What we did: We encouraged transparent political finance in Mongolia through support for a state-run online reporting system.
What we achieved: Political parties, coalitions and candidates nominated for the 2021 presidential elections were required to report that their election funds had been legally recorded, collected from real sources and spent as intended.
Who we did it with: Open Society Forum–Mongolia
Impact area: Political Participation and Representation
Boundary partners: Oversight agencies
With the support of International IDEA, Mongolia took a step forward last year towards stemming the unregulated and opaque flow of money in its political elections, which has been threatening to damage the country’s progress as a democracy.
In time for the 9 June 2021 presidential election, the State Audit Office launched an online system for monitoring election donations. As a result, candidates were required to report that their financing had been legally acquired and appropriately spent.
Government officials hailed the new system as a major advance, saying it made ‘election financing open and transparent to voters and the public’.
International IDEA had previously warned that nebulous political financing was a serious threat in Mongolia.
So, the new system—backed by the European Union-funded Level Up project implemented by International IDEA and the Open Society Forum–Mongolia—was a positive move.
But a lot remains to be done to create a truly transparent political finance system. The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) election monitors noted that there are no requirements for interim reports and that the State Audit Office has no means to verify whether everything is being reported.
International IDEA is continuing to work with its partners in Mongolia in support of political finance reform.
- Digital Solutions for Political Finance Reporting and Disclosure: A Practical Guide
- Funding of Political Parties and Electoral Campaigns: A Handbook on Political Finance
- Level Up: Political Finance with Integrity project
- OSCE/ODIHR Special Election Assessment Mission report for the June 2021 elections (see Campaign Finance section, p. 6). The State Audit Office of Mongolia, the political finance oversight body, provided an online platform and reporting template for political parties to submit their financial reports.