Photos of Mongolia

In southeastern Mongolia, roughly halfway between Ulaanbaatar and Beijing, lies an ancient crater. Tabun Khara Obo was first identified as a probable impact crater in 1976, but confirmation did not occurr until decades later. Drilling at the site in 2008 revealed rock features consistent with high-speed impacts such as those caused by meteorites. The dark, irregularly shaped area in the lower right corner of the image is vegetation along a river channel. Photo courtesy of NASA.

Introduction

Background

The peoples of Mongolia have a long history under a number of nomadic empires dating back to the Xiongnu in the 4th century B.C., and the name Mongol goes back to at least the 11th century A.D. The most famous Mongol, TEMÜÜJIN (aka Genghis Khan), emerged as the ruler of all Mongols in the early 1200s. By the time of his death in 1227, he had created through conquest a Mongol Empire that extended across much of Eurasia. His descendants, including ÖGÖDEI and KHUBILAI (aka Kublai Khan), continued to conquer Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and the rest of China, where KHUBILAI established the Yuan Dynasty in the 1270s. The Mongols attempted to invade Japan and Java before their empire broke apart in the 14th century. In the 17th century, Mongolia fell under the rule of the Manchus of the Chinese Qing Dynasty. After Manchu rule collapsed in 1911, Mongolia declared independence, finally winning it in 1921 with help from the Soviet Union. Mongolia became a socialist state (the Mongolian People’s Republic) in 1924. Until the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1989, Mongolia was a Soviet satellite state and relied heavily on economic, military, and political assistance from Moscow. The period was also marked by purges, political repression, economic stagnation, and tensions with China.

Mongolia peacefully transitioned to an independent democracy in 1990. In 1992, it adopted a new constitution and established a free-market economy. Since the country's transition, it has conducted a series of successful presidential and legislative elections. Throughout the period, the ex-communist Mongolian People's Revolutionary Party (MPRP) -- which took the name Mongolian People’s Party (MPP) in 2010 -- has competed for political power with the Democratic Party (DP) and several other smaller parties. In the 2016 parliamentary elections, the MPP won overwhelming control over the DP, which had overseen a sharp decline in Mongolia’s economy in the preceding years. Mongolians elected a DP member, Khaltmaa BATTULGA, as president in 2017. The 2020 parliamentary elections left the MPP with continued control of the parliament. Mongolians elected former prime minister and MPP member Ukhnaa KHURELSUKH as president in 2021.

Mongolia maintains close cultural, political, and military ties with Russia, while China is its largest economic partner. Mongolia’s foreign relations are focused on preserving its autonomy by balancing relations with China and Russia, as well as its other major partners, Japan, South Korea, and the US.

Visit the Definitions and Notes page to view a description of each topic.

Geography

Location

Northern Asia, between China and Russia

Geographic coordinates

46 00 N, 105 00 E

Area

total: 1,564,116 sq km

land: 1,553,556 sq km

water: 10,560 sq km

comparison ranking: total 20

Area - comparative

slightly smaller than Alaska; more than twice the size of Texas

Area comparison map:
Area comparison map

Land boundaries

total: 8,082 km

border countries (2): China 4,630 km; Russia 3,452 km

Coastline

0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims

none (landlocked)

Climate

desert; continental (large daily and seasonal temperature ranges)

Terrain

vast semidesert and desert plains, grassy steppe, mountains in west and southwest; Gobi Desert in south-central

Elevation

highest point: Nayramadlin Orgil (Khuiten Peak) 4,374 m

lowest point: Hoh Nuur 560 m

mean elevation: 1,528 m

Natural resources

oil, coal, copper, molybdenum, tungsten, phosphates, tin, nickel, zinc, fluorspar, gold, silver, iron

Land use

agricultural land: 73% (2018 est.)

arable land: 0.4% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 0% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 72.6% (2018 est.)

forest: 7% (2018 est.)

other: 20% (2018 est.)

