Anarres 2 cooperative community

August 30, 2012

Off to Mongolia

Filed under: Uncategorized — Ed @ 1:45 am

I’m off to Mongolia, and will be there from Sept. 5th to 11th. I’m going to look into the possibility of leasing land (foreigners can’t own land there)  for a cooperative farm in the countryside, hopefully not too far from Ulaan Baatar, and check out the country in general. Many collective farms were abandoned during the transition to capitalism. I haven’t travelled anywhere in Asia during the seven years I’ve lived in Japan, so even if things don’t work out at least I’ll get to experience another country. I’d be very interested in meeting Mongolians or expats who are interested in this idea. It doesn’t necessarily have to be primarily a farming operation, but I imagine we’d do some gardening, so that’s a good enough tag for now. “Cooperative community” might be a little harder to translate.

Results of my visit

Well, Mongolia is a beautiful and interesting country, but it seems like it would be difficult to start an intentional community there. If you set it up as a cooperative business, they require a $100,000 deposit, which I certainly don’t have. Or, you could set it up as an NGO, but then the main focus has to be helping Mongolian people. As far as abandoned cooperative farms, all of that land has been privatized long ago, some of it productively and some unproductively, but it is all leased by someone, and there is apparently no central source of information about what land is available. I was advised that I would need to chose a locality, and then conduct negotiations with the local government, and the goal would be to make lots of money and help the local economy. In addition, there is a serious language barrier. Oh well, it was an interesting place to visit….

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