21 September 2016

Land and Property Fiscal Database Project Approved by East Timor Council of Ministers

From East Timor Law and Justice Bulletin 21 September 2016 Source: Government of East Timor Press Release 13 September 2016 DILI Council of Ministers meeting of September 13th , 2016  - The Council of Ministers met on Tuesday at the Government Palace in Dili, and was updated on the status of the National Registry System project, managed by the GMN-H/ARM-APPRIZE consortium and under the authority of the Minister of State, Coordinator of State Administration Affairs and Justice and Minister of State Administration, in coordination with the Secretary of State for Land and Property.

The project, initiated in 2014, includes the survey and cadastral mapping of the territory, the establishment of a computerised database of registration and the creation of a system of property valuation for tax purposes, with the aim of supporting the implementation of a set of clear and fair rules in regulating the mechanisms of property ownership and transfer.

23 December 2015

Timor-Leste Road Project Gets Additional $12 Million Funding Boost

ETLS 23/12/2015 East Timor's Specialised Investment Agency published a report on 29 June 2015 originally published in Financial on 25 June 2015, that Officials from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of Timor-Leste had signed an agreement confirming additional ADB financing of nearly $12 million for the Timor-Leste Road Network Upgrading Project.

Signing the assistance package was the Minister of Finance and ADB Governor, Santina Viegas Cardoso, and ADB’s Country Director Shane Rosenthal.

“Creating a shorter and safer route between Dili and Tibar Bay, the site of a planned international seaport, will make it easer and less costly to transport goods, and enhance the Tibar Bay area as a place to do business” said Mr. Rosenthal.

The new funding will upgrade a 5-kilometer section of road along a key route linking Dili to Tibar Bay—site of the country's planned new international port—to Gleno, center of an important coffee-growing region. The original project supports road upgrades from Tibar Bay to Gleno and Liquica. The latest section targeted for improvement is part of the key north coast road linking Dili with Indonesia, as well as the western towns of Maliana and Bobonaro, according to ADB.

The Road Network Upgrading Project also includes upgrading from Tibar to Liquica and complements another road initiative funded by an ADB grant, which together will upgrade 57 km of roads from Tibar to Batugade, on the border with Indonesia. These are the first major road improvements to be undertaken by Timor-Leste since independence in 2002.

ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members – 48 from the region. In 2014, ADB assistance totaled $22.9 billion, including cofinancing of $9.2 billion.

East Timor Government grants surface land rights to land in Tasi Tolu to Singapore company for $310 million hotel development

Tasi Tolu, East Timor (Three Lakes)
From ETLJB The East Timor Council of Ministers, at its meeting on 22 December 2015, passed a resolution granting land use rights for the construction of a hotel complex.

The Government granted to Pelican Paradise Holdings Timor-Leste the surface rights on a land in Tasi Tolu for the development of an investment project. This international company, headquartered in Singapore, will build and explore a five-star hotel complex, with an investment of approximately US$310 million.

The project was presented to the Fifth Constitutional Government at the extraordinary meeting of the Council of Ministers of November 21st, 2014. It includes the construction of a hotel with 464 rooms, designed to be among the best 5 star hotels in the region, among other high quality and tourist potential units.

The training of human resources and the creation of employment are priorities of the investor, which plans to create around one thousand and five hundred direct jobs in the construction phase. With operations starting the investor expects that a thousand and three hundred jobs will be created and maintained.

At the Extraordinary Meeting of the Council of Ministers on 21 November 20141, the State Secretariat for the Support and Promotion of the Private Sector presented the investment project from the international company Pelican Paradise Holdings Timor-Leste located in Singapore, for the construction and exploration of a five star hotel complex located between Dili and Tibar, with an investment of around 310 million dollars.

The project includes a hotel with 492 bedrooms, gym, restaurant, spa, convention center for one thousand and five-hundred people, golf course, commercial area and residential area.

During the construction stage of the hotel complex, the Investor estimates that one-thousand and fivehundred direct jobs may be created, 70% to 80% of which can be carried out by Timorese. Once the hotel complex is completed and operational, the investor foresees that 830 jobs will be established and maintained, 70% to 80% of which can be carried out by Timorese.

Earlier this year, on 29 April 2015, Mr. Tony Duarte, President of the East Timor Specialised Investment Agency and the team received Datuk Edward Ong and his delegation on Wednesday, 15 April 2015 at the office of the Specialised Investment Agency.

The investment of the Pelican Paradise to the tune of USD$310 millions is scheduled to take place this year pending the approval of the Council of  Ministers. The investor does not request for the Special Investment Agreement, but rather a Certificate of Investment. For private investments worth USD$20  millions or more requires the approval of the Council of Ministers, as provided  for under the decree-law no. 6/2005, 27th July.

The five star hotel complex investment includes a hotel with 492 bedrooms, gym, restaurant, spa, and convention centre for 1500 people, golf course, commercial  area and residential area. It is located in Tasi Tolu with an investment of around  USD$310 millions. The investment will act as a catalyst to further draw foreign  direct investments into the country.

During the construction stage of the hotel complex, the Investor estimates that 1500 direct jobs may be created, 70% to 80% of which can be carried out by Timorese. Once the hotel complex is completed and operational, the investor foresees that 830 jobs will be established and maintained, 70% to 80% of which can be carried out by Timorese.

Datuk Edward Ong is of Singaporean nationality and has been constantly following up his Pelican Paradise investment for more than six years. Countless hours of painstaking efforts invested to see the project taking place this year.

All the required formalities have been prepared by the Specialized Investment Agency and delivered to the Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs, His Excellency Mr. Estanislau da Silva on 8th April 2015.

