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In the late 1980s, Mongolia's foreign economic relations were
primarily with Comecon members and other socialist countries.
Mongolian policies related to Comecon were set by the Comecon
Commission of the Council of Ministers. The principal official
mechanisms for bilateral foreign economic relations were the
various joint intergovernmental commissions on economic,
scientific, and technical cooperation, which were established by
treaty in the 1960s, the 1970s, and the 1980s between Mongolia
and the Soviet Union as well as other socialist nations.
Intergovernmental commissions--such as the Mongolian-Soviet
Intergovernmental Commission for Economic, Scientific, and
Technical Cooperation--met annually or semiannually to coordinate
planning and to arrange bilateral annual, five-year, and longerterm trade and cooperation agreements signed on the deputy
premier level. The Ministry of Foreign Economic Relations and
Supply primarily, but not exclusively, was handling Mongolia's
day-to-day economic interaction with foreign countries and with
Comecon in the late 1980s.
Close economic ties between Mongolia and the Soviet Union
have existed for a long time. For example, in 1984 MongolianSoviet links included direct ties among 20 Mongolian and 30
Soviet ministries and departments handling economic affairs as
well as among 55 Mongolian and Soviet ministries and departments
and about 100 Mongolian and Soviet scientific research
organizations handling scientific and technical cooperation.
In December 1987, the Ministry of Foreign Economic Relations
and Supply was formed from the Ministry of Foreign Trade, the
State Committee for Foreign Economic Relations, and the State
Committee for Materials and Technical Supplies. Because much of
Mongolia's machinery and equipment, fuel, and consumer goods were
imported, the Ministry of Foreign Economic Relations and Supply--
rather than the Ministry of Trade and Procurement (which ran
Mongolia's domestic trade system)--had specialized organizations
that combined export-import and domestic distribution functions.
These organizations included Abtoneft Import and Supply
Cooperative, which handled imports of motor vehicles, fuels, and
lubricants; the Agricultural Technical Equipment Import and
Supply Cooperative; Kompleksimport and Supply Cooperative, which
imported sets of equipment for the mining industry, power
stations, and production lines for the food and light industries;
the Materialimpeks and Supply Cooperative, which imported
construction materials and equipment; and the Technikimport and
Supply Cooperative, which handled imports of industrial machinery
and equipment, raw materials, chemicals, and dyestuffs.
Other organizations involved in foreign trade included
Mongolimpex, which handled imports and exports of goods in
convertible currencies; Mongolnom, which exported Mongolian
publications; and Mongolilgeemj, which handled foreign parcel
post, the sale and purchase of consumer goods, establishment of
business contacts with foreign companies, and intermediary
service on foreign trade and commodity exchange. The Ministry of
Social Economy and Services ran Horshoololimpex, which exported
handicrafts. Mongolia also had a Chamber of Commerce, the
functions of which included establishing contacts between
Mongolian and foreign trade and industrial organizations as well
as organizing and participating in international trade
exhibitions in Mongolia and abroad.
Data as of June 1989