Mongolia-U.S. Annual Bilateral Consultation takes place

2020-09-15 14:48:15

Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/. On September 14, 14th Annual Bilateral Consultation meeting between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Mongolia and United States Department of State was held in an online format. U.S. Department of State Assistant Secretary for East Asia and Pacific Affairs David R. Stilwell and State Secretary of the Mongolia’s Foreign Ministry N.Ankhbayar led the 2020 Annual Bilateral Consultation (ABC), which was participated by over 40 representatives from some 20 organizations from both sides. 

The meeting, which was the first ABC since the announcement of the Strategic Partnership between the United States and Mongolia in 2019, touched on issues concerning the current state of bilateral partnership and international affairs. In particular, matters on the implementation of the Strategic Partnership, further objectives to strengthen cooperation and develop economic ties, plans for post-pandemic cooperation, including high-level reciprocal visits, were discussed. The Mongolian side also presented about the government’s action plan for 2020-2024 and economic stimulus measures at the consultation. 

Stressing that the U.S. and Mongolia are united in desire to boost trade and investment ties, the sides have agreed to an additional upcoming dialogue to solidify the economic partnership and host a regular bilateral consultation on economic policy in the near future for an effective implementation of a roadmap for Extended Economic Partnership between Mongolia and the U.S.  

While the Mongolian delegates highlighted the necessity to bring the issues relating to citizens abroad and consular services amid the pandemic up for discussion, the both sides drew attention to mutual assistance provided each other for the fight against COVID-19 outbreak, such as the U.S. aid to Mongolia totaling over USD 1.2 million and support for arranging repatriation of Mongolian citizens in the country on diplomatic charter flights as well as Mongolia’s PPE assistance worth USD 1 million to the U.S. The U.S. has also pledged to provide an assistance of ventilators to Mongolia. 

The meeting also heard plans for the celebration of the 30th anniversary of the United States Agency for International Development and Peace Corps in Mongolia, which will be marked in 2021. 

The United States have successfully trained more than 1,000 Mongolian law enforcement and security personnel in areas such as investigative techniques, contraband interdiction, and anti-money laundering and have maintained robust people-to-people engagement through a range of in-person and virtual exchange programs.  The Mongolian side expressed gratitude to the U.S. for its continuous support to promote human resource development in Mongolia’s most important areas. Mongolia’s vast and active network of alumni of U.S. programs is a testament to common values and experiences of two nations, and many alumni are leading members of Mongolia’s parliament, government, business community, and civil society.

The U.S. side highlighted that United States and Mongolia share a deep commitment to the democratic values enshrined in respective constitutions, such as human rights, religious freedom, and rule of law, and bilateral law enforcement cooperation continues to grow, namely on border security and transnational crime. “Two countries have enhanced cooperation in multi–lateral fora, including on UN leadership elections over the course of this year and the relationship remains active in the security and military sphere, despite challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic”, underlined the U.S. side.  

In conclusion, the sides noted their willingness to reinforce the Mongolia-U.S. Strategic Partnership further. The next consultation is to be held in 2021 in Ulaanbaatar.