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Timor-leste's vision and actions for Belt and Road Cooperation

Seetao 2022-11-28 09:59
  • It will invest heavily in the construction and rehabilitation of roads, Bridges, airports and seaports
  • The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on Belt and Road cooperation is of positive significance to Timor-Leste's economic and social development
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East Timor, located in Southeast Asia, is the easternmost island of Nusa Tenggara Islands, bordering Indonesia West Timor to the west, and looking across the Timor Sea to Australia to the south. East Timor is a new nation, having only been established in 2002. Timor-leste is still a least developed country and faces development challenges such as inadequate infrastructure. It is a consistent policy of China's neighborhood diplomacy to develop good-neighborly and friendly relations with its neighbors. China established formal diplomatic relations with East Timor on the day it declared independence. In 2017, the governments of China and Timor-Leste signed a memorandum of understanding on Belt and Road cooperation, which marks a new stage of bilateral cooperation and is of positive significance to Timor-Leste's economic and social development. In this context, studying Timor-Leste's independently formulated development plan not only helps to accurately grasp Timor-Leste's development needs, but also is of great significance to promoting the cooperation between China and Timor-Leste under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative.

The National Development Strategic Plan 2011-2030, approved by the Timor-Leste Parliament in June 2011, Outlines "a 20-year vision that reflects the aspiration of the Timor-Leste people to create a prosperous and powerful country". The guiding document covers four aspects, namely social capital, infrastructure development, economic development and institutional framework, and puts forward specific development goals.

First, the Government of East Timor will maximize the health, education and quality of life of the people of East Timor as the core objective of building an equitable and progressive country. The true wealth of any country lies in the strength of its people. To this end, Timor-Leste will continue to make efforts to improve the living environment and quality of its people by strengthening education and training, improving the health of its people, enhancing social inclusion, and protecting the natural environment and historical and cultural heritage.

Second, Timor-Leste will actively build and maintain core and productive infrastructure to support the development of a modern and pluralistic state. Timor-leste lacks the necessary core infrastructure. In order to support the country's economic development, Timor-Leste will undertake large-scale, long-term investments in the construction and rehabilitation of roads, Bridges, airports and seaports. At the same time, the country will take action to address the serious shortage of electricity supply and the lack of modern telecommunications network construction.

Third, Timor-Leste will strive to build a modern and diversified economy and tap its growth potential. Although the private sector is emerging in Timor-Leste, the economy is homogeneous, with agriculture as the main pillar industry. Therefore, on the one hand, Timor-Leste is committed to promoting rural economic development and improving the business environment to attract investment and construction. On the other hand, we should give full play to the country's advantages in resources and environment, actively develop the economy of agriculture, petroleum, tourism and other industries, and promote the development of diversified economy while safeguarding national security.

Fourth, Timor-Leste will strive to build a peaceful, stable and law-based state that guarantees the right of all citizens to access to justice. Timor-leste, as a newly born country, has experienced many years of conflict, and stability and security are inevitably an important prerequisite for the socio-economic development of Timor-Leste. To this end, the Timor-Leste government will implement a comprehensive and long-term strategic plan to safeguard national security. Guarantee peace and stability within the State through the establishment of a judicial system; In order to ensure the effective implementation of the Plan, Timor-Leste will become a modern and prosperous country while taking a series of measures to improve the management capacity of the public sector and reform efforts of good governance, establish institutional institutions, strengthen national defense and improve the level of diplomacy.

Since Timor-Leste's independence, foreign aid has been an important source of external funds for Timor-Leste, which has played a positive role in maintaining Timor-Leste's economic development and political stability. As a firm supporter of Timor-Leste's development, China will step up its development cooperation with Timor-Leste based on Timor-Leste's independently formulated development plan and guided by its needs, so as to make greater contribution to Timor-Leste's post-epidemic economic recovery and development. Editor/Xu Shengpeng