Populist tycoon and ex-judo star inaugurated as Mongolia’s president | Inquirer News
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Populist tycoon and ex-judo star inaugurated as Mongolia’s president

/ 07:17 PM July 10, 2017
Khaltmaa Battulga - election day - 26 June 2017

Presidential candidate of opposition Mongolian Democratic party, Khaltmaa Battulga, goes to cast his vote at a polling station at School No. 48 in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, Monday, June 26, 2017. The Mongolian ruling party’s presidential candidate was taken down in elections by Battulga, a former judo champion and populist business tycoon from an opposition party and a nationalist. (AP Photo/CHADRAABAL BARAMSAI / AP)

ULAANBAATAR, Mongolia — A populist business tycoon and ex-judo star has been inaugurated as Mongolia’s new president, pledging greater benefits for the county’s three million people from their landlocked Asian nation’s vast mineral wealth.

Khaltmaa Battulga of the Democratic Party won a runoff Friday against his establishment opponent Miyegombo Enkhbold of the Mongolian People’s Party.

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Battulga told The Associated Press on Saturday that he wanted a “win-win situation for everyone” when it came to foreign investment, which has slumped in recent years following weaker commodity prices and high-profile disputes between the government and large investors including mining giant Rio Tinto.

Mongolia’s economy grew just 1 percent last year, down from 17.5 percent in 2011. It now has $23 billion in debt, more than double the size of its economy.

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Battulga was inaugurated Monday.

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