Program of the IX Constitutional Government









After these last six years, from 2017 to 2023, revealing the total inefficiency of the 7th and 8th Governments, multiple efforts are urgently needed to correct the irregularities committed during this long period of stagnation, where a systematic violation of the rules of good governance and transparency, crucial for the development and consolidation of this Democratic Rule of Law, prevailed.

The Programme of the 9th Constitutional Government presents itself as the political instrument through which and during these next five years, the Executive wants to resume the roadmap defined by Timor-Leste to comply with the '2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development of the United Nations, a roadmap that was also expressed based on the Strategic Development Plan, where it articulated its goals and priorities with the 'Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)' to achieving concrete progress in sustainable development.

Timor-Leste has made a political commitment to implement this Global Agenda of 17 SDGs and was mainly involved in the inclusion of 'Goal 16 - Peace, Justice and Effective, Accountable and Inclusive Institutions at all levels'.

In this challenging context for the country which has demonstrated to the world how fragile the State of Timor-Leste still is, the 9th Constitutional Government calls upon itself the duty and responsibility to make the necessary corrections to the irregularities perpetrated by the previous Government:

  1. Implement public policies to reform the system put in place by the outgoing Government, which lacked transparency and financial and administration accountability;
  2. Promote structural reforms to accelerate the necessary transformation in areas that are not meeting the expectations of society and the population;
  3. Make corrections to improve, across the board, the processes, systems and methodologies that are holding back sustainable development so that all institutions become more effective, accountable and inclusive.

For this young but still fragile State, 21 years old, social peace, justice and solid institutions are the pillars that will enable it to transmit confidence and security to the population and attract investment to develop the economic and social sector sustainably.

Therefore, reviewing, empowering and improving the institutions that guarantee these conditions is a national priority since, with a solid, transparent and effective justice system, it will be possible to overcome the barriers that allow us to eliminate this current situation of fragility as a State.

Economic diversification and job creation are priorities for this Executive to meet the challenges of modernity and support a young and fast-growing population. We benefit from energy wealth but must try to escape the "resource curse" by building bridges linking natural resources and progress.

In the face of this challenge, we will continue to invest in three key areas: social capital, infrastructure development and economic development, underpinned by an adequate institutional framework that helps to eliminate corruption and excessive bureaucracy while promoting competence, professionalism, honesty and transparency.

Social capital investments aim to build a healthy and educated society capable of meeting the social needs of the people and producing a labour force that keeps pace with the country's development. Infrastructure investments aim to contribute to an emerging, connected and sustainable economy. We have a comprehensive infrastructure plan to build ports, airports, roads, drinking water and sanitation across the country to be implemented with new momentum over the next five years. Investments in economic development will allow Timor-Leste to create a modern, diversified and prosperous economy by building strategic and transformative industrial sectors. Agriculture, fisheries, livestock and forestry resources are crucial sources of income and food for development which, combined with entrepreneurship, create diverse opportunities for industry development. Tourism requires priority investment to capitalise on the country's beauty, diversity and geostrategic location.

On the other hand, the investment in the transformation of the South Coast into a regional oil hub - the Tasi Mane project - is a bold commitment with multiplier economic effects on all municipalities.

An essential part of this process of State and Nation building is still to guarantee full sovereignty over the national territory, including the maritime territory that, under international law, is under its jurisdiction. It is In this regard that the 9th Government will continue to give top priority to the negotiations to finalise the delimitation of land and maritime boundaries with Indonesia and to implement the Maritime Boundary Treaty between Timor-Leste and Australia in the Timor Sea, whose implementation of the Tasi Mane project is intrinsically related.

Given that the Treaty between Timor-Leste and Australia contemplates, in addition to the delimitation of maritime boundaries, the legal status of the Greater Sunrise gas field and the establishment of a special regime for the development of these resources and the sharing of resulting revenues, we will continue to invest in the construction of a gas pipeline to Timor-Leste, thus implementing the vision of our people, as embodied in our Strategic Development Plan 2011-2030.

We are convinced that the success of Timor-Leste, as a State and as a Nation, depends on the democratic and political environment of the coming years, where the Timorese State will be structured and consolidated as a modern State, where everyone recognises the Rule of Law and where there is accountability and responsibility on the part of all the living forces of society.

Only by consolidating an awareness of the defence of national interests and a commitment to peace and democracy can concerted action be taken to reduce extreme poverty in the country, reduce inequalities and regional asymmetries and strengthen national sovereignty. To this end, the Government will involve other public institutions and national social actors to reconcile a shared development vision that fulfils constitutional requirements.

As such, the 9th Constitutional Government also undertakes to carry out an adequate and accurate Review of the Strategic Development Plan, in permanent consultation with Civil Society to update the previous plan and reflect the current state of the Nation and the changes that have occurred in the meantime in the country and the world, and to demonstrate the competitive advantages of the Nation in the development of the strategic sectors referred to which will lead to its adequate progress.

The Government Programme for the 2023-2028 legislature, which is now presented to the Honourable Members of the National Parliament, summarises the central public policies to be adopted to strengthen and optimise the sectors of governance and their resources, shortening the path outlined to transform the vision for 2030 into reality.

Ultimately, this document represents a set of publicly scrutinisable commitments to Timorese society for national development and the progress and well-being of all Timorese with the participation of all Timorese.

1.1. Overview

The programme of the 9th Government builds on the policies successfully implemented in the past (4th, 5th and 6th Governments), as the Government's central objectives and priorities are based on a perspective of continuing the efforts undertaken and the progress achieved in economic, social and political development.

For this reason, the Government has seriously analysed the country's internal situation - the state of the Nation - to assess the best strategies to implement over the next five years. As such, it is essential to look back at the recent past and summarise the country's current internal situation:

  1. The United Nations 2030 Agenda, adopted in 2015, thus recognises that without peace, justice and strong and effective institutions, it is challenging for a country to implement the other Sustainable Development Goals.
  2. This commitment was reinforced by Timor-Leste, already by the 6th Government, which in May 2017 organised a Global Conference on the "Roadmap for the Implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals". Timor-Leste has set out a clear pathway to progress on the Sustainable Development Goals and, considering the national context has aligned these goals with the Strategic Development Plan 2011-2030.
  3. Also, regarding the principle of transparency, Timor-Leste has adopted a measure in which Development Partners not only have to respect the system established in the country but also report annually on the use of the money invested granted by their Governments. As such, the Foreign Aid Effectiveness Management Policy was approved, which defines how international development support should be provided to Timor-Leste, ensuring ownership, alignment with Government programmes and promoting mutual accountability continually to achieve results that improve people's lives.
  4. Whether through the successes achieved towards peace, stability and economic growth in such a short period, or through its action in the g7+ group and participation in the most diverse international forums - sharing its experience from conflict to resilience and promoting an agenda of world peace and reconciliation - Timor-Leste was considered, at the global level, a success story, having had the opportunity to capitalise on its presence on the international stage. Unfortunately, the stagnation suffered for six long years, from 2017 to 2023, especially the systematic violations of the system and laws, put Timor-Leste in the perspective of needing to recover its international image.
  5. Our democracy is being consolidated year after year. Timor-Leste was considered the most democratic country in Southeast Asia, according to The Economist's independent assessment of the Democracy Index. This study, published in 2017, considers electoral processes, pluralism, freedoms and guarantees, political participation, political culture and the functioning of Timor-Leste institutions. These recent Parliamentary Elections have confirmed this political success, regionally and internationally.

1.2. Current Scenario

  1. In 2022, the total population of Timor-Leste reached 1,341,737 inhabitants, with an annual growth rate of about 1.8%. Of these, 48.7% of the inhabitants are under 20 years old, 48.3% are women and 75.8% live outside the capital, Dili.
  2. The Timorese economy experienced an average economic contraction of -1.4% between 2017 and 2021. In 2021, non-oil GDP was $1,528 million (equivalent to a growth of 2.9%), and GDP Per Capita was $1,136.80 (a figure that has decreased in 5 years from $1,285.30 in 2017).
  3. In 2022, GDP was expected to grow by 3.9 per cent; in 2023, it was expected to increase by 2.9 per cent. Unfortunately, this growth was not sustained as it was mainly due to the subsidisation of the economy. The 9th Government will work to continue to increase GDP in a sustained manner through public spending on strategic investment.
  4. As for the poverty indices in Timor-Leste, there was a significant increase between 2001 and 2007, from 36.3% to 50.4%, respectively. After this period, the poverty level has consistently decreased, from 50.4% in 2007 to 41.8% in 2014. A figure that is reduced more significantly if the international poverty indicator (US$ 1.9 per day) is used based on which the incidence of extreme poverty thus fell from 47.2% in 2007 to 30.3% in 2014 (a decrease accompanied by other improvements in living standards, such as increased access to electricity, housing quality and asset ownership). The poverty index has not been updated since 2014, and the 9th Government aims to conduct the necessary research and studies as early as 2024.
  5. Private consumption levels have also been reflecting this growth of the economy and poverty reduction since Independence, and according to the economic data of the National Account, between 2007 and 2014, Timorese households were responsible for an increase in private consumption of 63.3%. In 2021, the contribution of private sector consumption to the economy's growth was 65.1%.
  6. In 2020, construction, as an indicator of economic dynamics, recorded a total projected construction area of 2,105,668 m2, corresponding to 17 licences granted and a projected value of US$ 900.2 million. Compared to 2016, the construction area was projected at 92,814 m2 with 46 licences totalling a projected value of only US$ 37.716 million.
  7. In the acquisition of own transport, in 2020, there was the purchase of 20,032 vehicles, of which 83.9% correspond to motorbikes, 13% to light passenger vehicles, 0.2% to light cargo vehicles and 1.9% to heavy vehicles.
  8. Timor-Leste remains among the 46 Least Developed Countries (LDCs) identified in the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Report. With an economy overly dependent on public spending policies and programmes, the lack of consistent diversification of the economy capable of fostering private sector-led economic growth has hindered sustainable development and less dependence on oil dividends.
  9. According to the Labour Force Survey data, in 2021, 62.9% of the Timorese population was of working age, of which only 30.5% were in the labour force (excluding subsistence agriculture). Of those in the labour force, less than 25% were formally employed, i.e. in compliance with the Labour Law, with the remainder being informally employed or self-employed.
  10. Credit to the private sector, which was stagnant in 2019 and declined by 10% in 2020, has been recovering, increasing by 11.6% in 2021 and 17.2% in 2022. The fall in credit to the private sector was due to the economic contraction with a return to growth in the last two years.
  11. The Consumer Price Index (CPI), which has been declining consecutively since 2011, even reaching a depreciation of 1.5% in 2016, is expected to show positive inflation of 3.8% in 2021 and 7.2% in 2022. In 2023, the Consumer Price Index is expected to stand at 5.5% and in 2024 at 3.3%.
  12. Timor-Leste has been investing its revenues from natural resources in a sovereign wealth fund, the Petroleum Fund, consistent with the principles of transparency and good governance, and is obliged to withdraw only limited amounts to finance national strategic priorities in the General State Budget, such as essential infrastructure, education and health.
  13. This Fund, established in 2005 with an opening balance of $204.6 million, is a tool that contributes to a sound fiscal policy which duly considers and weighs the long-term interests of the Timorese, as the amount of transfers is guided by the Estimated Sustainable Income (ESI), set at 3% of total petroleum wealth. The ESI aims to smooth the spending of temporarily high petroleum revenues, shield against the volatility of petroleum revenue inflows, and safeguard the sustainable use of public finances.
  14. When amending the Petroleum Fund Law in 2011, after a rigorous and participatory process, an allocation of no less than 50 per cent in bonds, no more than 50 per cent in equities, and up to 5 per cent in alternative instruments was defined. This diversification strategy of the Petroleum Fund has proven to be sound and positive and has delivered solid returns. According to the Central Bank, the Petroleum Fund, affected by petroleum revenues, net investment return and withdrawals, was valued at US$ 17.9 billion as of 31 May 2023.
  15. Regarding the realised investments of the Petroleum Fund, a positive return of $8.1 billion has been recorded so far (with $7.5 billion recorded after the change in investment policy approved in 2011). In 2022, the most significant loss in the Fund's investment history was recorded at $2.1 billion, but this changed in 2023 with a positive return of $726.5 million by the end of May.
  16. Still on the development of the petroleum sector, it is essential to recall that in 2007 Timor-Leste joined the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), having developed a world-class system for managing revenues just a decade after independence, and was the first country in Asia-Pacific and the third worldwide to be granted EITI-compliant status for oil and gas revenue disclosure and transparency in July 2010.
  17. In 2002, the first General State Budget was $75.7 million from international donations. By 2022, Timor-Leste's General Budget had grown to $2,155.7 million. The significant growth in public expenditure required the Government to develop a public financial management system that was efficient, accountable and transparent. As such, several reforms were initiated for more excellent professionalism in the Ministry of Finance and other ministries, which improved financial management and execution and service delivery.
  18. Transfers from the Petroleum Fund finance the majority of public expenditure in Timor-Leste, and since 2009 the Government has made annual withdrawals from the Fund over 3% of the ESI. This dependence on the Petroleum Fund is due to the fact that domestic revenue collection is still meagre (less than 12% of GDP). The 9th Government is committed to reforming public financial management to diversify revenues and rationalise expenditures to promote fiscal sustainability.
  19. Also, as a way to ensure the best possible management of resources, the Government, in 2008, established the National Petroleum Authority (Autoridade Nacional do Petróleo-ANP), changed in 2016 to National Petroleum and Minerals Authority (Autoridade Nacional do Petróleo e Minerais -ANPM), as a public institution responsible for the management and regulation of petroleum and mining activities in the Timor-Leste area, both offshore and onshore, and in the Joint Petroleum Development Area (JPDA), as it was called before 2018. To maximise Timor-Leste's participation in developing the petroleum sector, the Government also established the national petroleum company of Timor-Leste, i.e. TIMOR GAP E.P., in 2011.
  20. The establishment of the Institute of Petroleum and Geology (IPG) in 2012 and the National Mining Company of Timor-Leste in 2022 aims to develop geological studies and to look after the interests of the State in the exploration of the country's mineral resources.
  21. With this real scenario of the country's socio-economic situation, the 9th Constitutional Government assumes, as its number one priority, the creation of employment. To this end, the Government creates all possible conditions to leverage economic diversification in productive areas such as agriculture, livestock, fisheries, forestry and tourism, and the industrial sector. To this end, the creation of a Development Bank, open to foreign investment, aims to provide a line of credit to national companies to start with confidence, active and effective participation in the country's economic growth.
  22. The National Development Bank (NDB) will also have the central role of managing the Veterans' Fund and the Social Security Fund to ensure sustainability in the future of these Funds, as regards the excellent use of the Veterans' Fund and to provide better certainty for the management of pensions, freeing the State from an annual financial obligation.


"The true wealth of any Nation is the strength of its people. Maximising the Timorese people's overall health, education and quality of life is essential to achieving a just and developed Nation."

Timor-Leste's economic development is a national goal that relies heavily on its labour force's empowerment, health and skills. Therefore, investing in human capital is a crucial strategy for sustainable development while creating conditions for greater inclusion, well-being and dignity in Timorese society.

A culturally democratic and developed society is also one that leaves no one behind, investing in the most fragile and vulnerable groups, and where the fundamental role of women, young people and older people is assumed for sustainable development, recognising not only their rights under the Constitution but, in the case of women's rights, promoting gender equality and transversality in all political, social and economic moments of the country and in all its institutions.

2.1. Education and Training

Removing barriers to access to education and ensuring that all children and young people have access to quality education, regardless of their social and economic status and where they live, is a priority strategy of the Government. Access to quality education should never be a privilege of a few, but, on the contrary, education should be an inclusive instrument that allows levelling the differences in socio-economic opportunities, thus being possible to promote the equitable development of the Nation.

Education is a fundamental right of the citizen and the primary tool for social and economic development and creating a healthy and prosperous society.

By 2028, Timor-Leste aims to achieve a better quality education with broader access opportunities for all, being an education that can honestly respond to the needs of the labour market, contribute to the reduction of unemployment through lifelong learning, and essentially break the vicious circle of intergenerational poverty. The education to be achieved will promote understanding to serve as a basis for citizens to become active in sustainable development, in the consolidation of the Nation and to apply their human potential and creativity in favour of innovation.

To achieve this result, the Programme of the 9th Constitutional Government in Education reflects a coherent and, at the same time, integrated programme. It is stated through this programme that the natural way to achieve the expected results sustainably is through the effective participation of the educational community and the active contribution of the various public and private entities (including civil society and the private sector) based on a firm coordination system. In addition, this Programme promotes the definition and implementation of educational interventions based on scientific and concrete evidence and rigorous, quality studies.

In this regard, the Government will improve the quality of education and vocational training, ensuring equal access to all areas of education for the entire Timorese population. To this end, it will:

  1. Reform the management and administration of the education system at the level of the Ministry of Education and municipal and school levels, including the definition of appropriate procedures and systems for monitoring and evaluation;
  2. Strengthen the conditions for children aged three to five to have access to preparation for entry into compulsory Basic Education, including Preschool education and other early childhood development (ECD) and primary school readiness programmes, in schools close to their homes, and ensure the effective participation of the education community;
  3. Initiate a high-dosage tutoring programme and other interventions that provide accessible education and restore learning, especially in remote areas and schools where students have been identified with learning loss due to COVID-19.
  4. Solidify the conditions for implementing universal, compulsory, free and better-quality Basic Education. Basic Education will be a centre for learning to know, learning to do, learning to live with others and learning to be. By the age of six, all children will have access to quality Basic Education with the acquisition of sound mathematical and literacy skills in the official languages (Tetum and Portuguese) and basic skills in English as a foreign language, the core values of national identity, Timorese history and culture, and the development of 21st-century skills;
  5. Strengthen the conditions for a secondary education where scientific, humanistic and technical knowledge is acquired. Pupils will learn to apply this knowledge in the country's productive sectors, being prepared to enter the labour market or to pursue higher education, university or polytechnic studies. The Government will continue to provide two options: general secondary education and technical-vocational secondary education;
  6. Ensure that higher education provision is better able to respond to the labour market, ensuring equal access for all and strengthening the accreditation and quality assessment mechanisms for this level of education;
  7. Strengthen opportunities for those who want to study and further their knowledge, especially the most vulnerable, and those facing the most significant challenges through attractive and flexible educational programmes based on quality adult learning methodology;
  8. Modernise and ensure greater relevance of continuing professional development efforts, strengthening the most effective measures such as mentoring and coaching, and the use of computer and information technologies, multimedia materials and distance learning to ensure quality teachers fit to train Timor-Leste's future;
  9. Continue to develop national human resources through multi-year programmes, strategies and investments. The Human Capital Development Fund will continue to contribute to developing education and vocational training of youth and adults in a transparent and coordinated manner and based on the identification of the neediest areas of knowledge and skills;
  10. Consolidate the National Education Commission (NEC) as a mechanism for promoting inclusive and participatory dialogue among all stakeholders in the education sector and close coordination between the Ministry of Education, civil society, the private sector and development partners;
  11. Rooting the Programme in inclusive education, promoting a culture of respect for diversity, recognising the diverse talents and multiple abilities of all, promoting the success of all learners and effectively inviting them to have a future as citizens respected by the whole community, ensuring learner-centred education as a daily reality, and representing the critical principle for education policy.
  12. Strengthen programmes that ensure equity for children with less economic means through school feeding programmes and school subsidies whose resources are distributed fairly, and ensure that smaller schools in rural areas receive the facilities and resources they need.
  13. Create a masterplan for the infrastructure of the Ministry of Education, including schools at all levels and administrative buildings based on an infrastructure sense to address the problems that have been an obstacle to developing education,
  14. Consolidate the Tetum language to ensure standardisation of the language, and promote its use in educational institutions, in the different areas of governance, in the media and by the general population. Accordingly, the Government commits to reinvigorate the implementation of the National Education Strategic Plan 2011-2030 and to achieve the following targets over the next five years:
  15. Undertake the necessary studies and financial assessment to begin the process of extending CAFE schools to the Administrative Posts to promote a broader knowledge of the Portuguese language through the qualification of Timorese teachers;

2.1.1. Preschool Education

  • At least 60% of children aged 3-5 years are enrolled in, participate in and benefit from Preschool education or preparation programmes for compulsory Basic Education, with particular attention to rural communities to progressively achieve 100% participation in Preschool education;
  • Implement, in its entirety, the national core curriculum and pedagogical guidance programmes for Preschool education;
  • Ensure access to teaching materials and storybooks in official and national languages to support the effective implementation of the National Core Curriculum and promote the development of fundamental reading skills;
  • Define a system of administration and management of Preschool establishments appropriate to the national reality, capable of ensuring the effectiveness of the teaching-learning process and the maximisation of human and financial resources while also promoting access by Preschools to public financial incentives;
  • Ensure the construction or rehabilitation of at least 100 schools for the use of Preschool education, complete with their human resources, equipment and teaching materials;
  • Ensure that 100% of Preschool educators have the minimum qualification required by law;
  • Continue to provide professional development for teachers following the competencies indicated in the Curriculum Framework for the Training of Preschool Educators;
  • Offer integrated training to Preschool parents so that they can become better partners in their children's learning;
  • Promote the participation of children with special educational needs in teaching and learning by introducing the necessary modifications and accommodations in all Preschool education establishments.

2.1.2. Basic Education

  • Increase the net enrolment rate to 95%;
  • Increase the pass rate at the end of Basic Education to at least 85 per cent;
  • Decrease the ratio of pupils in classrooms to a national average of 1 teacher to 35 pupils by building at least 1,050 classrooms;
  • Assure at least a 30 per cent increase in pupils' literacy skills by the end of the second year of school, as measured by assessments according to international standards;
  • Ensure 100% of Public Central Basic Schools have water and sanitation facilities and libraries in usable condition and a 50% increase in the number of these schools with access to laboratory facilities;
  • Create a fund to respond to emergencies that jeopardise the safety and health of pupils and teachers;
  • Fully implement the national core curriculum and its pedagogically oriented programmes;
  • Develop and implement appropriate pedagogical measures to ensure quality education in rural areas, including special training and support for teachers in multimedia rooms;
  • Review the national curriculum for the 3rd cycle of basic education (lower secondary), approving the relevant legislation and pedagogical guidelines for a curriculum that develops 21st-century skills;
  • Consolidate curriculum enrichment activities, including the Pedagogical Garden Programme, and create new programmes that stimulate cultural, artistic and sporting competencies, in all Basic Education Schools; for a curriculum that is aligned with 21st-century standards;
  • Ensure that all pupils and teachers have access to relevant and quality textbooks and school materials, also promoting the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT);
  • Create a series of TV programmes and videos to support the teaching-learning process;
  • Define and implement programmes of excellence through a process of sharing model standards to provide access to quality practices to the most deprived public schools, using the School Learning and Training Centres (CAFE) and identified public schools as a resource;
  • Deepen the democratic management of schools through measures that strengthen the participation of parents and pupils;
  • Reinforce the implementation of the curriculum content on training for civic values, gender equality and respect for diversity;
  • Ensure that 100 per cent of primary school teachers have 21st-century professional skills and knowledge and ensure their access to digital learning;
  • Promote the participation of children with special educational needs in the teaching and learning process by introducing the necessary modifications and accommodations in all educational and teaching establishments;
  • Ensure the allocation of school subsidies in a way that adequately meets the needs of students, also taking into account the materials and equipment needed for modern pedagogy and equity for children living in remote areas;
  • Open opportunities and support students to participate in national and international academic competitions.

2.1.3. General and Technical-Vocational Secondary Education

  • Achieve up to 85% gross enrolment ratio by opening a required number of places in new and existing schools;
  • Build or rehabilitate at least 300 classrooms through the programme for the construction and rehabilitation of new secondary schools and classrooms;
  • Ensure 100 per cent of Public Secondary Schools are fully equipped and ready to serve as suitable places of learning with laboratory and library facilities with a safe and respectful environment;
  • Initiate the implementation of international standardised assessment measures for measuring learning outcomes (e.g. Programme for International Student Assessment - PISA), serving as a baseline for enhancing the quality of this level of education and as a mechanism for measuring progress;
  • Revise the National Curriculum for General Secondary Education to promote better alignment with regional and international standards of education, ensuring the acquisition of practical and laboratory skills, and cultural, artistic, sporting, life skills and transversal entrepreneurial skills;
  • Revising the National Curriculum for Technical-Vocational Secondary Education to promote better matching to market needs such as agriculture, industry, mechanics, electronics, construction and service provision, geared towards the arts, business tourism and catering, and with a focus on the development of rural areas;
  • Ensure teachers have access to pedagogical materials that can support the implementation of the curriculum;
  • Ensure that 100% of teachers in General Secondary Education have the minimum qualification required by law through the continuation of ongoing teacher training in the curricula and programmes of pedagogical orientation and use of the Portuguese language as a medium of instruction;
  • Use information and communication technologies as a tool to promote modern and quality education;
  • Implement a career counselling programme to support students' choice of higher education courses;
  • Promote strong partnerships with relevant organisations, such as the private sector, to ensure accessible and quality secondary education, including financial support and internships for students, adjusted to market needs;
  • Define and implement excellence programmes through a process of sharing model standards to provide access to quality practices for the most disadvantaged public schools;
  • Improve the management of existing Agricultural Technical Schools (ETA) in the country (Lautém, Manatuto, Bobonaro and Oe-Cússe Ambeno);

2.1.4. Recurrent Education

  • Use attractive and flexible methodologies to increase the pass and graduation rate of Recurrent Education programmes;
  • Evaluate and strengthen Community Learning Centres, essentially promoting that they have, at their base, the effective participation of civil society and the local community, maximising their use for various educational activities within the community;
  • Strengthen the quality of recurrent education through access to teaching materials with concrete and easy-to-understand content;
  • Expand the equivalence programme to secondary education based on a feasibility study;
  • Design recurrent education modalities encouraging gender equality, such as combining recurrent education opportunities with Preschool programmes.

2.1.5. Strengthening Social Cohesion through Education

  • Promote the integration of necessary physical modifications in all new public school facilities;
  • -Implement a reinforcement education system, accompanied by in-depth training for teachers together with a specific support programme for public and public schools that provide a specialised education service for pupils with special educational needs, enabling them to serve the population better;
  • -Conduct annual vision and hearing screenings for all pupils to detect problems that can be addressed through early intervention;
  • -Establish a specialised team to support the assessment of physical, cognitive and psychological disabilities and to support teachers to better respond to pupils with special educational needs;
  • -Establish a comprehensive, inclusive education model to support learners with special needs at the municipal level;
  • -Ensure that all pupils with special needs have the opportunity to be assessed, including through the national examination, using the modifications and/or adaptations necessary for each pupil;
  • -Offer advanced training opportunities in special needs education;
  • -Start a para-professional programme so that pupils with learning difficulties can receive more focused support in the classroom;
  • Ensure institutional and technical strengthening of Inclusive Education Resource Centres based on a rigorous needs analysis;
  • Promote a nutritious diet for pupils, including improving the implementation of the School Meals programme, strengthening its management and effectiveness through inter-ministerial coordination mechanisms;
  • Establish links with the Family Health Programme and other relevant programmes to coordinate support for children's physical and mental health, at school and home, including those with psychological problems, trauma and other health problems;
  • Reinforce coordination with the Bolsa da Mãe programme, also providing access to scholarships for pupils with special educational needs;
  • Promote support measures for children who do not know one of the official languages when they join the education system by continuing the EMBLI pilot programme until the end of the 6th grade, ensuring the reinforcement of specific training on the use of the first language, as a bridge to the learning of the official languages;
  • Develop a programme of recreational and entertainment activities and other innovations to promote knowledge of the two official languages for young children;
  • Design and implement a specific programme to ensure that teenage mothers continue to have equal access to education;
  • Develop a programme to encourage people with disabilities to participate in professional activities of great relevance to national development, including as teachers;
  • Initiate the implementation of a school transport programme, using methods appropriate to the national reality and the active participation of the educational community;
  • Increase the percentage of women teachers and women in management and leadership positions in relevant organisations in the education sector to at least 15%.