Irrigated land

602 sq km (2020)

Major lakes (area sq km)

fresh water lake(s): Hovsgol Nuur - 2,620 sq km; Har Us Nuur - 1,760 sq km; 

salt water lake(s): Uvs Nuur - 3,350 sq km; Hyargas Nuur - 1,360 sq km

Major rivers (by length in km)

Amur (shared with China [s] and Russia [m]) - 4,444 km
note – [s] after country name indicates river source; [m] after country name indicates river mouth

Population distribution

sparsely distributed population throughout the country; the capital of Ulaanbaatar and the northern city of Darhan support the highest population densities

Natural hazards

dust storms; grassland and forest fires; drought; "zud," which is harsh winter conditions

Geography - note

landlocked; strategic location between China and Russia

People and Society

Population

total: 3,281,676

male: 1,595,596

female: 1,686,080 (2024 est.)

comparison rankings: female 134; male 137; total 134

Nationality

noun: Mongolian(s)

adjective: Mongolian

Ethnic groups

Khalkh 83.8%, Kazak 3.8%, Durvud 2.6%, Bayad 2%, Buriad 1.4%, Zakhchin 1.2%, Dariganga 1.1%, other 4.1% (2020 est.)

Languages

Mongolian 90% (official) (Khalkha dialect is predominant), Turkic, Russian (1999)

major-language sample(s):
Дэлхийн баримтат ном, үндсэн мэдээллийн зайлшгүй эх сурвалж. (Mongolian)

The World Factbook, the indispensable source for basic information.

Religions

Buddhist 51.7%, Muslim 3.2%, Shamanist 2.5%, Christian 1.3%, other 0.7%, none 40.6% (2020 est.)

Age structure

0-14 years: 25.7% (male 429,867/female 412,943)

15-64 years: 68.4% (male 1,087,487/female 1,156,547)

65 years and over: 5.9% (2024 est.) (male 78,242/female 116,590)

2023 population pyramid:
2023 population pyramid

Dependency ratios

total dependency ratio: 58.4

youth dependency ratio: 51.4

elderly dependency ratio: 7

potential support ratio: 14.3 (2021 est.)

Median age

total: 31.5 years (2024 est.)

male: 30.1 years

female: 32.8 years

comparison ranking: total 126

Population growth rate

0.78% (2024 est.)

comparison ranking: 113

Birth rate

14.9 births/1,000 population (2024 est.)

comparison ranking: 109

Death rate

6.4 deaths/1,000 population (2024 est.)

comparison ranking: 144

Net migration rate

-0.8 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2024 est.)

comparison ranking: 138

Population distribution

sparsely distributed population throughout the country; the capital of Ulaanbaatar and the northern city of Darhan support the highest population densities

Urbanization

urban population: 69.1% of total population (2023)

rate of urbanization: 1.4% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

total population growth rate v. urban population growth rate, 2000-2030

Major urban areas - population

1.673 million ULAANBAATAR (capital) (2023)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 0.94 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.67 male(s)/female

total population: 0.95 male(s)/female (2024 est.)

Mother's mean age at first birth

20.5 years (2008 est.)

note: data represents median age at first birth among women 20-24

Maternal mortality ratio

39 deaths/100,000 live births (2020 est.)

comparison ranking: 104

Infant mortality rate

total: 19.4 deaths/1,000 live births (2024 est.)

male: 22.4 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 16.2 deaths/1,000 live births

comparison ranking: total 78

Life expectancy at birth

total population: 71.9 years (2024 est.)

male: 67.8 years

female: 76.3 years

comparison ranking: total population 168

Total fertility rate

1.87 children born/woman (2024 est.)

comparison ranking: 128

Gross reproduction rate

0.91 (2024 est.)

Drinking water source

improved: urban: 98.4% of population

rural: 64.2% of population

total: 87.6% of population

unimproved: urban: 1.6% of population

rural: 35.8% of population

total: 12.4% of population (2020 est.)

Current health expenditure

4.9% of GDP (2020)

Physicians density

3.85 physicians/1,000 population (2018)

Hospital bed density

8 beds/1,000 population (2017)

Sanitation facility access

improved: urban: 97.4% of population

rural: 69.9% of population

total: 88.8% of population

unimproved: urban: 2.6% of population

rural: 30.1% of population

total: 11.2% of population (2020 est.)

