Russia looks to Mongolia to further develop trade and connectivity with China
Transiting Arctic gas to China and increasing Russia-China rail capacity are on the agenda
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov arrived yesterday (Tuesday July 5) in the Mongolian capital, Ulaanbaatar, for talks with his Mongolian counterpart, Battsetseg Batmunkh, as well as with Mongolian President Ukhnaagiin Khurelsukh and the President of the Great State Hural, Gombojavyn Zandanshatar.
Senior diplomats of the two countries had a detailed discussion on key issues on the bilateral agenda and on the progress made by Russia and Mongolia in implementing the agreements reached at the highest and highest levels to develop mutually beneficial cooperation in the fields of economy, transport and infrastructure. , and energy, the Russian Foreign Ministry said earlier. Strengthening cooperation both internationally and in the region will also be discussed.
Mongolia is an important transit point for Russian-Chinese trade, as the Trans-Mongolian Railway splits from the Trans-Siberian at Irkutsk and heads south through Mongolia before terminating in Beijing.
Talks have been going on since 2019 to upgrade this road and maybe do double track but progress has been delayed due to Covid.
Mongolia is also in talks with China and Russia on the Trans Mongolian LNG pipelinewhich would transport gas from the Russian arctic peninsula of Yamal to China.
The country is also well known for its untapped but significant reserves of rare earths, other exotic minerals and metals that Russia will particularly need to source for its IT industry given the Western sanctions imposed on it. Mongolia is also discussing a Free Trade Agreement with the Eurasian Economic Union, and the price for Ulaanbaatar to join could well be increased rail capacity – paid for by Moscow. Lavrov’s visit should begin to unlock some of those mining and transit commodities as the new, Asia-focused Russia begins to emerge.
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