Press release

Oyu Tolgoi – UN Population Fund sign agreement on youth development

Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia – Oyu Tolgoi LLC COO, Mr. Ivan Vella, and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Representative, Ms. Naomi Kitahara, today signed a joint agreement to support youth development in Khanbogd soum, South Gobi.

The two organisations have agreed to establishment a Youth Development Centre, commonly known as a YDC, in Khanbogd. This YDC will provide training and coaching on life-skills, support young people in developing practical, relevant job skills, provide counseling in reproductive health, education, communication and psychology, while providing a fun, safe atmosphere for local young people.

This partnership between Oyu Tolgoi and UNFPA Mongolia brings together two organisations working in the private and development sector. This innovative collaboration is the first of its kind for the UN agency.

During the signing ceremony, UNFPA Representative, Naomi Kitahara said, “The objective of the project is to help young people acquire life skills, and grow as responsible, positive and self-reliant people. One of the main vehicles for achieving this is the Youth Development Centre.”.

Ivan Vella, COO – Oyu Tolgoi LLC said, “Over the many years that I have worked here, I have learned that the youth of Mongolia has truly world class potential. Over the years, Oyu Tolgoi has invested in significant programmes to deliver skills and knowledge, and we believe the YDC can be an important instrument in supporting Mongolia’s development. We are proud to be part of such an important project, and to partner with the UNFPA.”

To date, UNFPA and the Government of Mongolia, with support from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation and the Government of Luxembourg, have established 12 YDCs throughout Mongolia. These YDCs are working to build a responsible, positive and self-reliant youth population.

Highlighting the strength of the partnership, Ms. Kitahara added, “Oyu Tolgoi has delivered significant interventions, particularly in the regional Technical and Vocational training sector. Coupled with UNFPA’s technical expertise in the areas of youth, gender and adolescent health, we believe there is great potential to make a significant difference in the lives of Khanbogd youth.”

About Oyu Tolgoi LLC (

Oyu Tolgoi LLC, Mongolia's largest copper and gold mining company, is a strategic partnership between the Government of Mongolia, Turquoise Hill Resources and Rio Tinto. Located in the South Gobi, Oyu Tolgoi commenced shipment of product to customers in July 2013. Oyu Tolgoi is managed by Rio Tinto, which is investing global expertise and cutting-edge technology to help develop Mongolia’s mining industry and ensure Oyu Tolgoi is one of the world’s most advanced mines. For Oyu Tolgoi, nothing matters more than safety. The business operates under the principle that if a job cannot be done safely, it will not be done at all.

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