2.1.6. Management and Quality of Education

  • Promote a rigorous system for Teaching and Management Evaluation and Accreditation of Schools, and implement capacity-building programmes to address identified weaknesses;
  • Promote the strengthening of mechanisms to control the number of hours of formal education of each pupil;
  • Strengthen the human resources system in education and teaching establishments based on merit, professionalism and competence; provide incentives, training and capacity-building; and implement a performance evaluation based on qualitative means and career progression, capable of ensuring the valorisation of the profession;
  • Implement measures to match the qualification of teachers with the job to be performed and ensure that they are placed according to actual needs;
  • Ensure that the entire planning, financing and procurement process is of quality, and implement steps to monitor its effectiveness, using education and population data as a critical planning, monitoring and evaluation tool;
  • Modernising the various levels of education through the use of computer technology in school administration and management and the computerised school management system;
  • Strengthen the capacities of Municipal Services, including through effective coordination with the administrative decentralisation process and training in management and administration and other necessary areas;
  • Ensure efficient school management by defining and implementing regulations on teacher and pupil discipline and school funding;
  • Improve the relationship between schools and parents, including the promotion of parents' associations and the realisation of awareness-raising campaigns for the involvement of parents in children's education;
  • Implementing personal enrichment programmes for pupils, including through sports, scouting, civic, artistic and cultural activities;
  • Restructure INFORDEPE so that it can provide progressive, quality professional development for human resources in education and ensure more effective training for managers and teachers;
  • Continue to support the UNESCO National Commission in its mission to support the development of the education, science and culture sector in Timor-Leste;
  • Prepare teachers according to relevant areas of specialisation, ensuring their effective placement before the start of the school year;
  • Promote the quality and relevance of the National Institute of Linguistics, and ensure more resources for strengthening the official language Tetum and other national languages.

2.1.7. Higher Education

  • Strengthen the quality of education in public and private institutes and universities;
  • Set up a coordinating committee of universities and colleges to study a collective strategy to define better assistance from the State and to implement the objective of raising the quality of education;
  • Ensure a comprehensive and expanded Higher Education system, regulated by rigorous quality standards and that responds to the needs of the Country and respects the National Qualifications System of Timor-Leste;
  • Strengthen the capacity of the National Agency for Academic Assessment and Accreditation (ANAAA) to promote quality assessment and accreditation of higher education institutions;
  • Continue to strengthen the Scholarship programme through the Human Capital Development Fund (FDCH), ensuring that it responds to the strategic areas for the country's development, identified through the mapping of human resources prepared by the FDCH, and guarantees access based on merit and specific social support programmes;
  • Continue to strengthen the quality of education at the National University of Timor Lorosa'e, including the creation of new courses adjusted to the needs of the socio-economic development of the country, the improvement of infrastructure and equipment conditions, and the strengthening of the training of new teachers for the various levels of education;
  • Expand Technical Higher Education in strategic areas for the national economy by creating the Higher Polytechnic Institute of Tourism, Hospitality and Tourist Agencies and Guides in Lospalos, the Higher Polytechnic Institute of Engineering in Suai and the Academy of Fisheries and Marine Studies in Manatuto, and by improving the infrastructure, management and teaching conditions at the Polytechnic Institute of Betano, namely by equipping this institution with the appropriate equipment for technical higher education;
  • Diversify the training offer and reorient the areas, courses, degrees, levels and nature of higher education, particularly in Higher Technical Education;
  • Strengthen the National Institute of Science and Technology to develop and create scientific knowledge with relevant impact on the social, economic and cultural dynamics of the country, made available in a National Digital Repository...;
  • Implement programmes to foster broad access to academic materials for students and staff through physical and digital libraries;
  • Promote the link between accredited public and private higher education institutions with qualified national enterprises to ensure alignment between educational provision and needs;
  • Ensure the implementation of a Higher Education Management and Organisation Policy which establishes guidelines on the diversification of the educational offer, compliance with the Minimum Standard curriculum and official languages, and promoting the identity, patriotism and social cohesion of the academic community;
  • Promote the implementation of the University Teaching Career in all public and private higher education institutions;
  • Promote the strengthening of the level of language and scientific skills with which students access higher education by establishing a preparatory programme for the strengthening and acquisition of skills (Year Zero) in Higher Education Institutions;
  • Approve and/or update structuring and specific legislation for Higher Education to strengthen the functioning of the sector and raise the quality of education, promote equity of access and gender equality;
  • Ensure the use of official languages as exclusive languages and training and teaching in all Higher Education Institutions, as set out in the Basic Law of Education;
  • Put in place mechanisms and procedures to ensure regular mapping, monitoring, inspection and follow-up of all higher education institutions to ensure quality education;
  • Develop a capacity-building programme for Higher Education to raise the institutional quality of academic and administrative support services;
  • Promote cooperation in Higher Education, duly regulated and framed with the priorities of Timor-Leste with accredited foreign Higher Education Institutions;
  • Approve and implement a programme to combat academic plagiarism in public and private higher education institutions;
  • Develop partnerships with ASEAN and CPLP countries to foster the exchange of experiences and student and faculty mobility and other academic activities;
  • Develop a network of university residences;
  • Establish partnerships with national and international partners for the development of programmes, content, curricula, training and provision of teachers and technical experts;
  • Promote research, safeguarding and dissemination of cultural heritage (including anthropological, archaeological, ethnological, linguistic and sociological studies).

2.1.8. Human Capital Development Fund

The Human Capital Development Fund (FDCH) was established in 2011 to contribute to developing national human resources in various strategic development areas by funding multi-year training programmes and projects to increase the capacity of Timorese professionals. This fund includes vocational training programmes, mainly focused on youth, technical vocational training for civil servants, and young teachers, Police and Defence Forces and scholarship programmes for State employees and the general public to acquire an initial or advanced academic degree.

The Government will continue to:

  • Invest in the FDCH to provide, in a coordinated and strategic way, extended vocational education and training, including for people with special needs;
  • Monitor and evaluate the programmes of the FDCH;
  • Analyse and map Timor-Leste's public sector human resources;
  • Produce and disseminate scholarship and access to training guidelines;
  • Improve human resources regulations and manuals for FDCH employees;
  • Double the number of scholarships to be awarded, on merit and in terms of national needs.

2.2. Health

All citizens have the right to health, medical and sanitary assistance and the duty to defend and promote it. According to the Constitution of the Republic, the State must encourage the creation of a universal, general and, whenever possible, free National Health Service.

The Government will continue to implement the National Health Policy and the National Health Sector Strategic Plan 2011-2030 (PENSS 2011-2030), maintaining the vision of having a "healthy Timor-Leste" where all Timorese can have access to health and where health is seen as an overall development factor in the fight against poverty.

The Government's initiatives for the Health sector will continue to be guided by maximising efforts to ensure better service delivery in the health sector, and generalising access to quality health care, constantly assessing efficiency, transparency and professionalism in the management of financial, human, material and logistical resources, infrastructure and equipment.

This will be achieved by strengthening the National Health System, represented by a set of interdependent elements that contribute to health and well-being in families, educational institutions, workplaces and public places, and together in communities through the empowerment of health care institutions, health professionals, drug supply and distribution systems, and medical emergency systems.

2.2.1. General Objectives

The overall objectives for the Health area are:

  1. Improve healthcare provision across the country with particular attention to remote areas and the most disadvantaged sections of the population, following the principles of inclusion, equity, efficiency and quality;
  2. Improve financing systems and the management of financial, human, logistical, material and equipment resources and infrastructure in the health sector;
  3. Continue efforts towards decentralisation of Health Services by improving coordination with the Ministry of State Administration and relevant institutions;
  4. Improve cross-sectoral coordination across Government towards the realisation of a "Healthy Timor-Leste", including improved nutrition and sanitation through concerted strategies to improve agriculture and food self-sufficiency, increase livestock production and improve the fisheries sector, and through the provision of electricity, clean water and sanitation;
  5. Review and improve the structure of the National Health System, its organisation, resources and technical capacity to enhance the provision of integrated services, in sufficient quantity and quality, including by improving planning, monitoring, evaluation and indicator collection systems;
  6. Continue to invest in ensuring safety and improving the quality of health service delivery;
  7. Ensure a better functioning of the Autonomous Service for Medicines and Health Equipment (SAMES, I.P.) and the National Institute of Public Health of Timor-Leste to guarantee the availability and distribution of medicines, reagents and medical consumables with efficiency, speed and quality;
  8. Ensure better functioning of Emergency Services and patient transfer;
  9. Establish partnerships with Civil Society, Private Sector and Development Partners to develop awareness campaigns across the country that improve public health, including through prevention and improvement of healthcare and promotion of healthy habits in nutrition, immunisation, reproductive health, mental health and environmental health.

In pursuit of these objectives, the Government will undertake the following actions and aim to achieve the following targets:

2.2.2. Provision of Primary Health Care Services

  1. Ensure that all villages (sucos) with a population between 1,500 and 2,000 people, mainly located in remote areas, have access to a Health Post with a comprehensive package of services;
  2. Ensure that the Community Health Centres, in the administrative posts, provide care for between 5,000 and 15,000 people and can manage around 4 Health Posts in their respective geographical areas;
  3. Increase to 70% the rate of pregnant women who receive antenatal care at least four times during their pregnancy;
  4. Increase the rate of births attended by a health professional to 80%;
  5. Increase the postnatal care coverage rate to 90% during the first two weeks after delivery;
  6. Continuing to promote the improvement of the nutritional status of the population with a particular focus on infants and children, including the prevention and treatment of nutritional deficiencies, and through campaigns to change nutritional behaviour - is an objective that can be reversed to reduce the rate of undernutrition (malnutrition and obesity), including the percentage of children benefiting from growth monitoring and follow-up;
  7. Ensure 90% immunisation against polio, measles, tuberculosis, diphtheria and hepatitis B;
  8. Continue to prepare and implement the prevention plan for heart disease, rheumatism and rheumatic fever;
  9. Reduce the impact and increase awareness and prevention of diseases such as HIV-AIDS, tuberculosis, asthma, malaria, dengue and leprosy;
  10. Continue to improve access to treatment related to psychological and mental disorders;
  11. Strengthen oral health promotion actions and improve dental services;
  12. Strengthen eye health promotion actions and improve ophthalmological services;
  13. Strengthen health promotion actions based on dietary habits and improve service delivery for cardiovascular disease, diabetes and hypertension;
  14. Promote general health campaigns involving families, communities and schools, particularly for preventing diseases related to drug use, tobacco, alcohol, sexually transmitted diseases and other risk behaviours towards contagious diseases.

2.2.3. Provision of Hospital Health Services

  1. Continue to plan, fund and deliver cardiac and palliative care at the Guido Valadares National Hospital (HNGV);
  2. Plan, finance, and deliver the provision of cancer and renal care and other specialised health care at Hospital Nacional Guido Valadares;
  3. Establish neurosurgery services;
  4. Increase the number and quality of specialised doctors and technicians at Guido Valadares National Hospital and Referral Hospitals, taking into account a comprehensive package of secondary and tertiary health care;
  5. Strengthen the conditions and availability of the National Hospital and the Reference Hospitals so that they continue to serve as training centres for all health professionals with increased quality;
  6. Prepare a detailed study to assess the country's needs and financing conditions to achieve the target of building a hospital in each municipality by 2030;
  7. Reduce the transfer of patients for medical treatment abroad by offering better services, equipment, diagnostic means and specialised doctors at the Guido Valadares National Hospital;
  8. Implement policies to decongest hospitals, i.e. "return" or "counter-refer" patients requiring primary health care to Community Health Centres;
  9. Decentralise the administration and financial management competencies of the Reference Hospitals to ensure institutional strengthening and better autonomy over the management of the resources allocated to these hospitals;
  10. Reform Timor-Leste's National Institute of Public Health to improve access to and management of laboratory services across the territory;
  11. Reform the Blood Bank for better management of blood supply systems and substitutes.

2.2.4. Infrastructure in the Health Sector

  1. Continue to build and rehabilitate Health Posts to reach the target of 1 Health Post for each village (suco) and each locality with 1000 to 5000 inhabitants;
  2. Continue to rehabilitate and increase the capacity (equipment, human resources) of Community Health Centres;
  3. Ensure that both Health Posts and Community Health Centres are adequately equipped and operational, including expanding HNGV facilities/buildings to accommodate additional specialities and providing accommodation for visiting specialists;
  4. Expand the number and quality of medical equipment, including support for and access to information technology;
  5. Ensure that 100 per cent of buildings integrated into the National Health Service have access to electricity, drinking water and basic sanitation;
  6. Ensure that health professionals working outside their home area, and especially in remote areas, have adequate accommodation;
  7. Continue to rehabilitate and increase the technical capacity of the Reference Hospitals to be able to offer more specialised services to the population;
  8. Continue to extend the facilities of the central services office of the Ministry of Health to accommodate existing staff decently;
  9. Establish a Psychiatric Health Hospital.

2.2.5. Management and Distribution of Medicines and Medical Equipment

  1. Empower the Autonomous Service for Medicines and Health Equipment (SAMES, I.P.) to deliver services better and ensure efficiency in the procurement and logistics of pharmaceuticals and medical equipment for the National Health Service;
  2. Review the stock management system for medicines and medical consumables, ensuring a stock of at least 20 per cent of needs in the SAMES warehouse and 10 per cent in health facilities;
  3. Improve the provision and distribution of medicines and associated products throughout the National Health Service, prioritising speed, efficiency, transparency and quality of services through better coordination and communication between SAMES and relevant entities;
  4. Reform the National Institute of Public Health of Timor-Leste for better management and quality control of clinical analyses and blood supply systems;
  5. Review the regulation and supervision of pharmacies and non-specialised sales outlets for medicines.
  6. Regulate the practice of alternative and complementary medicine and promote Timorese traditional medicine.

2.2.6. Medical Emergencies

  1. Ensure the quality and efficiency of emergency services, from the helpline to the speed of the response, with means and professionals appropriate to each emergency case, 24 hours a day;
  2. Ensure the existence of a sufficient and appropriate fleet of emergency transport, namely ambulances and multi-purpose vehicles with the capacity to move throughout the country;
  3. Strengthen the capacity for urgent medical evacuation of remote and difficult-to-access areas by road through air assets.

2.2.7. Health Sector Management and Administration

  1. Implement the National Health Sector Strategic Plan 2011-2030;
  2. Review and improve the structure of the National Health System, including its organisation, resources and technical capacity, improving integrated service delivery and also enhancing systems for planning, monitoring, evaluation and indicator collection;
  3. Improve financing and management systems for financial, logistical, material and equipment resources and infrastructure in the Health Sector;
  4. Develop and operationalise a plan to optimise material and human resources, including training, capacity-building and performance evaluation, in improving the hygiene and aseptic conditions of all buildings where primary and hospital health services are provided;
  5. Implement the survey of needs for subsequent improvement in the Sanitary Units in facilities where primary health care and hospital services are provided;
  6. Continue efforts to decentralise health services through better coordination with the Ministry of State Administration and other relevant institutions;
  7. Develop and implement appropriate occupational health and safety standards in all State institutions;
  8. Implement all regulations on service provision from private health facilities in line with the public health system;
  9. Improve Health Information Systems to collect clinical information for each patient in a single register to allow quick consultations, electronic prescription of medicines, and use of complementary means of diagnosis to unify the Electronic Health Record for all citizens.

2.2.8. Human Resources for Health

  1. Continue to create the conditions for all health posts to be staffed by one doctor, two nurses and two midwives;
  2. Continue to ensure that all hamlets (aldeias) located more than an hour's walk from a health centre have access to a competent health professional;
  3. Continue to build the capacity of the National Institute of Public Health of Timor-Leste to ensure the quality of health teaching, research and education and improve oversight of sector training institutions;
  4. In partnership with higher education institutions and the Ministry of Higher Education and Science, review higher education curricula for the training of health professionals;
  5. Implement policies to ensure the academic training, professional qualification and continuing education of health professionals;
  6. Continue to invest in improving the professional competencies and technical capacities of human resources for health by providing adequate training for senior, middle and essential management;
  7. Stimulate partnerships and international cooperation to train and empower health professionals, from specialised health professionals to technicians and other human resources in the health sector and in administration, management, finance, procurement and accounting;
  8. Implement labour force plans, staffing frameworks, regulations and standards and codes of conduct for health professionals.

2.3. Social Inclusion, Social Protection and Social Solidarity

From 2007 to 2017, successive Governments (4th, 5th and 6th Governments) have prioritised assistance to the poorest and most vulnerable citizens of Timorese society. While we know that, in the long term, the provision of quality education and training and the creation of employment opportunities will be the essential tools for the escape from poverty, until then, the State must ensure that the National Liberation Combatants (who have offered countless sacrifices to the Homeland), women and children (where the formula for success for sustainable development lies), and poor and deprived families, the elderly and other vulnerable citizens (such as people with disabilities), have access to fulfilment of their essential needs and well-being, and access to opportunities to get out of their situation of fragility.

The 9th Constitutional Government will therefore continue to support this section of the population while developing policies and creating strategies that reduce dependence on State support, namely:

  • Consolidate the implementation of the National Social Protection Strategy;
  • Consolidate the implementation of the Law on the General Social Security System and guarantee the protection of workers and their families, also in situations of maternity, paternity, adoption, old age, disability and death;
  • Consolidate the National Social Security Institute and the Social Security Reserve Fund to manage the social security system, including contributory and non-contributory schemes with independence, transparency, effectiveness and efficiency;
  • Approve the Basic Law on Social Protection;
  • Review and evaluate the legislative and operational documents of the Social Pension;
  • Review and evaluate the Jerasaun Foun Mother's Grant Programme, which will be readjusted, and the social cash support for the neediest families with a particular focus on investments in children's health and education;
  • Extend the construction of Social Solidarity Centres (CSS), already existing in the Municipalities, to all Administrative Posts;
  • Improve the Social Services (SAS) close to the communities through the Social Solidarity Centres (CSS);
  • Improve the Support Programme for Social Solidarity Institutions with priority given to those with the most significant impact on helping children and young people, the elderly, women and citizens with disabilities, and in social integration, humanitarian development and support in emergencies, such as in the event of natural disasters, prevention and repair of cases of need and dependence;
  • Promote social cohesion actions which foster dialogue, community safety and the resolution of conflicts and social problems at the community level;
  • Review the legal framework of the National Rehabilitation Centre.

2.3.1. Women

Women and men have equal rights and obligations in all aspects of family, cultural, social, economic and political life. So that these rights can be realised and Timorese women can contribute more and better to our society and the growth of the country, the Government will:

  • Stimulate the creation of self-sustainable businesses for women heads of households and for women victims of domestic violence and gender-based violence to ensure their economic independence;
  • Ensure that 60 per cent of women have equal opportunity to access decision-making positions, justice and security according to their ability and merit;
  • Co-operate with the Ministry of Education to review and further implement gender-sensitive curricula and ensure that they are implemented effectively and with quality in education systems;
  • Continue to promote vocational training actions in areas likely to create small and medium-sized enterprises and cooperatives led by women;
  • Cooperate with the Ministry of Education and INDICA - Institute for the Defence of Children's Rights, IP to ensure that 75% of girls of school age complete basic education;
  • Continue to implement the National Action Plan against Gender-Based Violence;
  • Continue to implement the National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security;
  • Continue to implement campaigns to combat domestic violence;
  • Continue to implement the gender-responsive budget policy;
  • Ensure better working conditions for women who are also mothers and educators by reviewing labour legislation and in collaboration with SEFOPE;
  • Support women's organisations and associations that defend women's rights and interests;
  • Implement the Maubisse Declaration, which focuses on providing equal opportunities for women regarding education and vocational training, access to the labour market and social and political life.

2.3.2. Children

Children have the right to special protection by the family, the community and the State, particularly against all forms of neglect, discrimination, violence, oppression, sexual abuse and exploitation. Children enjoy all universally recognised rights, those enshrined in international conventions, duly ratified or approved by the State. All children, whether born in or out of matrimony, enjoy the same rights and social protection.

In this regard, the Government will continue to take measures to:

  • Implement the Maternity, Paternity and Adoption Protection Legal Regime, along with other measures to support vulnerable children;
  • Implement the Law on the Protection of Children in Danger;
  • Implement the Children Protection Network in all Administrative Posts in the country;
  • Build the capacity of INDICA - Institute for the Defence of the Rights of the Children, IP and implement the National Action Plan for Children;
  • Create and streamline specific occupational and book-time programmes for institutionalised children in orphanages with appropriate pedagogical and psychological support;
  • Promote awareness-raising campaigns and actions on children's rights and duties and relevant legislation affecting children;
  • Increasing social inclusion programmes for children considered marginalised or in conflict with the law;
  • Create programmes that prevent marginalisation and delinquency of children for reintegration into the community or institutions working in children protection;
  • Continue to implement programmes to prevent, protect and assist children victims of violence, neglect, incest and sexual abuse, including through a secure hotline for reporting such cases;
  • Improve the monitoring and handling by the Police, Public Prosecution and Courts of cases of violence and abuse against children.

2.3.3. Elderly

All citizens in old age are entitled to special protection by the State. Old age policy encompasses economic, social and cultural measures to provide older people with opportunities for personal fulfilment through dignified and active participation in community life.

However, the State must recognise that not only the Guerrillas or the Members of the Clandestine Front fought for the Liberation of the Homeland. For these citizens who supported the Resistance, the State must reward them for their activities during the Resistance.

Therefore, the 9th Government will pay all its attention to the Elderly, already over 70 years old, because it was this large section of the population who suffered since the beginning of the War of Liberation with countless sacrifices, having lost their relatives who were murdered or died of hunger and disease and, at the end of the challenging course of the Struggle, in 1999, they endured all kinds of threats, but did not hesitate to Vote for Independence, in the Referendum. They are the real Living Heroes, and the State must recognise this because of their sacrifices and courageous decision to go to the polls and vote for 'Ukun Rasik-an'. If they had been afraid and had chosen not to go, the members' votes of the clandestine organisations would have had no meaning because the guerrillas did not vote either, on instructions from the Higher Command of the Struggle.

Therefore, the 9th Government will pay full attention to older people whom we can call 'Living Heroes'. Thus, the Government will:

  • Formulate concrete rules to urgently collect data on older people aged over 70 so that they can receive more significant support in the latter stages of their lives;
  • Continue to provide cash benefits to older people through the Social Pension;
  • Create Centres for the Elderly in all municipalities;
  • Develop campaigns on the rights of older people and promote their integration and special care in families and communities;
  • Set up leisure/ social/ occupational therapy programmes for older people, promoting their well-being and integration into society (this could include sports activities, arts, traditional technologies such as pottery and crafts, painting, walks, or merely social spaces).

2.3.4. Other Vulnerable Groups

Disabled citizens enjoy the same rights and are subject to the same duties as other citizens, except for the exercise or fulfilment of those they cannot exercise or fulfil due to their disability.

As measures to support these groups of citizens, the Government will:

  • Stimulate the creation of self-sustainable businesses for citizens with disabilities;
  • Improve capacity across the country to provide quality services to vulnerable people, including building facilities and accessibility to facilities of public institutions;
  • Develop programmes to support families and communities that care for people with disabilities;
  • Improve the conditions for assisting disabled people at the National Rehabilitation Centre and, in future, set up similar centres in all municipalities;
  • Continue to develop the Rehabilitation Programmes and service provision and outreach to improve the quality of life of people with disabilities through specialised and integrated rehabilitation;
  • Survey people with chronic diseases and set up support programmes, and promote awareness campaigns on chronic diseases;
  • Implement rehabilitation programmes for prisoners and ex-offenders with a view to their integration into society;
  • Invest in food assistance programmes to support victims of natural disasters and vulnerable individuals and families;
  • Improve relief and assistance mechanisms for victims of natural disasters, including the construction of infrastructure and distribution of construction materials and storage materials;
  • Carry out training and capacity-building actions for the prevention, mitigation and act in case of natural disasters in all communities of the country;
  • Conduct a survey on the existence of drug addicts in the country and create conditions for their recovery and counselling while strengthening awareness campaigns on drug use and combating illegal trafficking;
  • Support the National Institute for the Fight against HIV-AIDS, I.P., and continue to carry out prevention campaigns on HIV-AIDS transmission, provide support to the patients of the Tibar Health Recovery House, and improve assistance in terms of food, health care and treatment of HIV-AIDS patients and develop integration and occupational therapy campaigns, in coordination with the Ministry of Health;
  • Implement the Maubisse Declaration.

2.4. National Liberation Fighters

The Constitution stipulates that the State must ensure special protection for war mutilates, orphans and other dependants of those who dedicated their lives to the struggle for independence and protect all those who participated in the resistance against foreign occupation. The law also defines the mechanisms for honouring national heroes. The Government will therefore continue to recognise the inestimable value of national heroes, preserve and celebrate the memory of the struggle and ensure that all those who lived with sacrifice to achieve the common good can now live in dignified conditions, not least because the dignity of the country itself depends on it.

The Government will continue to develop the following actions:

  • Promote the official recognition of Veterans and National Liberation Fighters (CLN) through the award of decorations and other acts of official recognition, paying particular attention to the CLN with three years in the Support Base who, according to the law in force, do not benefit from any pension;
  • Award Diplomas of Honour to all Veterans and CLN with validated records and processes;
  • Continue to promote Commendation ceremonies for Veterans, Martyrs and CLN who have not so far received honorary medals from the State;
  • Attribute a One-Time Cash Benefit or other benefits to CLN with three years of Support Base by revising the Law on the Status of National Liberation Combatants;
  • Repeal the status for family members of deceased Combatants with the exclusive dedication of 4-7 years to acquire the right to the single cash benefit;
  • Repeal the CLN Statute to give exclusive dedication to combatants killed during the fighting period but not considered martyrs;
  • Complete all Claimed and Pending cases from the 2003-2005 register;
  • Accelerate the process of verification and validation of 2009 records;
  • Open new registration to Veterans and CLN who did not apply for registration in 2003 and 2009;
  • Ensure social protection and pensions to Veterans and National Liberation Fighters and the families of the martyred and bereaved;
  • Implement the system of awarding scholarships to the children of martyrs and National Liberation Fighters taking into account the individual conditions of each one;
  • Integrate Veterans and National Liberation Fighters into economic and social life, including access to skills and employment opportunities;
  • Stimulate the creation of self-sustaining businesses for Veterans and National Liberation Fighters;
  • Study the feasibility of setting up a Veterans' Fund;
  • Support the CCLN in setting up a commercial bank with funds from the Veterans Investment Fund;
  • Advise Veterans and CLN to join associations or cooperatives and encourage investment in micro, small or medium-sized enterprises with their own pension money;
  • Implement programmes for the preservation and enhancement of the history of the struggle and the construction of historical and other monuments (cemeteries, heroes' gardens, etc.);
  • Immortalise the names of those who died during the fighting period, collected by the Uma Lisan register to be engraved on the memorials at all Administrative Posts;
  • Building new special cemeteries (in Ainaro, Natarbora, Covalima, Kelikai, Iliomar, Uato Lari, Ermera, Maliana) and finishing the cemeteries constructed already but so far unfinished (Laga and others) and the continuation of the Garden of Heroes in Metinaro;
  • Burial of the remains already collected in 'Uma Mahon' in almost all Municipalities;
  • Encourage Veterans and CLN to continue to collect the remains;
  • Establish the Independent National Scientific Commission for the History of the National Liberation Struggle, provided for in Article 36 of the Statute of the CLN;
  • Complete rigorous research on the History of the National Liberation Struggle and disseminate it to schools and communities so that future generations know the past, honour the present and value the future in cooperation with the Culture sector;
  • Implement programmes for the preservation and enhancement of the history of the struggle and the celebration of historical moments and days;
  • Implement the Organic Statute of the National Council of National Liberation Fighters and support its programmes and initiatives, including its participation in national development programmes;
  • Continue to support the "Chega!" National Centre and its programmes and initiatives to preserve the memory of the past and promote reconciliation and peace at national and international levels;
  • Take the necessary steps, particularly with the Ministry of Education, to include the materials and content of the "Chega!" National Centre in the teaching curricula;
  • To launch, in various formats, the Contemporary History of Timor-Leste, including the historical research and survey data that will be carried out throughout the country during the period of the Resistance and the Struggle for Independence;
  • Provide exhibitions, museum spaces and installations which relate to the Resistance period and national history, including museum spaces "Underground Shelters of the Resistance", places marking essential events, and permanent, temporary and travelling exhibitions with the support and promotion of the Archives and Museum of Timorese Resistance (AMRT).

