Subject: Chinese investors present projects in East Timor

Also Chinese eye wide-ranging investment in East Timor

Chinese investors present projects in East Timor [ 2007-09-20 ]

Beijing, China, 20 Sept ­ A group of Chinese potential investors Wednesday began a visit to East Timor to present projects to the Timorese government, the value of which, according to the East Timor embassy in Beijing, is over US$100 million.

During the three-day visit, the Chinese businesspeople will meet with the Timorese authorities and civil society and private sector representatives, the embassy said in a statement sent to Portuguese news agency Lusa in Beijing.

According to Vicky Tchong, advisor to the East Timor embassy in China, the investment projects, as well as being ecologically sustainable, will provide thousands of jobs for East Timor’s population.

The investment package that the Chinese delegation will present to the East Timor authorities includes creation of a retail bank, a shopping center and a port development area, as well as the construction of a road network and aircraft runways.

“The visit by the Chinese investors is the result of two years of efforts to promote East Timor in China,” said the Timorese ambassador in Beijing, Olímpio Miranda Branco.

In 2005, trade between China and East Timor totaled US$1.27 million and represented only sales by China to East Timor, but between January and July 2006, this rose ten-fold to US$13.37, according to the embassy. (macauhub)

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Chinese eye wide-ranging investment in East Timor

Fri 21 Sep 2007, 7:08 GMT

By Tito Belo

DILI, Sept 21 (Reuters) - Chinese businessmen want to invest more than $100 million in East Timor over the next 10 years in a range of sectors from banking to agriculture, a Chinese business delegation said on Friday.

East Timor, a young nation of about 1 million people, is one of the world's poorest with a per capita income of only around $400, but is starting to tap its rich energy resources that over time could significantly raise standards of living.

Some businessmen fled when the country was rocked by deadly factional and gang violence last year, but calm is returning to the impoverished country after presidential and legislative elections this year.

"We have come here to meet with relevant ministries to find the way how we can invest in East Timor," a spokesman for the delegation visiting East Timor, Lu Yong Hua, told Reuters.

"This investment is very relevant to East Timor's condition, and I believe Timorese people involved in this investment will change their economy in five years to come," he told reporters after talks with the tiny country's economy and development minister, Joao Gonsalves.

Lu said the private sector delegation was seeking investment in commercial banking, agriculture, property and road construction.

He added projects worth $10 million were expected to start next year and give jobs to 50,000 locals.

The value of investment will increase to more than $100 million over the next 10 years, another delegation member said.

The minister of economy and development, Joao Gonsalves, welcomed the proposal.

"The government will facilitate the company by offering land. If they invest in Dili, they will use land for free for seven years and outside of Dili for ten years," he told Reuters by telephone.

He said the government would guarantee the security of the investment.

Factional bloodshed broke out in the predominantly Catholic country last year, killing 37 people and forcing tens of thousands to flee their homes.

About 3,000 foreign police and troops remain in East Timor, which only became fully independent in 2002 after a period of U.N. administration.

East Timor remains one of Asia's poorest countries, although the disputed Greater Sunrise gas fields in the Timor Sea hold great potential wealth, with an estimated 8 trillion cubic feet of gas and up to 300 million barrels of oil,


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