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Mongolian Currency Spotlight: Mongolian Togrog

In Business and Currency by Continental StaffLeave a Comment

In this Spotlight we’ll take a deeper look at the Mongolian togrog (MNT). We’ll also provide some insights into the emerging economy of this oft-overlooked country.

  • Mongolian Togrog Symbol:
  • Mongolian Currency Code: MNT
  • Subunit: möngö (1/100)
  • Coins: 20, 50, 100, 200, 500 togrog
  • Banknotes: 1, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 1000, 5000, 10000, 20000 togrog
  • Mongolian GDP (nominal): US$11.735 billion (125th)
  • Central Bank: Bank of Mongolia

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History of Mongolian Currency

The togrog was first introduced in Mongolia during the year 1925 (replacing the Mongolian dollar), on par with the existing Soviet ruble. Both the togrog and the ruble were equivalent to 18 grams of silver at the time. By 1928, the togrog was the sole currency of Mongolia.

Notes and Coins

The current series of coins were introduced following the fall of the Soviet Union and end of the communist era in Mongolia.

Value Obverse Reverse
20 togrog Value Soyombo
50 togrog Value Soyombo
100 togrog Value, Janraisig Temple Soyombo
200 togrog Value, the Government House Soyombo
500 togrog Value, Soyombo Damdin Sükhbaatar

The banknotes that are commonly circulated today were largely introduced from 1993 onwards. Some remain very rare, however most of the higher value notes are still in circulation.

Value Colour Obverse Reverse
1 togrog (rare) Yellow-Brown Lion Soyombo, Paiza
5 togrog(rare) Orange Sükhbaatar, Soyombo, Paiza Mountainous landscape and horses eating grass
10 togrog Green Sükhbaatar, Soyombo, Paiza Mountainous landscape and horses eating grass
10 togrog (rare) Pink Soyombo, Archery Archery
20 togrog Reddish Purple Sükhbaatar, Soyombo, Paiza Mountainous landscape and horses eating grass
20 togrog(rare) Yellow-Brown Soyombo, Wrestling Wrestling
50 togrog Brown Sükhbaatar, Soyombo, Paiza Mountainous landscape and horses eating grass
50 togrog(rare) Green-Cyan Soyombo, Horse riding Horse riding
100 togrog Violet Sükhbaatar, Soyombo, Paiza Mountainous landscape and horses eating grass
500 togrog Green Chinggis Khan, Soyombo, Paiza Mongolian yurts in motion
1000 togrog Blue Chinggis Khan, Soyombo, Paiza Mongolian yurts in motion
5000 togrog Pink-Purple Chinggis Khan, Soyombo, Paiza “Drinking Fountain” at Genghis Khan’s court
10000 togrog Orange Chinggis Khan, Soyombo, Paiza “Drinking Fountain” at Genghis Khan’s court
20000 togrog Lime and Purple Chinggis Khan, Soyombo, Paiza Nine White Banner

Value of the MNT

The MNT largely held constant against the USD for most of the 2000’s, around the 1200 to 1 mark. 2008 saw a massive decline to about 1600 MNT to 1 USD, before the mining sector boom caused a slight recovery. Since 2013 however, the exchange rate has been falling once again and the MNT is now sitting around a low of 2000 to 1 USD.

1 USD is currently (12:15PM, Jun 10 2016) valued at 1,979.24 MNT

USD US dollar MNT mongolian togrog rate watch 5 years graph

MNT to 1 USD over the past 5 years (courtesy of Rate Watch)

1 CAD is currently (12:15PM, Jun 10 2016) valued at 1,555.42 MNT

CAD canadian dollar MNT mongolian togrog rate watch 5 years graph

MNT to 1 CAD over the past 5 years (courtesy of Rate Watch)

Mongolian Economy

A communist country for many years, the collapse of the Soviet Union hit Mongolia hard. Political infighting and the disappearance of Soviet aid resulted in a major recession during the 1990’s. After a short period of growth, the Asian financial crisis in the late 90’s once again severely hamstrung the economy. The country has since recovered to a degree thanks to an economy based on agriculture, livestock, and, increasingly, mining, as well as trade with China. That being said, disasters such as a zud, which killed livestock, as well as the larger Global Financial Crisis have impacted growth negatively. Still, some have referred to Mongolia as the ‘Asian Wolf’ before – with the view that economic and industrial growth will continue well into the future. It just remains to be seen whether the country will live up to the moniker going forward.

coins mongolia togrog 15 communist

Communist era Mongolian coins

Final Thoughts

It’s tough to pinpoint exactly where Mongolia will end up. While there are periods of prolonged growth, they are often interrupted by lack of investment, falling resource prices, and other crisis. Still, the country has come a long way since the fall of communism.

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Whether you need to buy Mongolian togrog or any of over 160 different other currencies, we’ve got you covered at your nearest Continental branch! You can also order a large selection of currencies online for pickup or delivery with FXtoGO! And don’t forget track the exchange rate of your favourite currency with Rate Watch.

For a broader understanding of Mongolian history and culture check out our Country of the Week profile. For information about traveling to Mongolia then be sure to follow our Travel Guide.

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