Obesity - adult prevalence rate

20.6% (2016)

comparison ranking: 97

Alcohol consumption per capita

total: 5.46 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

beer: 2.18 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

wine: 1.46 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

spirits: 1.82 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

other alcohols: 0 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

comparison ranking: total 80

Tobacco use

total: 29.4% (2020 est.)

male: 51.7% (2020 est.)

female: 7.1% (2020 est.)

comparison ranking: total 33

Child marriage

women married by age 15: 0.9%

women married by age 18: 12%

men married by age 18: 2.1% (2018 est.)

Education expenditures

4.7% of GDP (2020 est.)

comparison ranking: 88

Literacy

definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 99.2%

male: 99.1%

female: 99.2% (2020)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)

total: 15 years

male: 14 years

female: 16 years (2019)

Environment

Environment - current issues

limited natural freshwater resources in some areas; the burning of soft coal in power plants and the lack of enforcement of environmental laws leads to air pollution in Ulaanbaatar; deforestation and overgrazing increase soil erosion from wind and rain; water pollution; desertification and mining activities have a deleterious effect on the environment

Environment - international agreements

party to: Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Climate

desert; continental (large daily and seasonal temperature ranges)

Land use

agricultural land: 73% (2018 est.)

arable land: 0.4% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 0% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 72.6% (2018 est.)

forest: 7% (2018 est.)

other: 20% (2018 est.)

Urbanization

urban population: 69.1% of total population (2023)

rate of urbanization: 1.4% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

total population growth rate v. urban population growth rate, 2000-2030

Revenue from forest resources

0.14% of GDP (2018 est.)

comparison ranking: 104

Revenue from coal

8.62% of GDP (2018 est.)

comparison ranking: 1

Air pollutants

particulate matter emissions: 41.3 micrograms per cubic meter (2019 est.)

carbon dioxide emissions: 25.37 megatons (2016 est.)

methane emissions: 13.72 megatons (2020 est.)

Waste and recycling

municipal solid waste generated annually: 2.9 million tons (2016 est.)

Major lakes (area sq km)

fresh water lake(s): Hovsgol Nuur - 2,620 sq km; Har Us Nuur - 1,760 sq km; 

salt water lake(s): Uvs Nuur - 3,350 sq km; Hyargas Nuur - 1,360 sq km

Major rivers (by length in km)

Amur (shared with China [s] and Russia [m]) - 4,444 km
note – [s] after country name indicates river source; [m] after country name indicates river mouth

Total water withdrawal

municipal: 50 million cubic meters (2020 est.)

industrial: 170 million cubic meters (2020 est.)

agricultural: 250 million cubic meters (2020 est.)

Total renewable water resources

34.8 billion cubic meters (2020 est.)

Government

Country name

conventional long form: none

conventional short form: Mongolia

local long form: none

local short form: Mongol Uls

former: Outer Mongolia, Mongolian People's Republic

etymology: the name means "Land of the Mongols" in Latin; the Mongolian name Mongol Uls translates as "Mongol State"

Government type

semi-presidential republic

Capital

name: Ulaanbaatar

geographic coordinates: 47 55 N, 106 55 E

time difference: UTC+8 (13 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Saturday in March; ends last Saturday in September

time zone note: Mongolia has two time zones - Ulaanbaatar Time (8 hours in advance of UTC) and Hovd Time (7 hours in advance of UTC)

etymology: the name means "red hero" in Mongolian and honors national hero Damdin SUKHBAATAR, leader of the partisan army that with Soviet Red Army help, liberated Mongolia from Chinese occupation in the early 1920s

Administrative divisions

21 provinces (aymguud, singular - aymag) and 1 municipality* (singular - hot); Arhangay, Bayanhongor, Bayan-Olgiy, Bulgan, Darhan-Uul, Dornod, Dornogovi, Dundgovi, Dzavhan (Zavkhan), Govi-Altay, Govisumber, Hentiy, Hovd, Hovsgol, Omnogovi, Orhon, Ovorhangay, Selenge, Suhbaatar, Tov, Ulaanbaatar*, Uvs