2.5. Culture and Heritage

According to the Constitution of the Republic, the State recognises and guarantees the citizen's right to culture and determines that everyone has the right to cultural enjoyment and creation and the duty to preserve, defend and enhance cultural heritage. Culture is also a peaceful and constructive way of developing the personality and expressing emotions, enhancing citizenship awareness and valuing individual sensitivity and empathy towards others. Thus, culture has a fundamental and irreplaceable role in building a peaceful and modern society.

In this regard, the Government will develop efforts in the promotion and enhancement of the various artistic expressions, in addition to the safeguarding and promotion of historical and cultural heritage, material and immaterial, including archaeological and built heritage, music, languages and dialects and oral history, traditional architecture, crafts and any forms of artistic expressions, traditional or modern.

The Government will also use culture and cultural heritage to promote patriotic awareness and a sense of belonging and national identity, thus contributing to creating optimism and well-being in the population and stimulating their participation in the country's sustainable development.

This Government will therefore promote the following general objectives in Culture and Heritage:

  • To foster Timorese national identity and culture to contribute to the building of a peaceful, tolerant and creative Nation;
  • Ensure that the entire population has access to the diversity of knowledge, artistic expressions and cultural elements, with respect to the country's historical and geographical specificities;
  • Increase cooperation, partnerships and artistic and cultural exchanges with other nations and with international organisations to promote Timorese culture and heritage abroad, but also as a learning and training strategy for our cultural institutions and our national cultural producers and artists;
  • Increase cultural tourism and support public or private initiatives aimed at preserving and developing the national cultural heritage;
  • Improve and strengthen cross-sectoral coordination to promote culture in a transversal way, including vocational training and cultural and artistic education in schools;
  • Encourage greater consumption of art and culture in the country and incentivise the conservation of cultural heritage;
  • Continue to promote all national cultural events, including fairs, competitions and traditional ceremonies, among others;
  • Implement a legal framework for the preservation of the country's historic sites and respective rehabilitation and conservation rules (in liaison with relevant Government entities, notably the Ministry of Justice);
  • Develop the mapping programme for all historic sites in liaison with the relevant Government entities, notably the Ministry of Tourism;
  • Implement the Copyright and Related Rights Code, approved by Law no. 14/2022, of 21 December.

To accomplish these general objectives, the Government will develop the following actions:

  • Build a Museum and Cultural Centre in Dili (SDP 2015);
  • Proceed with the construction of the National Library;
  • Establish the Academy of Art, Culture and Creative Industries;
  • Establish Regional Cultural Centres in Oe-Cússe Ambeno, Liquiçá, Ermera, Maliana, Ainaro and Suai (SDP 2020);
  • Create a National Theatre and Dance Company and promote regular events and visits at the municipal level;
  • Implement the legal framework for Cultural Heritage and encourage the legal regulation of libraries;
  • Continue to survey cultural assets across the country and publicise them through an online database;
  • Invest in staff training and support research in cultural areas through partnerships with national and international academic institutions;
  • Promote the creation of national associations that defend, promote and conserve cultural heritage, also in cooperation with international institutions and bodies;
  • Improve coordination between the public entities responsible for the area of Culture and Education aiming at the development of training programmes and curricula in cultural heritage, cultural and artistic action;
  • Improve coordination between public entities responsible for the area of Culture and Tourism to develop cultural heritage programmes and cultural actions that are attractive to the tourism sector;
  • Strengthen historical, cultural, linguistic and artistic ties with CPLP countries by promoting programmes, events and exchanges in the cultural and artistic field;
  • Strengthen cooperation and friendship ties with ASEAN and Pacific countries through cultural and artistic programmes, events and exchanges;
  • Review existing legislation on culture and correct the necessary gaps to provide a legal framework that can effectively support, promote and harmonise initiatives in the cultural field and its stakeholders;
  • Create legislation to promote cultural patronage;
  • Promote cultural and artistic activities, especially in artistic expression, by creating national awards to motivate greater participation through Sponsors or Patronage.

2.6. Youth

The State promotes and encourages youth initiatives in the consolidation of National Unity in the country's reconstruction, defence and development. To the extent of its possibilities, the State promotes young people's education, health and vocational training.

The young Timorese are the nation's future leaders, and it is up to them to transform the Country, contributing to its sustainable development. Timor-Leste is a very young Nation, where more than 50% are under 20 years old, and most of them need to acquire better qualifications and access to employment opportunities and personal and professional fulfilment.

The Timorese Government is committed to creating opportunities that enable young people to fulfil their potential.

To this end, the Government intends to implement the following actions and achieve the following targets:

  • Implement the National Youth Policy and national action plans that promote youth development and empowerment;
  • Strengthen the functioning of the National Youth Development Council to create conditions for better coordination between public and private entities, which ensures the promotion of initiatives for young people and their entry into the labour market, providing the preparation of policies and the implementation of national action plans, related to the strategies approved in the National Youth Policy;
  • Supporting the establishment of a Youth Association;
  • Continue to promote the Youth Parliament - "Foin Sa'e Parliament", including capacity-building in leadership, civic values, critical thinking, debating skills and social analysis;
  • Build a National Youth Centre in Dili (SDP 2020);
  • Develop the conduct of Leadership Training Camps to promote physical fitness, administrative skills, conflict resolution and civic values;
  • Improve existing Youth Centres and the construction of Multifunctional Youth Centres in all municipalities to provide training in areas such as languages, technologies, art, music, sports and civic education;
  • Promote Youth Days.

2.7. Sports

One of the best ways to properly mould the character of young people and foster values of cooperation, friendship and teamwork while improving the physical condition of young people is to focus on sports development.

Sport is a crucial part of young people's lives, involving them in more and better social relationships and promoting dialogue, tolerance, ethics, democracy, healthy competition and even leadership skills. In general terms, the sport can unite people and make them work towards a common ideal while also promoting a strong national identity which is expected of all citizens in the construction and development of the country.

Finally, physical activity is an essential factor for the quality of life of human beings, ensuring greater productivity and a sense of well-being.

To promote and encourage the practice of sports activities by our young people, girls and boys, the Government will continue to develop the following goals and actions:

  • Review and implement the Timor-Leste Sport Strategic Plan;
  • To finance, promote and support sports activities in all communities of the country to encourage competitions of various modalities at the national level;
  • Support and develop human resources in the areas of sports facility management, athlete training and development, team management and event management;
  • Support the participation of communities and pupils in sporting activities through community and school sports clubs and events, including by improving coordination between Governmental entities, responsible for Sport and Governmental entities, responsible for Education to promote school Sport and Governmental entities, responsible for Sport and municipal entities to develop Municipal Sport;
  • Ensure participation in CPLP and ASEAN university games;
  • Encourage and develop talents to promote top-level sports;
  • Encourage and promote sports tourism, including extreme sports and sea sports;
  • Develop football, volleyball and basketball, badminton, tennis, boxing, and swimming, including the development of leagues, in partnership with national and international organisations;
  • Support the Martial Arts Regulatory Commission to develop this sport in a peaceful and rewarding way for its participants, complying with the Martial Arts Law at the national level;
  • Promote the realisation of healthy competitions between martial arts groups to promote friendship and solidarity between these groups to break the mentality of violence once and for all;
  • Rehabilitate sports infrastructure and build new facilities, including multi-purpose gyms, in each municipality (SDP 2020), and rehabilitate the Dili stadium and sports complex;
  • Promote the professionalisation of sport through the capacity-building of sports federations with the ultimate goal of Timorese participation in the Asian Games, Sea Games and Olympic Games.

2.8. Information and Communication Technologies (ICT)

We live in an era of globalisation and technology, where citizens of any country can access knowledge quickly and comprehensively. It is, however, necessary to create conditions for access to information and communication technologies and to instil in people and institutions their active participation in the production, dissemination and use of knowledge.

The mastery of Information and Communication Technologies will contribute to improving the quality of education and training to better public management and administration and to developing the private sector, factors necessary for the competitiveness and sustainable development of the country.

Accordingly, the Government will pursue the following actions:

  • Implement the Information and Communication Technologies Policy;
  • Develop and implement the legal framework to support the use of Information and Communication Technologies by proposing to the National Parliament, in particular, the approval of legislation on computer-related crime and the management, access and protection of electronic personal databases;
  • Empower the Information and Communication Technologies Agency I.P. - TIC TIMOR with the mission to manage the IT network of the Government and other public entities to modernise the State and improve the functioning and service delivery of public institutions;
  • Strengthen capacities in terms of institutions, infrastructure and human resources in this sector;
  • Implement an administrative modernisation strategy, developing the added value of eGovernment, including the establishment of connectivity and internet access platforms in all State and Government institutions;
  • Provide training in Information and Communication Technologies for all leaders, administrators, directors and civil servants;
  • Create the necessary infrastructure for widespread internet access throughout the country, including in rural areas, through the creation of Internet Spaces or Information and Communication Technology Centres;
  • Continue to hold Information and Communication Technology camps across the country;
  • Promote the creation of content adapted to local circumstances and needs;
  • Promote and facilitate women's access to new Information and Communication Technologies;
  • Promote scientific research, innovation and competitiveness through the use of information and communication technologies;
  • Create partnerships with the national and international private sector to develop Information and Communication Technologies as a valuable tool for the acquisition, production and dissemination of knowledge;
  • Continue to offer free training in computer skills, user skills, graphic design and the use of new information technologies for research and business creation.

2.9. Media

The Constitution of the Republic states that freedom of the press and other media shall be guaranteed, including freedom of expression and creation of journalists, access to sources of information, editorial freedom, protection of independence and professional secrecy, and the right to establish newspapers, publications and other means of dissemination. The State must ensure the freedom and independence of public media from political and economic power and guarantee that the media are not monopolised.

It is also incumbent upon the State to ensure the existence of a public radio and television service, which must be exempt with a view, among other objectives, to protecting and disseminating the culture and traditions of Timor-Leste and ensuring the expression of pluralism of opinion.

The Government will:

  • Support and strengthen TATOLI - News Agency of Timor-Leste, IP;
  • Support and enhance the Press Council as an independent regulatory body for the media sector;
  • Continue to support programmes for the dissemination of Government action, promoting public knowledge of Government action and greater transparency about governance;
  • Continue to support RTTL, E.P., including the improvement of physical infrastructure and the upgrading of technical equipment, and the implementation of a Company Strategic Plan to improve the quality and quantity of information disseminated;
  • Propose to the National Parliament the approval of legislation to regulate the audiovisual media sector in Timor-Leste;
  • Establish the Journalists Training Institute and continue to focus on training journalists for the development and diversification of the sector;
  • Develop mechanisms for cross-sectoral cooperation to enhance the correct use of official languages by journalists;
  • Develop cross-sectoral cooperation mechanisms to promote and disseminate official languages to the entire population;
  • Support the Community Radio Council and the establishment of new community radio stations;
  • Support the National Journalists' Associations;
  • Encourage women's access to and participation in the media;
  • Increase the gender perspective in the media and encourage campaigns and programmes that promote the use of official languages, national identity, citizenship education, the role of women in society and technical and scientific knowledge;
  • Promote the diversification of media organisations at the municipal level;
  • Set up, in collaboration with the Ministry of State Administration, a programme to disseminate the municipal decentralisation policy;
  • Set up a programme to support private media to contribute to developing the media sector;
  • Create an Information Centre in each Village (suco) to promote everyone's knowledge of current international and national news;
  • Set up a professional training programme to train media officers in line ministries and municipalities to increase the effectiveness of each institution's official communication;
  • Develop a plan to disseminate the promotion of Timor-Leste through digital platforms.

2.10. Civil Society

Civil Society is a determining part of the State and Nation building process of the development and democratic consolidation of Timor-Leste.

The partnership between the Government and Civil Society organisations should be strengthened towards a more active and responsible participation in implementing the strategic agenda for the country's development.

Supporting Civil Society in fulfilling its role is also an integral part of the Executive's strategy to ensure good governance and promote social inclusion. Building a healthy Nation implies the development of an equally healthy and independent civil society.

The Government will therefore contribute to improving Civil Society capacities, initiatives and actions, thus promoting tolerance, peace and human dignity, keeping the State accountable for its actions, and promoting alternative and progressive solutions for the Country.

  • Carry out a study and investigate the financial sustainability of allocating funds and tax incentives to civil society organisations to help the State make sound decisions in this area;
  • Improve support for the implementation of Civil Society activities, including better coordination and dialogue with the Government;
  • Promote and boost cooperation between Civil Society from various countries or groups of countries (notably through CPLP and ASEAN) to explore opportunities for economic, cultural, social, religious and political development, and solidarity and human rights actions;
  • Continue to support and collaborate with the different religious institutions and confessions, encouraging the realisation of initiatives that promote the moral and ethical values of society and the promotion of peace, family and social harmony and tolerance;
  • Promote the active participation of Civil Society in the fight against poverty reduction in rural areas in a sustainable way;
  • Promote civil society participation in improving good governance;
  • Promote active involvement of Civil Society in promoting civic duties and human rights.

2.10.1. Religion

Under the Constitution of Timor-Leste, everyone is guaranteed freedom of conscience, religion and worship, with religious denominations being separate from the State.

No one may be persecuted or discriminated against because of their religious beliefs, and the freedom to teach any religion within the framework of their religious confession is also guaranteed.

The Government will continue to support and collaborate with the different religious institutions and confessions, encouraging the realisation of initiatives that promote the moral and ethical values of society and peace, family and social harmony and tolerance.

In addition:

  1. Continue cooperation with Timorese Episcopal Conference (TEC) on good governance, strengthen TEC institution, transparency and accountability;
  2. Develop a policy to ensure that all religious denominations can practise peacefully;
  3. Promote the participation of religious denominations in promoting human rights, civic education and poverty reduction.

2.11. Housing

Everyone has the right, for himself and his family, to housing of an adequate size, in conditions of hygiene and comfort, which preserves personal intimacy and family privacy.

To provide decent housing for our citizens, the Government will:

  • Review the 2007 National Housing Policy and develop a National Housing Programme, including sustainability issues to ensure that all Timorese are eventually provided with decent housing with access to clean water and a reservoir, individual sanitation facilities (toilet), cooking, electricity and a level of comfort appropriate to modern standards;
  • Create regulations to establish minimum requirements for building to ensure the construction of decent housing that promotes habitability in safe and healthy conditions;
  • Review and reform the Millennium Development Goals Programme (MDG Sucos - SDP 2015);
  • Create and implement a programme to support the rehabilitation and construction of housing to improve the quality of habitability;
  • Introduce modern techniques and building materials more suited to Timor-Leste's culture, tradition and climate, involving the participation of local communities throughout the process;
  • Study and implement a programme to promote the building of housing by private investors in new areas through planned Urbanisation Plans equipped with all the infrastructure and duly approved;
  • Ensure ongoing monitoring of communities concerning how their dwellings accommodate farm animals, training and sensitising community leaders and heads of households to the public health issues associated with living with these animals;
  • Fostering a healthy housing policy and innovative and integrated neighbourhoods;
  • To support communities, hamlets (aldeias) and villages (sucos) for their development.


"A central pillar of the Strategic Development Plan is the construction and maintenance of a range of productive infrastructure."

Infrastructure is crucial to economic and social development, and the scale and costs associated with implementing an infrastructure network are a huge challenge that will sustain productivity, job creation and private sector development at the national level.

For this reason, planning, budgeting, monitoring and evaluation are an essential part of this strategy. Thus, in the short term, the Government proposes to conduct a detailed survey of all infrastructure and projects underway during these last five years to audit, re-evaluate, correct and restructure the infrastructure plan to fight against the total lack of transparency which has been put aside, and to reducing asymmetries, closing the many gaps that still exist in terms of essential infrastructure in the country.

One of the government's main priorities regarding the infrastructure sector is to demand more excellent professionalism from human resources and contractors, implementing an institutional reform that includes better planning, monitoring, inspection and supervision of ongoing projects and works. Considering that to build a productive and modern economy, it is necessary to continue to make a considerable investment in large-scale infrastructure, it is essential to guarantee quality constructions and ensure their cost-effectiveness while also projecting the future investments required in terms of operation and maintenance and assessing the available resources and future sustainability.

This infrastructure plan aims to combat extreme poverty in the country.

It is in this context that we also want to build essential infrastructure:

  • Creating better health conditions, including the physical, mental and social well-being of citizens, which includes, among other things: facilitating access to primary, secondary and tertiary healthcare; improving the physical environment, including safe roads and bridges and considering balanced infrastructure construction, minimising the risks of pollution and environmental degradation, and investing in urban cleanliness; facilitating and promoting access to clean housing with the conditions indispensable for public health; creating conditions for basic sanitation and access to 24-hour electricity throughout the country;
  • Create better education conditions through more and better access to places of education, vocational training and cultural consumption. This also includes the provision of water, sanitation, electricity and access to the Internet and new information and communication technologies;
  • Create the necessary conditions for access to basic public infrastructure for citizens with special needs.
  • Create conditions for private investment and growth of the economy, as through the provision of better transport, communications and energy supply it is possible to boost and diversify the economy. However, this should be planned according to regional potential and with due consideration of the multiplier effects of other sectors to draw economic dividends for the whole population;
  • Create employment conditions, facilitating mobility and access to labour opportunities, but also the opportunities arising from economic growth and increased private investment in the country. However, above all, the infrastructure construction process naturally requires a large amount and variety of labour, thus creating an opportunity to improve qualifications and specialisations through negotiating contracts between the Government and the contractors to build significant infrastructure projects.

3.1. Governance of the infrastructure sector

It is proposed to carry out a detailed survey, updating all existing essential infrastructure and ongoing infrastructure projects, for reassessment, correction and restructuring of the infrastructure plan, ensuring quality constructions and the best cost-benefit ratio of the same, and projecting the future investments required in terms of operation and maintenance and assessing the available resources and future sustainability.

To this end, the Government proposes even more specific terms:

  • Rationally and sustainably invest Petroleum Fund revenues in modern and productive essential infrastructure, strategically coordinating the planning of such infrastructure with the development of other development sectors and policies;
  • Improve the management of the Infrastructure Fund through the Major Projects Secretariat to continue implementing large-scale, multi-annual projects. These prioritising projects promote the country's socio-economic development and thus contribute to fighting poverty and improving citizens' quality of life. The Infrastructure Fund will continue to finance essential infrastructure projects, public buildings, projects in education, youth and sports, health, defence and security, social housing, financial systems and support infrastructure;
  • Strengthen and empower the National Procurement Commission for more effective, efficient and transparent infrastructure-related procurement procedures, including the functions of supporting all line ministries in procurement processes across the national territory;
  • Strengthen and capacitate the National Development Agency for more effective, efficient and transparent procedures and proposals in the infrastructure sector, including prior supervision and project planning, and its implementation management, monitoring, surveillance, evaluation and quality control functions;
  • Ensure the efficiency, effectiveness and transparency of the investment system for infrastructure and major projects, including procurement procedures, contract management and payment system;
  • Strengthen the monitoring, inspection, surveillance and evaluation systems of infrastructure projects and major projects, both in terms of physical and financial realisation;
  • Establish partnerships between the Ministry of Public Works, the National Development Agency and universities to strengthen the means of quality control of infrastructure construction;
  • Continue to assess and certify construction and civil technical consultancy companies;
  • Develop and update essential infrastructure construction standards and criteria;
  • Continue to supervise, monitor and assess the quality of materials used in the construction of infrastructure projects;
  • Develop quality studies and analyses to leverage the use of local raw materials and the use of other goods and materials to reduce imports to fuel the growth of the infrastructure sector;
  • Increase the capacity of the Timorese labour force at national, municipal and rural levels;
  • Ensure greater participation of Timorese labour in future hiring, including better working conditions, training opportunities and internships;
  • Establish a system to implement regular infrastructure maintenance;
  • Encourage national private sector participation in infrastructure development;
  • Strengthen bilateral cooperation with other countries for public works infrastructure cooperation;
  • Rehabilitate the National Laboratory to ensure the quality of infrastructure projects;
  • Strengthen the Equipment Management Institute to respond to emergencies and natural disasters.

3.2. Road Network

The Government will continue to implement the infrastructure plan for the country's road network, including the construction, rehabilitation and maintenance of national, municipal and rural roads, according to international quality and safety criteria.

In this context, we highlight the following key actions and targets:

  • Rehabilitate all rural roads using local companies (SDP 2015 - 1270 km), implementing the Rural Roads Development Programme and the Master Plan and Strategic Investment for Rural Roads;
  • Rehabilitate all national, regional and urban roads (in the capital of municipalities) to international standards (SDP 2022);
  • Conduct annual road condition monitoring surveys on all rehabilitated roads to determine maintenance needs (SDP 2015);
  • Conclude the plan for the national ring road motorway. The Government will review the detailed design of phases II to IV before launching the public procurement tender;
  • Carry out monitoring studies of existing bridges in the country and ensure their rehabilitation and maintenance, and the construction of new bridges in critical areas of the country;
  • Carry out flood control monitoring studies and continue to ensure the construction of retaining walls and gabions throughout the national territory.

3.3. Water and Sanitation

A clear reinforcement of investment in access to drinking water and basic sanitation is urgently needed. The absence of these infrastructures seriously affects public health and the population's quality of life, fuelling the spread of diseases, mortality and poor development of children.

Investing in water and sanitation is investing in health, education, the environment and economic growth, improving job opportunities and the country's productivity. Strategic investment in these areas is essential for economic growth and the population's well-being.

In this context, the Government recognises that there has not been substantial investment in this sector to date and sees investment in basic sanitation as a priority and a sustainable way to fight poverty.

The Government's objectives in this area are:

  • Provide widespread, safe and sustainable access to water supply, whether for private consumption of all citizens or for agriculture, commerce and industry;
  • Improve indicators in health, education, social and economic development, ensuring access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation throughout the country;
  • Ensure that all Timorese have access to improved sanitation throughout the country through a self-sufficient and quality sewerage system, including the construction of treatment centres, and by providing access to public sanitation facilities in the capital and municipalities;
  • Ensure quality drainage systems in Dili and all municipalities;
  • Ensure the technical training of Timorese in the water and sanitation sector and the institutional capacity-building of the entities and bodies that manage, implement, monitor and supervise the industry;
  • Create alternative resilience mechanisms to climate change and prevent its possible effects on water and sanitation infrastructure.

To accomplish these objectives, the Government will undertake the following actions and achieve the following targets:

  • Ensure that the majority of Timor-Leste's rural population has access to reliable and sustainable drinking water (SDP 2015);
  • Ensure that all public schools have piped drinking water (SDP 2020);
  • Create cross-sectoral coordination mechanisms to develop a strategic and consistent water management plan;
  • Approve and implement the Investment, Policy and Institutional Reform Plan 2023- 2030 to fulfil the Strategic Development Plan and the 6th Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) targets. This plan will identify the investments needed for water supply and sanitation across the country;
  • Develop and implement additional studies, analyses, and investment plans to guide decision-making on the best options for investing in the water sector;
  • Develop and implement additional studies, analyses, and investment plans to guide the best sustainability options for the maintenance and operation of water supply systems;
  • Review the National Policy for Water Resources Management;
  • Review the National Water Supply Policy;
  • Review the legal framework necessary for the implementation of water resources management and water supply policies;
  • Implement the Water Supply and Sanitation Master Plan for Dili and the other municipal capitals;
  • Reform the institutional model of the sector, as a public sector with greater autonomy, efficiency and sustainability, for the implementation of the Government's strategy and adequate technical and economic regulation;
  • Identify new sources of water, including desalination, construction of reservoirs and water treatment facilities throughout the national territory and continue to expand the water supply network throughout the national territory;
  • Ensure that all municipal urban areas have improved sanitation facilities (SDP 2020);
  • Connect all dwellings to existing sewerage systems in Dili and, where not possible, ensure connection to septic tanks or access to community sanitation facilities (SDP 2020);
  • Improve coordination with development partners on cooperation projects in the provision of water supply and management and sanitation in rural areas to ensure the necessary investments in rural communities;
  • Approve and implement a Tariff Policy that includes differentiated tariffs for different consumers, both private and commercial and industrial;
  • Develop appropriate infrastructure, including operation and maintenance systems, for sewage collection, treatment and disposal (SDP 2020);
  • Improve monitoring and control systems for wastewater collection and treatment from public, commercial, industrial, social and residential facilities;
  • Implement existing legislation and regulations and develop integrated municipal solid waste management systems;
  • Implement the Dili Sanitation and Drainage Master Plan;
  • Improve drainage systems in all municipalities by ensuring the construction of stormwater drainage systems (SDP 2020);
  • Increase vocational training and institutional capacity-building projects for water and sanitation infrastructure development, including maintenance and operationalisation of systems, in cross-sectoral coordination with relevant Government entities;
  • Ensure the development of monitoring, prevention and action mechanisms on climate change to minimise its effects on water and sanitation infrastructure in cross-sectoral coordination with relevant Government entities.

3.4. Energy

Access to regular and reliable electricity supply is a fundamental right and the foundation for Timor-Leste's economic growth. In this regard, continuing to invest in the energy sector is crucial to improve the quality of life of Timorese and to support the growth of industry, commerce and tourism, contributing to economic and social development in rural and urban areas.

Therefore, the Government intends to continue to upgrade and improve electricity transmission and distribution systems while investing in expanding renewable energy systems.

3.4.1. Electricity Supply

The Government will prioritise the following actions and targets:

  • Ensure that the entire population has access to electricity 24 hours a day, either by expanding the National Electrification Programme or through the use of renewable energy sources (SDP 2015) - In all capitals of the Municipalities, the population will have access to electricity 24 hours a day, and in the Administrative Posts. Most of the 461 villages (sucos) and most of the hamlets (aldeias) already have access to electricity. Regarding Ataúro, a feasibility study has not yet been carried out to be able to materialise a sustainable electrification plan for the island;
  • Analyse the state of play in rural areas, especially in the most remote regions, and develop a concrete plan for rural electrification, including connecting small local networks to the national grid or offering renewable energy sources;
  • Review the National Electrification Programme to improve electricity generation and distribution across the country and continue the installation and maintenance of medium and low voltage lines;
  • Review the reorganisation of the electricity sector and implement a new plan for the country;
  • Restructure the electricity sector to allow for better service provision and better oversight, aiming for greater efficiency in both operational and economic terms;
  • Approve and implement a Tariff Policy that includes differentiated tariffs for different consumers, both private and commercial and industrial;
  • Develop a new transmission line between Camea and Comoro, build a new substation with a capacity of 2x31.5 MW to meet the increased power supply needs in the city of Dili;
  • Study and analyse the possibility of implementing a transmission line Dili - Aileu - Maubisse - Betano to provide an alternative power supply in overload situations;
  • Implement a system of control and provision of technical repair services, ensuring 24-hour power supply;
  • Establish an online "pulse" sales system.

3.4.2. Natural Gas

Timor-Leste has access to significant gas reserves in the Timor Sea. The availability of natural gas for electricity generation has the potential to offer a cheaper and cleaner fuel when compared to liquid fuels. Environmentally, for the same amount of electricity produced, the carbon emissions from electricity produced from natural gas are considerably lower than electricity produced from diesel.

Following the signing of the Maritime Boundary Treaty between Timor-Leste and Australia, the Government will start negotiations with oil companies on developing the Greater Sunrise field and seek to secure the construction of gas processing facilities on the South Coast of Timor-Leste. In this context, it will develop feasibility and sustainability studies on using natural gas for electricity generation, making efforts to use less expensive energy and considering environmental issues.

3.4.3. Renewable Energy

Renewable energy sources can contribute to economic growth and reduce poverty levels in remote rural areas. In addition, they contribute to a less polluted environment and mitigate the impacts of climate change, fulfilling commitments made in international conventions.

In this context, studies will be resumed for the implementation of renewable and non-polluting energy production projects, such as:

  • Hydroelectric power: produced using watercourses, according to feasibility studies on the potential of hydroelectric projects;
  • Wind energy: according to preliminary studies already carried out, especially in mountainous regions where there is potential to install wind turbines, such as the Lariguto and Bobonaro wind farms;
  • Solar energy: continue to develop studies and promote initiatives that use Timor-Leste's favourable climate and daily sunlight rates to install solar energy production systems;
  • Biomass energy: increase studies and projects to produce energy through plants, agricultural residues and animal waste, and household and industrial waste, which can be turned into biomass and converted into electricity.

