On May 22, 2017, the Mongolian National Federation of Pasture User Groups (MNFPUG) and the Khuvsgul Pasture Users Group (KPUG) organized a Pasture Users Consultative Convention.

            Approximately 120 people attended this convention, including participants from Alag-Erdene and Arbulag soums (where the "Green Gold" project began in 2016), the soum governors of Tsetserleg and Tsagaan Uul (where the project will commence this year), as well as members of the Pasture Management Working Group, APUG leaders, herders, and representatives of Food and Agriculture Division and Agency for Land Administration and Management, Geodesy and Cartography.

            During the convention, participants talked openly about the current status of rangelands, and rangeland usage, and discussed ways to avoid pasture degradation, improve livestock health, and increase the livelihoods of herders. MNFPUG delivered a presentation about its action plan for Khuvsgul Aimag for 2017-2020, and soum and aimag representatives introduced their pasture action plans and policies for 2017. At the end of the meeting, attendants passed a Pasture Action Plan for 2017.

            Also at the convention, MNFPUG came to an agreement with the governor of the Khuvsgul Aimag, within the framework of the "Green Gold and Livestock Health" project. Governor L.Ganbold expressed his administration’s support for the working groups from the five soums, and requested that the project spread its good practices and experiences to other soums. In this way, the "Green Gold and Livestock Health" project is gearing up to improve rangeland utilization, nomadic movements, and income levels of herder families in Khuvsgul Aimag. As part of the project, both the project and pasture users will each raise 50% of the herders' common fund. In addition, N.Ganhuyag, executive director of the National Federation of Pasture User Groups, committed to the project by financing smaller micro projects aimed at improving incomes of herdswomen.

            Surveys show that 64% of the total rangelands of Khuvsgul Aimag has been degraded to some extent. This degradation is negatively affecting herder incomes, and as a consequence the incomes of the larger rural community. In order to mitigate this decrease in income, a working group was established in 2016, headed by the Governor of the Khuvsgul Aimag and representatives of Food and Agriculture Division and Agency for Land Administration and Management, Geodesy and Cartography. This year, more working groups have been set up at soum level, comprised of the soum chairman, Veterinary and Animal Breeding Division, land managers, local Meteorology office experts and representatives of local civil society organizations.

            As a result of the vocational trainings organized in the soums last year, the price of yak wool – once very cheap – has increased to 10 000 tugriks per kg, with a consequential increase in the income of herders. J. Uurtuya, Head of the Pasture Users Association of Arbulag soum, reported that this year her soum signed a contract with the aimag's Pasture Users Group to supply 2 tons of yak wool. In addition, they are now planning to hold a milk product fair in the near future.



Published: 2017-10-27 06:33:06