As reported over the past five years, Mongolia is a source and destination country for men, women, and children subjected to forced labor and sex trafficking. Mongolian men, women, and children are subjected to forced labor in Turkey, Kazakhstan, Israel, Norway, and Sweden and to sex trafficking in South Korea, Japan, China, Hong Kong, Macau, Malaysia, Germany, Sweden, Belgium, Turkey, and the United States. Women and girls are subjected to sex trafficking in Mongolian massage parlors, hotels, bars, and karaoke clubs. Mongolian girls employed as contortionists—often under contractual agreements signed by their parents—are subjected to forced labor primarily in Mongolia and Turkey and less so in Hong Kong and Singapore. Women are subjected to domestic servitude or forced prostitution after entering into commercially brokered marriages to Chinese men and, with decreased frequency, South Korean men. Traffickers sometimes use drugs, fraudulent social networking, online job opportunities, or English language programs to lure Mongolian victims into sex trafficking. A significant number of Mongolian victims from rural and poor economic areas are subjected to sex trafficking in Ulaanbaatar and border areas. Japanese and South Korean tourists engage in child sex tourism in Mongolia.
The continued development of the mining industry in southern Mongolia led to an increase in internal and international migration, increasing the risk of trafficking, particularly along the China-Mongolian border. Increasing their vulnerability to exploitation, truck drivers transporting coal across the border often have their passports confiscated as collateral for their vehicles; young women are also at risk of being exploited in prostitution by drivers who are awaiting border crossing. Some Mongolian children are forced to beg, steal, or work in the informal sectors of the economy, such as horse racing, mining, herding, and construction, and are sometimes subjected to sex trafficking—often with familial complicity. North Korean and Chinese workers employed in Mongolia are vulnerable to trafficking as contract laborers in construction, production, agriculture, forestry, fishing, hunting, wholesale and retail trade, automobile maintenance, and mining. Purportedly, North Korean laborers do not have freedom of movement or choice of employment and are allowed to keep only a small portion of their wages while being subjected to harsh working and living conditions. Chinese workers have reported non-payment of wages. Previous reports allege corruption among Mongolian officials impedes the government’s anti-trafficking efforts.