Independence

29 December 1911 (independence declared from China; in actuality, autonomy attained); 11 July 1921 (from China)

National holiday

Naadam (games) holiday (commemorates independence from China in the 1921 Revolution), 11-15 July; Constitution Day (marks the date that the Mongolian People's Republic was created under a new constitution), 26 November (1924)

Constitution

history: several previous; latest adopted 13 January 1992, effective 12 February 1992

amendments: proposed by the State Great Hural, by the president of the republic, by the government, or by petition submitted to the State Great Hural by the Constitutional Court; conducting referenda on proposed amendments requires at least two-thirds majority vote of the State Great Hural; passage of amendments by the State Great Hural requires at least three-quarters majority vote; passage by referendum requires majority participation of qualified voters and a majority of votes; amended 1999, 2000, 2019, 2023; note - an amendment passed in a referendum held in May 2023 increased the seats in the State Great Hural from 76 to 126

Legal system

civil law system influenced by Soviet and Romano-Germanic legal systems; constitution ambiguous on judicial review of legislative acts

International law organization participation

has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; accepts ICCt jurisdiction

Citizenship

citizenship by birth: no

citizenship by descent only: both parents must be citizens of Mongolia; one parent if born within Mongolia

dual citizenship recognized: no

residency requirement for naturalization: 5 years

Suffrage

18 years of age; universal

Executive branch

chief of state: President Ukhnaagiin KHURELSUKH (since 25 June 2021)

head of government: Prime Minister Luvsannamsrai OYUN-ERDENE (since 27 January 2021); Deputy Prime Ministers Sainbuyen AMARSAIKHAN (since 8 September 2022) and Chimed KHURELBAATAR (since 5 January 2023)

cabinet: directly appointed by the prime minister following a constitutional amendment ratified in November 2019; prior to the amendment, the cabinet was nominated by the prime minister in consultation with the president and confirmed by the State Great Hural (parliament)

elections/appointments: presidential candidates nominated by political parties represented in the State Great Hural and directly elected by simple majority popular vote for one 6-year term; election last held on 9 June 2021 (next to be held in 2027); following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or majority coalition is usually elected prime minister by the State Great Hural

election results: 2021: Ukhnaagiin KHURELSUKH elected president in first round; percent of vote - Ukhnaagiin KHURELSUKH (MPP) 68%, Dangaasuren ENKHBAT (RPEC) 20.1%, Sodnomzundui ERDENE (DP) 6%

Legislative branch

description: unicameral State Great Hural or Ulsyn Ikh Khural (126 seats; 78 members directly elected in a selected constituency by simple majority vote and 48 members directly elected by proportional representation vote; members serve 4-year terms); note - a constitutional referendum passed in May 2023 increased the number of seats from 76 to 126

elections: last held on 24 June 2020 (next to be held 30 June 2024)

election results: percent of vote by party - MPP 44.9%, DP 24.5%, Our Coalition 8.1%, independent 8.7%, Right Person Electorate Coalition 5.2%, other 8.5%; seats by party - MPP 62, DP 11, Our Coalition 1, Right Person Electorate Coalition 1, independent 1; composition - 59 men, 13 women; percentage women 18.1%

Judicial branch

highest court(s): Supreme Court (consists of the Chief Justice and 24 judges organized into civil, criminal, and administrative chambers); Constitutional Court or Tsets (consists of the chairman and 8 members)

judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court chief justice and judges appointed by the president upon recommendation by the General Council of Courts - a 14-member body of judges and judicial officials - to the State Great Hural; appointment is for life; chairman of the Constitutional Court elected from among its members; members appointed from nominations by the State Great Hural - 3 each by the president, the State Great Hural, and the Supreme Court; appointment is 6 years; chairmanship limited to a single renewable 3-year term

subordinate courts: aimag (provincial) and capital city appellate courts; soum, inter-soum, and district courts; Administrative Cases Courts