The Government will therefore advocate the following actions:

  • Create a Renewable Natural Resources Office which coordinates efforts at the cross-sectoral level, carries out analyses and feasibility studies relevant to this sector and is responsible for the implementation of renewable energy projects, including management, monitoring and evaluation (partly already included in the SDP objectives);
  • Continue to invest in the rural electrification programme through technical and financial support to communities for the production and use of renewable energy sources;
  • Ensure that half of the electricity needs are generated from renewable energy sources (SDP 2020);
  • Resume feasibility studies on the potential for Mini-Hydro construction across the country;
  • Build the Lariguto and Bobonaro power stations as a model for wind development (SDP 2015);
  • Ensure that at least around 100,000 households have access to solar energy systems (SDP 2020);
  • Develop the potential of solar energy through the Dili Solar Centre (SDP 2015);
  • Develop a feasibility study for constructing a thermal power plant to generate energy from household and industrial waste in Dili (SDP 2015).

3.5. Transport

Creating conditions for economic growth, and improving and increasing the movement of people and goods, is critical to implementing the vision contained in the Strategic Development Plan 2011-2030.

As such, it is urgent to improve the land, sea and air transport system and to create a meteorological forecasting system that, among others, offers safety, especially concerning air traffic. Therefore, the Government will review the state of play of the transport sector, approve the Integrated Transport Master Plan, improve the institutional capacity of the industry and train the necessary human resources.

It will continue to adopt the necessary legislation and implement the existing legal framework in an integrated manner to ensure transport safety and cross-sectoral coordination. The public transport safety system will be improved by implementing a framework for recording, analysing and reporting transport-related activities that may cause injury, death, loss or damage to property. The framework will, among others, investigate transport accidents and provide transport safety recommendations.

3.5.1. Land Transport

The Government will continue to promote the development of public and private land transport, including infrastructure and support facilities. This includes adequate road signalling and ensuring its enforcement throughout the country.

Traffic management measures will be updated for urban areas to respond to certain specific situations. Traffic technologies, such as innovative transport systems (e.g., modern signalised intersections for traffic monitoring), will be deployed to manage traffic better and promote passenger safety. The Government will endeavour to develop, approve and implement a national road safety and prevention policy.

Passenger comfort and safety on public transport will be improved. High-quality public transport will be introduced on appropriate routes so that passengers can access a more comfortable, efficient and safe public transport network.

Also, within this framework, and to improve the public transport services available, the Government will expand and modernise support facilities such as terminals and the various services provided to the public.

It will also seek to ensure ongoing monitoring of active operators, encouraging improvement of their services and compliance with the applicable legislation, which should be subject to a review process with a view to its progress.

Finally, the Government will carry out a thorough revision of the Highway Code with a particular focus on improving safety, providing for the creation of compulsory classes before the driving test and establishing special training for operators of public transport vehicles and heavy goods vehicles.

3.5.2. Maritime Transport

The development of port infrastructure is critical to enable Timor-Leste to import essential goods and equipment to strengthen and diversify the national economy. Investment in the country's port system will continue to accompany the development of Tibar Harbour. Operational efficiency and regional port facilities will be improved, including developing new regional ports to ensure that maritime transport remains a viable option for transporting people and cargo, generating economic gains, especially for fishing communities.

In this regard, the Government will:

  • Improve the harbour facilities at Com and Atauro;
  • Build a harbour facility at Kairabela in Vemasse, Baucau, to facilitate access to the sea and support the tourism sector;
  • Continue the implementation of the Public-Private Partnership model, which made the construction of the Tibar Harbour - crucial for the development of trade and industry in the country;
  • Ensure the functioning of Tibar Harbour as the country's principal port facility;
  • Carry out feasibility studies for the construction of the port of Manatuto and for the creation of a national maritime line to facilitate cabotage transport and coastal connection and to provide maritime transport services for people and cargo at various points along the country's coastline;
  • Restructure and modernise the Port of Dili to convert it into a City Marina and Cruise Port;
  • Strengthen the regulator and maritime authority, including improving and modernising its regulatory standard;
  • Implement a maritime signalling system (lighthouses) in Atauro, Maubara, Baucau and Com to promote the safety of navigation and international maritime traffic in national waters.

3.5.3. Air Transport

Air transport is critical for moving people and goods to and from our country. Its safety is crucial in developing our tourism, trade and business industry. To enable a more reliable air service between Timor-Leste and regional and international destinations, efforts will be made to create the conditions for more scheduled flights to more flight destination options.

The planned improvements to Presidente Nicolau Lobato International Airport will be implemented to cater for the growing increase in passengers. Investing in air transport is vital to meeting the future demand for air traffic and the country's economic growth.

To this end, the Government will:

  • Implement the National Civil Aviation Policy;
  • Reorganise the Administration of Airports and Air Navigation of Timor-Leste (ANATL) as the operator of Timor-Leste's airports, including the development of an analysis of capacity-building options in contracting and management;
  • Increase the capacity of the Civil Aviation Authority of Timor-Leste (AACTL) for effective regulation of the air transport sector;
  • Develop the Master Plan of the Presidente Nicolau Lobato International Airport in Dili and finalise its expansion, including the runway, and ensure the necessary conditions for this airport to have the capacity to handle about one million passengers per year with the highest safety standards;
  • Develop feasibility studies for municipal airports in liaison with the Master Plans for international airports to complete a network of fully operational municipal airports, including Lospalos, Maliana, Viqueque, Same and Atauro;
  • Operationalise Suai Airport;
  • Develop the necessary mechanisms for effective control of national airspace.
  • Create the legal framework for effective control of national airspace.

3.6. Meteorology and Geophysics

Further develop a meteorological and geophysical system to support civil aviation, maritime navigation, agriculture and public service needs.

Therefore, the Government will carry out a study to assess the possibility of creating a meteorological and geophysical laboratory, evaluate the needs in terms of human resources, prepare an investment study and consider the creation of bilateral cooperation mechanisms to start producing this data and create conditions to make regular and viable meteorological and geophysical information available to the public.

3.7. Telecommunications

Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) are vital to enable the digital economy as a new economic growth sector and promote good governance. The Government will ensure that the country has a reliable, quality and secure telecommunications network which is crucial for the socio-economic development of the Timorese population.

ICT infrastructure has improved significantly following introduction of a competitive telecoms market in 2012. Mobile service coverage (2G network) has moved to 96% of population areas, and 3G data services are now available in all municipalities. The 4G network has recently been launched in urban centres. Having achieved mobile services, the new challenges are to develop broadband networks and services.

The Government will continue its efforts to create a modern telecommunications network that connects people in Timor-Leste and between Timor-Leste and the world, taking full advantage of advances in global telecommunications, including the production, dissemination and use of knowledge.

The Government thus has as actions and targets:

  • Implement a reliable fibre optic submarine cable system connecting Timor-Leste to a cable landing facility in the region that allows the country to acquire capacity and competitive transmission lines to connect to a global IP distribution centre;
  • Formulate and implement the necessary plans, such as national broadband plan, national cyber security plan, e-Government plan, digital economy infrastructure plan, and digital terrestrial television (DTTB) migration plan to provide overall policy direction and guide all infrastructure deployment and development interventions;
  • Create a cyber security and critical infrastructure structure. This entity will function as the National Agency for overseeing cyber security strategy, operations and capacity-building and overseeing the policy, design and programme of critical infrastructure development;
  • To accelerate capacity-building in the areas of science and technology needed to drive new economic growth, the Government will strengthen the Timor-Leste Research and Education Network (TLREN), including the application of dedicated broadband to the TLREN submarine cable system to benefit research and higher education institutions in the country;
  • Strengthen and empower the Autoridade Nacional de Comunicações (ANC), including improving and modernising its regulatory framework to better respond to technological advances and changes in the market landscape, considering the convergence of technologies;
  • Promote the development of a carrier-neutral Internet exchange point for operators to ensure fast and secure data transmission between Internet service providers (ISPs) in the country;
  • Ensure reliable, secure and affordable mobile phone coverage for all Timorese, including in rural areas;
  • Strengthen the capacity of Computer Security Incident Response Teams (CSIRTs) to ensure access to a secure internet, accessible throughout the national territory;
  • Promote the internet connection of the entire national education system and the whole of the national health system as priority sectors;
  • Establish e-Government services to upgrade Government networks.

3.8. Postal Service

The postal service is an essential public service that allows sending of correspondence, books, publications and other types of parcels within the national territory at relatively affordable prices and the dispatch of mail and other goods abroad.

The Government in this area proposes to:

  • Reform and develop Timor-Leste's Post Office for more efficient, faster and accessible services, considering the creation of municipal hubs in liaison with central services;
  • Introduce innovative systems at Timor-Leste Post Office to enable parcel delivery up to the Administrative Post level throughout the country;
  • Develop a Postal Service Development Plan, including municipal expansion.


"Timor-Leste is a low-income country with a nascent private sector, limited economic diversification and mainly focussed on agricultural production. However, our country has considerable economic opportunities and strong potential to become a middle-income Nation."

While some progress has been made in this area, Timor-Leste must continue to invest in strategic planning for a modern and diversified economy. Boosting the productive sectors around three key industries – agriculture, tourism and petroleum - by studying and harnessing existing natural resources, taking advantage of geographical location and population profile, is a simple and sound strategy to drive much-needed economic diversification and mitigate dependence on petroleum revenues.

Job creation and the promotion of entrepreneurship is both a factor and an outcome in the pursuit of this economic development goal, and the Government has to create conditions not to be alienated from young people while promoting the private sector, resources that are fundamental to increase national productivity and create opportunities for sustainable economic growth. To this end, the Government will introduce legal and policy mechanisms that stimulate the national economy's creativity, innovation and diversification.

This Government will transform Timor-Leste's natural wealth from its soils and seas into food security, health, productivity and job creation opportunities. It will also transform hydrocarbons into opportunities for development and well-being for the entire population through infrastructure development, the private sector and job creation. It will also change its people's wealth, natural landscape and unique culture into entrepreneurship and increase incomes across the country.

To this end, the Government must develop a National Planning Framework to implement Development Hubs in the various regions of the country, which defines the characteristics of each region and the growth potential of each sector and subsector, according to the local resources available, for the implementation of actions and strategies for sustainable growth and equitable development throughout the country, under the motto that "if nature is rich, the people cannot be poor".

A new strategy to be adopted by the 9th Constitutional Government with a view to the economic diversification and sustainable growth of the Nation involves capitalising on the sea's resources sustainably for a new paradigm of national development.

The Head of the Negotiations Team for the Definitive Delimitation of Maritime Boundaries (since 2016) was also appointed in December 2019 as the Special Representative of the Government of Timor-Leste for the Blue Economy to provide coordinated advocacy at national and international levels and to support and lead Timor-Leste's Blue Economy affairs.

In this regard, an awareness-raising programme on the importance of Timor-Leste's maritime areas was initiated in 2021. This Socialisation Campaign on Maritime Sovereignty - Ha'u nia Tasi, Ha'u nia Timor (My Sea, My Timor) - is a campaign that aims to raise awareness about the importance of unity and national support for the negotiations as a way to strengthen the country's position around its struggle for maritime sovereignty and, at the same time to promote the blue economy, as a new approach to face the future of the country with the participation of all Timorese and with a direct impact on the various dimensions of the country, including the economic, social, environmental and cultural dimensions.

The Government will continue implementing the Ha'u nia Tasi, Ha'u nia Timor campaign. It will prioritise defining and implementing a strategy for developing Timor-Leste's Blue Economy for the Nation's sustainable growth, including preserving, conserving and using our ocean resources and promoting initiatives and programmes aimed at environmental, economic and social sustainability.

4.1. Blue Economy

Timor-Leste is a coastal State with a vast maritime zone. With a coastline of about 700 km and a potential Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of about 75,000 km2, Timor-Leste's identity is anchored in the sea.

The ocean has marked Timor-Leste's past and is one of the pillars of its vision for the future. For the people of the island of Timor-Leste, the oceans are an integral part of their way of life. The seas have a spiritual significance for the Timorese people. According to legend, the Timorese are the grandchildren of the crocodile - after its death, its body became the land of Timor, the ridges on its back became the mountains and valleys, and the oceans its final home. Many Timorese depend on the oceans for their livelihoods, fishing and harvesting marine species such as tuna, octopus and seaweed. The rich coral reefs and steep underwater cliffs surrounding Timor-Leste are a growing tourist attraction. Protecting and preserving the marine environment is fundamental to safeguarding Timor-Leste's livelihoods and economic development.

The maritime sovereignty achieved after the signing and ratification of the "Treaty between the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste and Australia establishing their respective maritime boundaries in the Timor Sea" makes it possible to invest in economic and social development based on the resources in the sovereign water column (fisheries tourism and other industries and services) and based on the resources on the seabed (petroleum sector and other related industries and economic sectors). These opportunities will be further expanded by obtaining full maritime jurisdiction rights by delimiting permanent maritime boundaries with the Republic of Indonesia.

On the other hand, Timor-Leste is committed to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, in this specific case through support and commitment to Sustainable Development Goal 14, which envisages conserving and sustainably using the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development, including also, and more recently, the voluntary commitment to specific targets at the United Nations Conference in New York in June 2017 which now needs a new commitment.

In this regard, the Government will strengthen internal coordination to promote the growth of the national Blue Economy, recognising that it encompasses a broad spectrum of economic activity sectors linked to the seas and oceans, adding sustainability to the traditional Economy of the Sea, such as fishing; offshore oil and gas extraction; maritime transport; port facilities, maritime infrastructure and logistics; tourism; education training and scientific research; renewable ocean energy and marine biotechnology; defence of maritime areas, security of persons and goods, maritime surveillance, among others.

The Government will thus promote the joint and dynamic effort of various ministries and public entities, especially those with responsibilities in agriculture and fisheries, environment, foreign affairs, petroleum, State administration, defence and security, for the successful and sustainable development of the Blue Economy.

Therefore, We will first define our vision and strategy and ascertain our national value in the Blue Economy, which needs to be known to be transformed into wealth. This will be done with the involvement of all the living forces of Timorese society through the promotion of consultations and dialogue, promoting the sustainable development of current and future communities and boosting economic growth and job creation, balancing economic activity and the long-term capacity of ocean ecosystems to support that activity, thus favouring the protection of the seas and oceans.

This new national design will strengthen our maritime identity, culture, and values and foster national cohesion around preserving this universal asset of the oceans.

On the other hand, considering that we want to project the Blue Economy on the international stage and promote Timor-Leste's image and sustainable development abroad, we will encourage national campaigns and campaigns aimed at international organisations and audiences.

Within this framework, the Government will endeavour to develop the following main initiatives:

  • Draft the Timor-Leste Blue Economy Policy, revisiting the draft National Ocean Policy developed in recent years. This new national policy should include the definition and opportunities related to this sector, the economic, social and environmental benefits, the political definition of this national vision, and the initiatives to be developed in a collaborative and cross-sectoral way;
  • Prepare short and medium-term action plans to implement Timor-Leste's Blue Economy Policy, in line with the country's budget periods, which include defining the participatory integrated governance system, fostering private participation, including financial contributions to support private initiative projects, defining the legislation to be approved to support the implementation of initiatives, strengthening national maritime defence and increasing national capacity in the areas of research, investigation and education, including the revision of curricula and the promotion of school campaigns on the oceans, for the formation of a "blue generation";
  • Promote contact and establish partnerships with international organisations specialising in issues related to the Blue Economy, including the protection and conservation of the marine environment, collaboration with other States, international organisations and non-governmental organisations on the challenges faced by Timor-Leste and possible solutions to protect the marine environment; and invest in opportunities for international cooperation;
  • Train and empower young people to enable them to accompany job creation within the Blue Economy.
  • Promote and communicate the image of Timor-Leste at national and international levels through the Ha'u nia Tasi, Ha'u nia Timor campaign, according to the TASI concept: Timor-Leste, Blue, Sustainable and Innovative through various initiatives, namely:
    1. Establish a Marine Education Centre with the support of international institutions, including academia. It is proposed that plans be developed to establish a Marine Education Centre, which will anchor Timor-Leste's Blue Economy. The Centre will disseminate the importance, specificities and biodiversity of Timor-Leste's marine environment and contribute to ocean literacy for all Timorese, also through the development of targeted campaigns for educational institutions and youth and serving as a tourist attraction;
    2. Develop a Dili Coast Development Masterplan. Dili is one of the most beautiful capital cities in the world, backed by stunning mountains that descend into the tropical sea. Dili's coastline is undoubtedly the face of the city and offers excellent opportunities to become a focus for residents and tourists - a centrepiece of the Blue Economy. It is proposed that a Dili Coast Masterplan be developed to cover the area from Cristo Rei to the Comoro River;
    3. Map and publicise Timor-Leste's dive sites. Premium dive sites worldwide are usually mapped to facilitate their use and promote this burgeoning type of tourism. We will also promote diving tourism with appropriate information centres and essential infrastructure support for this activity;
    4. Establish the Ataúro National Marine Park. The waters around Atauro Island have been recognised as having the most incredible biodiversity globally, with globally significant coral reefs. Atauro's marine environment is, however, fragile and vulnerable to human threats. To protect Ataúro's biodiversity, promote tourism and improve fish stocks for artisanal fisheries, Timor-Leste may consider establishing a Marine National Park on Ataúro Island;
    5. Undertake a biodiversity assessment and mapping of coral reefs to be carried out by Atauro National Marine Park.
    6. Establish a National Centre for Cetacean Regulation, Research and Control. Timor-Leste is one of the best places in the world to watch blue whales, dolphins and sperm whales and one of the few places where people can even swim with these animals. This opportunity has just been publicised around the world and is raising a wave of international interest with high-occupancy rates for whale-watching vessels;
    7. Establish Marine Protected Areas. Significant global efforts are underway to declare Timor-Leste's marine areas as Marine Protected Areas to enable sustainable management of marine resources and ecosystems. Marine protected areas can take various forms and different types of protections and restrictions. Currently, Ataúro Island has 13 locally managed Marine Protected Areas supported by Conservation International and the Coral Triangle Centre. As a coastal State, the Government will now directly support Marine Protected Areas and create new ones.
    8. Establish a Marine Peace Park. Through bilateral, regional or multilateral cooperation, peace parks contribute to protecting and sustainably managing the terrestrial and marine environment and living resources by establishing transboundary marine protected areas. Timor-Leste will endeavour to establish these "parks", prioritising cooperation with Indonesia.
    9. Develop and implement Marine Spatial Planning within the framework of the Blue Economy to ensure a clean, healthy, productive and biologically diverse marine area. Through Marine Spatial Planning, we will ensure a coordinated and sustainable approach to our seas by mapping and analysing the use of our marine areas. This initiative includes mapping our marine resources, managing the use of the seas by the public and private sectors, conserving outstanding marine areas, protecting whale migration routes and managing recreational use to ensure that our oceans are used productively and sustainably;
    10. Tackling marine litter, especially plastics, which severely affect ocean health through awareness-raising campaigns, beach and coastal clean-ups and other initiatives for monitoring, control, reduction and mitigation of marine litter and preservation of the oceans;
    11. Preserve and promote mangrove reforestation campaigns. Mangroves, widely distributed along the northern and southern coasts of the country, are vital for the marine environment and coastal communities and for mitigating the effects of climate change. These natural tropical ecosystems are considered 'blue carbon ecosystems', and to ensure Timor-Leste maintains its vast mangrove forests, we will implement a conservation policy, drawing on science and support from conservation groups. This will include a collective effort to protect and reforest, promoting the sustainable use of these forests, educational campaigns and the involvement of coastal communities, contributing to an important tourist destination.

4.2. Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Forestry

Primary sector development is key in a country where about 75 per cent of the population resides in rural areas and where poverty levels are still high with all the other weaknesses associated with poverty.

Therefore, The Government considers agriculture the basis for the country's economic and social development. The improvement of this sector, associated with the progress of the fisheries sector and animal production, has, as a short-term result, improved the quality and well-being of all Timorese. Thus, the Government's goal is to enhance national food security, reduce rural poverty, support the transition from subsistence culture to business production of agricultural, livestock, fisheries and forestry products, and promote environmental sustainability and conservation of Timor-Leste's natural resources.

4.2.1. Agriculture

To fulfil the food security objective, the Government will expand the agricultural sector, improve cultivation practices and agricultural productivity, develop actions to improve the production of specific and systematic crops according to the potential of each region of the country, also ensuring the objective of developing the productive sectors of the Nation.

The targets and actions for this area are:

  • Invest in creating a Public Agricultural Research Laboratory to develop research programmes for all the main agricultural products in Timor-Leste. It is intended to focus, as a priority, on those that offer the most significant potential and include support for the technical aspects of agricultural production, which guarantees and identifies, through analyses, the typicities and qualities of soils, waters, plants and seeds to achieve competitive modernity;
  • Establish an Agricultural Research and Development Institute, made up of agronomists and technicians to research, execute and supervise strategies for implementing production systems with farmers throughout the territory;
  • Establish a mechanism to support the transition from subsistence to modern market-orientated agriculture;
  • Implementing new organic farming programmes, including marketing them internationally through marketing campaigns;
  • Continue to strengthen the implementation of the National Food Security Policy;
  • Rehabilitate, expand and improve the management of irrigation systems and water storage which is essential for agricultural cultivation, by reviewing the inventory of existing irrigation systems;
  • Continue to invest in the study and construction of irrigation systems according to the most modern, viable and climate-resilient techniques and methodologies;
  • Improve the management of tractor maintenance centres to ensure the operational use of tractors to support farmers;
  • Mapping agro-ecological zones for the sustainable use of agricultural machinery and equipment concerning the physical structure of the soil;
  • Continue to invest in the purchase and maintenance of agricultural machinery and equipment to support farmers;
  • Improve the agricultural extension service and the management of the farming tractor leasing programme to support farmers;
  • Continue to implement the Agricultural Mechanisation Scheme to support extensification, intensification and diversification programmes to increase agricultural production and productivity;
  • Conduct studies on dam development in Timor-Leste and implement pilot dam and groundwater utilisation projects;
  • Improving soil management and maintenance for cultivation by strengthening training for farmers and agricultural businesses;
  • Ensure Timor-Leste can reach 70% rice production by 2028 by further improving rice production techniques and systems;
  • Create conditions to increase the area of irrigated rice fields to reach 50,000 hectares by 2028;
  • Strengthen statistical, information and agro-climatic forecasting services;
  • Strengthen facilities in quarantine services to implement the protocol, standard, and database for SPS (sanitary and phytosanitary) to facilitate the import and export of agricultural products and ensures the interoperability of the Single Window system;
  • Continue to promote the use of specific rice production systems, integrated crop management and rice intensification systems;
  • Continue efforts to reduce production losses through pest control and post-harvest losses through improved harvesting, milling, and storage management systems for rice, maise, and other cereals and products;
  • Continue to subsidise producers of rice, maise, sorghum and other staple crops for the purchase of seeds, fertilisers and pesticides to increase productivity and support the improvement of the efficiency of post-harvest processes of the respective products;
  • Providing financial advice and assistance in the marketing of rice, maise, other cereals and other products to the respective producers;
  • Ensure the maise cultivation area reaches 76,500 hectares by 2028, or increase the average maise yield to 2.5 tonnes per hectare;
  • Increase the area under root and tuber crops from 48,000 hectares to 80,000 hectares by 2028;
  • Continue to invest in research, development and dissemination for specific crop varieties in Timor-Leste, such as cereals (rice, maise, sorghum, wheat, barley and rye), cassava, sweet potato and green beans;
  • Introduce agricultural zones to identify the most suitable areas for growing and marketing maise and other staple foods such as cassava, green beans, sweet potatoes and various cereals;
  • Provide training to producers of maise and other cereals, and other staple foods in the use of agricultural machinery and farm management techniques, continuing to distribute hand tractors and support their use;
  • Integrate agricultural activities with family businesses, such as processing agrarian products or using rural waste for organic fertilisers and animal feed;
  • Develop and extend special support programmes for maise, sorghum, roots and tubers in rural communities;
  • Develop and promote livestock feeding systems based on surplus maise, roots and tubers;
  • Invest in fruit and vegetable production to replace imports, encouraging the supply of high-value fruit to urban markets;
  • Support large-scale vegetable production strategically located close to urban centres through supply protocols to markets, restaurants and hotels;
  • Carry out research and investment studies to assess the potential for the development of hydroponics (a technique of growing plants without soil) in the country through a pilot project that allows the immediate production of organic vegetables;
  • Create more incentives and continue to support farmers for the production of cash crops such as coffee, coconut, vanilla, cashew, soya, groundnuts, chilli, turmeric, ginger, cinnamon, paprika and nutmeg, among others, including their processing and transformation into domestic products to create new markets;
  • Map the quantity and quality of warehouses available for storing cereals and other granular agricultural products, including beans, broad beans, peas and soya beans;
  • Strengthen inter-ministerial coordination and coordination with other relevant institutions concerning the implementation and monitoring of agricultural sector services.
  • Prioritise and invest in cash crops with the most significant potential to be promoted to commercial scale. Coffee Cultivation

  • Continue to support the production and promotion of organic and high-quality coffee, including through the advertising of Timor coffee at national and international levels;
  • Improve coffee production through the rehabilitation of coffee plantations;
  • Continue to develop adaptive coffee research studies and programmes;
  • Continue to support the Coffee Association of Timor-Leste (ACTL) and, in partnership with the private sector and development partners, continue to implement the Coffee Sector Development Plan;
  • Review the stimulus programme for the renewal and expansion of coffee plantation areas, approved through Decree-Law No. 27/2022 of 19 May, to respond to the current situation and needs of the sector;
  • Create new programmes to promote domestic industries to process plantation residues, especially coffee, into organic fertilisers and animal feed, and coconut plantation residues into materials and household goods;
  • Study the feasibility of setting up a public company to commercialise coffee.

4.2.2. Livestock

The animal husbandry sector in the country has great potential to contribute to improving the nutrition of the Timorese people, both through access to and consumption of fresh meat and dairy products. Investing in affordable and quality feed and ensuring animal vaccination and deworming is necessary to improve this sector. Currently, the surplus and waste from agricultural production are not sufficient to create a domestic animal feed processing industry which means that if there are improvements in agriculture, such as increased cultivation, or if protein sources become available through fish waste, there could be a substantial improvement in the livestock area as well.

This Government aims to increase livestock production by 20 per cent by 2028 to decrease imports of livestock products abroad. The targets and actions to be achieved for livestock development are:

  • Continue to invest in animal vaccination campaigns and provision of free vaccines and expand these programmes nationwide;
  • Implement an animal disease control management system;
  • Continue to invest in the purchase and maintenance of machinery and equipment for livestock production and veterinary services to support livestock farmers;
  • Continue national outreach campaigns on primary animal health care and improving animal nutrition;
  • Invest in education and training for this sector to establish veterinary clinics with specialised professionals and continue to develop the Livestock Development and Training Centres;
  • Establish the necessary public veterinary care infrastructure involving animal producers;
  • Establish an Animal Production Research Centre to assess which species, for example, cattle, are best adapted to Timor-Leste conditions, improve genetic quality and selective breeding techniques and contribute to improving other production parameters such as mortality rates, calving rates and daily live weight gains;
  • Support the establishment of a Cattle Breeders' Association by facilitating its establishment and related policies and initiatives;
  • Develop specialised poultry and pig production systems;
  • Promote the creation of small livestock support enterprises, including meat chilling, sorting, processing and packaging infrastructure to develop a safe and quality livestock industry;
  • Conduct demonstration campaigns on processing animal waste into organic fertilisers;
  • Promote access to financial institutions and cooperation with investors;
  • Ensure the establishment of partnerships with the private sector, national and international, for the growth of this sector in the country;
  • Increase the processing and export of livestock products (e.g. buffalo farming for milk and cheese production);
  • Creation of decentralised support services for local producers to clarify doubts, socialise veterinary campaigns (vaccination, diseases, techniques, etc.) and control the population of each species;
  • Continue to develop pasture and animal feed formulation;
  • Continue to invest in animal husbandry systems from traditional to semi-intensive and intensive and in training for technicians and farmers.

