IRIM Operations Director S.Moiltmaa and Executive Director A.Dolgion participated in the Forum on Japan-ADB assistance in Mongolia, jointly organised by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR) on 30 September 2014 in Ulaanbaatar.

The forum took place to convene under the theme, Outcomes and Future Directions of the Assistance in Mongolia. The theme reflects 20 years of JFPR funded grants, technical assistance value and development impact to Mongolian society. In particular, the assistance has been targeted at the poor, socially and economically excluded and vulnerable groups.

Under the theme, sector presentations by were made by respective line ministries of health, social protection, education, finance, agriculture, energy, environment, urban development and infrastructure on the achievements and lessons learnt from past and current JFPR projects.

Following the presentations, chaired by Robert Schoellhammer (Country Director of Mongolia Resident Mission, ADB), a panel discussion occurred on what should be the focus of JFPR and how the development projects can be sustainable.

Panellist A.Dolgion (Executive Director of IRIM) told the forum that “the last 20 years of experience in Mongolia has shown that economic growth is not sufficient to fight against poverty. To reduce poverty, programmes focusing on social protection and human development need to be prioritised in addition to the orthodox ones. One of the main barriers for sustainability of such programmes is that they are not implemented by national private or civil society organisations which will have more ownership and capacities.”

Overall, the panellists agreed that the role of JFPR in fostering long-term social growth in Mongolia was significant and the assistance should continue to focus on fighting against poverty with the involvement of all relevant stakeholders.