Portuguese-speaking countries should take advantage of opportunities in Asia

24 February 2016

Governments and the private sector of the Community of Portuguese-Speaking Countries (CPLP) should make a concerted effort to capitalise on the opportunities that Asia offers, the Timorese Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister said Tuesday in Dili.

Roberto Soares spoke in Dili at a conference on the Second Meeting of CPLP Trade Ministers, which precedes the 1st Portuguese language Global Economic Forum due to bring hundreds of businesspeople and delegates from over 20 countries together in the Timorese capital.

Soares was quoted by Portuguese news agency Lusa as saying that governments have been striving to improve conditions for entrepreneurs, but it is now up to the private sector “to continue the government’s efforts,” seeking to become “more productive and innovative.”

At the Tuesday conference there were several presentations on investment opportunities in Timor-Leste (East Timor), especially projects such as the Special Zone of Social Market Economy (ZEESM) of Oecussi and Atauro, and trilateral Timor-Leste / Australia / Indonesia cooperation.

João Gonçalves, Coordinator of the Triangular Cooperation Unit, said the aim was to launch an area for growth and economic development of Timor-Leste, the Indonesian province of East Sonda (NTT) and Australia’s Northern Territory, taking advantage of the conditions of Timor-Leste for access to major world markets, creating an “industrial and logistics centre for raw materials and semi-manufactured products of adjacent geographies.” (macauhub/TL)