India-Mongolia Relations

India funded refinery in Mongolia:
Mongolia has launched construction of its first strategically important oil refinery funded by India.
  • The strategically important oil refinery will make Mongolia independent from energy imports and stabilise fuel and commodity prices in its domestic markets.
  • It is expected to boost Mongolia’s gross domestic product (GDP) by 10%.
  • It will end country’s dependence on Russian fuel as it imported almost 1.5 million tonnes of oil products in 2017, virtually all from Russia, thus diversifying its sources of oil products from the current single source.
  • The refinery is expected to increase Magnolia’s crude oil output, helping it to increase its export earnings.
  • The refinery project is also considered as important milestone in bilateral ties between India and Mongolia.
NOTE: Above is an example how India is trying to penetrate in new areas. It can be mentioned in answers related to SCO, India-China, India-Russia etc. - India-Mongolia Relations
Critically examine the nature of relationship between India and Mongolia. Do you think Mongolia can become India’s strategic partner to counter China’s influence in its neighbourhood? Comment. (200 Words)
India established diplomatic relations with magnolia in 1955. India was the first country outside the Soviet block to establish diplomatic relations with Mongolia.
  1. Economic front: bilateral trade though has increased manifold since 2000 but still remains much below potential; our economic presence in Mongolia is restricted to provision of soft loans or financial aid for infrastructure development.
  2. Culture and philosophy – The root of buddhism binds the two countries culturally.
  3. Natural resources – Mongolia has rich uranium resources. Both the countries have inked agreement for peaceful use of nuclear power. Jindal steel is involved in mineral exploitation in Mongolia. But critical infrastructure problem in Mongolia comes as a hindrance in trading relation between the two countries.
  4. Defence – Nomadic elephant -It is a joint military exercise between India and mongolia. China‘s presence in the neighbourhood of both india and Mongolia will affect defence cooperation. Under framework of defense agreement (signed in 2001), Mongolian military officers are trained in Indian institutes
  5. Renewable energy – Due to lack of technology; mongoliya derives its energy from coal mainly leading to serious environmental and health problems. India can help Mongolia in utilizing solar energy or other renewable energy sources through technology aid.
  6. Mutual support – Mongolia stood with India in case of UN resolution supporting Bangladesh as an independent state ignoring its neighbour Pakistan. Mongolia support India for permanent seat in UN security council.
  7. soft power: projected by India through establishment of institutes namely Atal Bihari Vajpayee Centre for excellence in ICT and Rajiv Gandhi college for production & art in Mongolia; presently both institutes require modernization to cater to Mongolian youth.
  8. Democracy – Mongolia has transformed herself for a better democracy through ages. It has joined many peace initiatives with UN.
  1. The growing relationship between china and Russia, and Mongolia as a buffer zone between them creates challenges to India.
  2. The land locked position of Mongolia lessens the more independent and strategic relationship between India and Mongolia. Being a land locked country Mongolia relies heavily on China for trade & commerce; particularly regarding mineral resource exploitation in which Chinese companies have nearly monopolistic access; making Mongolians wary; giving rise to Sino phobia in Mongolia
The third neighbour policy of Mongolia – Mongolia has been making efforts to establish relations with western and eastern powers through its third neighbour policy.

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