September of 2009
“Mongolia-Japan Center’s 42nd Open Seminar”

        Mongolia-Japan Center’s 42nd Open Seminar was held on Friday the September 25th. Science Doctor of Geography Professor Ch. Sonomdagva is a faculty at Mongolian National University (MNU) and lectured his research on “Ulaanbaatar City’s Air Pollution”.

“Ulaanbaatar City’s Air Pollution”

        With continuing in-migration, rapid urbanization, increasing use of cars and other machines, and industrial factories in the city, the air pollution has risen. Currently, Ulaanbaatar city has approximately one million residents, 92000 vehicles, and burns over 7000ton coal in a year, which is equivalent of 40% of the country’s fuel emission.
Energy production and increased road traffic have initiated the air pollution. Also the use of low quality fuel, out-dated and inefficient technological resources, inexhaustible use and deprived road traffic rules and laws all impact air pollution. However proper research has not been done regarding this issue; thus, there are no answers to exact estimate of the pollution, what factors played major roles in this matter, what is the best plan to clean and prevent future or additional damage, etc.
Primarily, a proper data and research need to be collected and studied. From them, we will have answers to all causes and their damage estimates. As well as we can conclude and prioritize the necessary plans, and finally initiate cleaning the air. (Senior Representative Ulambayar)

“Japanese Management” Training Session

        From August 15th through September 5th, “Japanese Management” training session, that JICA organized, took place in Hokkaido, Japan.Team of seven attended this session; among them three were graduates from Mongolia-Japan center’s business course “Small Business Management value and analysis”, three Business course instructors and I.
The objective of this training was to expand our knowledge, share our opinions, most importantly learn and understand the Japanese Management techniques. What we learned here is not only for personal duty; we should introduce and spread the knowledge to other businesses and individuals. In addition, we can consult businesses that are interested in implementing a Japanese Management system in their businesses.
Although the training session was only for three weeks, we all learned a lot about Small Business Management, its characters, and its fields.
The lectures covered following subjects, such as introduction, financial analysis, administrative management, industrial administration; promote the 5S, human resource development, and marketing. Moreover, they introduced and toured companies that utilized the Japanese Management and reached success. During the tour, all those companies were welcome and courteous to us. We learned that customer satisfaction and environmentally friendly are also critical factors in wellbeing of any company.
Moreover, we visited a company that Mr. Kobayashi Yoshisuke has been advising for past 20 years, “Nichinoki Seiko Co. Ltd”. By implementing the Japanese Management skills, the Small Businesses in Mongolia can be as successful as these companies. It is important to develop superior business strategy and management, and then work toward reaching the goal and success. Thus I’m pleased to share my experience with our center and colleagues. I hope to contribute more to the center in future. (Business Training Division Staff A. Nyamjargal)

“A Look into Japanese wedding dress Kimono”

        “Japanese wedding wear Kimono” event was organized on September 12, to celebrate the Mongolia-Japan center’s milestone of reaching one million customers. The event was hosted by specialists in Yamano-style kimono Fujishima Keiko, Takehara Naoko, and Ishii Yumie. Over 150 people attended the event, among them were special guests Japanese Ambassador Mr. Kidakoro Takuo and Representative of JICA Mr. Ishida Yukio.
The event consisted of four parts: 1. Introduction to Japanese traditional wear Kimono, 2. Introduction to Japanese wedding ceremony, 3. How to wear a kimono,4. How to tie an obi
At the end of the event, specialists answered attendants’ questions, and the kimono models were asked about their impressions.
1. Introduction to Japanese traditional wear Kimono:In general, Kimono looks as similar to Mongolian traditional dress Deel, only the sleeves and the belt (obi) are distinctive. Japanese usually wear kimono during traditional ceremonies and festivals, however not in daily use. There are several ceremonies for children since the age of one-month until 20 years old.
“Omiyamairi” is a ceremony for one month old infants; parents bring their baby to temple along with their family and friends to welcome and pray for the baby’s health and growth at the temple. Then the ceremony followed by family portraits in their kimonos. Everyone dresses in kimono.
“Shigosan” is a ceremony for five years old boys and three or seven years old girls. During the ceremony, parents pay their appreciation and respect to god for their children’s healthy growth and pray for future happiness. After this ceremony boys can wear Hakama, which is a kimono for adult men. Also girls, after their 13th year ceremony, they can wear adult women’s kimono.
In the recent years, the ceremony has not been celebrated as much. In Japan, when the young adults turn 20, they are considered as adults and celebrate their adulthood ceremony by wearing hakama. Most girls wear kimono with long sleeves, while the number of boys wearing hakama have increased. Young women graduating universities or colleges wear kimono and hakama same as young men. Traditionally, women used to wear hakama when going to school, in the past.
2. Introduction to Japanese wedding ceremony:
Brides and grooms wear the most beautiful and higher rank kimonos in their wedding ceremony; grooms wear “Kuromonpuku” which is black and same as ceremonial wearing of Yokozuna; brides wear white “Shiromuku”, which was originally used to be worn by Samurai brides. White color was honored as the color of a wedding 1200 years ago; it represented pure and ray of the sun.
“Wataboushi” is worn by brides on their head; it covers their head completely. In the 1500s, this originated from “Kazuki”, a bonnet used by Samurai’s wives to protect them from the sun and wind. It’s shaped as a small or short-sleeve kimono. From 1600, Kazuki was changed to Wataboushi, which is made of cotton. Wataboushi was used to cover bride’s face from the guests. However, nowadays brides change their kimono to colorful Uchikake during the wedding reception.
Brides wear their hair with six decorative accessories; the most expensive is pearl hairpin and a comb until the recent 70 years. Bride’s hairdressing is called “Bunkintakashimada”.
When attending wedding ceremony, single women wear “Furusode”, which has long sleeves; married women wear short sleeves. And most men wear suits than kimonos.

