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Bus transportation in Ulaanbaatar. Courtesy Allen H. Kassof.

In the late 1980s, Mongolia had 6,700 kilometers of roads, of which 900 kilometers were paved. Most paved roads were in cities. Principal routes included the north-south highway connecting Ulaanbaatar with Erenhot at the Chinese border and Kyakhta at the Soviet border, and the east-west highway linking Ulaanbaatar with Choybalsan in the east and Olgiy in the west. Roads also linked Choybalsan with Chita, Soviet Union, and Hailar, China. A highway from Biysk, Soviet Union, reached Olgiy, and one from Irkutsk, Soviet Union, reached Turt on Hovsgol Nuur. In 1985 roads carried 35.9 million tons of freight and 1,934.3 million ton-kilometers, accounting for 24.8 percent of all freight turnover. Roads transported 168.4 million passengers and 688.3 million passenger-kilometers, or 48.7 percent of all passenger turnover. Bus service existed in major cities and towns, and in Ulaanbaatar it was being supplemented by construction of a trolley bus line. Motor transport services were based in depots located in most provincial centers. No figures were available on the number and the types of motor vehicles in service; however, visitors reported that Soviet jeeps provided the major form of transportation in rural areas and that motorcycles were becoming increasingly popular. Automobiles and trucks also were important modes of transportation. It was not known to what extent draft animals supplemented motorized transport in carrying freight and passengers on Mongolian roads.

Last Update: 2010-12-07