During “Ministers’ Hour” program, Mining Minister R.Jigjid along with the CEO of “Erdenes Mongol”, B.Byambasaikhan, and the CEO of the “Erdenes Oyu-Tolgoi” company Da.Ganbold answered some questions from the media.
-The investment contract of Oyu-Tolgoi underground mining has been signed. Will the dollar rate be reduced, as a result of investment?
R.Jigjid: In 2009-2014, USD 7.9 billion was invested to the Oyu-Tolgoi, and USD 2 billion was traded. Also, Oyu-Tolgoi has generated USD 1.3 billion in tax for the state budget. The contract which has been signed approves investment of USD 4.4 billion. 80% of the gold and copper will be extracted from the underground mine.
B.Byambasaikhan: The construction works of the Oyu –Tolgoi underground mine requires USD 6-7 billion. The financing will come to Mongolia after the beginning of 2016.
-Mongolia owns 34% of Oyu-Tolgoi. When will Mongolia obtain the benefits? Also, the Mongolain government debt seems like it is becoming endless.
-6400 Mongolian employees work at Oyu-Tolgoi. No project yields short time benefit. Money doesn’t just rain. In a developing country, like Mongolia, the benefits of big projects are noticed progressively. The copper price will stabilize in 2017-2018. The price of the metal, which was USD 10,000, currently stands at USD 4685. The copper price is falling gradually. Of course, the price will never reach a zero US dollar rate. How much do people around the world need copper? It is just a cycle of growth and decline. Therefore, the copper price will increase again in 2018.