Timor-Leste and New Zealand Deepen Economic Cooperation

Wed. 28 of August of 2019, 17:32h

28 August 2019 - The Minister of Legislative Reform and Parliamentary Affairs and Acting Minister Coordinator for Economic Affairs and for Tourism, Trade and Industry, Fidelis Manuel Leite Magalhães, met today with his New Zealand counterpart, Hon. Phil Twyford MP, Minister of Development Economic, Urban Development and Transport, who leads the New Zealand delegation to the 20th Anniversary commemoration of the Referendum and the Interfet. MTCI Chief Advisor Jacinto Rigoberto was also part of the meeting.

Minister Phil Twyford welcomed the results our country has achieved since the referendum and after independence. He recalled that in the 1990s and afterwards he himself was an activist supporting the cause of the Timorese people.

Minister Fidelis Magalhães expressed the country’s recognition for the support of so many New Zealanders to Timor-Leste's and for the assistance that New Zealand extends to our national development. The Acting MTCI said that bilateral cooperation between Timor-Leste and New Zealand runs very smoothly and also presented to its counterpart Timor-Leste’s current priorities on economic diversification. Minister Fidelis Magalhães highlighted that tourism and industry are the government's top priorities for economic and business development because they are sectors where faster results for diversification can be achieved. Tourism and business sector development in Timor-Leste has been one of the priorities of bilateral cooperation with New Zealand since 2011. A great number of Timorese students have also attended universities in New Zealand with the support of New Zealand government scholarships.

The Minister added that the development of trade also has his full attention and the country's accession to the World Trade Organization is a priority. He hopes that the impulse to the trade sector will bring results in the medium term.

The interim MKAE and MTCI expressed his hope that bilateral cooperation with New Zealand could contribute to the capacity building of Timorese middle and senior management personnel for the tourism sector in order to accelerate the acquisition of know-how.

Minister Phil Twyford expressed New Zealand's full willingness to deepen cooperation in the Tourism industry and in other areas, including urban development and digital technologies, among others.