4.2.3. Fisheries

Timor-Leste has a coastline of more than 700 km and an Exclusive Economic Zone of about 72,000 km2, which means access to maritime resources with great potential for exploitation in the fisheries sector, with only the Municipality of Aileu and Ermera having no access to the coast.

On the other hand, aquaculture activities such as seaweed extraction and the farming of shrimp, abalone, crabs and oysters can also be developed along the coast, which will contribute to income generation for coastal communities.

It is, however, essential to develop strategies in this sector that take into account the different existing resources and the possible ways of exploitation since:

  1. The sea north of Timor-Leste has as its main characteristics a small coastal shelf, associated with the presence of corals with high temperatures, the depletion of nutrients by the weak water input by the streams and the absence of sea upwelling which also means that it has low recruitment of commercial species, due to the low production of phytoplankton, due to the reduced level of oxygen and high temperature, and also the significant reduction of the maternity areas, the mangroves.
  2. The sea south of Timor-Leste, with greater intensity of swell and more exposure to winds and without the protection of multiple Indonesian islands, has a more significant contribution of nutrients, either through the streams or through resurgence phenomena that, due to a longer continental shelf, allows to conserve in the zone of exposure to light, the nutrients capable of allowing the primary production of phytoplankton.

Timor-Leste, although an island, has a short tradition of fishing. This is often justified by cultural and ancestral tradition, but also because of the conditions of the environment: poor exploitation capacity of the North Sea and dangerous fishing with native resources in the South Sea. On the other hand, studies point to the fact that, even though fishing effort has been increasing in recent years, namely the number of active fishermen and the number of vessels, the total catch does not rise proportionally to the increase in fishing effort which may mean that the country may exhaust the capacity of the environment, or, little capacity for growth without damaging the environment. Therefore, there is a need to study and implement approach strategies that will increase fish production sustainably.

In summary, we will promote a fisheries sector in Timor-Leste in line with Timor-Leste's Blue Economy Policy.

Within this framework, the Government will:

  • Review the studies prepared on the fisheries sector to identify priority actions and strategies for the growth of the industry, assessing how current constraints are being overcome and efforts to increase fisheries in the future;
  • Regulate and control fishing, including minimum mesh sizes of nets, defences, protected species and other ways to protect species and prevent catches of animals before they can reproduce and thus repopulate naturally. Legislation to reduce illegal fishing, especially by foreign vessels, and the definition of surveillance zones will also be strengthened;
  • Promote campaigns among fishermen and their communities on fishing techniques that pose less risk of depleting fish production capacity and the surrounding environment;
  • Promote the consumption of fish in the country in a sustainable way through awareness campaigns on its nutritional value to increasing its consumption to 10kg/person/year;
  • Invest in the training of human resources in fisheries and aquaculture to support technical services at sea and in aquaculture;
  • Investing in deep-sea fishing with a focus on future exports, continuing to develop fishing centres along the coast, and access to better boats, equipment and training;
  • Creation of a fish conservation network for the full utilisation of the fish caught, also allowing for an increase in the catching effort and thereby guaranteeing the disposal of the fish;
  • Establish links to markets and export, also through transport systems and chilling centres, between fishing areas and points of sale and export;
  • Establish demonstration centres on the use of electronic fisheries control systems and the cutting, processing, transport and storage of fisheries products;
  • Develop alternative fish preservation processes such as salting, smoking or drying;
  • Ensure the preservation of fish and other marine environments by, among other things, defining suitable sites for commercial fishing;
  • Establish a Timor-Leste Marine Research and Development Centre;
  • Maximise the Liquiçá Aquaculture Training Centre by initiating training for fisheries technicians, fishermen, aquaculture farmers and youth;
  • Continue to invest in the development of essential infrastructure such as harbours, quays and docking facilities;
  • Develop further studies and research for aquaculture production for domestic consumption and export;
  • Develop different types of aquaculture activities in fresh, brackish and saltwater;
  • Ensure at least three types of aquaculture activities to support coastal activities;
  • Prepare studies to establish a State indirect administration entity for fisheries and aquaculture, such as the National Institute for Fisheries and Aquaculture, which could also be a source of promotion and motivation for private investment;
  • Establish a fish export market for fisheries and aquaculture products;
  • Creation of a fish auction hall with refrigeration equipment through which the State can enforce quality and food safety criteria and the reasonableness of the prices charged, providing the sector with the monitoring and organisation it still needs.
  • Review existing commercial licences and define the exploitation of marine resources in the medium and long term to secure and guarantee the country's economy;
  • Continue to invest in acquiring and maintaining fisheries and aquaculture machinery and equipment.

4.2.4. Forestry Production

Sustainable forest management for Timor-Leste's forest resources is critical for families and communities who depend on this resource for food, fuel and income generation and for farmers to consider the effect of deforestation on land erosion or slippage and water harvesting. If this does not exist, there will be no agricultural production.

Timor-Leste has already lost its native forest, such as redwood, mahogany, and sandalwood, which harms wildlife and decreases the food source. Therefore, there is an urgent need to act consistently in protecting the national forest areas, which represent about 50% of the country's land area, to make this sector economically profitable and sustainable.

The Government is committed to the following actions:

  • Continue to implement the Forest Conservation Plans, already approved in 2012 to promote reforestation and agroforestry for sustainable practices throughout the territory, including the mapping and inventorying of forest species;
  • Continue to implement legal frameworks, including the Basic Forest Law on the management and protection of forest resources;
  • Implement the Forest Investment Plans, including the identification of potential markets and comparative advantages of Timor-Leste on high-value forest products;
  • Establish the Timor-Leste Agriculture Research and Development Institute to strengthen investment and research in all agricultural sub-sectors, including forest products;
  • Continue to develop permanent nursery centres and community nurseries to support the community with seedlings (of sandalwood, red cedar, redwood, mahogany, rosewood/ ai-ná, bamboo, etc.) that can be developed to provide raw materials for small industries and carpentry for furniture production;
  • Plant 1 million trees annually throughout the territory;
  • Continue to implement the Bamboo Commercialisation Policy and Strategy;
  • Continue to invest in the production and commercialisation of bamboo, which, in addition to its versatile and profitable use, also contributes to stopping/preventing erosion or landslides and damage to the soil;
  • Promote technical and administrative training for forestry professionals;
  • Continue to strengthen intersectoral coordination, especially in the management of natural resources in a sustainable manner and promote the National System of Protected Areas and National Parks and Biodiversity Conservation.
  • Rehabilitate mangrove areas on Timor-Leste's coastlines to protect communities and coastal biodiversity;
  • Promoting the management of river basin areas through a natural resource management system based on the needs of communities;
  • Continue to invest in acquiring and maintaining machinery and equipment for forest management.
  • Approval of integrated and sustainable management plans for the "Nino Konis Santana" National Park, the "Xanana Gusmão" National Park, and the "Francisco Xavier do Amaral" Botanical Garden.

4.3. Petroleum and Mineral Resources

One of the pillars of Timor-Leste's future economic development is the petroleum and mineral resources sector which will ensure that the wealth of natural resources is utilised to build the Nation and provide progress and well-being for all Timorese people.

The national vision contained in the Strategic Development Plan (2011 - 2030) is that the necessary infrastructure for petroleum development should be implemented on the South Coast so that it can generate direct economic dividends for the entire population, either through the activities of the petroleum industry and related job creation, or through the development of supporting infrastructure on the South Coast of Timor-Leste.

This development, called the 'Tasi Mane' Project, is a multi-year programme aimed at creating two industrial hubs considered the backbone of the Timorese petroleum industry.

In the short term and to fulfil this vision, the Government will continue to engage in negotiations with the companies involved in the Greater Sunrise process, as provided for in the Maritime Boundary Treaty between Timor-Leste and Australia, to fulfil the special regime for the Greater Sunrise Fields through a pipeline to Timor-Leste.

The Tasi Mane project will not only contribute to developing the South Coast in general and the petroleum industry in particular. Still, it will also encompass a wide range of direct and indirect economic impacts at national, regional and local levels by providing financial benefits derived from exploiting Timor-Leste’s natural resources.

This project will increase the national Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and export earnings while creating employment opportunities during the construction and operation of the related infrastructure and acting as a catalyst and enabler for the development of the South Coast. Up to 10,000 direct jobs are expected to be generated from the Tasi Mane project. More than 50,000 indirect jobs could be created as the oil sector transforms from its current pure extraction phase to a more advanced industrialisation and value-addition stage.

In addition, the Tasi Mane Project will generate indirect benefits by influencing a higher economic performance of the country due to the dynamisation of other industrial sectors. The investment made by the project participants and by workers, Government and private beneficiaries will produce "multiplier effects" in that the economic activities associated with the project will have an impact on the broader economy, resulting mainly from the purchase of additional goods and services, both by workers and by companies directly or indirectly involved in the project.

Investment in productive physical assets (such as power generation facilities, roads and airports) and social assets (such as the construction of new urban and educational hubs and improved education and health services) could also benefit the economy by maximising the productivity of economic factors. One of the significant impacts of the project is the opportunities it will provide for local businesses. These opportunities include subcontracting services such as catering, engineering, security, fuel supply, management services, professional and technical services and agricultural product needs.

TIMOR GAP will continue to be mandated by the Government to manage and administer the Tasi Mane project. This Public Enterprise will support the establishment of support industries and the development of human resources required to operationalise the petroleum sector efficiently. The construction of this essential infrastructure is expected to boost and incentivise commercial investment in other projects and areas within the Tasi Mane impact area. This will transform the character of Timor-Leste's current petroleum sector from a purely extractive dimension, allowing it to evolve into a higher value-added, more industrial and diversified petroleum sector, including the development of a refinery and petrochemical industry hub and the Liquefied Natural Gas ("LNG") plant.

The Government of Timor-Leste, as the proponent and promoter of the Tasi Mane integrated project, will participate in the financing of some of these projects, and essential infrastructure, such as the Airport (already built) and the Suai logistics base. The remaining Tasi Mane projects will be built and developed based on project finance and other private or mixed investment forms.

In this regard, the Government will continue to develop studies and investment plans, considering all the necessary surroundings for the realisation of this project, including environmental impact studies to minimise negative impacts on the environment and humans.

The Tasi Mane Project consists of the following development clusters:

4.3.1. Development of a Logistics Base in Suai

A Logistics Base will be constructed and operationalised in Suai, located in Kamenasa, Covalima Municipality, which incorporates the construction of logistics and maritime facilities. This base will support all petroleum activities conducted in the Timor-Leste Exclusive Area, adjacent areas in the Timor Sea, and other general economic, commercial and industrial activities.

The Suai Logistics Base will also serve as an entry point to support the supply chain management of the activities of the other two industrial clusters, namely the refinery and petrochemical complex and the LNG plant.

This logistics base will also cover the following:

  • Land-based facilities - operations buildings, covered warehouses, mini land bases, fuel storage park, water storage tanks, waste management system, parking areas, recreational and community facilities, among others;
  • Maritime facilities - three jetty bridges consisting of the main jetty, barge jetty and landing craft ramp, supported by a tugboat berth, passenger vessel berth and a breakwater with shore connection that will provide shelter from the waves, creating a calm, safe and secure harbour for the facilities.

This project will have a huge social impact as it will be a platform driving new job opportunities, generating hundreds of jobs, supporting national economic development, and potentially improving the skills of the local labour force in areas such as steel fabrication, construction, marine construction, mechanical and electrical engineering, among others. It is also envisaged that other non-oil industries, such as commercial fishing, could benefit from the maritime facilities.

Environmental impact assessments and related public consultations were carried out for this project, and the environmental licence was granted in 2013 and subsequently renewed in 2015.

4.3.2. Development of a Petroleum Refinery and a Petrochemical Complex

The second development hub of the Tasi Mane Project is the Petroleum Refinery and Petrochemical Complex on the South Coast. These facilities are designed to convert condensate, transported to the site from the Timor Sea fields, into various fuels and other refined petroleum products. The project is expected to make Timor-Leste self-sufficient in the supply of unleaded petrol and diesel with the scope to meet a future increase in domestic demand.

The refinery complex will cover an area of more than 250 hectares. The main refinery facility comprises processing and support units such as utilities, waste treatment units, feedstock and petroleum product tanks, fire water and solid waste management landfills. The complex will have support facilities such as warehouses, an operations building, an administration building, a laboratory, a fire and safety office and a canteen. Water for refinery operations will be piped to the site from a water source 10 km from the refinery.

The initial stage of the development phase will establish a refinery to produce fuels for domestic consumption (diesel, petrol, LPG and Naphtha) and export. The refinery hub will be realised through a commercial partnership, in which TIMOR GAP will play the role of leading facilitator for the project's development.

Feasibility studies for this project have already been developed, and environmental impact studies and public consultations have already taken place. The environmental licence for the start-up of the project is currently awaited.

4.3.3. Development of a Liquefied Natural Gas Plant

The Government remains committed to developing the gas from the Greater Sunrise field by constructing a submerged pipeline to the South Coast of Timor-Leste and building and operating a Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) plant to process it.

This cluster will incorporate the LNG plant complex, associated marine facilities, and new urban areas. The existing airports on the South Coast will be rehabilitated to have the capacity to operate fly-in-fly-out (FIFO) movements of workers employed by the LNG operators, also serving as regional airports.

4.3.4. Development of the Southern Coastal Zone

The necessary infrastructure to support the oil industry, linking oil clusters or hubs, will be built and/or operationalised. This will include:

  • New towns to house workers in the sector and to rehouse residents;
  • A motorway to connect the above clusters and support the oil industry's growth along the south coast, enabling general economic development and improving people's lives. This motorway includes the construction of main bridges and a multifunctional port in Suai to support the logistics base;
  • The completed Suai airport for safe operations of light aircraft and helicopters to support oil activities. This airport will improve passenger and freight transport, including a terminal with customs and immigration facilities, a fire station and a helipad with air ambulance service facilities.

Also, in this sector, the Government will:

  • Continue to train professional and technical staff and award scholarships for specialised areas related to the oil, mining and geological industry;
  • Continue to build the capacity of communities in the municipalities that will be most directly involved in the Tasi Mane project;
  • Develop a mechanism for the use of natural gas in the country's economic activities;
  • Restructure the Companhia Mineira de Timor-Leste, S.A., which is responsible for looking after the interests of the State in the exploration of the country's mineral resources;
  • Increase ongoing study, research and promotion activities within the country and abroad to maximise investment in both the oil and mining sectors;
  • Ensure compliance with the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) by continuing to submit the required reports;
  • Ensure synergies and international cooperation in the energy resources sector;
  • Continue oil and gas exploration and development work in Timor-Leste's onshore and offshore areas through TIMOR GAP and its partners or other interested investors;
  • Ensure that revenues from oil and gas exploitation contribute to the industrialisation of the country and the development of different national economic activities and increase exports;
  • Develop additional legislation and regulations aimed at the efficient and transparent management of all activities related to the exploitation of petroleum and mineral resources in Timor-Leste, including:
    1. The revision of the Petroleum Activities Law and other complementary legislation;
    2. Review and regulate the Mining Code to enable the conduct of mining operations and complementary legislation and regulations;
    3. Pass and implement the necessary legislation to ensure the implementation of the provisions of the Maritime Boundary Treaty between Timor-Leste and Australia.
    4. The establishment of a Mineral Fund to ensure better administration of revenues collected from mineral activities in the country;
    5. Approve the necessary legislation and regulations to enable carbon capture and storage activity.

4.3.5. Development of Geological Surveys and the Minerals Sector

As with the Petroleum sector, the minerals sector is also recognised as an essential pillar for Timor-Leste's economy in the National Strategic Development Plan 2011 - 2030. If well developed, it can contribute significantly to job creation and national economic development, as most mineral development activities will occur within the national territory. Prudent and environmentally sustainable development of the minerals sector will bring high revenues to the Timorese State, contributing to the State's income.

In the minerals sector, the Government will:

  • Review and restructure the industry to increase its efficiency and effectiveness;
  • Develop research and promotion activities for mineral resource exploration blocks;
  • Promote the potential of mineral resources in the region and in areas already identified with relevant Government entities;
  • Improve technical knowledge on mineral resources to ensure the viability of investment in mineral resources.
  • Stimulate and reinforce scientific research in geoscience and specific techniques for identifying the territory's oil, gas, mineral resources, and geological risks.

4.4. Tourism

Tourism is an essential driver for the development of economic activities and also contributes to safeguarding Timor-Leste's natural and cultural heritage.

With its unrivalled natural beauty, rich history and unique cultural heritage, Timor-Leste has all the conditions to develop an original tourism sector that primarily engages its people and creates diversified businesses and employment opportunities.

The Government will, in a planned and organised manner, develop a strategy for tourism in the region without seeking to compete with mass tourism from South East Asia but can create synergies with other locations in the region, such as Flores, Moluccas and Kupang to create and develop tourism packages that attract visitors from Indonesia, Australia and other countries in Asia and the Pacific.

It could also invest in tourism based on shared historical and cultural ties, including the common denominator of the Portuguese language, promoting initiatives within the CPLP countries. However, and also considering the strategic position where Timor-Leste is inserted in the framework of ASEAN and Australia, it is also essential to enhance the secular historical and cultural relations that unite the Luso-Asian peoples present in the region, namely Malacca, Sri Lanka, Macau, Bangkok, Goa, among others. Therefore, The Government will promote innovative initiatives, making Timor-Leste a cultural centre and meeting point for these peoples, including holding a Conference of Luso-Asian Communities in Timor-Leste.

Timorese tourism has the following competitive advantages:

  1. It is one of the rare Catholic countries in the region, practising Catholic rituals that could serve as a draw for Catholic tourists to the region;
  2. It is a country with a unique and recent history with several symbolic sites to visit;
  3. It has excellent potential to develop mountain tourism and provide sports and adventure activities that attract a significant number of tourists;
  4. It has a long coastline and beautiful beaches rich in biodiversity with great potential for the development of sports, adventure and maritime activities, including snorkelling and diving;
  5. It is one of the countries included in the Coral Triangle Initiative, which aims to protect the abundance and diversity of marine life in Timor-Leste's waters with particular attention to the area around Atauro Island, now recognised as the most biodiverse underwater site in the world;
  6. It contains a unique and expanding gastronomy with a fusion of various other culinary traditions;
  7. It maintains ancestral communities, still in a natural context which can be visited and studied, both from a tourist perspective and from an anthropological and academic perspective which may also contribute to the consolidation of national identity, which is reflected in the tourist proposals and products presented;
  8. Timor-Leste’s still unexplored landscape and natural and well-preserved environmental conditions are essential catalysts for the development of community and ecological tourism;
  9. It is in the process of fully joining ASEAN, which will allow it to increase its promotion efforts in neighbouring markets;
  10. It is also located in a strategic position, a tropical destination in the Asian region, which is the most populous in the world;
  11. Timor-Leste has one of the lowest crime rates in the world.

Thus, in a global market that seeks new and authentic tourism offers, Timor-Leste can position itself with great competitiveness, especially in the region, by making a difference. It is necessary, however, to develop an effective strategy for tourist attraction, where promotion and marketing will be fundamental to affirm this competitiveness.

As a first approach, the investment will be made in promoting the following types of tourism:

  • Community and Ecological Tourism;
  • Adventure tourism (including mountaineering, diving and snorkelling and other extreme sports);
  • Religious Tourism;
  • Historical, Cultural and Ethnographic Tourism;
  • Leisure and bathing tourism;
  • Thermal Tourism.

Within this framework, the Government proposes to achieve the following targets and implement the following actions:

  • Promote Timor-Leste's sustainable marine tourism and ecotourism, including the review and implementation of logistical, regulatory, infrastructure, marine conservation and protection aspects, among others, in line with Timor-Leste's Blue Economy Policy;
  • Increase the number of tourists in the country to the maximum sustainable potential, thereby increasing domestic revenues;
  • Implement the National Tourism Policy to ensure effective, efficient and sustainable growth of the tourism sector;
  • Finalise and implement a detailed action plan with all specific measures and actions for the promotion of tourism development;
  • Review the legal regime on Gaming;
  • Creation of the Dili Marina through the implementation of the Marina Square project and the Dili Waterfront project, making this waterfront a pleasant leisure and entertainment space for the entire population and for tourists who visit us;
  • Rehabilitation of Dili's waterfront, between Avenida de Portugal (Av. dos Coqueiros) to the new Dili Marina;
  • Co-operate with the Ministry of State Administration and the Ministry of Public Works in the requalification of gardens and green spaces in population centres;
  • Continue to improve and implement legislation and regulations concerning the tourism sector;
  • Reform the conditions and services provided at the Presidente Nicolau Lobato International Airport, ensuring that tourists are well received with professional and quality services, thus improving the "first impressions" upon entering the country;
  • Establish the Tourism and Hospitality Training Centre in Dili (PED);
  • To recognise the Tais Market, in the centre of Dili, as one of the leading and most visited tourist attractions in the city, dignifying the space and valuing the work of its traders, involving them in the design of a welcoming building that fits the nature of its mission with the appropriate support equipment, cafeteria, and museum and interpretation area related to the manufacture of Tais;
  • Continue to ensure technical training in the field of tourism throughout the country, oriented towards the various types and activities of tourism (religious tourism, community and ecological tourism, adventure tourism, etc.;)
  • Improve tourism signage and promotional materials throughout the country to attract and guide tourists;
  • Build and energise Crocodile Management Parks, increasing beach safety while preserving the species and promoting the tourist attraction of an animal that is a formal symbolic representation of Timorese identity;
  • Continue to develop comprehensive tourism packages for the Eastern, Central and Western Tourist Zones;
  • Encourage permanent inter-ministerial dialogue, as tourism is dependent on a set of conditions in terms of safety, health, public works, environment, sport, and culture, among others which combine with the way the country is promoted and visitors are received;
  • Improve coordination and strengthen partnerships with the private sector in the development of tourism infrastructure and offers;
  • Expand Tourist Information Centres to all municipalities (PED 2015);
  • Extend the Community Tourism Programme to all municipalities;
  • Review, improve and streamline the website and promotional materials on Timor-Leste and ensure their maximum publicity in the region and globally;
  • Continue to carry out feasibility studies and implement the historical tourism projects, including the training of the respective tour guides;
  • Continue to implement the annual national and international tourism events such as the Carnival parade, the Darwin-Dili regatta, the Tour de Timor and the Artistic Caravan and Traditional Dances and Music Festival and Gastronomy Festival;
  • Strengthen inter-sectoral coordination mechanisms for the promotion and development of the tourism sector.

4.5. Trade

The formulation of trade policies will allow the flow of products from the primary and secondary sectors at national and international levels, and the increase in the export of products generates wealth for the industry and, consequently, its growth.

The Government will continue to implement measures to regulate commercial activities and approve policies for expanding markets, including disseminating products with added economic value through marketing and public relations strategies that promote Timor-Leste and its products in the region and the world.

Within this framework, the Government will:

  • Strengthen the role of the commercial private sector;
  • Strengthening the National Logistics Centre;
  • Review and expand projects to build goods transit warehouses in the land border area;
  • Build quality municipal markets;
  • Develop mechanisms for certification, promotion, dissemination, marketing and physical distribution of national products;
  • Finalise full membership of the World Trade Organisation and ASEAN;
  • Build shopping centres that will support regional development areas, following the National Planning Framework;
  • Invest in training and capacity-building of the private sector to improve national and international competitiveness;
  • Increase inspection and surveillance of commercial activities;
  • Strengthen the capacity of the Authority for Inspection and Supervision of Economic, Health and Food Activity (AIFAESA) for quality control, transport and health conditions of foodstuffs and production and marketing sites, including the introduction of the "complaints book" in commercial establishments, initially still as a pilot project to make the proper assessment as to its actual or not application;
  • Implement and improve the legal framework for commercial activities;
  • Strengthen and build the capacity of the Timor-Leste Institute for Quality;
  • Carry out feasibility studies necessary for the establishment of Free Trade Zones (FTZ);
  • Establish the Trade Information Portal.

4.6. Industry

Timor-Leste's vision of a modern, diversified economy will depend on investing in the growth of three primary industries: agriculture, tourism and petroleum, as it has considerable advantages due to its natural resources, geographical location and economic profile.

However, Timor-Leste has all the conditions to develop other industries which are subsidiary to developing the primary production sectors.

Agro-industry, i.e. the processing of meat, dairy, fish and agricultural products into excellent, organic by-products, could give rise to reference brands with export potential to select, higher-priced markets.

Timor-Leste will invest in transforming raw materials for packaging products, furniture, and construction, among others, to multiply the opportunities for change of the various natural resources, aiming at local supply, reducing the need for imports, and exporting original and value-added products.

With the development of the agricultural sector, there are conditions for more excellent cereal, fruit and vegetable and livestock production of a semi-intensive and, in particular, extensive type. If we combine this growth with the promotion of agro-industry, this could lead to the sustainable development of the country since we enhance the spontaneous development of local commercial markets and possibly their distribution at the national level, optimising endogenous resources and protecting the environment, respecting the self-regeneration capacity of the ecosystem.

By growing the industrial sector in a planned manner, the Government can thus promote the following objectives:

  • Increase the supply of consumer goods essential to the well-being of local communities;
  • Create employment opportunities;
  • Boost and valorise the development of the primary sector: agriculture, fisheries, livestock and forestry;
  • Develop small and medium-sized enterprises, drawing on local human and material resources;
  • Increasing the role of the private sector in rural development;
  • Contribute to the reduction of imported goods by increasing the production of quality domestic goods;
  • Preserve the environment by ensuring that industrial areas minimise harmful impacts on the environment and have adequate water supply, solid waste collection and a sewage system for industrial waste.

The Government will therefore focus on the industry as one of the key drivers of national economic development, leveraged on rural development through the following main actions:

  • Finalise the National Industry Development Policy based on the National Planning Framework, determining production priorities concerning available resources, including the selection of priority products for domestic consumption and export;
  • Review the legal framework in the field of industrial property, industrial licensing, including issues related to the location of industrial units and parks, ensuring environmental preservation;
  • Continue to support and allocate public credits to small industries;
  • Support the establishment of industrial production units, in particular agro-industries, and promote industrial incubator centres;
  • Promote the creation and development of industrial parks through coordination with relevant ministries;
  • Establish Tibar Industrial Park (Tibar Industrial Park feasibility study has been conducted to ensure storage of products for import/export and local products to replace imported products);
  • Implement an industrial property register;
  • Develop business and technical training for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises and industries involving the banking sector;
  • Introduce new technologies in the primary and secondary sectors to develop agro-industry;
  • Developing campaigns with farmers and agricultural producers for the transition from primary to industrial activities, ensuring their involvement and motivation;
  • Develop partnerships with the private sector, national and international, for cooperation in this sector and also for the transfer of scientific and technical knowledge;
  • Coordinate with relevant Government entities, namely the Ministry of Education, for the introduction of curricula aimed at agro-industrial production, namely at the level of Technical-Vocational Secondary Education;
  • Continue to invest in small industrial projects producing salt, coconut oil and soap, spices and bottled water, among others;
  • Operationalise, strengthen and expand the plastic recycling industry in Timor-Leste;
  • Strengthen the production and implementation of legislation that takes into account environmental protection in the context of industrial sector growth;
  • Review the legal regime of GESPIN - Gestão de Parques Industriais, S.A.

4.7. Private Sector

According to the 2022 Census, around 48.7% of the population is under 20. Therefore, in the next 5 to 10 years, hundreds of thousands of young people will enter the labour market with the legitimate aspiration to create their livelihood dignifiedly and be inserted in a fair economy that values their work. In this context, the private sector, regardless of its vocation and size, is and will be one of the main drivers of the national economy, ensuring job creation and, as such, constituting one of the most significant factors in combating poverty, improving the Nation's social capital.

A private economy, healthy, sustained and with rigorous accountability, will provide the country, in addition to the statistical elements for the excellent orientation of national management, a large part of the tax revenue, which will be decisive in sustaining the general budget of the State and solve the main social problems of Timor-Leste.

