Dili, 31st August 2019: HE, the Prime Minister of Timor-Leste, Taur Matan Ruak, this Friday, held a bilateral meeting with his Australian counterpart, Scott Morrison, in the Ministry of Finance’s conference hall – Dili, to discuss the bilateral relationship and cooperation of these neighbouring countries in the future, namely the cooperation on internet optical fibre connection, maritime borders management and immigration areas.
In the joint press conference after the meeting, the Timorese Head of Government stated that this bilateral meeting is a historic milestone and a decisive step for both nations. Timor-Leste is resolute to strengthening the relationship with Australia, extending the cooperation to other areas such as internet optical fibre connection, maritime borders management and immigration.
“This moment marks a new historic milestone and a new stage. Timor-Leste is resolute to maintain this relationship and open up bilateral cooperation on other areas. One area that has just been mentioned by the Prime Minister is the optical fibre connection, which will allow internet connection to become faster and cheaper. Another area we addressed was the maritime security. Timor-Leste has an abundance of natural resources on the sea, but don’t have the capacity to control it. Despite this lack of resources, we are being supported and we can guarantee the security to all companies investing in our sea. Another issue we discussed was the management of border and immigration. The Prime Minister has stated that from this moment on will be a new stage, Timor-Leste and Australia will cooperate better to help one another”, said the Timorese Head of Government during the joint press conference.
In the presence of his Australian counterpart, the Timorese Head of Government acknowledged the support Australian Government has given to Timor-Leste, over the last 20 years, in order to help the development of Timor-Leste in the areas of education, human resources, good governance, defence and security, rural development, just to mention a few.
The Head of Government further extended his gratitude to the Australia Prime Minister for accepting his invitation to participate in the celebrations of the 20th anniversary of Referendum (Popular Consultation) and the INTERFET Mission, as well as, wished him to have an enjoyable stay in Timor-Leste.
The Timorese delegation taking part on this bilateral meeting includes the Minister of State and Minister for Presidency for the Council of Ministers, Hermenegildo Augusto Cabral Pereira, the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, Dionísio da Costa Babo Soares, the Minister for Legislative Reform and Parliamentary Affairs, and Interim Minister for Economic Affairs and Minister for Tourism, Fidelis Leite Magalhães, the Defence Minister and Interim Interior Minister, Filomeno da Paixão de Jesus, as well as the Minister of Education, Youth and Sports, Dulce de Jesus. On the Australian side, the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Women, Honourable Senator Marise Payne was present on this historic occasion too.
This was the first official visit of the Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morrison to Timor-Leste, in response to his Timorese counterpart’s invitation to participate in the celebrations of 20th anniversary of Referendum (Popular Consultation) and the INTERFET Mission. In addition, within this visit, take place the Diplomatic Notes Exchange ceremony on the Ratification of Maritime Boundary Treaty of Timor Sea between both countries – which had been an issue and resolved through the compulsory conciliation process. The final decision was taken during the conciliation process and both parties consequently signed the treaty on March 6th, 2018 in New York. END