Timor-Leste and Australia sign a US$ 25 million subsidiary agreement for the PROSIVU program

Thu. 04 of August of 2022, 09:25h

The Minister of Finance, Rui Gomes, on behalf of the Government of Timor-Leste, and Australia's Ambassador to Timor-Leste, Bill Costello, signed today, August 4th, 2022, at the Ministry of Finance Auditorium, a US$ 25 million Subsidiary Agreement for the Partnership for Inclusive Prosperity programme (PROSIVU) – First Phase, that will be implemented over four years, until June 2026.

The PROSIVU programme, with a US 25 million contribution, will help the Government to focus on three main areas: Public Administration Reform, Economic Development and Public Finance Management Reform, reforms that were initiated in 2015 by the 6th Constitutional Government and to the implementation of which the 8th Constitutional Government remains committed.

“The Partnership for Inclusive Prosperity programme – PROSIVU brings new hope, motivation and commitment to our Development Partners to try to improve the performance of our public services. This improvement will have a significant impact on the lives of the population”, said Minister Rui Gomes. “From the Ministry of Finance, we are ready to receive this support to strengthen the Public Finance Management Reform, especially the services closer to the involved Directorates of Planning and Budgeting, Tax Authority and Customs Services, so that the Ministry can perform its functions based on its mandate. We also hope that the PROSIVU programme can continue to support our 2020 Economic Recovery Plan”, concluded Minister Rui Gomes.

After the signing of the agreement, both parties will hold an annual Development Policy Dialogue between the two countries. This dialogue will be a platform for the two sides to discuss and seek consensus on development priorities, identify the most important areas that need support, and reflect on the successes and challenges that the services involved in the partnership have faced.

Topics under discussion included the 2023 Major Planning Options, the priority of Public Finance Management Reform, and other strategic areas that need support from Australia, namely through Australia's Direct Budget Support to the Timor-Leste Treasury Account.

In the Australian fiscal years 2022-2023, Australia's development assistance budget to Timor-Leste amounted to approximately US$ 73 million.

“Development cooperation between Australia and Timor-Leste is very broad and deep”, the Finance Minister said. “This cooperation is an important part of our bilateral relationship”.

On his part, the Australian Ambassador to Timor-Leste noted: “In our bilateral dialogue in support development, between Australia and Timor-Leste, we discussed our extensive assistance and the emerging challenges and opportunities. This discussion has also included how to provide quality and affordable services to the Timorese and Australia's programs aligned with the 2023 Major Planning Options, in the Government's priorities and framework. Our cooperation is happening in various areas and ministries, from the community development programme at the base, to political reform”.

Minister Rui Gomes also added that “during the COVID-19 pandemic, our long-established partnership allowed us to work together to implement Timor-Leste's response to COVID-19, with the provision of over one million Australian Government-funded vaccines”.