Diversifying the economy is, therefore, one of the main goals to be achieved by this Government, and it is necessary to create the fiscal and bureaucratic conditions that allow a greater predisposition for national and international investors to commit to the country. On the other hand, all transversal policies that include the development of social capital, the development of infrastructures and the development of the governance sector are inseparable from boosting economic growth and creating conditions for entrepreneurship.

Also, in this context, the development of the National Planning Framework with a view to the creation of Development Hubs and Special Economic Zones will be fundamental to installing "business areas" or "industrial zones" in the country, according to the specificities and potentialities of each region, and, from there, attract the private sector and sustainably create jobs:

  • Improve national entrepreneurship policies, which include valuing and educating for entrepreneurship, removing barriers and supporting entrepreneurship, and covering access to information and know-how;
  • Establish a Centre for Entrepreneurship Support to provide support services for new businesses;
  • Develop studies for the allocation of incentives to the private sector, notably to support the creation and growth of small businesses;
  • Develop studies and reform the legal framework of the financial sector (repeal the UNTAET regulation still in force, prevent financial abuses, etc.);
  • Prepare investment studies and business plans for the establishment of a Timor-Leste Investment Bank as a strategic partner of the State in promoting public investments, which will also increase entrepreneurship and, consequently, the emergence of national and international companies;
  • Carry out studies for the regulation of insurance and promote the development of this sector to create national insurers;
  • Strengthen the institutions responsible for producing accurate national statistics to inform the Private Sector, nationally and internationally;
  • Update the "Investor's Guide" every two years;
  • Expand and strengthen the capacities of the Institute for Support to Enterprise Development (IADE);
  • Strengthen and build the capacity of the Timor-Leste Investment and Export Promotion Agency (TradeInvest);
  • Reform the Business Registration and Verification Services (SERVE);
  • Promote the creation and development of cooperatives, especially in rural areas, which will be an integral part of the rural economy development package to empower entrepreneurship and encourage small businesses in productive sectors, especially in agriculture, fisheries and livestock, by creating a favourable environment for the creation of cooperatives and supporting the expansion of existing cooperatives in a sustainable manner;
  • Encourage and support the creation of micro and medium-sized enterprises with a particular focus on the development of rural areas through capacity-building programmes, access to credit and the creation of markets;
  • Continue to develop the "Business Incubator" programme allowing access to business finance according to the criteria and priorities defined by the Government;
  • Ensure continued and reinforced investment in vocational training across all of the country's strategic activities to develop a national portfolio of skilled professionals to support private enterprise;
  • Continue to develop and participate in international initiatives, events and conferences to promote strategic partnerships between Timorese and international companies;
  • Improve communication and strategic partnerships between the public and private sectors so that priorities are better aligned and the private sector can be a better strategic partner for the Government;
  • Review the activities of the National Bank of Commerce of Timor-Leste;
  • Continue to cooperate with the Timor-Leste Chamber of Commerce and Industry;
  • Reactivate the TIA-GT (Timor-Leste, Indonesia & Australia Growth Triangle) to support the establishment of the sub-regional integrated economic development platform and the formalisation of a strategy for this growth triangle which will enhance private investment in the country through the synergies created between companies/industries, cooperatives and Chambers of Commerce and Industry of the three countries, acting in particular in Oe-Cússe Ambeno;
  • Continue to review and produce new legislation that promotes the development of the private sector in an efficient, transparent and sustainable manner;
  • Improve systems and procedures harmoniously and simplified, including providing readable forms and documents in several working languages necessary for the business relationship between the State and investors.

4.8. Employment

The structural changes the Government proposes to implement in the economy will provide employment opportunities for the Timorese people. As the economy grows and the agricultural and private sectors can be transformed for greater productivity, an investment in education and health builds a more skilled labour force. Timorese people will contribute more strongly to the economy's growth.

As the economy develops, the service sector tends to expand, and this increase corresponds to more significant opportunities for job creation with a particular focus on women.

The Government's employment policy is reflected throughout its programme, as investments in the various development sectors will contribute to a healthier and more productive workforce, a better educated and skilled workforce and, with the diversification of national production, more significant opportunities for job creation.

The Government will:

  • Review, approve and implement the National Employment Strategy 2017-2030, which aims to increase labour market demand, improve labour market supply and further strengthen labour market institutions;
  • Promote the creation of jobs for young people, adults and women, always ensuring the principle of equal opportunities, regardless of gender;
  • Put in place mechanisms to combat precarious work, including through monitoring of companies and employers and ensuring the implementation of labour regulations and social protection schemes;
  • Expanding the number of employees working abroad, strengthening cooperation protocols and improving the monitoring of these processes and follow-up of employees;
  • Establish an Employment and Vocational Guidance Centre in each municipality (SDP 2020);
  • Regulate the Labour Law (and revise if necessary), strengthen dialogue mechanisms to increase productivity and propose regulation of domestic work;
  • Improve conflict resolution mechanisms at work, including through mediation and conciliation mechanisms;
  • Raising the skills of workers, especially young people, to increase their competitiveness in the international labour market;
  • Provide young final-year students with a career advice programme, including career exhibitions to be held in all municipalities;
  • Increasing Temporary Employment Programmes by establishing partnerships with friendly nations;

4.9. Cooperatives

Cooperatives, particularly agricultural cooperatives, are strategically important for national development. The formation of cooperatives is a way to encourage private sector growth in rural areas and stimulate active participation in the national economic system.

The Government will continue to invest in human resource training and institutional capacity at the level of cooperatives and provide tools and equipment, raw materials and cash concessions to improve their infrastructure and increase the quality of their products to expand markets and grow trade activities.

Increasing and socialising ideas and possible projects with families and communities could also be a way to create conditions for the development of cooperatives and family economies.

Some of these may be:

  1. Honey Production: Timor-Leste produces honey and wax that can be harnessed for developing cooperatives and, consequently, improving the family economy. An organised commitment to honey production, with the support of a cooperative, could be an essential contribution to the family economy;
  2. Bread production: investing in rainfed sowings, especially for wheat and sorghum, and barley and rye for flour and bread production, can be an essential strategy of direct benefit to households and communities. Support cereal production and milling techniques and, consequently, bakery cooperatives (or later their industrialisation);
  3. Dairy farming: investment in livestock farming, especially cattle breeding, could encourage producers to process milk from cows, buffaloes and goats into dairy products and yoghurt and other derivatives, contributing to improved nutrition and the family economy;
  4. Production of coconut oil and its derivatives;
  5. Salt and candle nut production.

The Government in this area will continue to:

  • Provide public support and concessions to cooperatives conducting private sector activities in various areas;
  • Encourage cooperative, associative and mutual movements to ensure community participation and benefit the dynamics of the third sector in the fight against social and economic inequalities;
  • Encourage organised civil society responses to social needs through the provision of goods and services and a social use of surpluses;
  • Facilitate access to credit for cooperatives;
  • Review credit access systems for credit unions, including simplification of processes;
  • Promote exchanges between cooperatives;
  • Encourage the supply of raw materials produced by cooperatives to industries in each sector and for direct distribution/sale to consumers;
  • Propose and build and rehabilitate local Storage Centres according to the production needs of the cooperatives and according to existing conditions;
  • Encourage the supply of food and other goods produced by cooperatives for school meals;
  • Coordinate with the National Logistics Centre and the private sector in the procurement of the cooperatives' production;
  • Promote capacity-building of cooperatives through technical training to make them more efficient;
  • Review the recently approved legal framework for cooperatives;
  • Promote recruitment and train new managers capable of managing cooperatives efficiently and effectively.

4.10. Environment

According to the Constitution of the Republic, everyone has the right to a humane, healthy and ecologically balanced living environment and the duty to protect and improve it for the benefit of future generations. The State recognises the need to preserve and enhance natural resources. The State must promote actions to defend the environment and safeguard the sustainable development of the economy.

The Timorese people have a solid connection to their environment, not only for survival but also for cultural and anthropological reasons. However, in addition to natural causes such as rainfall, unbalanced exploitation, or even destruction of the environment, it has led to chronic soil erosion, including excessive felling of trees and forests, burning, and lack of planning and monitoring of agricultural activities and infrastructure construction.

Erosion and landslides cause soil degradation and water catchment damage, decreasing groundwater quantity and quality and threatening wildlife and food resources. In addition, socio-economic habits such as using firewood for cooking and air pollution caused by car and motorbike emissions and forest fires have contributed to the increase in respiratory diseases.

Also, climate change, with the consequent rise in sea level and extreme weather conditions, leading to flooding, food insecurity, change in chemical composition and sea temperature affecting coral reefs, is a serious environmental challenge that Timor-Leste has to respond to and put in place prevention mechanisms.

It is emphasised that this is an added challenge for Timor-Leste, considering its embryonic stage of development with the clear need for the growth of industries to support economic growth. However, it is also emphasised that Timor-Leste's contribution to the problem of climate change is minuscule, as Timor-Leste is one of the countries that emits the least carbon dioxide, in contrast to emerging and developed nations.

It is also important to note that the defence and conservation of the environment, including the promotion of biodiversity, is an essential contribution to developing an industry with solid potential, namely the growth of the tourism sector.

In this regard, the Government will pursue the following priority objectives in the environment:

  • Revise and strengthen an environmental institutional and legal framework for the sustainable use of natural resources, including better planning and monitoring of the country's cross-cutting development sectors, which prevents environmental deterioration and improves the country's environmental management;
  • Promote awareness-raising campaigns on environmental issues and develop content and actions that enable generalised environmental education focused on preserving the environment for children, young people, adults and communities;
  • Improve cross-sectoral coordination to include environmental concerns in the country's development programmes, including in the areas of agriculture and fisheries, infrastructure development tourism and exploitation of energy resources;
  • Build capacity and improve the institutions and bodies responsible for the management, monitoring and enforcement of environmental issues with priority given to localities and intervention areas most at risk of environmental degradation;
  • Strengthen national and international partnerships for better environmental management.

To this end, the Government proposes to develop the following actions:

  • Implement the legal regime for environmental management, protection and conservation, including approved strategies and action plans (including national biodiversity legislation, wildlife protection, etc.);
  • Continue to monitor and endorse international agreements, programmes and mechanisms related to environmental management and conservation and climate change, including their translation into national legislation and implementation of the measures and standards adopted (HCFC emission reduction, the Vienna Convention on ozone, international conventions UNFCCC, UNCCD, UNCBD, Paris Agreement, etc.);
  • Introduce new programmes and campaigns to reduce burning and forest fires during the dry season, including gradually replacing the use of firewood as an energy source;
  • Develop the waste collection and treatment programme (solid and liquid) throughout the country, with priority given to the Dili area;
  • Continue to ensure the implementation of the Healthy Juice Award and develop the "Habali Ambiente" (Addressing the environment) Award for commercial, industrial and private entities promoting the polluter-pays principle, biodiversity conservation, carbon emission reduction or other measures aimed at improving the environment;
  • Develop and implement the regulation for the control of air, noise and soil pollution and air pollution from gases emitted by vehicles;
  • Continue to invest in human resource capacity in environmental monitoring, including the use of new environmental methodologies and tests;
  • Establish an environmental laboratory to conduct environmental testing, inspection, monitoring and enforcement;
  • Produce environmental statistics on Timor-Leste and ensure their dissemination, both for executive decision-making and for the broader knowledge of the general public;
  • Implement the National Strategy for marine litter mitigation;
  • Implement the National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan;
  • Work together with CPLP and ASEAN on the commitment to develop the "Oceans Strategy", which cuts across areas such as the environment and economy;
  • Continue to invest in an extensive network of national terrestrial and marine parks that protect representative samples of the country's biodiversity;
  • Encourage more excellent knowledge of environmental protection and environmental principles in formal education curricula, and promote campaigns and actions through non-formal education;
  • Develop the National System of Protected Areas and National Parks and Biodiversity Conservation;
  • Develop coordination between the Government entity with responsibility for the environmental sector and the Government entity with responsibility for the tourism sector to set up programmes to protect specific ecosystems, such as turtles, corals, etc.;
  • Implement the "Zero Plastics Policy" throughout the territory and develop effective programmes to combat plastics to replace them wherever possible, including raising awareness of the harm of plastic use, especially the degradation of Timor's seas, and developing the plastic recycling industry.
  • Continue the identification and collation of biodiversity data, including ecosystem mapping of different areas of the terrestrial, marine, lake, wetland and other ecosystems at risk;
  • Promote and strengthen good cultural practices aimed at environmental protection, nature conservation, and protection of sites with relevant biodiversity heritage;
  • Promote an environmental sector in Timor-Leste in line with Timor-Leste's Blue Economy Policy, including campaigning on specific environmental issues affecting the seas and oceans as they are under enormous anthropogenic pressure and its consequences, notably related to pollution, climate change and overfishing or aggressive fishing.


"Timor-Leste is a low-income country with a nascent private sector, limited economic diversification and mainly focussed on agricultural production. However, our country has considerable economic opportunities and strong potential to become a middle-income Nation."

While much progress has been made in this area, Timor-Leste must continue to invest in strategic planning for a modern and diversified economy. Boosting productive sectors around four key industries – agriculture, tourism, petroleum and minerals, and manufacturing - by studying and harnessing existing natural resources, taking advantage of geographic location and population profile, is a simple and sound strategy to drive much-needed economic diversification and mitigate dependence on petroleum revenues.

Job creation and the promotion of entrepreneurship is both a factor and a result in the pursuit of this economic development goal, and the Government must create conditions so as not to be alienated from young people while promoting the private sector, resources that are fundamental to increasing national productivity and creating opportunities for sustainable economic growth.

The Government of Timor-Leste will transform its natural wealth from its soils or seas into food security, health, productivity and job creation opportunities. It will also transform hydrocarbons into opportunities for development and well-being for the entire population through infrastructure development, the private sector and job creation. It will also transform its people's wealth, natural landscape and unique culture into entrepreneurship and increased incomes across the country.

To this end, it is essential to develop a National Planning Framework to implement Development Hubs in the various regions of the country, which defines the specific characteristics of each region and the growth potential of each sector and subsector, according to the local resources available, for the implementation of actions and strategies for sustainable growth and equitable development throughout the country, under the motto that "if nature is rich, the people cannot be poor".

For this, the process of Administrative Decentralisation is crucial so that in each Municipality, its citizens strive to know the existing potentials, discuss and plan objectively how to boost economic activities in each Region of the country.

5.1. Macroeconomic Policy

One of the objectives of the macroeconomic policy of the 9th Government is to create labour fields for all, especially young people and welfare for the entire population. Thus, the Government aims to develop new labour camps, reduce the unemployment rate, and reduce the minimum poverty rate to 10% over the next five years.

To achieve these objectives, macroeconomic policy will enhance economic development with high, inclusive and sustainable growth, diversification of the economy through the development of productive sectors (agriculture, livestock, fisheries tourism, oil and minerals and manufacturing), promotion of private sector investment to strengthen fiscal sustainability and develop the financial industry.

Over the next five years, the Government aims to achieve an average economic growth above 5% and an inflation rate in line with that defined in the Strategic Development Plan 2011-2030 with the high contribution of the private sector in productive sectors. The Government will create the conditions to increase private sector investment by at least 10 per cent each year to contribute to the diversification of the economy, expanding the tax base, thus enabling fiscal sustainability objectives and contributing to inclusive and sustainable development.

The Government will first develop infrastructure and human resources and strengthen public institutions to enable macroeconomic policy implementation to achieve its objectives. As a precondition for stimulating the development of other sectors, the Government will further develop infrastructure to support economic growth and strengthen productivity and connectivity.

5.2. Financial Sector

The financial sector in Timor-Leste is limited only to the banking sector, and the financial market is still non-existent. The Financial Market facilitates money from those with more capital (surplus) to those who need it most through direct and indirect mechanisms. A comprehensive and transparent Financial Market enables investment in productive sectors and boosts economic growth. The Government will work with the relevant entities, namely the Central Bank of Timor-Leste (BCTL), to promote the development of the financial sector by creating an enabling environment, facilitating the business activities of the banking sector, insurance institutions, microcredit institutions and the financial market in Timor-Leste.

The financial sector development policy will contribute to the shift in the economy's structure which is mainly dependent on public spending (public sector-driven economy), to a sustainable economy underpinned with private sector activities (private sector-driven economy).

Within this framework, the Government will also:

  • Review the legal framework for the financial sector and repeal outdated legislation that is still in force;
  • It creates a financial regime that is consistent with the legal and institutional framework to prevent financial sector malpractice;
  • Promote the establishment of a general regime of real guarantees on movable and immovable property and the asset register and establish a coordinated management with the intervention of all competent Ministries;
  • Carry out studies to develop the insurance sector, which is essential for the development of private-sector investment;
  • Establish a scheme for the introduction of an accounting standard to facilitate access to credit and incentivise the improvement of the formal economy;
  • Promote the creation of treasury bonds (T-Bonds, T-Bills, T-Notes) to diversify the sources of financing public expenditure and maximising capital (liquidity) to promote national development.

5.2.1. Development Bank of Timor-Leste (BDTL)

Private sector development in Timor-Leste is not progressing, mainly because it is limited to State projects and needs access to credit and financing at a long-term and affordable interest rate. Businesses need credit to invest. There is a need to increase access to credit in Timor-Leste to rehabilitate hotels, facilitate the purchase of goods by retailers with variety and in large quantities, and facilitate the purchase of equipment by construction companies to construct housing and offices. Although commercial banks have increased market liquidity, credit to the private sector still accounts for less than 15% of total assets (deposit/loan ratio). Existing banks only lend to international organisations, their home country companies, and sectors that rely heavily on Government contracts and public investment.

The Government will establish a Development Bank of Timor-Leste (BDTL) to facilitate access to long-term finance at affordable interest rates. This Bank will provide opportunities for Timorese businesses to sustain themselves, create jobs, build infrastructure, and contribute to economic diversification. This Bank will focus on meeting the demand for credit in the strategic areas of the Nation, relating to the growth of the private sector and the development of the financial market. The State will be the "Owner" of the bank and will also have the contribution of Timorese capital. This bank will have clear, strict investment guidelines, independent administrative and commercial operations, and high governance standards.

5.2.2. National Bank of Commerce of Timor-Leste (BNCTL)

Access to credit continues to create problems for small businesses and Timorese citizens, including those living in rural areas. Lack of credit prevents small businesses from expanding, limiting the ability of Timorese to establish businesses and therefore creating a barrier to economic growth. BNCTL must expand its service in municipalities and administrative posts through mobile banking. The Government will continue to support BNCTL and its expansion to serve our population through banking services and credits, providing access to financial services to all Timorese and micro, small and medium enterprises in both urban and rural areas. The Government will continue to support the Central Bank and the Commercial Bank and establish the Development Bank to facilitate a comprehensive banking system accessible to all citizens, including projects such as mobile phone banking, financial inclusion, internet banking and electronic payments.

5.2.3. Micro and Credit Union

Efforts to generate a sustained national economy in Timor-Leste rely heavily on the incentives created around micro-enterprises or, better still, family businesses.

Several established micro and credit union institutions have already provided credit services to many people. The Government will continue to assist these institutions to expand their services and facilitate access to credit for the people, especially micro and small enterprises in rural areas.

5.3. Public Finance

Public Finance is an essential factor in the development process in Timor-Leste. Therefore, the Government will continue to improve and strengthen fiscal policy and public finance management with transparency, accountability, efficiency and sustainability as one of the priorities during its mandate.

Improving fiscal policy and public financial management will be done through the "Public Financial Management Reform" by strengthening the management and promoting the implementation of improvements in tax and fee collection, in the mobilisation and management of public debt and external resources, in the direction of the Petroleum Fund, in the progress of budget planning, budget execution, financial decentralisation, management of public funds (including the Social Security Reserve Fund) and State assets, including State shareholdings in enterprises.

5.3.1. Public Finance Management Reform

The Fiscal Reform implemented in the mandate of the 6th Constitutional Government will be replaced by the "Public Finance Management Reform" to be implemented by the 9th Government, which commits to comprehensive reform in public finance to increase State revenues and the transparency and efficiency of fiscal policy and financial management. The Public Finance Management Reform reinforces fiscal strategy, strengthens resource mobilisation, promotes programme-based budgeting, rationalises public expenditure, increases accountability and transparency, and promotes financial decentralisation.

Public financial management reform will be achieved by defining a fiscal strategy, diversifying external resources, improving the implementation of programme-based budgeting, rationalising public expenditure, increasing accountability and transparency, and strengthening financial decentralisation.

5.3.2. Taxes and Fees Reform

In the area of taxation, the Public Finance Management reform aims to diversify revenues, enabling the Government to reach a minimum of 15 per cent domestic revenue of total Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by 2028. This is essential to free us from our dependence on Petroleum Fund revenues. To achieve this goal, the Government will continue to improve the administration, human resources, system and infrastructure of the Tax Authority and Customs Authority, revise the Tax Law and introduce the "Value Added Tax (VAT)".

On the other hand, the Government intends to increase revenues through greater efficiency and effectiveness in tax collection while keeping the tax burden neutral and competitive in the Region by identifying and regulating existing revenue potentials and by improving the capacities of public institutions that aim to carry out tax and non-tax collection (national and municipal).

One of the main objectives is to increase and diversify revenues, so the Government will ensure that the bodies, services and staff of the Tax Authority, the Customs Authority and the other public entities responsible for collecting non-tax revenues are fully set up.

5.3.3. Efficiency and Effectiveness of Public Expenditure

In the last five years, there has not been full rigour in the transparency and efficiency of implementing the public finance management reform.

In this regard, the 9th Government will make much-needed and crucial changes to ensure that public spending is carried out effectively, efficiently and transparently and that those who carry it out are accountable. To this end, the Government will continue to strengthen financial decentralisation to public institutions and regional and municipal authorities, building the capacity of public institutions such as the National Development Agency (ADN), Major Projects Secretariat and National Procurement Commission (CNA) to finalise, process and carry out project supervision accurately, upgrade and apply the financial IT system and transparency to all public entities including RAEOA and ZEESM by linking the IT system used by relevant institutions in the public sector with the financial IT system and reviewing and improving the Budget and Financial Management Law and the Procurement and Public Procurement Regime, gradually transforming the State accounting system from the cash basis system to the accrual basis system and continuing to implement and improve the "programme budgeting" policy.

A career regime based on performance evaluation of professionals in public finance management will also be implemented to strengthen human resources in finance, ensuring that public financial resources are managed with rigour to finance the process of building the State and the Nation. This effort will also target the technical and professional preparation of Human Resources, which is necessary for Administrative Decentralisation.

5.3.4. Programme Budgeting

In the last five years, the 8th Government has failed to prove that it has any programme for the development of the country and has come up with several 'packages' of absolutely irrelevant spending measures which have only led the State to enter into superfluous and useless expenditure, indicative of corruption.

Public resources are limited, so public expenditure must always have a significant impact to ensure the efficiency and effectiveness of public spending and contribute to the common good. In this context, this Government is committed to resuming the "programme budgeting" policy, which must be taken up in all national and municipal public institutions.

Therefore, the Government will implement this commitment as a component of the Public Financial Management Reform, creating a system of interconnection between budget and planning which aims to define the objectives, targets and impacts of public service to the populations in the short, medium and long term, and to monitor and evaluate this interconnection.

5.3.5. Procurement and Transparency in Public Finance

One of the critical components of Public Financial Management Reform is the public procurement process. To improve some practices realised in the last five years, a revision of the Procurement and Public Contracts Regime will be implemented in this mandate, and the capacity of public institutions to carry out procurement will be improved. Procurement laws and rules will be reviewed and updated to ensure that the public procurement process at national, regional and municipal levels is carried out in a practical, transparent and non-discriminatory manner and to facilitate the development of the private sector, including the local private sector. These revisions are necessary to adjust the procurement laws and rules in stages and a process of enveloping development.

The Government also has a solid commitment to continue promoting transparency and accountability for public finances based on the following actions:

  • Further develop e-Public Finance Management and promote transparency through the Budget Transparency Portal, the e-Procurement Portal, the Aid Transparency Portal and the Government Results Portal;
  • Coordinate with relevant entities to regularly audit public expenditures;
  • Continue to strengthen cooperation with the Chamber of Accounts to promote transparency and accountability of public spending;
  • Strengthen inspection bodies, namely the State General Inspection, to increase and improve inspections and audits of public entities in an accountable and independent manner.

5.3.6. Public Debt

The Government will continue to manage with rigour the money already borrowed and what will be borrowed in the future. The funds borrowed from financial institutions and/or the financial market will be used only to finance investment in productive sectors, which will be the Government's capacity to repay in the future. Thus, the policy of borrowing to obtain cheap money (interest below 3%) to finance infrastructure projects with significant economic, financial and greater social returns will be continued to stimulate development and facilitate economic diversification.

In this regard, improving the capacity of relevant public institutions to supervise and ensure investment quality should always be considered.

The Government will approve the Treasury Bond Regime (T-Bonds, T-Bills, T-Notes) to diversify the sources of financing of the general State budget. This will require an amendment to the Public Debt Act to allow the funding of general Government expenditure through these treasury bills.

5.3.7. Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs)

The PPP modality will continue to promote the process of diversifying spending to finance significant investments. The Government will identify projects from the sectors with high potency to create varied multiplier effects. In this context, the Government will need to continue to improve the laws and rules and the capacities of the Ministry of Finance’s PPP Unit to monitor and manage the investment of the Tibar Port project well, even after the end of construction. The PPP Unit should also be equipped with the capacity to identify strategic projects through negotiation with the private sector and manage the PPP portfolio with rigour.

5.3.8. Public Sector Participation in Private Investment (Fair Share)

Timor-Leste is considered one of the high-risk countries for private investment. To achieve financial diversification (revenue and expenditure) and to promote investment and job creation, the Government will encourage equity participation programmes for private sector investment.

Currently, Timor-Leste has the Petroleum Fund that is invested in the international market with an average annual return of 4%. Therefore, the Government intends that in its investment policy, the Petroleum Fund can consider the investments made by the companies in shares it holds. Thus, the investment made in Timor-Leste will determine the purchase of private sector shares if the asset has a high financial and economic return.

To make this commitment feasible, the Government will strengthen the capacities of existing State-owned enterprises to direct their activity to promote investments in Timor-Leste and assess the financial and economic effects for the State, promoting the establishment and activities of State-owned enterprises for productive sectors and establish the Timor-Leste Investment Corporation (TLIC) and capitalise State-owned companies, such as Timor-GAP by business plan. Therefore, the Government will approve the State Enterprise Sector Regime to improve the monitoring of State-owned enterprises and promote the participation of the State in private investments and contribute to their financial and economic return.

Based on Equity Participation, the financial diversification mechanism is intended to be implemented by the Government, as it will stimulate private sector investments, promote infrastructure development, and contribute to the diversification of the economy and job creation to raise revenue for the State.

5.3.9. Timor-Leste Investments (TLIC)

The Government will establish TLIC to act as a State investment company. TLIC will be funded by the Government so that TLIC can make independent commercial investments that allow for a high financial return or multiplicative effects for socio-economic development, representing an added value in economic, professional, and social terms for the Timorese people. Priority will be given first to inward investment in the country and/or other countries where the Timorese community is vital. As a State-owned investment company, TLIC may also capitalise on other State-owned companies as part of its business activities. The investment decision TLIC makes should be based on commercial and/or economic, professional and social principles and objectives.

5.3.10. Management of the Petroleum Fund

The Government will continue to work together with the National Parliament and the Central Bank of Timor-Leste to maintain good management of the Petroleum Fund as the sole financial resource for Timor-Leste. This commitment will be reflected through the Government's policy to maintain good governance with transparency, sustainability and prudent investment for the Petroleum Fund.

The system of checks and balances will be strengthened to ensure that the use of the Petroleum Fund to meet the needs of the State is always authorised by the National Parliament. On the other hand, the Petroleum Fund will continue to be invested with rigour and prudence in the financial market (bonds, equities) and petroleum operations to increase the return on the fund as provided for in the Law. In addition, the sustainability of the Fund will also be strengthened based on rational, effective and efficient budgeting and public expenditure to manage the cash flow of the treasury.

5.3.11. Management of the Social Security Fund

The Government aims to provide good social protection for all citizens. Therefore, a social assistance programme will be ensured by adjusting the existing level of financial assistance by necessity and by making a sound management of the social security fund to ensure its sustainability.

