copper concentrate exports increased to 214,100 tons from 140,000 tons a year earlier, the National Statistical Office said on its website. The Oyu Tolgoi mine began commercial production of copper concentrate in July.
Mongolia exported 3.74 million tons of coal in the first three months compared to 3.44 million tons a year earlier, according to the agency. Mongolia exported 908,600 tons of iron ore in first three months compared to 1.12m tons a year earlier, according to the agency. Gold exports rose to 2.2 tons in the first three months compared to one ton in the same period a year earlier, according to the statement. Total exports reached USD 986.9 million in the first three months compared to USD 809.1 a year earlier, according to the agency.

Altankhuyag submits economic stimulus bill

Source: Undesnii Shuudan
Prime Minister Norov Altankhuyag presented a new economic stimulus bill that would streamline projects deemed essential to the economy.
This week the government will have to revise the parliamentary decree to stimulate the economy and create a strategy for how to best complete projects with significance to the economy in a timely fashion.

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Rio’s Turquoise Hill Says Parties to Seek OT Funding Extension

Source: Bloomberg
Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd., the miner controlled by Rio Tinto Group, said all parties in the Oyu Tolgoi copper mine agreed to seek a funding extension for the underground expansion amid talks with the government.
Requests to extend the funding commitments to 30 September will be sent to lenders, Kay Priestly, chief executive officer of Vancouver-based Turquoise Hill, said in a statement yesterday. Mongolia’s government and Rio Tinto have been in talks over disputes related to the mine including cost overruns and the financing conditions. Rio laid off 1,700 workers and put the underground tunneling on care and maintenance mode in August.
“All parties remain committed to the underground development of Oyu Tolgoi and to resolving the outstanding shareholder issues,” Turquoise Hill’s Priestly said. “Constructive discussions between all parties have resulted in significant progress being made in resolving the issues, and those discussions are continuing.”