Homeland of the great conqueror Genghis Khan who will submit China and much of Siberia and Central Asia, Mongolia is a province of China in 1946 when, under the protection of the USSR, it became independent. In 1960, she became a people's republic. The territory consists mainly of steppes, pastures and the Gobi Desert. The economy is mainly agricultural and pastoral despite numerous mineral wealth. Until effonfrement of the USSR, the country had a strategic importance with the presence of many Soviet troops.