HMA Catherine Arnold talks about what to expect in 2017.
2016 has been a significant year.
Here in Mongolia you hosted a very successful ASEM conference. I would like to congratulate Mongolia on its global success. You also held parliamentary elections and invited the OSCE to monitor them, for the first time. Democracy is something that our two countries share. Our governments and our people share the importance of democracy and the wider values it brings, such as freedom to express ourselves and increasing transparency.
In the UK we held a referendum on the UK’s membership of the European Union. The UK is and will remain an outward looking and engaged global player and here in Mongolia I look forward to building our strong relationship even further.
2016 has been a busy year for UK and Mongolia partnership. We have worked together to strengthen democracy and transparency. We have worked together to strengthen global peace and security through peacekeeping and human rights. We have worked together to help counter the illegal trade in wildlife. I would like to thank all our many partners for making this possible.
The UK continues to work with Mongolia to support the sustainable development of your economy – through education, innovation and technology. I recently went to the UK with a mining delegation led by the Vice Minister of Mining to promote investment into Mongolia. And I want to continue to work with you to show the world what Mongolia has to offer.
Open is the word I use most about Mongolia. You are an open people with an open democracy. You are open to business and open to tourism.
You have continued to show this openness and warmth to me and my embassy this year, here in UB and as we have travelled around this extraordinary country. You have taught me to play Polo in UB, sing Mongolian folksongs in Gobi Altai, and to make aruul in Khuvsgul.
May 2017 and the years that follow bring you and your country blessings and opportunities.
Happy New Year.