The U.S. and Mongolia on Aug. 2 held the strategic Third Neighbor partnership as part of efforts to further expand bilateral ties with a focus on building economic resilience, promoting democratic principles and institutions, and strengthening security cooperation. Deepening economic ties with resource-rich Mongolia could be a way for the U.S. to reduce its dependence on China for various critical minerals.

A joint statement indicates that the two sides are exploring opportunities to increase trade and investment through bilateral cooperation and regional trade mechanisms. Areas of cooperation through existing and new mechanisms, including for capacity building and trade promotion, include the mineral resources sector, clean energy, food security, and the digital economy. The parties said a newly-signed economic cooperation roadmap will serve as the foundation for increased bilateral commercial and economic ties in the coming years.

The U.S. and Mongolia recognized the importance of critical minerals to the global supply chain and agreed to deepen cooperation in this area. Among other things, they welcomed the June 27 signing of a bilateral memorandum of understanding concerning cooperation on mineral resource sector development and governance, as well as the June trilateral dialogue between the U.S., Mongolia, and Korea in Ulaanbaatar to support the development of Mongolia’s mining sector.

The two sides also highlighted the importance of strengthening Mongolia’s business climate, including through continued implementation of the U.S.-Mongolia Agreement on Transparency in Matters Related to International Trade and Investment, and announced plans to hold a meeting of the U.S.-Mongolia Trade and Investment Framework Agreement Council in Mongolia later this year. In addition, they expressed support for the development of transparent market mechanisms for the trade of export commodities.

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