Malaysia Introduction

The name 'Mongolia' has always stirred up visions of the untamed and exotic - the warlord Genghis Khan, camels wandering in the Gobi Desert and wild horses galloping across the steppes. Even today, Mongolia seems like the end of the earth - outside Ulaan Baatar you begin to wonder if you haven't stepped into another century, rather than another country. It remains one of the last great adventure destinations in Asia.

Mongolia's survival as an independent nation is little short of miraculous, sandwiched as it is between the godzilla states of Russia and China. The country now has a ruling democratic coalition but independence has cost them dearly. Currently they are suffering from a lack of infrastructure and support, and a couple of harsh winters have decimated herds and bought the country to near starvation.

1,566,000 sq km (610,740 sq mi)
Population: 2.6 million
People: Khalkh Mongols (86%), Kazaks (2%), Chinese (2%), Russian (2%), about a dozen other ethnic groups
Languages: Mongolian, Turkic, Russian, Chinese
Religions: Tibetan Buddhism, Muslim, Shamanism
Government: Communist-Republic
President: Natsagiyn Bagabandi
Prime Minister: Nambaryn Enkhbayar

US$1 billion
GDP per head: US$390
Annual growth: 3.5%
Inflation: 44%
Major industries: Copper, livestock, cashmere, wool
Major trading partners: Russia, China, Japan, US,

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  Information provided by the Ministry of Tourism. Government of Mongolia.


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