Ladies and Gentlemen:

It gives me a great pleasure to welcome you here in Ulaanbaatar and to say that we are honoured to host this important Meeting on Security Concepts In The Changing World  here in Mongolia. I wish to take this opportunity to express my sincere gratitude to the UN Secretariat, to the Department for Disarmament Affairs, and to the Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament for their valuable assistance in organizing this meeting.

I am confident that ours will be a very productive Meeting providing us with an opportunity to conduct a thorough exchange of views on the current security situation in the world,  and to look closer at the challenges associated with the preservation of peace and stability and advancement od  disarmament in the face of evolving international and regional realities.

One of the purposes of this Meeting is, I believe, to contribute to fostering regional dialogue on security and disarmament and strengthen security cooperation. We believe that such cooperation is essential as we approach a new century and face a rapidly changing international situation, with a multitude of challenges emerging, including traditional and non-traditional threats to security.

With respect to regional security, Mongolia believes that, since the end of the Cold War, it has remained stable on the whole. But further efforts and cooperation are needed in the region to preserve this climate of peace and stability in the light of evolving realities. The Asian economic and financial crisis seems to be receding. We, however, should not rule out the possibility of its lasting security implications. The emerging concept of human security  reflects, in our view, these preoccupations. The lingering unresolved regional issues - whether in Northeast Asia or elsewhere - as well as the emergence of new ones call for enhanced regional security cooperation. We think, for one, that dialogue and cooperation among major powers in very important in enhancing regional stability. Strengthening the processes of regional security dialogues and cooperation, both bilaterally and multilaterally, is important in developing common responses to the existing and emerging challenges.

Mongolia, like other small states, associates its security with a number of factors. We undertake efforts to create an environment favorable to building a multi-pillared framework of security. Within that approach we work to maintain friendly good-neighbourly relations with our neighbours; develop closer relations with other regional countries; work within the ARF multilateral process and are eager to contribute to North-East Asian peace and stability. With regard to our regional security strategy we also think it important to strengthen military confidence in the region; implement global non-proliferation and arms control regimes; and encourage  "track two" dialogues on security issues. Mongolia stands for enhancing our cooperation with the United Nations in the area of peace and security, and supports the further strengthening of the ARF and a fuller use of other appropriate fora.

We are especially pleased that this Meeting will be addressing the issue of Mongolia's international security and nuclear-weapon-free status. The implementation of the GA resolution 53/77D could, in our view, promote further confidence and security not only for Mongolia and its immediate neighbors, but also in the whole of the region.

Lastly, I wish to reiterate my confidence that this Meeting will make a good contribution to the strengthening of our mutual understanding, cooperation and our desire to work together to preserve peace and security and ensure a better life for our children.  I wish you a very productive discussion and a very pleasant stay in Mongolia.

Thank you very much.