15th Anniversary of the Ryoichi Sasakawa Young Leaders Fellowship Fund program at the Academy of Management, Mongolia

Ulaanbataar, Mongolia

Your Excellency Prime Minister Baymbasuren, Dr. Prof. Lkhagvaa Togooch, Rector of Academy of Management, members of SYLFF Steering Committee, SYLFF fellows, ladies and gentlemen.

I am deeply honored to have been invited to speak here today by the Academy of Management. The year 2007 is memorable in many respects. It marks 35 years of diplomatic ties between Mongolia and Japan. It also marks the 20th anniversary of SYLFF–the Ryoichi Sasakawa Young Leaders Fellowship Fund–and the 15th year that SYLFF scholarships have been offered by the Academy of Management.

On this auspicious occasion, I would like not only to offer my heartfelt congratulations, but also to express my deepest gratitude to Rector Lkhagvaa Togooch and each one of the members of the SYLFF Steering Committee, for their outstanding efforts and accomplishments in nurturing the future leaders of this country.

Mongolia, with its vital geopolitical position linking Asia and Europe, and its surging economy underpinned by its abundant underground resources, has captured the world’s attention. Following the end of the Cold War, Mongolia has played an increasingly important political and economic role in Asia, and the international community has also identified Mongolia as a key player in resolving pressing issues on the Korean Peninsula.

The lives of people around the world with different religious, ethnic, cultural, and political viewpoints are becoming increasingly intertwined, resulting in a new and complex world. This presents us with a variety of problems such as war, terrorism, poverty, disease, and discrimination. No part of the world is free from these challenges, and the Central Asian region surrounding Mongolia also faces many unresolved problems ranging from ethnic conflict to disputes over water resources.

In order to find a solution to these problems that are trans-boundary by nature, it is essential to nurture individuals with a broad perspective capable of accommodating divergent viewpoints and grasping the essence of each issue. I believe that institutions of higher education play a vital role in cultivating such human resources.