3. How to wear kimono:
It is simple to dress yourself in kimono. First, always put on white tabi socks, then zori sandals which are flat. The zori is worn by both men and women, and they are made in variety of colors and materials. It is difficult to bend down to put on socks and sandals after the full kimono and belt is on. Next, put on the kimono, making sure the back seam is centered. For both men and women, wrap the right side of the kimono over the body, and then overlap it with the left side.
(Цагийн ажилтан Ц.Мөнхбаясгалан)

4. How to tie kimono obi:
Kimono belt, Obi, is quite long and appropriate to tie in various ways. There are many types of obi: maru obi, fukuro obi, and nagoya obi. Obi for men is skinnier than women’s. The width of obi is folded in half, and it is wrapped twice around the waist and then tied in the back. Formal obi belts are made of a brocade or tapestry weave. The more pattern, the more formal is the basic rule. Today, an obi is completely covered with woven or embroidered designs, which are now normally worn by a bride.
In conclusion, this celebration event of reaching one million customers was successful with participations of all attendants, kimono specialists and the Center’s staff (full or part-time). At the end of the show, people asked questions and got chances to take photos with kimono models. The event was a great opportunity to raise cultural awareness of kimono, even though people in Japan rarely see event like this. It is evident that our two nations’ mutual understanding is to expand our relations with further cultural activities and events.
(Hourly staff Ts. Munkhbayasgalan)

“Comments on Training”

        I first came to Mongolia-Japan center to get an application for employment. As I walked through the gates, I noticed the sign; it says: “The center was built in March of 2002 by the donations from Japan”. Behind the sign, I saw a 2 story building surrounded by garden. This center is the only place I know that is affordable and offer Japanese language, computer and various business courses. They have television and couches in the waiting areas to accommodate their customers while attending to them.
To be considered as a candidate for an employment at Mongolia-Japan center, everyone has to submit a written application, writing test and lastly an interview. I was one of 5 who passed the interview section, that’s how I became part of the center. On the first day of employment, director of the center greeted, and then did brief introduction and orientation of each division by the division personnel. The Mongolia-Japan center was originally, a project of JICA, intended for five years; however since it has reached its mission and was successful, it is extended for another five years until 2012.
In order to expand the center, various business courses are offered regularly; and to improve the quality of the programs, we invite guest lecturer from Japan, who are experienced and professional in the field of the course.
Mongolia-Japan center is a non-profit organization. Its mission is human resource development, and to reach more people. Mongolia has a lot to learn from Japan, which is the 2nd most developed country in the world. (Hourly staff G. Sainkhuu)

“I will try…”

        Hello, greetings to everyone. I graduated from University of Science and Technology. From September 7th of 2009, I began working at the Mongolia-Japan center. When I was a student, I liked to come to the center and study. Somehow I thought it was quiet and comfortable. Now, I’m very happy to work at the center’s library.
Every morning, I wake up with such motivation and willingness to accomplish more. At first, I was afraid to make mistakes, but my colleagues are nice; they encouraged me and thought me patiently when I didn’t know. With my first paycheck, I bought a present for my mother. I thank you all who have supported me throughout the years. I will work hard. I picture my future and our center’s future with full of bright colors.
If anyone wants to improve their skills and get training, our door is always open. You are welcome to our center anytime! (Hourly staff Ts. Uuriintuya)
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