Political parties and leaders

Democratic Party or DP [Sodnomzunduin ERDENE]
Mongolian People's Party or MPP [Ukhnaagiin KHURELSUKH]
Civil Will-Green Party or CWGP [Tserendorj GANKHUYAG]
Justice Party [Batbayar NASANBILEG]
Mongolian National Democratic Party or MNDP [Bayanjargal TSOGTGEREL]
Mongolian People's Revolutionary Party or MPRP [Nambaryn ENKHBAYAR]
Mongolian Social Democratic Party or MSDP [Adiya GANBAATAR]
Mongolian Traditionally United Party or MTUP [Batdelgeriin BATBOLD]
National Labor Party or HUN [Togmidyn DORJKHAND]

Coalitions:
Our Coalition (MPRP, CWGP, and MTUP)
Right Person Electorate Coalition or RPEC (HUN, MSDP, Justice Party) [Togmidyn DORJKHAND]

note: 36 total parties registered for the 2020 legislative elections to the State Great Hural

International organization participation

ADB, ARF, CD, CICA, CP, EBRD, EITI (compliant country), FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (NGOs), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, MINURSO, MONUSCO, NAM, OPCW, OSCE, SCO (observer), UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNISFA, UNMISS, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US

chief of mission: Ambassador BATBAYAR Ulziidelger (since 1 December 2021)

chancery: 2833 M Street NW, Washington, DC 20007

telephone: [1] (202) 333-7117

FAX: [1] (202) 298-9227

email address and website:
washington@mfa.gov.mn

http://mongolianembassy.us/

consulate(s) general: New York, San Francisco

Diplomatic representation from the US

chief of mission: Ambassador Richard L. BUANGAN (since November 2022)

embassy: Denver Street #3, 11th Micro-District, Ulaanbaatar 14190

mailing address: 4410 Ulaanbaatar Place, Washington DC  20521-4410

telephone: [976] 7007-6001

FAX: [976] 7007-6174

email address and website:
UlaanbaatarACS@state.gov

https://mn.usembassy.gov/

Flag description

three, equal vertical bands of red (hoist side), blue, and red; centered on the hoist-side red band in yellow is the national emblem ("soyombo" - a columnar arrangement of abstract and geometric representation for fire, sun, moon, earth, water, and the yin-yang symbol); blue represents the sky, red symbolizes progress and prosperity

National symbol(s)

soyombo emblem; national colors: red, blue, yellow

National anthem

name: "Mongol ulsyn toriin duulal" (National Anthem of Mongolia)

lyrics/music: Tsendiin DAMDINSUREN/Bilegiin DAMDINSUREN and Luvsanjamts MURJORJ

note: music adopted 1950, lyrics adopted 2006; lyrics altered on numerous occasions

National heritage

total World Heritage Sites: 6 (4 cultural, 2 natural)

selected World Heritage Site locales: Uvs Nuur Basin (n); Orkhon Valley Cultural Landscape (c); Petroglyphic Complexes of the Mongolian Altai (c); Great Burkhan Khaldun Mountain and surrounding sacred landscape (c); Landscapes of Dauria (n); Deer Stone Monuments and Related Bronze Age Sites (c)

Economy

Economic overview

lower middle-income East Asian economy; large human capital improvements over last 3 decades; agricultural and natural resource rich; export and consumption-led growth; high inflation due to supply bottlenecks and increased food and energy prices; currency depreciation

Real GDP (purchasing power parity)

$41.029 billion (2022 est.)
$39.063 billion (2021 est.)
$38.434 billion (2020 est.)

note: data in 2017 dollars

comparison ranking: 124

Real GDP growth rate

5.03% (2022 est.)
1.64% (2021 est.)
-4.56% (2020 est.)

note: annual GDP % growth based on constant local currency

comparison ranking: 74

Real GDP per capita

$12,100 (2022 est.)
$11,700 (2021 est.)
$11,700 (2020 est.)

note: data in 2017 dollars

comparison ranking: 131

GDP (official exchange rate)

$17.146 billion (2022 est.)

note: data in current dollars at official exchange rate

Inflation rate (consumer prices)

15.15% (2022 est.)
7.35% (2021 est.)
3.8% (2020 est.)

note: annual % change based on consumer prices

comparison ranking: 189

Credit ratings

Fitch rating: B (2018)

Moody's rating: B3 (2018)

Standard & Poors rating: B (2018)

note: The year refers to the year in which the current credit rating was first obtained.