Social security is a commitment of the Government to strengthen inclusive development. Therefore, the Government will work together with the National Institute of Social Security (INSS) and the Social Security Reserve Fund and establish the Social Security Reserve Fund Investment Committee and the Single Auditor to ensure the sustainability and transparency of the Fund and ensure the entitlement of beneficiaries in the long term.

5.3.12. Management of State Assets

Building the State (which has been stagnant for the last five years) has obviously increased the State's movable and immovable assets at the national, regional and municipal levels. Therefore, this Government intends to improve the management of these State assets. To manage the State assets properly, the Government's policy is to establish a dedicated institution to coordinate with relevant public institutions and inventory and manage all movable and immovable assets. The State Property Management includes establishing a Central Database for all State Property, which regularly defines the property's values and depreciation and makes good management for the utilisation and leasing of this property.


Good governance and a professional, competent and efficient public sector are essential for providing public services and implementing the policies and actions set out in the Strategic Development Plan and the Government Programme. Increasing confidence in governance necessarily implies raising the performance of the public sector, not least because it is the main engine of national economic growth.

Audits and establishing effective mechanisms to ensure transparency of public institutions and independent accountability of their actions are the main guarantor of good governance. Good governance, in turn, helps prevent corruption at all levels of society.

As such, the Government will promote the principles of transparency, accountability, integrity and leadership through risk management mechanisms, results-based accountability, complaints systems and, crucially, proper use of public funds.

The Government, to promote good governance and fight corruption, will undertake the following actions:

  • Carry out a performance evaluation to improve the performance of inspection bodies, namely the General State Inspection, in carrying out audits of public entities responsibly and independently;
  • Conduct performance evaluation to improve the performance of the Anti-Corruption Commission and promote corruption prevention initiatives, including civic education campaigns;
  • Undertake performance appraisal to improve the performance of the Civil Service Commission to promote further a performance management culture and merit-based recruitment and career progression;
  • Carry out performance evaluation to improve the performance of the Board of Auditors;
  • Review the various pieces of legislation and approve a Code of Conduct for Members of the Government (SDP);
  • Adopt modern information technology in the civil service to support Government cohesion and eGovernment initiatives (SDP 2020);
  • Review existing legislation and increase preventive and anti-corruption measures;
  • Establish specific anti-corruption action plans according to the sectors and institutions they target;
  • Carry out anti-corruption campaigns not only at the level of the Public Administration but also in schools and to the general public as a preventive and educational form for future generations;
  • Promote complaints and public consultation systems by promoting complaints forms and implementing public questionnaires;
  • Develop a database on public and private institutions involved in corruption for effective monitoring;
  • Continue to implement a legislative policy that aims at the quality of legislation, its simplicity, systematisation and accessibility;
  • Improve access to and knowledge of national legislation by improving the publication and continued distribution of collections, organised by sectors, and making them available in a bilingual form and disseminating them online;
  • Strengthen the institutions responsible for producing national statistics to inform decision-making better so that decisions are made based on accurate information that allows monitoring and evaluating the true performance of the public sector in delivering public services and the precise picture of the Nation;
  • Improve internal communication within the Government, both between and within Government agencies, reducing the informality of processes that affect knowledge transfer and accountability. Strengthening communication will also help to reduce duplication of activities, roles and responsibilities on the same programme, which can dilute accountability;
  • Implement initiatives that contribute to a culture of performance and accountability with hierarchical chains and assignment of responsibilities in an institutionalised manner;
  • Review the Lifetime Pension Law so that this scheme is integrated into the Contributory Social Security Scheme concerning the pensions of the new members of the Sovereign Bodies.

6.1. Public Administration

Improving the effectiveness, efficiency and professionalism of the Public Administration for the delivery of better public services is a crucial factor for implementing development policies and programmes that lead to poverty reduction and, consequently, the progress and well-being of the population.

For this reason, reforming the Public Administration to modernise it and implement suitable governance measures remains one of the Government's main objectives. Alongside this, improving leadership, management and performance capacity, transparency, and accountability will contribute to the delivery of better public services with consequent results in the well-being and progress of the population and, of course, in increasing confidence in State institutions.

The Government will continue these efforts by ensuring the continuity of ongoing reforms and programmes, ensuring the continued promotion of efficiency, effectiveness, transparency, productivity and gender equality in the public sector.

In this regard, the 9th Government will:

  • Create the National Agency for the Reform and Modernisation of Public Administration, which will be responsible for the inter-ministerial review and coordination of the implementation of the Guide to Reform and Modernisation of Public Administration;
  • Create coordination and cooperation mechanisms between the National Agency for the Reform and Modernisation of Public Administration, the Civil Service Commission, the National Institute of Public Administration and the various Government departments for the identification of priority goals, necessary legislation and actions to be implemented for the progressive improvement of the organisation and functioning of Public Administration, for the increase of the qualifications of the human resources of Public Administrations and the progress of the quality of the provision of public goods and services to citizens;
  • Review and implement the Institutional Strengthening Policy, including the review of the institutions' organisational matrix;
  • Approve and implement the legal framework for the Organisation of Public Administration, duly harmonised with the Institutional Strengthening Policy and the Guide for Reform and Modernisation of Public Administration;
  • Standardise the systems, processes and procedures relating to the operation of the Public Administration, in particular for the performance of the typical functions of the various Government departments;
  • Continue to carry out diagnostics on the workforce in public institutions to adjust and improve the staffing map in each of the organisations while implementing standardised rules and procedures, including concerning employment contracts;
  • Strengthen mechanisms that allow for merit-based recruitment, career progression through performance and merit outcomes, productivity incentives and training and institutional development opportunities for all public sector human resources;
  • Approve a national training programme for the human resources of the State's local administration to improve the delivery of local public goods and services;
  • Review, approve and implement the Strategic Plan of the Civil Service Commission to ensure its harmonisation with the Guide to Reform and Modernisation of Public Administration and the National Institutional Strengthening Policy;
  • To provide the National Institute of Public Administration with the necessary conditions to perform its functions, namely organisational, logistical and financial means, including computerisation, ensuring its affirmation as a Professional Training Centre for Public Administration;
  • Strengthen the control and administrative, financial and patrimonial management of the State through the General Inspection of the State by revising the organic statute of the IGE and approving and implementing the law on the internal control system of the Public Administration.

6.2. Decentralisation

Modernising Public Administration and improving its effectiveness and efficiency necessarily include decentralisation and deconcentration. The transfer of attributions, competencies and responsibilities to local and municipal bodies, empowering them and creating conditions for them to provide quality services, is one of the fundamental aspects of the decentralisation process.

This, in addition to enhancing democratic participation, will also contribute to developing the private sector at municipal and rural levels so that everyone contributes to their development and ultimately to the integrated and sustainable development of the Nation.

Spatial Planning and the National Planning Framework will continue to be addressed in a complementary and integrated perspective, also considering the Policies of Administrative Decentralisation and Local Autonomy to ensure the Nation's sustainable, balanced and equitable development.

Within this framework, the Government will:

  • Promote the approval by the National Parliament of an amendment to the Law on the Administrative Division of Territory with a view to the extinction of the municipality of Ataúro;
  • Promote the approval by the National Parliament of the law governing the status, employment relationships, careers and remuneration of municipal employees, the law regulating the assets of municipalities, and the laws specifically establishing municipalities;
  • Approve the regulation of Law no. 23/2021 of 10 November, Law on Local Power and Administrative Decentralisation, Law no. 22/2021 of 4 November, Municipal Electoral Law, and Law no. 16/2023 of 31 May, Municipal Finance Law;
  • Make legislative amendments to the legal framework for the organisation and functioning of Municipal Authorities and Municipal Administrations, continuing the administrative decentralisation strategy underlying the approval of Decree-Law no. 3/2016, of 16 March, taking into account the regulatory framework of Local Government, namely to create a legal framework favourable to the identification of central administration human resources that should be transferred to local administration services.
  • Review and approve the Municipal Development Plans of the municipalities, in harmony with the Strategic Development Plan and the Government Programme, which will serve as a reference for the preparation of the Annual Action Plans, Municipal Investment Plans and Municipal Budgets;
  • Approve and implement the joint ministerial diplomas for the local implementation of Government programmes delegated to Local Government bodies;
  • Approve and implement the joint ministerial orders approving the training programmes for Local Government officials for the implementation of the Government programmes whose execution is the responsibility of the Municipal Authorities and Administrations;
  • Reinforce the allocation of funds in municipal budgets to have the necessary financial means to increase the quantity and quality of public goods and services provided through Local Government services;
  • Carry out the mapping of the human resources needs of the Local Administration;
  • Develop and implement vocational training, capacity-building and retraining programmes for Local Government human resources;
  • Approve and implement a programme for the recruitment and redeployment of human resources by Public Administrations, ensuring an equitable distribution of human resources, according to the needs existing in each service, among municipal administrations and authorities;
  • Approve and implement a programme to assess the conditions existing in each municipality for the installation of representative bodies of Local Government;
  • Organise elections for representative bodies of local Government in stages during the term of office, taking into account the concrete conditions in each municipality;
  • Approve and implement the National Local Development Policy, duly harmonised with the Strategic Development Plan;
  • Revising the legal framework of the Municipal Integrated Development Planning, simplifying the procedures for programming and implementing public investments financed through this programme, and strengthening the powers of Local Government bodies in their implementation;
  • Revising the legal framework of the National Programme for the Development of Villages (sucos) to strengthen the participation of Villages (sucos) bodies in the programming, implementation, supervision and quality assessment procedures of the projects financed through this programme and for the financing of capacity-building and training actions for community leaders;
  • Approve and implement the legal framework for Community Development Planning, ensuring funding for the implementation of Community Development Plans through the National Village (Suco) Development Programme (PNDS);
  • Regulate the implementation of the Villages (sucos) Law to operationalise the exercise of the competencies established in this law for community organisations and to facilitate coordination between Villages (sucos), the State Administration and municipalities;
  • Regulate the conclusion of inter-administrative contracts between the State Administration, municipalities and the Villages (sucos) to enable the possibility of increasing the provision of goods and services through the Villages (sucos), according to the concrete capacity of each community organisation;
  • Review and implement a National Community Leadership Capacity-building Programme;
  • Define and implement a national strategy to build the capacity of Municipal Authorities and Administrations to better deliver public goods and services in the fields of toponymy and urban organisation at the local level.

6.3. Electoral Administration

The process of national reconciliation and the building of our democratic Rule of Law has benefited, to a large extent, from our country's ability to organise and carry out free and democratic elections.

Internationally too, there is confidence in our electoral system, and the international community recognises our State as a true democracy. This fact is demonstrated by the requests that, over the last few years, have been addressed to our State to provide technical support for the organisation and holding of elections in other States, namely in the Republic of Guinea-Bissau, the Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Príncipe and the Central African Republic.

The quality and capacity of our Electoral Administration must, however, continue to be ensured and strengthened, not only by supporting the realisation of training and qualification activities for our electoral technicians but also by reviewing and updating our electoral legislation to clarify aspects that may have been more controversial or difficult to apply, and by updating it, so that it maintains its capacity to respond to the challenges that our electoral system is facing at the moment.

Within this framework, the Government will:

  • Promote the organisation and delivery of an Electoral Management and Administration Course to strengthen the technical skills of professionals in the Electoral Administration bodies;
  • Carry out a general update of the Voter Registration Database to eliminate situations of multiple voter registration and the registration of voters who have since died;
  • Strengthen the transparency of the electoral administration in the context of electoral processes and acts;
  • Promote the approval by the National Parliament of an Electoral Code that condenses, in a single legal diploma, all the legal norms conforming to the organisation and conduct of the elections for the President of the Republic and Members of the National Parliament.

6.4. Spatial Planning

Part of the strategy to develop social capital, also through providing better services, is related to the Government's ability to define the process of organising the space where the population lives to provide for the occupation, use and transformation of the environment according to its potential.

In this regard, this Government's priority is to implement the Basic Law of Spatial Planning. To this end, the Government will review, if necessary, the legislation that regulates the Basic Law and the recently approved National Spatial Planning Plan to articulate these documents with the strategic version defined in this document, providing for the management of the territory in a balanced and strategic way, the use of space for the development of human activities, in a sustainable way, taking into account economic, social, cultural, political and environmental aspects.

The Basic Law provides for the existence of two major types of territorial planning instruments: those of national scope and those of municipal scope. Their approval makes it possible to precisely define the guiding principles and objectives of the Administration to identify the various public interests with a territorial dimension to use territorial planning instruments as a means of Public Administration and to define the typology and objectives to be followed by them in the medium and long term.

Within the framework of the economic sector, and for its success and sustainable growth, the Government will develop sectoral plans with a view to the implementation of Development Poles and Special Zones of Social Market Economy in various regions of the country based on the specific characteristics of each region and according to the local resources available, for the implementation of actions and strategies for sustainable growth.

The Government proposes to:

  • Analyse and revise, if necessary, already approved legislation and plans relating to land use planning;
  • Elaborate the institutional and legal framework necessary for the full implementation of the Basic Law on Spatial Planning, and the national spatial planning plan, sectoral spatial planning plans, master plans for large cities, municipal master plans and urban and land subdivision plans;
  • Develop a rural urbanisation plan, providing populations with road access, water and sanitation, schools, medical clinics, and access to markets and electricity in a strategic way (SDP 2022);
  • Promote the preparation and implementation of urban implementation plans for the systematic revitalisation of the urban fabric, in a phased and integrated manner, in coordination between the various sectors with an impact on land use;
  • Implement the National Urban Mobility Policy to develop land transport and to ensure sustainable development and adequate protection of the environment. This policy also aims to provide that municipalities draw up and submit their respective urban mobility plans for the planning and growth of cities in an orderly manner, giving priority to non-motorised means of transport and public collective transport services;
  • Revise the Ataúro Island Spatial Plan, bringing it into line with the legislation approved in the meantime with a view to the economic and social development of the island;
  • Continue implementing the diplomas on toponymy for the city of Dili, the legal regime for toponymy and police numbering at the municipal level.

6.5. Rural Development

The social and economic transformation of rural areas, promoting the quality of life of all Timorese, even those living in remote and hard-to-reach areas and possibly the most needy, is one of the main objectives of this Government.

To fulfil this objective, the Government will act in a coordinated and cross-sectoral manner which implies that all sectoral policies and investments will address the issue of rural development in a transversal way. In a small country like Timor-Leste, the existence of regional asymmetries and social and economic inequalities is an inconsistency that represents a massive loss of opportunities.

Creating local jobs is the best way to raise the rural population's standard of living and well-being. In this regard, it is essential to invest in the growth of the private sector in rural areas, including supporting small and medium-sized enterprises and cooperatives and fostering their participation in rural economic development.

The Government will continue to develop a national planning framework that considers local specificities and potential development sub-sectors, regional characteristics and traditional practices, and their access to primary, economic and social infrastructure and market access.

In this regard, the following main actions for rural development are highlighted:

  • Implement the National Planning Framework to address the challenges of each region and enable sustainable growth and equitable economic development for the whole country;
  • Build, rehabilitate and develop basic economic and social infrastructure in consultation with planning and direct involvement of communities;
  • Improve the legal and regulatory framework to enable the development of initiatives and projects at the level of rural communities;
  • Develop studies for the creation of a favourable environment for investment in rural areas, including the implementation of micro-credit systems and other forms of loans, promotion of cooperatives or family businesses with priority for agricultural production and creation of markets, also for processed products;
  • Promote institutional capacity-building and vocational training for family businesses, cooperatives and small and medium-sized enterprises in rural areas;
  • Improve planning of agricultural activity and management of land and natural resources, including studies on the comparative advantages of each region and access to infrastructure and markets;
  • Continue to promote private sector development in rural areas, including through incentive schemes and tax benefits for primary sector development, projects to transform private sector products into commercial goods, development of traditional technologies for tourism and markets, etc.;
  • Continue to promote the decentralisation process and local Government for the political, social and economic emancipation of rural localities;
  • Develop international cooperation partnerships between agricultural enterprises to improve the following areas: market research, marketing strategies, business assessment and planning, training and technical assistance, technology and product development, and financing mechanisms;
  • Continue to support rural enterprises with raw materials and equipment to grow their micro-businesses.

6.6. Special Administrative Region of Oe-Cússe Ambeno and Special Social Market Economy Zone

The Special Administrative Region of Oe-Cússe Ambeno (RAEOA) was established to facilitate better synergy between State institutions in the region to enable more effective governance, poverty reduction and the economic well-being of the entire population. Until the appropriate time in the future, the concept of 'RAEOA' will include Ataúro until the infrastructural and technical conditions are developed for the island of Ataúro to be autonomously separated from RAEOA.

Unfortunately, ten years later, all we have seen is the construction of the streets of Pante Macassar and, worse still, an attempt to partisan the Region, diverting the population's attention from the true meaning of ZEESM. At the same time, the roads throughout the Oe-Cússe Ambeno hinterland are in increasingly poor condition.

The Special Social Market Economy Zones of Timor-Leste (ZEESM) is a national development programme which aims to establish special social trading zones that will enable the growth of a social market economy, which means that the people and communities of a given Region receive the most significant benefits, both direct and indirect.

Given the rigidity of policies adopted in Oe-Cússe Ambeno and the prolonged non-compliance with the procedures that guide the State in the field of Public Administration and good governance, strategies that have been adopted in recent years by all Government institutions, this Government sees a pressing need to change the current legal framework prevailing in that Region.

The most disappointing fact is that, after these many years, there has still been no definite planning to ensure the spirit and ultimate goal of creating Special Social Market Economy Zones.

There must be a separation of powers between RAEOA and ZEESM to empower society and local populations to intervene and express their wishes and expectations to ensure the spirit and ultimate goal of creating Special Social Market Economy Zones.

The effective participation of society and communities in the development process carried out in their region is the determining factor in the search for benefits that will fall on their lives for socio-economic and cultural growth, responsible, transparent and sustainable.

Thus, the Government will continue to invest in this regional governance structure through innovative policies and by betting on this new development paradigm based on the social market economy while continuing with the following actions:

  • Review Law No. 3/2014, of 18 June, which creates the RAEOA and the ZEESM;
  • Separate the services provided by ZEESM from the functions of the Regional Administrative Authority;
  • Establish a new Authority in the Oe-Cússe Ambeno Region with a complete restructuring of the administrative and technical staff, also managing the physical and technical development activities of Atauro Island;
  • Integrate your finance services into the national 'Freebalance' system;
  • Improve control and monitoring systems, especially for large projects which are subject to the supervision of the Chamber of Auditors;
  • Improve procurement systems by ensuring compliance with the central procurement regime;
  • Carry out an immediate audit of the RAEOA and ZEESM.

6.7. eGovernment

E-Government or e-Government allows the services provided and the information produced by the Government to be informed and disseminated to the general population, making use of Information and Communication Technologies, ensuring good governance, greater transparency in public processes and policies and, at the same time, bringing people closer to Government bodies and, as such, their greater participation in the decisions taken by those in power.

The Government will invest in the development of Information and Communication Technologies, implementing the National Policy for Information and Communication Technologies and creating the necessary conditions for the Information and Communication Technologies Agency to fulfil its mission of managing the IT network of the Government and other public entities to modernise the State and improve the functioning and service delivery of public institutions.

A crucial part of this strategy is administrative modernisation, developing the added value of eGovernment, including establishing connectivity and internet access platforms in all State and Government institutions.

In this regard, the Government will continue to endeavour to bring the citizen closer to the public administration by developing the IT and technological sector that will enable a modern and effective e-Government system in the future.

To this end, the Government will:

  • Carry out studies to establish the management of the IT network of the Government and other public entities;
  • Implement the National Policy for Information and Communication Technologies;
  • Adopt modern information technology in the civil service to support Government cohesion and eGovernment initiatives (SDP 2020);
  • Improve and continuously update the Government e-Portal, including with information about the country and Government activities, including linking with all Government and public entities;
  • Promote the existence of quality e-portals for all Government entities;
  • Promote an interactive platform with Government entities, initially centralised on the Government Portal, where the Government opens a space to listen, debate and organise information relevant to public opinion;
  • Initiate talks with the other sovereign bodies to create a space for dialogue between them using technology platforms;
  • Map and promote inter-ministerial coordination on the components of eGovernment and the services and forms that should be made available online in the future;
  • Continue to develop the e-Public Finance Management and Transparency Model of Timor-Leste through the electronic portals that allow for the consultation of State operations, including the Budget Transparency Portal, the Electronic Procurement Portal, the Aid Transparency Portal and the Government Results Portal;
  • Gradually implement more State online payment services;
  • Continue to invest in the creation of electronic databases in addition to the Civil Service database;

6.8. Justice

Promoting the Rule of Law and ensuring equal access to justice for all citizens without discrimination remains a significant challenge for Timor-Leste and involves highly complex aspects. Therefore, consolidating the justice sector is of fundamental importance for peacebuilding and State building. It is also a crucial factor in transmitting confidence and attracting investment in the development of the economy. We face several challenges that include, in short, deficient legal frameworks or inadequate to our reality, insufficient infrastructure and difficulties in terms of training and qualification of our human resources, and fundamental conditions to allow access to justice for all.

The historical context explains some of the challenges in this sector, highlighting that a part of the professionals in the justice sector does not master the legal system inspired by the Portuguese model, nor even the complete mastery of the Portuguese language, which is essential for a good interpretation and application of the laws. This situation creates a total and absurd dependence on legal documents written by foreign jurists who usually do not interpret reality by resorting only to legal language, in Portuguese, which the Timorese justice actors need help understanding, leading them to make almost always wrong decisions.

The justice system's weakness can jeopardise the State's construction and the Nation's economic and social development. There is only confidence in economic investment with a justice system that ensures compliance with the law. And without investment, there are no jobs; without jobs, there is no peace. It is, therefore, an issue that must be addressed with the necessary respect for institutions and the separation of powers, but also with urgency and seriousness.

Therefore, the objective of this Government is to initiate a profound reform of this institution which will take time, given its complexity. We believe that institutional cooperation, in a process that is inclusive and ownership by national decision-makers, can contribute to the solution of this challenge, that is, to the consolidation of an effective justice system, where the processes through which it is applied are swift, balanced, reliable, independent and fair.

They are thus part of the Government's main objectives:

  • Consolidate peace and democracy by guaranteeing the fundamental rights, duties, freedoms and guarantees of all citizens;
  • Introduce a thorough reform of the justice sector;
  • Improve the efficiency, effectiveness, speed and digitalisation of the exercise and administration of justice;
  • Promote a professional, competent, independent and transparent judiciary;
  • Build a competent, independent, skilled and experienced human resources cadre in the justice sector;
  • Ensure the independence of the Courts from other sovereign bodies;
  • Promote and respect the rights of all citizens, including citizens with special needs, including extending legal aid to the most vulnerable and disadvantaged citizens with special needs, particularly concerning access to and understanding of the justice system;
  • Promote the confidence of the people and other foreign nationals, including investors, in the justice system.

To pursue the stated objectives, the Government will implement the following according to the different sector themes:

  1. In the institutional development plan, consolidate the administration of justice by improving institutional capacity and coordination. And to that end:
    • Review and update the Justice Sector Strategic Plan (PESJ) 2011-2030 for faster justice sector reform;
    • Promote the revision of the coordination and integrated planning lines, establish the Technical Commission for the revision of the PESJ and encourage dialogues with Justice Sector stakeholders on policy and implementation outcomes;
    • Reform the Centre for Legal and Judicial Training as a centre of excellence for judicial actors and harmonise the legal basis for recruitment of magistrates and public defenders;
    • Improve the coordination of the sector by ensuring that its institutions have a clear perspective on how they interact and complement each other;
    • Deconcentrate justice services and create effective mechanisms to facilitate access to justice for the entire population.
  2. The reform of the legal framework will be done through the consolidation and harmonisation of legal frameworks in the justice and law systems. And to this end:
    • Review the set of laws and codes structuring the justice sector that have already been approved and implemented, filling in gaps and improving regulations where necessary;
    • Complete the legal framework of the judicial system and review existing laws;
    • Review the recommendations of the Public Policy and Strategy Proposal for Law Reform and the Justice Sector prepared by the Law Reform and Justice Sector Commission to define an implementation plan for the structural reform of the Administration of Justice;
    • Review the Law on Judicial Organisation;
    • Review the Law on the Chamber of Accounts;
    • Revise, to the extent necessary, the recently adopted Statute of Judicial Magistrates, Statute of the Public Prosecutor's Office and Statute of the Public Defender's Office;
    • Implement the Land and Property Law and finalise the cadastral survey and registration of real estate;
    • Complete the Land Law package and review the Land Registry;
    • Propose the adoption of legislation to improve the management regime for State property and the leasing of State property to private individuals;
    • Propose and approve the Legal Framework for the Protection of Personal Data;
    • Strengthen the Language Policy in the Justice Sector with the implementation and reinforcement of the Official Language Use Scheme in the justice sector, which aims to adopt a bilingual model for the drafting of normative acts, court proceedings and the administrative procedure of the justice services;
    • Introduce the necessary regulations for mandatory bilingual (Portuguese and Tetum) implementation in the justice sector.
    • Propose the creation of the Bar Association.
  3. Human resources development in Justice is crucial for a sector with an unquestionable role in the State-building process. Therefore, it will be necessary to:
    • Define a policy and a strategic plan for the training of the human resources framework in the justice sector, crucial for the improvement and consolidation of the industry with short, medium and long-term measures and considering the fundamental aspects that have been hampering the area of justice;
    • Ensure the review of recruitment, training and deployment processes for human resources in the justice sector;
    • Continue to develop plans and train the necessary human resources with a view to the future establishment, in the medium and long term, of all the institutions provided for in the Constitution and the Law;
    • Encourage further training for auditors of the Chamber of Auditors and judges of the High Administrative, Tax and Audit Court;
    • Ensure continuous and complementary training for Public Defenders and establishment of the Bar Association, regardless of the organisation of the Bar Association referred to;
    • Ensure training for civil servants, bailiffs, and administrative support technicians in the justice sector;
    • Implement the training of Notaries and Registrars;
    • Support training for cadastral technicians and strengthen the functioning of the Land Commission;
    • Invest in the Legal and Judicial Training Centre (CFJJ) and in improving its capacities to continue capacity-building and training of justice sector professionals;
    • Prepare the teaching curriculum and promote the reform of the cadres of trainers/teachers in the CFJJ;
    • Continue the training of magistrates, public defenders and private lawyers at the CFJJ;
    • Strengthen the capacity of Public Defenders and create conditions for professional and competent private lawyers to improve effective and quality legal aid;
    • Promote capacity-building of national judicial actors;
    • Promote and empower the role of the Judicial Inspector;
    • Reinforce the cadre of judges in sufficient numbers to implement all functioning and planned judicial bodies, and recruit and train staff to perform administrative functions to free judges from such tasks;
    • Train Judicial Officers to fulfil their duties fully;
    • Social reintegration, legal and physical training for correctional officers (prison guards), and specialised training for correctional officers (prison guards) in the juvenile rehabilitation centre;
    • Review the recruitment criteria for international judges to improve advisory, training and mentoring functions for an accurate transfer of knowledge and for national judges to fulfil these advisory functions better;
  4. The need to provide the sector with adequate infrastructure is a critical condition. To this end, it will be necessary to:
    • Invest in the capacity of justice sector institutions to better fulfil their mandates, including support infrastructure, equipment and computerisation;
    • Construct the Supreme Court of Justice building;
    • Finalise the construction of the Public Defender's office building in the municipalities;
    • Build residences for correctional officers (prison guards);
    • Rehabilitate the facilities of the Public Defender's Office, the facilities of Civil Registry and Registry Offices and the facilities of the Lands and Properties in the municipalities;
    • Build the Juvenile Rehabilitation Centre;
    • Modernising the justice sector, including infrastructure, equipment and tools, also procedural;
    • Approve and install the IT system that allows procedural digitisation and a network with the capacity to cover all municipalities in the national territory to increase procedural speed and simplification;
  5. Concerning access to justice, promote the approximation of justice to citizens, and to this end:
    • Ensure the capacity of the prison services to guarantee the security and improvement of prison facilities, compliance with international standards and the reintegration of prisoners into communities through the establishment of Reintegration Centres;
    • Improve the capacity of registry and notary services to guarantee the security of legal commerce and ensure that acts are executed quickly and in a way that is accessible to citizens;
    • Improve the efficiency of land cadastre management and the State's real estate assets;
    • Continue to implement the extension of the issuance of identity cards to all municipalities and continue to invest in the distribution of the Timor-Leste Electronic Passport;
    • Establish and develop the system for issuing the Unique Identification Card to all citizens of legal age;
    • Expand the Access to Justice Clinics programme, in coordination with the Single Window programme of the economic sector to cover all municipalities;
    • Review the map of the justice sector and implement measures to ensure that in the future, there is a quality and professional judiciary in all municipalities;
    • Conduct widespread campaigns to publicise the justice system, the laws and the fundamental rights of citizens to build trust in the justice system and ensure the perception of "Justice for all";
    • Continue the dissemination of laws, decree-laws and legal acts to increase citizens' knowledge;
  6. Finally, a matter that is transversal to all institutions of the Justice Sector is good governance because only good governance can result in the excellent performance of Justice in favour of the common good. To achieve this, it is necessary to:
    • Improve the capacity of the supervisory, control and disciplinary bodies of the justice system, ensuring greater independence and their effectiveness and efficiency (High Councils and Chamber of Accounts);
    • Strengthen the Justice Sector Coordination Council by strengthening the functioning of the Superior Council of Judicial Magistrates, Public Prosecutor's Office, and Public Defender's Office and establish the Superior Council of the Chamber of Accounts;
    • Ensure the improvement of management systems and procedures for planning, budgeting, financial management, procurement, logistics and human resources, including the establishment of co-ordinated case management systems;
    • Improve coordination within the justice sector itself and between this sector and other bodies, especially those most relevant to the improvement of the justice sector;
    • Strengthen the services of the Justice Sector Coordination Board by harmonising the legal basis to provide opportunities for stakeholders to participate in the Coordination Board meetings;
    • Continue to strengthen the implementation of management systems, procedural digitisation and procedures, including the procedural case management system;
    • Improve international cooperation mechanisms by aligning the priorities of its programmes with country strategies and priorities;
    • Continue to promote cooperation with CPLP and ASEAN countries and other international organisations in justice as important partners for developing the justice sector.

