Sources inform that Chinese “Petrochina Dachin Tamsag” company breached laws repeatedly since concluding an agreement with and collaborating the Government of Mongolia 10 years ago. Due to inadequate rehabilitation of the land by the company, a lot of losses incurred to the environment. People explained the reasons with regard to insufficient performance by the land. To get details on this matter, we talked with D.Altangerel, Head of Division of Product sharing agreement and mining, Implementer agency of the Government.
Q: How compatible is current Chinese standard with our country?
D.Altangerel: -Today who is in oil sector is Chinese, and what technology is used is Chinese. Thus Chinese regulations and rules are being followed. It is not impossible to adopt Chinese standards here and as such there has been no accident case like those in gold, copper and coal mines.
Q: According to the law, the agency should be responsible for formulating the standard. But it is said that it’s being developed. Therefore there are many people criticize you regarding this issue.
D.Altangerel: Yes, the agency should formulate the standards and regulations. It is true that it is provided by laws but budgets for these activities have not been approved or have been reduced. Even we have been working with few staff and it is still the same today who are unable to put controls. On the other hand, we cannot do this because we don’t have any specialized people or institutes. We hardly put controls on explorations. We have insufficient capacity and specializations. This is done by highly skilled specialists in bigger institutes in highly developed countries. Therefore developing a national standards and having it approved is though. Thus we proposed related agencies to use the translated standards. Currently we have translated 3 standards.
Q: Can we see previous and present standards in use?
D.Altangerel: We don’t have one in Mongolian but in Chinese. There is no professional translation bureau in Mongolia so far.
Q: As a Government implementer agency, you sign documents on behalf. But standards are Chinese. As I get from you, there is no translated standard. Then on what basis you sign?
D.Altangerel: Any standard can be used for 2-3 years. As I said Chinese technology and Chinese people are working.
-The company had breaches as result of repeated checks and reviews by related organizations. How you assess the environmental rehabilitation? Can they do the work in line with proper regulations?
D.Altangerel: -State professional inspection agency first inspected the company in 2007, giving 22 requirements. In accordance with it, Oil authority and the company took necessary measures. However there were things that cannot be accepted. The second inspected was carried out in 2009, giving number of requirements. We forwarded our response talking jointly with the Company. Soon the issue will be discussed at the director’s meeting of SPI.
Q: Do you think this company operate activities totally non poisonous to the environment?
D.Altangerel: -We don’t have a right to inspect and act at the spot. We enforce state legislations and regulations, and control implementation of government agreement. For this, there is Oil authority. Also we focus on whether investments to Mongolia are real or not. And we demand the company to attach special attention on environment issues.
Q: You have just visited China to evaluate the agreement.
D.Altangerel: Over 10 people visited China to evaluate activities done in the year and to plan next actions. Some issues were discussed. For instance, chemical substances shall be sent to other country’s laboratory for check. Due to end of exploration, land shall be returned not by the company but by the other organization.