GDP - composition, by sector of origin

agriculture: 12.1% (2017 est.)

industry: 38.2% (2017 est.)

services: 49.7% (2017 est.)

comparison rankings: services 179; industry 38; agriculture 76

GDP - composition, by end use

household consumption: 49.2% (2017 est.)

government consumption: 12.3% (2017 est.)

investment in fixed capital: 23.8% (2017 est.)

investment in inventories: 12.4% (2017 est.)

exports of goods and services: 59.5% (2017 est.)

imports of goods and services: -57.1% (2017 est.)

Agricultural products

milk, wheat, potatoes, lamb/mutton, goat milk, beef, goat meat, bison milk, sheep milk, horse meat (2022)

note: top ten agricultural products based on tonnage

Industries

construction and construction materials; mining (coal, copper, molybdenum, fluorspar, tin, tungsten, gold); oil; food and beverages; processing of animal products, cashmere and natural fiber manufacturing

Industrial production growth rate

-4.52% (2022 est.)

note: annual % change in industrial value added based on constant local currency

comparison ranking: 200

Labor force

1.389 million (2022 est.)

note: number of people ages 15 or older who are employed or seeking work

comparison ranking: 138

Unemployment rate

6.21% (2022 est.)
7.75% (2021 est.)
6.59% (2020 est.)

note: % of labor force seeking employment

comparison ranking: 129

Youth unemployment rate (ages 15-24)

total: 21% (2021 est.)

male: 20.1%

female: 22.4%

comparison ranking: total 77

Population below poverty line

27.8% (2020 est.)

note: % of population with income below national poverty line

Gini Index coefficient - distribution of family income

32.7 (2018 est.)

note: index (0-100) of income distribution; higher values represent greater inequality

comparison ranking: 127

Household income or consumption by percentage share

lowest 10%: 3.3%

highest 10%: 25.7% (2018 est.)

note: % share of income accruing to lowest and highest 10% of population

Remittances

2.33% of GDP (2022 est.)
3.08% of GDP (2021 est.)
4.12% of GDP (2020 est.)

note: personal transfers and compensation between resident and non-resident individuals/households/entities

Budget

revenues: $3.699 billion (2020 est.)

expenditures: $4.979 billion (2020 est.)

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)

-6.4% (of GDP) (2017 est.)

comparison ranking: 187

Public debt

67.57% of GDP (2021 est.)
73.94% of GDP (2020 est.)
60.84% of GDP (2019 est.)

note: central government debt as a % of GDP

comparison ranking: 58

Taxes and other revenues

16.91% (of GDP) (2021 est.)

note: central government tax revenue as a % of GDP

comparison ranking: 114

Current account balance

-$2.303 billion (2022 est.)
-$2.108 billion (2021 est.)
-$674.612 million (2020 est.)

note: balance of payments - net trade and primary/secondary income in current dollars

comparison ranking: 150

Exports

$10.989 billion (2022 est.)
$8.95 billion (2021 est.)
$7.646 billion (2020 est.)

note: balance of payments - exports of goods and services in current dollars

comparison ranking: 109

Exports - partners

China 78%, Switzerland 15%, Singapore 3%, South Korea 2%, Russia 1% (2022)

note: top five export partners based on percentage share of exports

Exports - commodities

coal, copper ore, gold, animal hair, iron ore (2022)

note: top five export commodities based on value in dollars

Imports

$12.112 billion (2022 est.)
$9.256 billion (2021 est.)
$7.34 billion (2020 est.)

note: balance of payments - imports of goods and services in current dollars

comparison ranking: 113

Imports - partners

China 36%, Russia 29%, Japan 7%, South Korea 5%, US 3% (2022)

note: top five import partners based on percentage share of imports

Imports - commodities

refined petroleum, cars, trucks, trailers, raw iron bars (2022)

note: top five import commodities based on value in dollars

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

$3.398 billion (2022 est.)
$4.38 billion (2021 est.)
$4.545 billion (2020 est.)

note: holdings of gold (year-end prices)/foreign exchange/special drawing rights in current dollars

comparison ranking: 101

Debt - external

$29.945 billion (2019 est.)
$28.046 billion (2018 est.)

comparison ranking: 84

Exchange rates

togrog/tugriks (MNT) per US dollar -

Exchange rates:
3,140.678 (2022 est.)
2,849.289 (2021 est.)
2,813.29 (2020 est.)
2,663.541 (2019 est.)
2,472.484 (2018 est.)

