Sustainable tourism to be developed in Mongolia
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) approved USD38 million in loans to develop ecotourism in Khuvsgul Lake National Park
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) approved USD38 million in loans to develop ecotourism in Khuvsgul Lake National Park in most northern Mongolia and Onon-Balj National Park in eastern Mongolia to serve as models for economically inclusive development and conservation in Mongolia. The lending marks ADB’s first project loans in Mongolia to focus on tourism and protected area management. They will benefit around 11,000 residents as well as improve local environmental conservation and climate change adaptation and mitigation efforts. Khuvsgul Lake in Khuvsgul Lake National Park is Mongolia’s largest freshwater resource, while Onon-Balj National Park is the birthplace of Chinggis Khaan, a revered leader in Mongolia’s history. The Sustainable Tourism Development Project will improve planning for community-based tourism that will both support visitors but also create local income generation opportunities. It will also upgrade tourism infrastructure, including tourism centers such as the Chinggis Khaan Tourism Complex and other waste management facilities that will benefit both tourists and the host communities, and improve park management to safeguard wilderness areas. It will also pilot test Mongolia’s first tourism concession manuals and eco-certification programs for protected areas. ADB’s support is aligned with Mongolia’s National Program on Tourism Development, 2016–2030, and promotes the country’s strategies and efforts to diversify the economy, improve climate-resilient infrastructure, protect the environment, and increase economic opportunities for residents in rural areas. The government has identified a range of other sites for ecotourism development.