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United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
   Alleviating Poverty through Social Development (Environment)
 Local Democracy at the Bag Level
Human rights and local democracy in rural areas of Mongolia

Within the process of democratisation currently taking place in Mongolia, a particular attention is being given by the Mongolian government to decentralisation and to the enhancement of the role of local communities both in building up democracy and in promotion of economic modernisation. The primary focus of this project will be to provide the opportunity for local governance institutions and the citizens at the grassroots level to work together upon a participatory approach to improve local democratic governance. Upon a participatory identification of needs and problems related to the concrete implementation of human rights and democratic governance at local level, micro-projects to improve quality of life of the populations and especially of its disadvantaged groups, will be identified, funded and implemented.

Progress and Promise

  • increased citizens knowledge of human rights and their awareness of their active role in the concrete implementation of Human Rights at Bag level
  • Effective decentralisation in the sense of political and technical empowerment of authorities at the bag level achieved
  • Democratic practice at the Bag level strengthened by means of improving the executive, technical and management functions and initiatives of bag governors and Public Khurals and the consolidation of an environment wherein the communities are enabled to work together with local authorities to directly plan, manage and monitor local development projects


  • The country is divided into 21 major territorial units known as Airmags, Nineteen of these Airmags are classified as rural and two as urban.
  • Bags (around 1600) are the smallest administrative and territorial unit in Mongolia.
  • One out of 6 households are surviving on incomes below the poverty line. A household with an average monthly income lower than US$ 9 in the urban area is considered to be living below the poverty line.

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