Energy

Electricity access

electrification - total population: 100% (2021)

Electricity

installed generating capacity: 1.479 million kW (2020 est.)

consumption: 7,336,520,000 kWh (2019 est.)

exports: 24 million kWh (2019 est.)

imports: 1.723 billion kWh (2019 est.)

transmission/distribution losses: 892 million kWh (2019 est.)

comparison rankings: installed generating capacity 126; transmission/distribution losses 98; imports 61; exports 94; consumption 109

Electricity generation sources

fossil fuels: 89.2% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

nuclear: 0% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

solar: 1.3% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

wind: 8.1% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

hydroelectricity: 1.3% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

tide and wave: 0% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

geothermal: 0% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

biomass and waste: 0% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

Coal

production: 43.904 million metric tons (2020 est.)

consumption: 8.818 million metric tons (2020 est.)

exports: 28.551 million metric tons (2020 est.)

imports: 1,000 metric tons (2020 est.)

proven reserves: 2.52 billion metric tons (2019 est.)

Petroleum

total petroleum production: 16,700 bbl/day (2021 est.)

refined petroleum consumption: 35,800 bbl/day (2019 est.)

crude oil and lease condensate exports: 14,700 bbl/day (2018 est.)

crude oil and lease condensate imports: 0 bbl/day (2018 est.)

Refined petroleum products - production

0 bbl/day (2015 est.)

comparison ranking: 184

Refined petroleum products - exports

0 bbl/day (2015 est.)

comparison ranking: 195

Refined petroleum products - imports

24,190 bbl/day (2015 est.)

comparison ranking: 109

Natural gas

production: 0 cubic meters (2021 est.)

consumption: 0 cubic meters (2021 est.)

exports: 0 cubic meters (2021 est.)

imports: 0 cubic meters (2021 est.)

proven reserves: 0 cubic meters (2021 est.)

Carbon dioxide emissions

22.74 million metric tonnes of CO2 (2019 est.)

from coal and metallurgical coke: 17.445 million metric tonnes of CO2 (2019 est.)

from petroleum and other liquids: 5.295 million metric tonnes of CO2 (2019 est.)

from consumed natural gas: 0 metric tonnes of CO2 (2019 est.)

comparison ranking: total emissions 83

Energy consumption per capita

83.045 million Btu/person (2019 est.)

comparison ranking: 69

Communications

Telephones - fixed lines

total subscriptions: 475,000 (2022 est.)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 14 (2022 est.)

comparison ranking: total subscriptions 93

Telephones - mobile cellular

total subscriptions: 4.836 million (2022 est.)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 142 (2022 est.)

comparison ranking: total subscriptions 124

Telecommunication systems

general assessment: liberalized and competitive telecoms market comprises of a number of operators; fixed-line penetration increased steadily in the years to 2018 as more people took on fixed-line access for voice calls and to access copper-based broadband services; the number of lines fell in 2019, and again and more sharply in 2020, partly through the economic consequences of the pandemic (GDP fell 5.3% in 2020, year-on-year) and partly due to the migration to the mobile platform and to VoIP; fixed broadband penetration remains low, mainly due to a limited number of fixed lines and the dominance of the mobile platform; the attraction of fixed broadband as a preferred access where it is available is waning as the mobile networks are upgraded with greater capacity and capabilities; the growing popularity of mobile broadband continues to underpin overall broadband and telecom sector growth, with Mongolia’s market very much being dominated by mobile services, supported by widely available LTE; this will largely determine and shape the future direction of Mongolia’s developing digital economy (2021)

domestic: fixed-line teledensity of 12 per 100; mobile-cellular subscribership is 140 per 100 persons (2021)

international: country code - 976; satellite earth stations - 7 (2016)

