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[Newsletter Vol.11] First President of Mongolia to Attend Jeju Forum 2017-04-27
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First President of Mongolia to Attend Jeju Forum 
First President of Mongolia Punsalmaa Ochirbat, who oversaw the transformation of Mongolia from a 
Communist state to a multiparty democracy, will attend the Jeju Forum for Peace and Prosperity 2017 
(hereafter the Jeju Forum) that will be held with the theme of “Sharing a Common Vision for Asia’s 
Future” at the International Convention Center Jeju from May 31 to June 2, 2017.
Former Mongolian President Punsalmaa Ochirbat is expected to appear at the World Leaders’ Session 
of the Jeju Forum that will take place at 11:00 a.m. on the first day of June. He will discuss the role that 
Asia should play in resolving the myriad problems facing the whole humanity, such as climate change 
and cyber security, and discuss ways of how to advance our shared vision of the region’s future.
He underlines that Mongolia has played a key role in bringing Northeast Asia together, as it occupies a 
particularly important place geopolitically in Northeast Asia. Indeed, Mongolia is an important 
intersection of the Eurasia transportation network. For such reasons, some experts have chosen 
Mongolia as the country that Korea needs to be paying more attention to. Mongolia’s support is 
desperately needed to realize the Silk Road Express, the project that the Korean government has long 
pursued. Mongolia also occupies an important strategic position in realizing the vision of South Korea’s 
Eurasia Initiative.
The session will take place in the afternoon of June 1, 2017, at the Jeju Forum in order to deal with 
issues directly related to the Northeast Asian ‘Super Grid’ project that would construct a power grid 
linking Mongolia, China, Korea, and Japan. Mongolia has a great potential for renewable energy 
resources, especially from solar and wind resources. A memorandum of understanding for fostering 
green growth was signed last year by the electric power corporations respectively from South Korea, 
China, Japan, and Mongolia. 
Former Mongolian President Punsalmaa Ochirbat served as President of Mongolia from 1990 to 1997, 
the first to be elected by direct popular vote. He is perhaps best well known for his invaluable 
contributions to advancing Mongolia’s transition to multiparty democracy and market-based economy 
pursuant to the new constitution adopted in 1992. He has played a pivotal role in establishing 
diplomatic relations between South Korea and Mongolia during his first year in office. He is the most 
ardent ‘pro-Korean’ Mongolian politician who has visited South Korea a couple of times even after his 
retirement and has made an unprecedented effort to strengthen the bilateral ties between the two 
Mongolia takes a resolutely middle road when it comes to North and South Korea. It values its long-
standing relations with the North while developing its newly-declared strategic partnership with the 
South by supporting South Korea’s unification policy. Former Mongolian President Punsalmaa 
Ochirbat has always had a keen interest in the unification of the Korean peninsula and launched the 
‘Korean Unification Forum’ with Mongolian intellectuals from different backgrounds and experiences. 
During an interview with South Korean media last year, he urged North Korea to adopt the reform and 
opening up policy fully geared towards achieving economic growth by following in the footsteps of 
Mongolia that has transitioned from the most isolated country to a fastest-growing market economy 
after the country’s democratization. He underlines the importance of inter-Korean relations in tackling 
the major challenges facing the two Koreas. 
At a seminar held last year at the Korea Institute for International Economic Policy, he said, 
“Sustainable development requires Northeast Asian states to work together for a harmonious region of 
enduring peace and common prosperity.” His opinion largely conforms to the themes that represent the 
idea of the Jeju Forum. 
After his retirement in 1997, Former Mongolian President Punsalmaa Ochirbat founded the “Ochirbat 
Foundation,” a non-profit, non-Governmental organization that focused on poverty alleviation and self-
sufficiency, environmental, and education programs, that year. In 2000, he became Director of the 
Center for Ecology and Sustainable Development at Mongolian University of Science and Technology. 
In 2005, he was appointed Member of the Constitutional Court of Mongolia and re-appointed in 2010.