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Press Release: New IOM Office to help Mongolian migrants


With more and more people choosing to migrate overseas or within the country, migration is a top issue for many Mongolians.
According to the National Population Census, in 2010 alone, 11,000 Mongolians choose to migrate overseas. While with abundant natural resources, Mongolia is becoming an increasingly attractive place for foreigners, who now number 16,320. Within the country, more than ever before, traditional nomadic herders are increasingly migrating to urban areas. Last year Mongolia’s urban populations increased by 33.7%.

In order to better help Mongolian migrants at home and abroad, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) has opened a new Country Office in Ulan Bator.

In town for the Office opening, IOM Director General William Lacy Swing has met with Prime Minister, Minister of Justice and Home Affairs, Minister for Labour and Social Welfare and other senior officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Mongolia Immigration Agency, General Authority for the Protection of the Border, General Authority for State Registration and National Emergency Management Agency to discuss Mongolia’s migration challenges and how IOM can help.

With a total of 132 Member States and a budget of US$ 1.4 billion in 2010, IOM is the only inter-governmental organization working on migration issues. Mongolia became an IOM Member State in 2008, but Mongolia-IOM cooperation dates back to 2001.

Migration is a relatively new area for the Mongolia, and many Mongolians are not aware of risks involved. Over the past decade, IOM has assisted over 5000 Mongolian migrants who have ended up in vulnerable situations overseas return safely home.

Over the last three years, IOM has provided 352 Mongolian victims of trafficking with medical and psychosocial support, legal assistance, and livelihood training.

“The opening of this Office marks the start of a new level of cooperation between IOM and Mongolia, and IOM will continue to work in close cooperation with our Mongolian partners on migration issues in this country,” said IOM Director General Swing.

In addition to helping Mongolians return home, the new IOM Office will provide income generation assistance to help recently returned migrants restart their lives in Mongolia.

The new office will also continue to implement a technical cooperation program on migration governance launched last year. The ‘Capacity Building for Migration Management in Mongolia’ (CBMM Mongolia) Project focuses on working with government on strengthening migration policies, a relatively new policy area in Mongolia.

The new office also recently assumed the role of Cluster Lead on Camp Coordination Management within the United Nations Humanitarian Country Team to provide assistance to displaced populations in the case of a disaster. IOM is the global cluster lead within the Inter-Agency Standing Committee for this area, and has a considerable technical expertise and experience including responses in Haiti and Pakistan.
For more information, please contact: Ms. RENTSENDORJ Oyunbileg, National Project Officer, IOM Mongolia Country Office, Mobile: 91033103, Email: orentsendorj@iom.int".


FACT SHEET: International Organization for Migration (IOM)

  • IOM OVERVIEW: With a total of 132 Member States and over 7000 staff worldwide, IOM is the leading inter-governmental organization mandated to work on migration issues.
  • With a budget of US$ 1.4 billion in 2010, IOM has over 2900 projects in over 100 countries around the world.
  • IOM has recently hit international headlines by assisting over 150,000 foreign migrants in Libya return to their home countries.
  • For more information, please see the IOM website: www.iom.int.
  • IOM MONGOLIA: IOM has been cooperating with Mongolia since 2001, and became an IOM Member State in June 2008.
  • Helping Mongolian migrants come home: Over the last ten years IOM has assisted over 5000 Mongolians from 14 sending countries through its Assisted Voluntary Returns (AVR) Program, which helps vulnerable Mongolian migrants abroad return to safely return home. The new Office will provide income generation assistance to help these Mongolians migrants rebuild their lives in Mongolia.
  • Assisting victims of trafficking: Over the last three years, IOM has provided 352 Mongolian victims of trafficking with direct assistance and reintegration packages including medical and psychosocial support, legal assistance and livelihood trainings.
  • Strengthening migration governance: In 2010 IOM launched its landmark ‘Capacity Building for Migration Management in Mongolia’ (CBMM Mongolia) Project, a broad technical cooperation program on migration governance.
  • Since 2010, under the framework of the CBMM Mongolia Project, IOM has reached nearly 80 participants from government, academia and non-governmental organizations. The new Office will continue to implement this project.
  • Preventing against disaster: In August 2010 IOM conducted an assessment of the movements, intentions and needs of those most Mongolians affected by the Dzud.
  • The new IOM Office also recently assumed the role of Cluster Lead on Camp Coordination Management within the United Nations Humanitarian Country Team to provide assistance to displaced populations in the case of a disaster.
  • IOM is the global cluster lead within the Inter-Agency Standing Committee for this area, and has a considerable technical expertise and experience.
  • For more information on IOM’s activities in Mongolia, please see the IOM Mongolia Country Website: http://www.iom.int/jahia/Jahia/mongolia
  • IOM DIRECTOR GENERAL: Former US Ambassador William Lacy Swing assumed the position of Director General of the IOM in October 2008.
  • From 2003 till 2008, as UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General for the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ambassador Swing successfully led all facets of the largest UN peacekeeping operation in history.
  • From 2001 to 2003 Ambassador Swing served as the Special Representative to the Secretary-General for Western Sahara and Chief of Mission for the UN Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara.
  • A six-time US ambassador, Mr. Swing has managed some world’s largest diplomatic missions and humanitarian aid programmes.
  • For more information, please see the IOM Director Genera’s official biography: http://www.iom.int/jahia/Jahia/director-general


  • CONTACT: Ms. RENTSENDORJ Oyunbileg, National Project Officer, IOM Mongolia Country Mobile: 91033103, Email: orentsendorj@iom.int.

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