6.8.1. Reform of the Criminal Investigation Scientific Police

  • Reform and empower the Criminal Investigation Scientific Police, which will be under the PNTL Command to strengthen the capacity for prevention, detection and investigation actions;
  • Invest in scientific and criminal laboratories and equipment;
  • Strengthen training in criminal investigation, in particular through bilateral cooperation with the Portuguese Judicial Police School ;
  • Reform, modernise and improve the capacity of this scientific police.

6.9. Defence and Security

The development of transparent, efficient, competent and professional Defence and Security institutions is fundamental to the maintenance of democracy and the consolidation of stability and peace at national and international levels.

As such, there has been a good effort after the 2005-2007 crisis to ensure a strong Defence and Security sector with an approach that considers the country's circumstances, namely its recent conflict past, youth and inherent fragility.

Some Constitutional Governments have gradually addressed Reconstruction challenges, including preparing human resources, developing a sound legal framework consistent with local idiosyncrasies, and providing the necessary equipment and infrastructure for national security institutions.

The Government will therefore continue to consolidate the progress already made, correct the systems and imperfections in the sector, and develop new strategies to consolidate a modern and professional Defence and Security sector.

These objectives include strengthening coordination and close cooperation between the Defence Forces (F-FDTL) and the Security Forces (PNTL), ensuring clarity and engagement following their respective responsibilities and distinct missions.

The Government will also create the National Security Council, an advisory body to provide advice and support for higher decision-making and draft policies and legislation that include defence and security matters.

6.9.1. Defence

The Armed Forces of Timor-Leste, the FALINTIL-Forças de Defesa de Timor-Leste (F-FDTL), composed exclusively of national citizens, are constitutionally responsible for military defence. Their primary mission is to guarantee national independence, territorial integrity and the freedom and security of the population against any external aggression or threat while respecting the constitutional order.

In addition to their primary mission, the F-FDTL can be employed in other missions to support civil authorities within the Integrated National Security System framework under the National Security Law and support the State's foreign policy, peace support and humanitarian operations.

Like the Security Forces, the Defence Forces are non-partisan and owe obedience to the competent sovereign bodies, and are prohibited from any political intervention.

In the development of the Defence sector, the Timorese State reaffirms its strategic defence posture based on respect for the rule of law, pursuing diplomacy and deterrence as a means of preventing and resolving possible conflicts while maintaining the non-renunciation of the use of force under the terms of the United Nations Charter necessary to guarantee national independence.

This approach implies investing in the Defence Forces to defend the Nation from external threats and contribute to regional and international cooperation efforts, including preserving national and international peace and stability.

In this context, the development of defence will take into account a contemporary reading of the international geostrategic context of the 21st century, permeated by new types of risks and threats - now diffuse, multidimensional and of a markedly internal character, blurring the boundary between defence and security. Thus, an enlightened reading of the 21st-century security environment is required, reassessing the role and functions of the Timorese State's defence institution and its position in external relations in this area, especially concerning cooperative security and its participation in collective humanitarian and peace actions within the United Nations and other international forums.

To consolidate the building of defence and military strategic planning, whose documents are fundamental for the development of the essential capabilities of the F-FDTL for the performance of their missions, and for the orientation of the force planning cycle, the defence will continue the elaboration of the structuring building of defence and military strategic planning. The Strategic Concept of National Defence and Security will cement the strategic planning framework, consolidating the Ministerial Directive on Military Planning and Defence, reviewing and implementing the Military Strategic Concept, the F-FDTL Missions, the Force System and Device, the Military Programming Law and the decree-law on military procurement on the way to the modernisation and professionalisation of the F-FDTL. From this perspective, force planning serves as strategic planning based on assessing national defence needs according to the risks and threats identified following the RDTL Military Defence Doctrine.

The Government will also assume a more effective strategy concerning maritime geostrategic security, considering recent events in various parts of the world with the growing increase in terrorism and human trafficking and other types of organised crime. On the other hand, considering the geographical position of Timor-Leste, its extensive Exclusive Economic Zone and the wealth of natural resources at sea, including the energy resources of the Timor Sea, it is urgent to develop naval capacity so that Timor-Leste can protect and preserve its resources and its people and, above all to combat illegal fishing.

In this regard, the defence will consolidate the necessary legislation for the construction of the Maritime Authority System of Timor-Leste (SAMTL) and the National Maritime Authority and operationally implement its functioning as an entity that exercises public power in the maritime spaces under national sovereignty and jurisdiction and the function of the superior structure of direction, administration and coordination of the bodies and services that act within the scope of the SAMTL.

The Government, in defence, will pursue the following objectives:

  • Defend national sovereignty, consolidate peace and stability and promote reconciliation and national unity;
  • Promote military service as a patriotic duty and instil a sense of exemplary citizenship and integrity in professionals in the sector;
  • Involve F-FDTL in the economic, social and human development of the country;
  • Develop bilateral and multilateral cooperation actions for the promotion and preservation of national, regional and global peace and stability in strengthening cooperative security;
  • Ensure F-FDTL participation in multinational forces and international organisations, including UN peacekeeping and humanitarian operations;
  • Train and improve the capacity of F-FDTL to support civilians, especially in the event of natural disasters and other emergencies within the framework of the Integrated National Security System;
  • Build the capacity of the Naval Component for the defence, surveillance, control and supervision of maritime and port activities within the Maritime Authority System of Timor-Leste;
  • Promote the Air Support Component to participate in an integrated manner in the military defence of the country, monitor the national airspace and participate in humanitarian missions in support of the civilian population;
  • Promote the building of all F-FDTL capabilities identified in the Strategic Concept for National Defence and Security;
  • Review and implement the Military Strategic Concept and the Military Programming Law;
  • Consolidate the structuring bases of Strategic Defence and Military Planning;
  • Promote the study and reflection on the obligation of military service;
  • Promote the participation of women in the defence sector, including creating career advancement opportunities and promoting gender equality.

To achieve these objectives, the following actions will be carried out:

  • Ensure that the defence sector, including the F-FDTL through the implementation of organisational culture, is credible, professional and well-equipped with the versatility to perform a range of missions and the vocation to participate in national security, stability and development efforts (SDP 2020);
  • Review and update the "Force Strategic Study - 2020" and redefine the development and consolidation plans of the F-FDTL, in what is still necessary until the construction of the structuring documents of the Strategic Defence and Military Planning;
  • Implement the National Defence and Security Strategic Concept, including the review and approval of the respective legal framework;
  • Review and implement the Ministerial Directive on Military Planning and Defence, the Military Strategic Concept, the F-FDTL Missions, the Force System and Device, the Military Programming Law and the legal regime for military procurement to consolidate the strategic defence planning cycle;
  • Create and implement specific legislation for military infrastructure;
  • Upgrade infrastructure and build new military facilities for all components, including significant land, air and naval bases;
  • Transform the National Defence Institute into a higher education establishment for National Defence and promote the Joint Academy for Defence Forces and Security Forces and Services for all relevant institutions;
  • Build Neighbourhoods for the families of the Military personnel integrated into the Military Bases, in different localities and whenever necessary;
  • Develop studies and investment plans for the construction of a hospital dedicated to the provision of health care to military personnel, police and veterans;
  • Equip the F-FDTL with modern and quality equipment, material and weapons in compliance with the national and international legislation in force;
  • Implement an integrated human resources development policy for the Defence sector;
  • Improve military recruitment processes based on merit;
  • Improve information systems and technologies and develop the Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Cybersecurity, Intelligence and Surveillance system (C5IRS);
  • Improve logistical supply and maintenance systems through the means and resources of the F-FDTL;
  • Conduct feasibility studies for the creation of small industrial units for the production of combat rations, uniforms and small calibre ammunition (5.56mm and 9mm);
  • Increase the capacity of the operational components, land, naval and support units;
  • Provide the Naval Component with adequate means to fulfil its missions;
  • Strengthen and empower the National Maritime Authority to ensure sovereignty in maritime spaces under national jurisdiction and defence of maritime resources;
  • Invest in the training of human resources, both civilian and military, to ensure the proper functioning of the National Maritime Authority;
  • Strengthen the development of Special Forces Units;
  • Strengthen the Air Support Component to participate in an integrated manner in the military defence of the country, patrol and monitor the national airspace and participate in humanitarian missions in support of the civilian population;
  • Consolidate bilateral and multilateral cooperation in training and education, promote strategic partnerships with partner countries and contribute to national and international development;
  • Create training opportunities and logistical support to increase the participation of F-FDTL elements in UN peacekeeping and humanitarian operations;
  • Strengthen the capacity of the defence sector in terms of engineering and health units to provide support to populations and in terms of language training;
  • Implement the National Alert System and improve response capacity to natural disasters and emergencies;
  • Promote together with the Security Forces and Services and Civil Protection, joint exercises within the framework of the Integrated National Security System;
  • Continue to develop measures and implement actions that lead to a fair and dignified retirement process for veterans still in active service.

6.9.2. Security

Security, as one of the essential functions of the State, is an indispensable prerequisite for exercising the fundamental rights and freedoms of citizens, and its guarantee depends on the preservation of the stability of society itself and the normal development of economic activity.

Under the Constitution, the PNTL and the security services are mandated to defend democratic legality and ensure the internal security of citizens, being strictly non-partisan and acting in an exemplary manner regarding respect for human rights.

To this extent, the Government assumes, as a priority of its action, the adoption of policies and concrete measures that continue to contribute to making Timor-Leste a safer country, strengthening the authority of the State and the development and consolidation of the effectiveness of the Security Forces and Services, recognising that this is an area in which the constitution of investment presents, both in the short, medium and long term, exponential advantages and benefits.

The Government will therefore continue to implement a comprehensive strategic plan that responds to its reality's strategic objectives, which covers relevant issues such as risk prevention for social stability, the fight against crime, civil protection and road accidents.

In the Security sector, the Government will continue to implement a comprehensive, long-term plan, ensuring that the Security sector fulfils its primary role of serving the people and ensuring peace, security and stability. The Government wants to ensure that the following objectives are pursued:

  • Review the legal framework of the institutions of the Internal Security and Civil Protection sectors concerning recruitment and qualification promotions under the policy established in the SDP 2011-2030 and with the Strategic Concept of Defence and National Security;
  • Develop the operational capacity of Internal Security and Civil Protection institutions, improving the fulfilment of their missions;
  • Intensify the deconcentration of services, bringing them closer to citizens throughout the national territory;
  • Continue to focus on strengthening Civil Protection through the effective legal and operational implementation of the National Civil Protection Authority;
  • Continue to improve the Migration Service by implementing existing laws and regulations, including the new Migration and Asylum Law;
  • Strengthen the capacity of the Border Patrol Unit by building surveillance posts and acquiring the necessary equipment.
  • Strengthen the capacity of the National Road Safety Directorate, ensuring that services are accessible to citizens and that rules and procedures are adopted for the management and operation of road traffic offences;
  • Improve internal mechanisms for monitoring and reporting on compliance with human rights;
  • Continue to improve the system of community conflict prevention and resolution;
  • Strengthen the training and specialisation of human resources through medium and long-term study programmes or internships in peer institutions of CPLP member states;
  • Strengthen bilateral cooperation with CPLP and the ASEAN Member States in areas of relevance, expertise and technical assistance;
  • Evaluate, review and update the 2030 Homeland Security Strategic Plan to adapt it to the current challenges of the Homeland Security and Civil Protection sectors;
  • Implement the National Defence and Security Strategic Concept and the capabilities identified for the Security Forces and Services;
  • Improve procedures and mechanisms for planning, budgeting, financial management, procurement, logistics and human resources through the implementation of applicable laws and the adoption of uniform and transparent rules and procedures in the practice of the respective acts;
  • Ensure order and security of persons and goods; guarantee peace, stability and social harmony, preventing and combating crime;
  • Ensure respect for the human rights of all citizens in the actions of the security forces;
  • Professionalise the Security Forces and Services;
  • Modernise the Institution, including systems and processes, by adopting modern and efficient procedures also making use of Information Technology;
  • Promote the participation of women in the security sector, including the creation of career advancement opportunities.

To this end, the following actions will be developed:

  • Ensure that the security sector, including the National Police of Timor-Leste, is staffed by qualified and accountable professionals, supported by modern infrastructure and equipment, and governed by regulations that promote the effectiveness, accountability and good governance of the sector (SDP 2020);
  • Continue to implement the Internal Security Plan 2030 based on its strategic objectives with a short-term focus on the implementation of the second phase dedicated to the "Enlargement and Development of Internal Security (2016-2020)";
  • Reform the legal framework for modernising and improving the performance of the Police and Civil and Operational Directorates following the Strategic Concept for National Defence and Security and SDP 2011-2030;
  • Review and reform the legal framework for effective control of land and sea borders;
  • Review and update the PNTL Disciplinary Regulations;
  • Create conflict prevention and management mechanisms to change attitudes and mentalities, promote democracy, tolerance and respect for difference;
  • Strengthen the community policing model and build the capacity of police forces in conflict resolution by orientating professionals in the sector towards a community-oriented policing model;
  • Review the Martial Arts and White Weapons Act, strengthen the status of the Martial Arts Regulatory Commission (MRAC) and continue the practice of community policing (visibility, engagement and professionalism);
  • Improve operational capacity in the consolidation of public security;
  • Improve operational ability for crime prevention and criminal investigation;
  • Strengthen coordination and cooperation between the National Police of Timor-Leste and the Criminal Investigation Scientific Police, which will be under the PNTL Command;
  • Strengthen institutional capacity-building and modernise infrastructure, equipment and information technology in the sector, including computerisation of the information collection and processing system;
  • Invest in the capacity-building of the Security Forces concerning public attendance, ensuring adequate care for women and children and people with special needs;
  • Ensure a well-trained and professional Traffic and Road Safety Unit on roads across the country, ensuring strict compliance with the Highway Code (PED 2020);
  • Establish the Police Academy;
  • Ensure the quality of police science education to raise the knowledge of police officers.
  • Promote the National Road Safety Directorate and reduce accidents by intensifying police prevention and control actions and by promoting comprehensive road education campaigns;
  • Promote citizens' civic education on the use of public roads and traffic rules at the intersectoral level;
  • Review and develop a legal framework to harmonise and improve road legislation and develop a National Road Safety and Prevention Plan;
  • Protect and preserve the State's heritage following the approved objectives;
  • Continue to develop bilateral and international cooperation with development partners to ensure the development of the sector;
  • Continue to invest in infrastructure, including civilian buildings, Municipal Commands, police stations and training centres.

6.9.3. Migration Services

  • Regulate Law no. 11/2017, of 24 May, amended by Law no. 10/2021, of 16 June, on Migration and Asylum and draw up a new green list;
  • Approve the templates and forms necessary for the implementation of the Migration and Asylum Law;
  • Regulate the organisation, content and functioning of the Border Management System;
  • Implement its own digital communications network for the Border Management System, which allows the connection between the Directorate General and Regional Delegations and Consular Posts;
  • Establish the mechanisms for the implementation of electronic borders (E-Gates) at the main entry points;
  • Revise the staff regulations of the Migration Office to ensure that officials have a clear definition of their duties and careers;
  • Strengthen consular services to issue tourist visas;
  • Build a dedicated building for the General Directorate of the Migration Service.
  • Improve the infrastructure and equipment of the Migration Services at the borders to ensure the control of entries and exits of national and foreign citizens;
  • Train and strengthen the capacities of Migration Service and border control professionals.

6.9.4. National Intelligence Service

  • Reform the legal framework of the National Intelligence Service and the organisational framework of personnel in a manner appropriate to the performance of the mission;
  • Approve and implement the National Intelligence Service Strategic Plan;
  • Promote human resources training and institutional capacity-building of the National Intelligence Service;
  • Equipping the services with adequate means of researching, collecting and analysing information and data and providing the institution with the equipment and technological means necessary to carry out its functions;
  • Promote coordination and cooperation with the Defence Forces and the Security Forces to prevent and combat internal and external threats;
  • Promote international cooperation between the National Intelligence Service of Timor-Leste and other similar entities in other countries.

6.9.5. National Civil Protection Authority

  • Review the Civil Protection Law, Law no. 12/2020, of 2 December to strengthen the National Civil Protection System in an integrated manner with municipal authorities and relevant ministries;
  • Develop a career path for Civil Protection and Firefighters by creating a career path of their own;
  • Construct a building for the National Civil Protection Authority, equipped with the necessary equipment to plan and coordinate Civil Protection and Firefighting activities;
  • Continue the implementation of a single emergency number system for police, medical and fire support services;
  • Establish bilateral cooperation agreements in Civil Protection and Firefighters;
  • Develop a programme to support the capacity-building of human resources and infrastructure and equipment necessary for Civil Protection, including an organised and professional Fire Brigade to carry out their mission efficiently and responsibly (SDP 2020);
  • Building the capacity of the National Civil Protection Authority;
  • Develop the National Fire Service;
  • Create early warning mechanisms for natural disasters and adequate means of response and action.

6.10. International Relations and Foreign Policy

Timor-Leste is a small Nation with a highly strategic geographical location whose security depends on the establishment of solid relations of friendship and cooperation with countries from various parts of the globe, but above all with neighbouring countries, countries in the region and countries with which it shares long-standing cultural, historical and solidarity ties, naturally highlighting the Portuguese-speaking countries.

It is also consistent with the constitutional foundations. Timor-Leste is governed by the principles of national independence, the right of peoples to self-determination and independence, the permanent sovereignty of peoples over their natural wealth and resources, the protection of human rights, mutual respect for sovereignty, territorial integrity and equality among States, and non-interference in the internal affairs of States.

The history of national independence is inseparable from the acts of diplomacy, friendship and solidarity of Governments and peoples worldwide. The objective of Timorese foreign policy could not be other than to continue to maintain and strengthen relations of friendship and cooperation and to promote, on the international scene, reconciliation, peace, stability, justice and an international economic order that enables the realisation of these objectives and contributes to poverty reduction and sustainable global development.

Timor-Leste will also conduct a foreign policy that fosters bilateral, regional and multilateral cooperation, enhancing economic, social and cultural partnerships with other countries, essential to attracting investment and building the capacity of the country's institutions and human resources.

In this context, the Government will pursue the following objectives in international relations and foreign policy:

  • Promote the national interests that derive from the country's historical, geographical, cultural and strategic context, preserving the national identity;
  • Strengthen relations of friendship, cooperation and solidarity with all States based on the constitutional principles of sovereignty and independence, according to the principle of "there are no allies or enemies, all will be only and only friends" - this will be the motto of the 9th Constitutional Government which will guide International Relations and Foreign Policy in the current and challenging world situation;
  • Finalise permanent land and sea borders with Indonesia to complete Timor-Leste's struggle for full sovereignty over its land and sea;
  • Affirm the ties of friendship and cooperation in the regional space and on a global scale with priority to those with whom Timor-Leste shares land and sea borders: Indonesia and Australia and the countries with which it shares a common identity matrix - historical, cultural and linguistic - namely the countries of the Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP);
  • Strengthen solidarity, cooperation and the common agenda of fragile and conflict-affected countries, mainly to implement initiatives leading to development and the consolidation of peace and stability within the framework of the g7+;
  • Strengthen friendly relations and bilateral cooperation with South East Asian countries, and continue to consolidate diplomatic representation in all ASEAN member countries;
  • Prioritise ASEAN membership by developing initiatives with ASEAN member countries to promote national reforms that meet ASEAN guidelines, continuing all efforts for Timor-Leste to become a full member of this organisation;
  • Strengthen international relations with Pacific countries, including participation as an Observer in the Pacific Islands Forum and the Pacific Small Island Developing States with whom Timor-Leste shares so much in common;
  • To deepen the historical relations between the Catholic Church and Timor-Leste for the common good and the building of a society that promotes the dignity of the person and human fraternity, justice and peace through cooperation with the Holy See and the implementation of the signed bilateral agreement, the Concordat;
  • Promote multilateralism as a priority foreign policy objective, given the complexity of the international environment. In this context, strengthening engagement with the United Nations will be a priority with emphasis on issues of interest to Timor-Leste and the promotion of the Sustainable Development Goals, constructive participation in the reform of the Security Council, and critical issues such as climate change, maritime affairs and the sustainability of the oceans, the Blue Economy, the issue of migration and refugees, and humanitarian initiatives;
  • Strengthen friendly relations and bilateral cooperation with friendly countries and important development partners, such as Portugal, Australia, Indonesia, the United States of America, Cuba, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, the United Kingdom, Ireland and China, and with the other BRICS countries, the CPLP, ASEAN and its dialogue partners (Australia, Canada, China, the European Union, India, Japan, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom and the United States of America) and other external partners, and with the countries of the Gulf region;
  • Consolidate the ties of friendship and cooperation with the countries of the European Union, and continue to invest in cooperation projects carried out in partnership with this organisation;
  • Strengthen international relations with countries committed to consolidating their development and defending territorial integrity, such as the Pacific Small Island Developing States, and those countries committed to using and controlling their wealth for the benefit of their peoples;
  • Uphold the fundamental principles of the Non-Aligned Movement and the Charter of the United Nations in preserving and promoting world peace through dialogue and diplomacy between states and avoiding the use of force in conflict resolution;
  • Continue to strengthen Timor-Leste's role in regional and international organisations such as the Pacific Islands Forum, ASEAN Regional Forum, South West Pacific Dialogue, African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States, ACP-EU, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Asian Development Bank, Asian Infrastructure Development Bank, World Trade Organisation, Bali Democracy Forum, Melanesian Spearhead Group, Coral Triangle Initiative, and other international organisations;
  • Reactivate Timor-Leste's participation in Forum Macao to enhance economic and trade cooperation between the People's Republic of China and Portuguese-speaking countries.

6.11. Delimitation of Land and Maritime Borders

In foreign policy, the delimitation of maritime and land borders is a national priority, as it is a matter of national sovereignty.

Timor-Leste was able to bring Australia into the negotiations under Compulsory Conciliation. In March 2018, Timor-Leste and Australia signed the Treaty in the presence of the UN Secretary-General and on 30 August 2019, Timor-Leste ratified the Treaty.

To achieve full sovereignty, Timor-Leste must finalise land and maritime boundaries with Indonesia following international law as a national priority.

6.12. Institutional Development of Foreign Policy

To implement the country's foreign policy in international relations, the Government will continue strengthening the institutions responsible for implementing its foreign policy and promote bilateral and multilateral cooperation geared towards developing the Nation.

The Government, therefore, will:

  • Further develop the legal framework conducive to strengthening the External Relations sector, including structuring and upgrading the Diplomatic Career Statute and regulating the rights and duties of Diplomatic Service staff;
  • Approve and implement the State Protocol legislation, which institutionalises the set of procedures and rules internally and in Timor-Leste's relationship with other States, thus also dignifying the Nation and its representatives;
  • Continue the drafting, production and approval of the Dokumentu Mutin (Foreign Policy White Paper);
  • Harmonise all international commitments that bind the State of Timor-Leste and disseminate them across sectors to improve the professionalism and action of the State and to fulfil the obligations assumed;
  • Systematise procedures and regulations on International Treaties and ensure the preservation and dissemination of documents related to the signing of International Treaties, Agreements, Memoranda of Understanding and Protocols, identifying and promoting the depository entity of the same;
  • Approve the new transitional regime for permanent officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the Diplomatic Career staff and strengthen the Centre for Diplomatic Studies as the central service of MoFAC to promote capacity-building of the Diplomatic Career staff;
  • Develop a continuous training plan for the human resources of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, including the reinforcement of competence in national and foreign languages;
  • Continue the process of rationalisation and downsizing of diplomatic and consular missions abroad;
  • Improve and constantly update the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, including making available to the public information that promotes the country and facilitates knowledge and access to areas of national interest;
  • Produce and distribute through all diplomatic representations promotional materials about the country to attract investment, trade and tourism in Timor-Leste.
  • Conduct an in-depth study on Timor-Leste's human resources to fully participate and benefit from future membership in ASEAN, including recommendations for capacity-building of technical staff in each sector to represent Timor-Leste fully.
  • Analyse, with a view to their effective implementation, all International Treaties and Conventions ratified or to be ratified and all commitments made or to be made in the future within the framework of the United Nations and other international organisations. This also includes the voluntary commitments already made for implementing the Sustainable Development Goals and other areas considered a priority for the country. The harmonisation of international obligations binding the State and their cross-sectoral dissemination will contribute to improving the professionalism and action of the State and to fulfilling the commitments that the State assumes.

6.13. Timorese Communities Abroad

The Government is particularly committed to strengthening the ties that bind our compatriots in the diaspora to our State. We understand that, despite the different circumstances that may have led many Timorese to leave our national territory, seeking security or better living conditions in other countries, it is essential that we maintain, and if possible strengthen, the ties that unite Timorese in the diaspora to the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste. Our compatriots abroad are the best means of promoting our Country abroad.

Political participation, besides being a fundamental right recognised to all Timorese citizens, is also an important instrument to strengthen the connection of our fellow citizens to our National Community.

The Government will therefore continue to promote the adoption of measures that support our compatriots residing abroad and strengthen their connection to Timor-Leste, so it is proposed to carry out the following tasks:

  • Pass legislation to ensure the provision of public services to Timorese citizens in the diaspora through the embassies and consulates of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste;
  • Strengthen the means made available to embassies and consulates of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste to provide services in the field of registration and notary and the issuance of passports to citizens residing outside the national territory;
  • Introduce consular support and protection mechanisms for Timorese citizens living abroad;
  • Improve the mechanisms for disseminating information by the Timorese communities in the diaspora related to the life and interests of our country.
  • Land and Maritime Boundary Office
  • National Petroleum Authority and Minerals
  • Timor-Leste Tourism
  • Ministry of Finance
  • Ministry of Justice
  • Agência Noticiosa de Timor-Leste
  • CPLP - Community of Portuguese Language Countries
  • ASEAN - Association of Southeast Asian Nations
  • COVID-19 - Timor-Leste Dashboard
  • CAC - Anti-Corruption Commission
  • Budget Transparency Portal
  • Courts of Timor-Leste
  • Institute of National Defence
  • Aid Transparency Portal
  • eProcurement Portal
  • Government Results Portal