Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, January 27, 2014 — The initial meeting of the Advisory Committee of the “Engaging Stakeholders in Environmental Conservation – II” Project, implemented by The Asia Foundation with support from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), was held today at Sky Plaza center. During the meeting, ESEC II project’s work plan was discussed and committee members gave comments and feedback.
The main objective of the Project Advisory Committee is to provide strategic guidance, high-level advocacy and support for ESEC II implementation and provide support for potential linkages and synergies with other national programs to increase national ownership, project impact and sustainable outcomes.
The Committee is chaired by the B. Batkhuu, Director of Policy Implementation and Coordination Department of the Ministry of Mining, and is composed of 12 members, representing line ministries and other relevant government institutions as well as the ASM Federation. The ASM Federation, established in May 2013, comprises over 30 ASM NGOs (over 7,000 artisanal miners) and works to protect the rights of artisanal miners and to promote environmentally and socially responsible artisanal mining.
ESEC II project, aims to ensure that Mongolia’s artisanal mining sector contributes to sustainable local development, including the realization of the right to a healthy environment and the right to decent work. The project complements SDC’s Sustainable Artisanal Mining project by introducing responsible and sustainable environmental rehabilitation approaches for abandoned artisanal and small scale (ASM) mining sites using a multi-stakeholder approach pioneered by the Foundation since 2006.
In December 2013, the Project held its Inception workshop to introduce the project to different partners and stakeholders in order to enhance cooperation. Since the start the Project has conducted number of capacity building trainings for ASM NGO members on multi-stakeholders’ engagement, use of mercury in artisanal mining and community-based conflict mediation.