Gankhuyag New Vice Minister of Finance, News.mn
In December, the Government of Mongolia named Ganhuyag Chuulun Hutagt, or Gan, a founder and CEO of XacBank and then CEO of Tenger Financial Group, as the new Vice Minister of Finance. Gan has also been economic policy advisor of the Prime Minister since 2009. This appointment marks a return to government work for Gan, who earlier worked as a floor supervisor at the Mongolian Stock Exchange and as a banking supervisor in the Bank of Mongolia, before becoming an entrepreneur to found one of the more successful financial services groups in Mongolia.
When I was called to serve, as a citizen, I thought, ‘I have to get involved to help these guys connect the dots, as it relates to equitable economic growth, bureaucracy, red tape, populism, all the things the government is criticised for.’ We are a democratic country and right now we have to do right things for the economy to stand firmly on its feet. Financially, I’m independent so I accepted this challenge when the Prime Minister called me to this position. I thought about it for a while, but he didn’t have to call me three times.
Both of my formal first jobs, in 1991 and 1997, were government jobs. Both were one year long only, because I got dissatisfied in these jobs after short while. Being in a junior position in government is not very fulfilling, especially for an entrepreneurial person. You are part of a big machine and people treat you as they want. You are not a decision maker. You have to have patience to make your way up through the ranks, and I was not that type. Also in an emerging country like Mongolia, public service does not pay well financially. You have to survive on a very low pay - as a vice minister I get paid about US$ 500/month.
But because I spent the last 12 years in the private sector, at one of the most dynamic institutions in Mongolia, I saw myself as potentially a demonstration for how young people could come into the government and make a lasting difference.
After just one month at the new job, I have been able to acclimatize and even make small changes in the way people operate - to become more open in communicating, to start using Facebook and Twitter. Now that I am in a high-level government position, I am excited about the potential to make a positive impact much more. There is a feeling of real power to effect changes, and to help the leadership of the country steer in the right direction, faster and more efficiently.