National Parliament approves in overall vote the 2020 General State Budget without votes against

Fri. 02 of Outubro of 2020, 17:42h

The National Parliament approved today, October 2nd 2020, the 2020 General State Budget (GSB), in the overall vote, with 44 votes in favour, 0 against and 21 abstentions. The detailed discussion and vote will follow, starting next Monday.

Prime-Minister, Taur Matan Ruak, in his closing speech for the two days plenary session, thanked “all the parliamentarians who expressed their support for the General State Budget” and also thanked “the contribution of the opposition parties during two days of debate”. He also added that “the Government expresses great hope that finally, after presenting the 2020 budget three times, there may now be a positive result for [the Government] effort and contribution, with the viability of the 2020 General State Budget”.

The 2020 GSB, labelled by the Head of Government, during his intervention in the presentation of the document, as a “Resistance and Resilience Budget” and of “Hope in Resumption and Recovery”, has a total amount of US$ 1.497 billion.

In a year marked by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government’s response to the adverse effects of COVID-19, both in terms of health and the economy, is also reflected in the 2020 GSB. After the Economic and Social Stabilization Program, which started right after the first outbreak of the crisis, consisting of nineteen concrete measures, priority will now be given to the implementation of the short-term measures included in the Economic Recovery Plan, which are:

Basic Food Basket, to support families in meeting their basic needs, but at the same time, also encouraging the production and consumption of food products produced by Timorese, contributing to the objectives of job creation, support for entrepreneurship, self-employment, innovation, and private, community and cooperative initiatives.

Economic Upturn Measures, with the allocation of subsidies to support employers and individual entrepreneurs, with special attention to the important strategic sector of Tourism, one of the most affected by the crisis. 

Contributions Waiver Measures, foregoing of income from taxes, fees or rent, at a time when companies face losses and loss of income.

Support measures for Informal Workers, stimulating their enrolment in the different social security regimes, thus, contributing to the inclusion and reduction of the size of the informal economy in our society, as well as increasing the range of action of our social protection system.

It is expected that the 2020 GSB final global vote will take place on the October 8th and the final wording approval, and sending to His Excellency the President of the Republic, on October 9th.