Asia

Japan-Mongolia Relations (Basic Data)

September 1, 2014

Basic Data

Diplomatic relations between Japan and the People's Republic of Mongolia were established on February 24, 1972.

In 2012, the two countries celebrated the 40th anniversary of their diplomatic relations.

Since Mongolia’s democratization in 1990, Japan has consistently supported the country’s efforts in democratization and transition to market economy.

In 1996, the two countries set out the goal of building a “Comprehensive Partnership”. In 2010, the two countries identified the development of a “Strategic Partnership” as their shared diplomatic goal.

Bilateral relations

1. Recent Political Ties

(1)2010:Building a Strategic Partnership

President Tsakhia ELBEGDORJ’s visit to Japan in November 2010.

The two countries identified the development of a Strategic Partnership as their shared diplomatic goal.

(2)2012: New level of expanded commercial relations

Prime Minister Sukhbaatar BATBOLD’s visit to Japanin October 2012.

Joint statement to start negotiation on Japan-Mongolia Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA)

(3)2013~: Developing a Strategic Partnarship

Prime Minister Abe’s visit to Mongolia in March 2013. The two countries shared the intention to enhance mutual relations based on the following three pillars.

  • (i) Politics and security (e.g., development of multi-layered dialogue frameworks, incl. launch of Japan-U.S.-Mongolia policy dialogue)
  • (ii) Economy (“ERCH Initiative” for achieving vibrant economies in the two countries)
  • (iii) People-to-people exchanges (e.g., invitation of around 300 Mongolian youths to Japan through JENESYS 2.0 program)

Prime Minister Altankhuyag’s visit to Japan in September 2013. The two countries issued “Joint Statement” and “Mid-term Action Plan”, which would become a basis for the two countries to elevate their “strategic partnership” to even higher levels and further strengthen their mutually beneficial and complementary relationship.

The outline of Mid-term Action Plan:

  • (1) Political and Security Relations (Strengthening high-level dialogue, vitalization of inter-foreign ministry Politico-Military consultations, defense exchanges, Japan-U.S.-Mongolia policy dialogue, and cooperation at regional and international fora)
  • (2) Cooperation in Economic Areas (Development of investment and business environment, Cooperation for Mongolia’s sustainable economic development)
  • (3) Cultural and People-to-People exchanges (Exchanges between parliaments, parliamentarians, activities of the two countries’ friendship parliamentary groups, Youth exchange, Exchanges between students, private sector friendship groups, municipalities, etc.)

President Elbegdorj’s visit to Japan in July 2014. The two countries signed “Joint statement on the agreement in principle in the negotiations of the Japan-Mongolia EPA, and the promotion of trade and investment between Japan and Mongolia.”.

Diplomatic Visits

From Japan to Mongolia
Year Name
1989.10 Minister for Foreign Affairs S. UNO
1991.08 Prime Minister T. KAIFU
1999.07 Prime Minister K. OBUCHI
2002.06 T.I.H. Prince and Princess AKISHINO
2004.08 Minister for Foreign Affairs Y. KAWAGUCHI
2006.09 Prime Minister J. KOIZUMI
2007.07 H.I.H. the Crown Prince
2010.08 Minister for Foreign Affairs K. OKADA
2011.01 Minister of State for National Policy K.GENBA
2012.01 Minister of Defence Y. ICHIKAWA
2013.03 Prime Minister S. ABE
2013.07 Minister of State K. FURUYA
2014.04 Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism A. OHTA
From Mongolia to Japan (1997-)
Year Name
1997.02 Prime Minister M. ENKHSAIKHAN
1998.05 President N. BAGABANDI
1999.05 Minister for Foreign Affairs N.TUYA
2000.09 Minister for Foreign Affiars L.ERDNECHULUUN
2001.02 Prime Minister N. ENKHBAYAR
2002.02 Chairman of the State Great Khural S. TUMUR-OCHIR
2002.07 Minister for Foreign Affairs L.ERDENECHULUUN
2003.11 Prime Minister N. ENKHBAYAR
2003.12 President N. BAGABANDI
2005.03 Minister for Foreign Affairs Ts. MUNKH-ORGIL
2006.03 Prime Minister M. ENKHBOLD
2007.03 President N. ENKHBAYAR
2008.02 Chairman of the State Great Khural D. LUNDEEJANTSAN
2008.03 Minister for Foreign Affairs S. OYUN
2009.04 Minister for Foreign Affairs S. BATBOLD
2009.07 Prime Minister S. BAYAR
2009.12 Minister for Foreign Affairs G. ZANDANSHATAR
2010.10 Prime Minister S. BATBOLD
2010.11 President Ts. ELBEGDORJ
2011.12 Chairman of the State Great Khural D. DEMBEREL
2012.03 Prime Minister S. BATBOLD
2012.09 Minister for Foreign Affairs L. BOLD
2013.06 Minister for Foreign Affairs L. BOLD
2013.09 Prime Minister N. ALTANKHUYAG
2013.09 President Ts. ELBEGDORJ
2014.02 Minister for Foreign Affairs L. BOLD
2014.04 President Ts. ELBEGDORJ
2014.07 President Ts. ELBEGDORJ

2. Economic Ties

  • The volume of trade and investment between Japan and Mongolia remains moderate. The both sides share views on the importance of promoting both-way trade between the two countries.
Total Japan-Mongolia trade (as of 2013, the Ministry of Finance, Japan)31.1 billion yen. (27.4 billion yen surplus in Japan’s favor)
Exports to Mongolia: 29.3 billion yen.
Imports from Mongolia: 1.8 billion yen.
Japanese direct investment in Mongolia (as of 2012)
US$ 34.24 million (12th largest amount)

After 7 rounds of negotiations, Japan-Mongolia Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) has reached an agreement in principle.

The 6th meeting of ”Japan-Mongolia Public and Private Sector Joint Committee on Trade and Investment Promotion and on Mineral Resources Development”, a framework of public and private-sector dialogue for discussing promotion of trade, investment, and resource development, was held in Ulaanbaatar on May 5, 2013. Both sides shared the views to enhance this committee through such measure as discussions on specific projects, etc.

JETRO, in cooperation with Mongolian chamber of commerce and Industry held the first “Japan Business Fair in Mongolia” in Ulaanbaatar on May 3-4, 2013.

3. People-to-People Exchanges

Japan and Mongolia have mutually favorable national sentiment partly owing to professional sumo (four grand champions Yokozuna hail from Mongolia), popularity of Japanese-language education in Mongolia. The two country will actively promote people-to-people exchanges to further develop and stabilize such emotional ties between their people through.

  • Promotion of multilayered exchanges (between parliamentarians & private bodies)
  • Promotion of exchange program
  • Japanese residents registered in Mongolia: 420 (as of Oct 2013)
  • Mongolian residents registered in Japan: 5,789 (as of June 2013)
  • Mongolian students in Japan: 1,552 (as of June 2013, 11th in nationality rankings)

Official Development Assistance (ODA)

Bilateral Assistance: 216,262 million yen (accumulated total as of 2012)
Grant Aid: 102,323 million yen
Loan Aid: 77,358 million yen
Technical Cooperation: 36,581 million yen

Japan’s Country Assistance Policy to Mongolia, formulated in April 2012, aims at supporting Mongolia’s effort toward poverty reduction through sustainable economic growth and puts the following three areas as priority of assistance: (1) sustainable development of the mining sector and enhancement of governance, (2) inclusive growth, and (3) enhancement of the capacity and function of Ulaanbaatar as an urban center.