Meeting of the Council of Ministers on October 27th, 2021

Presidency of the Council of Ministers

Eighth Constitutional Government


Press Release

Meeting of the Council of Ministers on October 27th, 2021

The Council of Ministers meet, at the Government Palace, in Dili, and, after analysing the presentation of the country's epidemiological situation, held by the Integrated Centre for Crisis Management (CIGC - Portuguese acronym) Situation Room, approved the draft Government Decree on the implementation measures of the Declaration of the State of Emergency, made by the President of the Republic’s Decree No. 95/2021, of October 26th, to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. The state of emergency, now renewed, covers the entire national territory and will be in force between October 30th, 2021, 12:00 a.m., and November 28th, 2021, 11:59 p.m..

Regarding the implementation measures of the previous state emergency declaration, there is only one change, establishing that the access to some public administrative services is now conditional on proof of full vaccination against SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19 or, alternatively, proof of a negative SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19 test result, carried out within five days.

The remaining rules remain unchanged, namely the obligation of all individuals residing in Timor-Leste to keep a distance of, at least, three feet from other individuals with whom they do not live in the same residence. They are also still obliged to wear a face mask that covers the nose and mouth when having access to or staying in public or private places of collective use and to sanitize their hands when they intend to enter commercial, industrial or service provision establishments or buildings where public administration services operate.

While the state of emergency is in force, licences, permits, visas, residence permits and other administrative acts and documents shall remain valid regardless of their period of validity.

The Council of Ministers approved the draft Decree-Law on Territorial Planning Instruments, presented by the Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Planning and Territory, José Maria dos Reis. This decree-law, developing Law No. 6/2017, of April 19th (Framework law of Territorial Planning), establishes the legal regime of territorial planning instruments, which defines, namely, the regime of coordination, at national and municipal level, of the territorial management system and the regime for the approval, execution and evaluation of territorial management instruments.

The draft Government Decree, which creates the integrated management unit for the Presidente Nicolau Lobato International Airport development project, presented by the Vice Minister of Finance, Sara Lobo Brites, was approved. This unit will report to the Prime Minister and its mission is to provide technical support to the Government in the execution of the Presidente Nicolau Lobato International Airport development project, in coordination with the various government departments, services and Public Administration entities.

The Council of Ministers approved the draft Government Resolution, also presented by the Vice Minister of Finance, regarding to the first amendment to Government Resolution No. 31/2020, of September 2nd, which established the Interministerial Committee for Fiscal Reform and Public Finance Management. With this draft Government Resolution, the composition of the committee is changed, and now includes the member of the Government responsible for tourism, commerce and industry.

The composition of the technical units that function within the Interministerial Committee for the Reform of Public Finance and the Interministerial Subcommittee for the Reform of the State Property is also altered, now with the participation of representatives of the various services of the Ministry of Finance affected by the reform, and with the possibility of appointing substitutes, while other personalities may also participate.

The Council of Ministers approved the draft Decree-Law, presented by the Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs, Joaquim Amaral, on the implementation of the food security measure provided for in Law No. 8/2021, of May 3rd, which makes the first amendment to Law No. 14/2020, of December 29th, on the General State Budget for 2021 and approval of socio-economic support measures. The food security measure was approved by the National Parliament and aims, on one hand, to mitigate the fragilities of the national economy in the face of the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and, on the other hand, to alleviate the food difficulties of the neediest Timorese individuals and families. CLN (National Logistic Centre) will be responsible for promoting the acquisition and distribution of food products from national agricultural production, preferably cereals, and may only resort to imports when the national supply is insufficient for this purpose.

Also approved was the draft Decree-Law presented by the Minister of Higher Education, Science and Culture, Longuinhos dos Santos, introducing the first amendment to Decree-Law no. 12/2021, of 21 July, regarding the creation of the credit line "Ensinu Superior Kualidade +". The purpose of this draft Decree-Law is to extend the deadlines for implementation of the said credit line. Some improvements were also made in the wording of the document.

The Council of Ministers decided to authorize, through the Ministry of Finance, the negotiation with the Asian Development Bank for the necessary amendments to the loan agreements, in order to include in those agreements the financing of the implementation and supervision costs for the public works of a four lane road between the Nicolau Lobato International Airport roundabout and the Tasitolu area. The Council of Ministers also decided to authorise the start of procurement of the public contracts for the referred public work.

The Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Social Solidarity and Inclusion, Armanda Berta dos Santos and the National Commissioner for Children's Rights, Dinorah Granadeiro, gave a presentation on the implementation of child-related indicators (Markadór ba Labarik) in the public finance management system of the Dalan ba Futuru system. The development of these indicators is an integral part of the public finance management reform. One of their main objectives is to enable monitoring of resource allocation and implementation results of the national child action plan. The development of these indicators is the result of the joint effort of the National Commission for Children's Rights, the Ministry of Finance and UPMA, with consultations held across ministerial lines and with the support of UNICEF. END