Gantulga Ganbayar, a Mining University graduate, is the vice president of one of the country’s largest mining companies, MAK (Mongolyn Alt).
“MAK was established in 1993 as a gold-mining company. But in the early 90s, a decision to diversify the business and expand into coal mining was made by the conglomerate’s executives.
“We have several mining-engineering universities in my country, yet there is a particular need for qualified generalists. Russian education is still of high value here, so the company announced a competition, the winners of which could leave to study at Saint Petersburg Mining University. The choice of a university is hardly coincidental. Both Punsalmaagiin Ochirbat, the first president of Mongolia, and Nyamtaishir Byambaa, founder of MAK, graduated from Mining University,” recalls Gantulga Ganbayar.
His uncle also studied at Mining University and suggested that he participate in the contest, Gantulga notes. Since he got a high score on the tests, he was admitted to the university’s programme in mine surveying.
“I am fortunate to have been a student of this programme where I learnt a lot beyond the basics. In addition to field-specific disciplines, we were also taught economics, as well as numerous other subjects.
“Mining University’s students have excellent technical competencies. Accordingly, they quickly move up the career ladder, either advancing to managerial positions or becoming in-demand field experts. MAK chooses the most talented high-school graduates every year and sponsors their education at Mining University. Due to the nature of my job, I often meet foreign partners and take part in various international events. But I have always felt that my professional skills are up to global standards,” admits Gantulga Ganbayar.
After graduating, Gantulga returned to his home country and took a job as a surveyor in the technical-engineering department of MAK. He was responsible for performing surveying activities at all of the company’s mines. Two years from then, his main line of work was to take care of coal mines. Afterwards, he was promoted first to mining engineer with 150 subordinates, then chief engineer managing 600 employees, deputy director and director of the department, before finally becoming vice president.
“Mining is one of the dominant industries in Mongolia. Coal makes up about 40% of our exports, plus we have copper and molybdenum. Coal also accounts for 90% of Mongolia’s total domestic energy consumption, with wind and solar power accounting for the remaining 10%. This explains why all mining-related specialities are of high prestige here. Of course, we understand the direction the world is headed in. Still, we are sure that the consumption of fossil fuels will last for at least several decades more,” says Mining University’s graduate.
Gantulga Ganbayar was appointed vice president two years ago. Since then, he has been developing MAK’s new business area — sales of construction products, such as concrete, cement, and others. These goods are mostly made from limestone, which the company extracts itself. Aside from this rock, MAK is involved in mining lignite, hard and coking coal, copper-molybdenum ores, and gold prospecting.