Broadcast media

following a law passed in 2005, Mongolia's state-run radio and TV provider converted to a public service provider; also available are 68 radio and 160 TV stations, including multi-channel satellite and cable TV providers; transmissions of multiple international broadcasters are available (2019)

Internet users

total: 2.772 million (2021 est.)

percent of population: 84% (2021 est.)

comparison ranking: total 124

Broadband - fixed subscriptions

total: 307,166 (2020 est.)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 9 (2020 est.)

comparison ranking: total 106

Transportation

National air transport system

number of registered air carriers: 4 (2020)

inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 12

annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 670,360 (2018)

annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 7.82 million (2018) mt-km

Airports

35 (2024)

comparison ranking: 112

Railways

total: 1,815 km (2017)

broad gauge: 1,815 km (2017) 1.520-m gauge

note: national operator Ulaanbaatar Railway is jointly owned by the Mongolian Government and by the Russian State Railway

comparison ranking: total 77

Roadways

total: 113,200 km

paved: 10,600 km

unpaved: 102,600 km (2017)

comparison ranking: total 45

Waterways

580 km (2010) (the only waterway in operation is Lake Hovsgol) (135 km); Selenge River (270 km) and Orhon River (175 km) are navigable but carry little traffic; lakes and rivers ice-free from May to September)

comparison ranking: 88

Merchant marine

total: 318 (2023)

by type: bulk carrier 8, container ship 8, general cargo 151, oil tanker 58, other 93

comparison ranking: total 55

Military and Security

Military and security forces

Mongolian Armed Forces (MAF): Mongolian Ground Force (aka General Purpose Troops), Mongolian Air/Air Defense Force, Cyber Security Forces, Special Forces, Civil Engineering Forces, Civil Defense Forces (2023)

note: the National Police Agency and the General Authority for Border Protection, which operate under the Ministry of Justice and Home Affairs, are primarily responsible for internal security; they are assisted by the General Intelligence Agency under the prime minister; the MAF assists the internal security forces in providing domestic emergency assistance and disaster relief

Military expenditures

0.6% of GDP (2022 est.)
0.8% of GDP (2021 est.)
0.8% of GDP (2020 est.)
0.7% of GDP (2019 est.)
0.7% of GDP (2018 est.)

comparison ranking: 153

Military and security service personnel strengths

information varies; approximately 9,000 active duty troops (2023)

Military equipment inventories and acquisitions

the MAF's inventory is comprised largely of Soviet-era and Russian equipment (2024)

Military service age and obligation

18-25 years of age for compulsory and voluntary military service (can enter military schools at age 17); 12-month conscript service obligation for men in the army, air forces, or police (can be extended 3 months under special circumstances); conscription service can be exchanged for a 24‐month stint in the civil service or a cash payment determined by the Mongolian Government; after conscription, soldiers can contract into military service for 2 or 4 years; volunteer military service for men and women is 24 months, which can be extended for another two years up to the age of 31 (2024)

Military deployments

875 South Sudan (UNMISS) (2024)

note: since 2002, Mongolia has deployed more than 20,000 peacekeepers and observers to UN operations in more than a dozen countries

Military - note

the MAF does not face a significant external military threat and focuses instead on counterterrorism, disaster response, and international peacekeeping; the Ground Force is the military’s primary service and is centered on a motorized infantry brigade equipped largely with Soviet-era equipment; it also has a battalion devoted to peacekeeping duties and hosts an annual international peacekeeping exercise known as “Khaan Quest”; Mongolia’s primary military partner is Russia, and in addition to receiving Russian military equipment, the MAF participates in Russia’s large “Vostok” exercise, which is conducted every four years 

Mongolia has been engaged in dialogue and cooperation with NATO since 2005 and is considered by NATO to be a global partner; Mongolia supported the NATO-led Kosovo Force from 2005-2007 and contributed troops to the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan from 2009-2014, as well as to the follow-on Resolute Support Mission that provided training, advice, and other assistance to the Afghan security forces (2015-2021) (2023)

Transnational Issues

Refugees and internally displaced persons

stateless persons: 17 (2022)