Batsukh Galsan, Chairman of Board , Oyu Tolgoi LLC, informed reporters that the company is conducting detailed studies and planning to build a new town next to Umnugovi’s Khanbogd soum during the recent ceremony to commission OT’s new copper concentrator, which was previously reported by BM. Located 45 kilometers from Oyu Tolgoi, Khanbogd is now a lively village (‘soum’ in Mongolian) with bustling economic activities.
The mine buses local workers between the soum and OT on a daily basis. Many of them work in catering services and other support areas with the mine. Currently, there is a dirt road, but it will be connected to the mine via asphalt road.
According to OT’s near future plans, the company is projecting that its employees will be residing in the new town with their families, as opposed to the current ‘fly in and fly out’ system. The studies on environmental impact, population and water needs are already underway.
The construction will commence within the next two years, and the new town will have an estimated population of 15,000-20,000 including the current Khanbogd residents. It is hoped that the town will have all the important infrastructure and services including apartment complexes, schools, kindergardens, hospital and theatre.
Oyu Tolgoi is considered to be the second largest in the world in terms of its mineral reserves such as copper and gold. Once put into full operation, it is expected that OT will become one of the largest five mines globally.