Mongolia votes for new president

Mongolia heads to the polls on Wednesday to vote for a new president.

This will be the first vote since constitutional amendments stripped the office of some of its powers, and limited holders to a single six-year term.

The move was made to keep incumbent businessman and former wrestler Khaltmaa Battulga of the opposition Democratic Party from seeking re-election.

The ruling Mongolian People's Party or MPP, is on the cusp of consolidating its power.

Ukhnaa Khurelsukh, who was forced to resign as prime minister after protests this year, is the favourite to take over the presidency for the MPP, which already controls parliament and government.

Their campaign has been built on self-sufficiency for Mongolia.

"Each year we spend around 1.5 billion American dollars on buying petrol from outside our country. If this money stays in Mongolia, the U.S. dollar exchange rate will drop tremendously. The tugrik currency value will strengthen. We will not need to worry about petrol prices."

Meanwhile, The Democratic Party has pushed a campaign with the slogan "Mongolia without Dictatorship".

They are fielding Sodnomzundui Erdene.

It says if it loses Mongolia will become a one-party state:

"Today, dictatorship has become a reality in Mongolia. One-party rule, one-party dictatorship has become a reality, social and political dictatorship has taken root in Mongolia. Today, if you are not a member of (the Mongolian People's Party), if you are not affiliated with the ruling party, it is no longer possible to do business as you choose, study what you choose and live in the way you choose."

Both major parties have accused each other of undermining Mongolia's 30-year-old democracy.

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