29 June 2017

East Timor Council of Ministers meeting on June 27th, 2017

Presidency of the Council of Ministers

Sixth Constitutional Government

Press Release
Council of Ministers meeting on June 27th, 2017

The Council of Ministers met on Tuesday at the Government Palace in Dili, and the Minister of State, Coordinator of Economic Affairs and Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries saw two Government Decrees and a Decree-Law approved and made a progress report on the construction of the Pelican Paradise tourist development.

With the approval of the new Companies Law, it is now needed to approve a Government Decree on the instruments of incorporation models for companies, following current regulations. The second Government Decree approved set out rules for the establishment of the supervisory body for commercial companies to allow the monitoring of accounts and tax compliance by companies that have relevant economic activities, regardless of the model used for incorporation.

Also approved was a Decree-Law on the licensing of commercial activities. This law sets out a new regime that was prepared, with technical support from the International Finance Corporation (IFC). The law creates a licensing system based on the risk of each economic activity. For low risk activities, permits will continue to be issued, but medium and high-risk activities, in addition to this authorization, shall be subject to sectoral licensing by the relevant ministries and require a prior appraisal.

The Minister of Finance saw two Government Resolutions adopted: one for humanitarian aid to Portugal, following the destruction caused by forest fires, and another on the allocation of funds for the Tour de Timor, a cycling competition used to promote national sport and tourism, which has been conducted every year since 2009.

The Government also approved a decree on the additional payment to employees of the National Press of Timor-Leste. Presented by the Secretary of State for the Council of Ministers, this measure is intended to reward the employees involved in the process of printing ballot papers, voter registers and other election material. The need to ensure compliance with the electoral calendar established by CNE and STAE, with the printing of 805 thousand ballot papers, in addition to other materials for the ongoing process, has produced continuous work for more than three weeks, well beyond the normal work period and also the 40 hours a month of extraordinary work allowed for in the law.

The Council of Ministers approved the arrangements for assessment and accreditation of Higher Education institutions and Study Levels. Presented by the Minister of State, Coordinator of Social Affairs and Minister of Education, this scheme is led by the National Agency for Academic Assessment and Accreditation (Portuguese acronym: ANAAA) and creates mechanisms for the assessment of higher education, university and technical training institutions, and their study levels. The scheme will support improvement in the quality of educational institutions and will provide accurate information on their performance. The accreditation of institutions and study levels is for a five-year period, at the end of which a new procedure for assessment and accreditation is required.

The Minister of Social Solidarity saw approved a Decree-Law on private sector support under the Social Welfare Contributory Framework. Because this is the first year in which this contributory scheme is in force, and recognising that employers need to adapt to this new reality, the law provides a set of exceptions and support to the private sector.
The Minister of the Interior, along with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), made presentation on the impact of the “El Niño climatic phenomenon in Timor-Leste for the period 2015-2016, and made recommendations for the future. ETLJB

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