Overview of the agricultural sector in Mongolia

Geography

Mongolia is a land-locked country between Russia and China with a territory of 1564.9 thousand square kilometers and a population of 3357.5 thousand by end of 2020. Mongolia is one of the most sparsely populated countries in the world, with an average density of 2 people per square kilometers.

Demographics

Urban population accounts for 68%, rural population 32% of total population and sex ratio of 97 males per 100 females. Because of the long tradition of nomadic lifestyle in Mongolia, livestock has been and continues to be a fundamental source of income for the rural population. Until recently, raising five species of animals (horse, cattle, camel, sheep, goat) was prevalent. Nowadays, household animals, such as pigs, chicken and bee farms are growing rapidly. Mongolia is self-sufficient in meat and meat products, flour, liquid milk and potatoes, but relies heavily on imports for many vegetables.

Agricultural Economics

Agriculture is a significant sector in the Mongolian economy, contributing approximately 13% to GDP and generating approximately 6% of export income. In total, 24% of the labor force is employed in this sector.

 The total number of livestock has reached 67.1 million by the end of 2020, according to livestock census. In total, 233.3 thousand households were counted with livestock, of which 73.6% of them were herder households.
 Sheep and goats accounted for the highest percentage of livestock, 44.8% and 41.3% respectively. Horses account for 6.1%, cattle for 7.1% and camels make up the remaining 0.7%. On average, one herder household owns 332 heads of livestock.
 Cashmere is one of Mongolia’s most prestigious products in international markets. The country is the world’s second-largest producer of raw cashmere after China. The cashmere segment has grown rapidly over the past 20 years.
 The ownership and utilization of pastureland is an important issue because of the dominance of nomadic animal husbandry in the economy. Pasture land is still owned by the Government.
 Approximately only one percent of Mongolia’s land area is used to grow crops. Because of the cold winter season that lasts many months, only a single annual crop harvest is possible. About 90% of the cropland is sown with cereals, primarily spring wheat, but also barley and oats. The rest are sown with potatoes, fodder crops and other vegetables, such as cabbage and carrots.
 Fishery and Forestry are not significant sectors in Mongolian economy.
 In the agriculture sector an agricultural census is conducted every ten years (since 2012) with a by-census every five years, a livestock census is conducted annually (since 1961) with a semi-annual livestock survey. In relation to crops, NSO is responsible for collection and dissemination of sown area, crops, hay, fodder and production of main crop statistics.

Design Escapes

The Asia and Pacific Commission on Agricultural Statistics (APCAS) is a statutory body of FAO and holds its biennial sessions in member countries.


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