Last year, on 21st November 2014, the V Constitutional Government has analysed the Pelican Paradise investment, (http://timorleste.gov.tl/?p=10920&lang=en&lang=en)

Meanwhile, the investor is now waiting for the approval of the Council of Ministers for the project to commence as soon as possible. Once the approval is received from the Council of Minister, the following animation of the master plan will be put into practice and coming to fruition – (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJf-VM9GvaY&feature=youtu.be).

“The investment of the Pelican Paradise is of a significant value in contributing to the economic development of Timor-Leste, in tourism sector, of a purely foreign direct investment and it further enhances the positive image of Timor-Leste as an investment destination for other potential investors”, says Mr. Tony Duarte.

It is a significant investment that will create the much needed employments for the growing number of Timorese youth and kick-start various supporting local  industries in the process. It is in the best interest of the country to ensure that  this investment proceeds as quickly as possible.
- See more at: http://invest-tl.com/news-investment-timor-leste/222/16/en/pelican-paradise-awaits-the-final-approval-from-the-council-of-ministers---for-usd$310-millions-of-investment.html#sthash.UE1OZw3v.dpuf

28 October 2014

Council of Ministers approves decree law for the transfer of rights of ownership of community or private property to the State for Suai Supply Base

From Extraordinary Meeting of the East Timor Council of Ministers of 22 August 2014 Decree Law approving the transmission of property rights of community and private property to the State, relating to the Suai Supply Base Project

This diploma sets the special framework applicable to the temporary transfer of rights of ownership of community or private property, to the State, for the implementation of the Suai Supply Base Project.

28 August 2014

Report on land dispute case heard in Baucau District Court in May 2014

17.  Land dispute, Case No.20/Civ.2008.TDB

Composition of judges            : Panel
Judge                                       : Jose Gonçalves, Antonio Fonseca, Afonso Carmona
Lawyer for the plaintiff          : Mujariah Amaral
Lawyers for the respondent    : Grigorio de Lima and Juvinal Yanes
Conclusion                              :Ongoing

On 15 May 2014 the Baucau District Court conducted a hearing to examine the testimony of the respondent. This case involved the plaintiff Francisco de Oliveira and the respondent Aderito de Carvalho. The land in dispute is located in Uatukarbau Sub-District, Viqueque District.

The witnesses Sebastião Pinto, aged 70, and Bernardo da Costa, aged 92, testified that their father and the plaintiff have been managing the rice field on the land in dispute and the father of the plaintiff has been using the rice field since Indonesian times. The two witnesses added that ever since the plaintiff has been occupying the land no one has claimed to be the owner of the land. The witness heard that in 1999 the respondent stopped the plaintiff from using the land. The witnesses did not know when the Department of Land measured the land because the two witnesses were not there. The witness Sebastião Pinto was traveling (back to his village) and the witness Bernardo da Costa was in Dili.

After hearing testimony from the two witnesses, the court scheduled a date to continue the trial on 22 May 2014 to hear testimony from the respondent.

The witness Jeremias Quintão, aged 68, and the witness Agapito Pinto testified that they knew the respondent’s father and in Portuguese times the respondent’s father had managed the rice field on the land in dispute and channeled water into the rice field. The witnesses added that they helped to channel the water. At that time the witness Agapito was assigned to look after the buffalo belonging to the father of the respondent. At that time they managed the rice field with the use of the buffaloes. In 1983 the respondent and his brother were still young so the plaintiff took the opportunity to manage the rice field belonging to the respondent until 1999. On the last occasion the witnesses heard from the respondent himself that he had been managing the rice field until now.

After hearing testimony from the two witnesses summoned by the respondent, the court adjourned the trial to 5 June 2014 at 10am to hear further testimony from the plaintiff and respondent.

See the full report of cases heard in the Baucau District Court in May 2014 on the East Timor Law and Justice Bulletin

28 July 2014

World Bank and Government of Timor-Leste Presents Dili-Ainaro Road Project to the community

Connecting people to the market and other critical services along the Dili-Ainaro corridor Dili, July 14th, 2014 – Today the Government of Timor-Leste presented the Dili – Ainaro road rehabilitation project to the community. Through this project, the World Bank is supporting the Government to rehabilitate a 110 km road corridor that will link the District of Dili to the District of Ainaro.

The presentation ceremony was conducted by Mr. Gastão de Sousa, Minister of Public Works and was witnessed by Franz Drees-Gross, World Bank Country Director for Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste, and the Pacific Islands outside of Dili.

The road from Dili to Ainaro is a vital link between the north and the south of the country and connects three districts—Dili, Aileu and Ainaro—which jointly account for a third of the country’s population, including thousands of small farmers.

“Improving the road access will bring a social and economic benefit to the State and to the people, as a good road makes it easier for the community to connect and sell its produce to the market”,  said Minister of Public Works Eng. Gastão. “It will also provide access for tourism, boost  the economic development  and increase the quality of life for people through better access to  health and education.”

“The need for robust road infrastructure that directly helps the population living along this Dili-Ainaro corridor is real and must be attended to in a swift manner, therefore we are pleased to see this project moving forward,” said Drees-Gross, World Bank Country Director for Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste, and the Pacific Islands. “The World Bank’s support will continue after this groundbreaking ceremony and we will help ensure that a high quality road is delivered to the people,” he continued.

This road project is part of the Timor-Leste Road Climate Resilience Project, launched in 2011, which delivered emergency repairs along key sections of the road, where road closures were frequent due to flooding or damage caused by heavy rainfall.

This project will now focus on rehabilitating the entire 110km road corridor across the three districts. Construction works will stabilize slope structures, improve drainage and repair pavements. The project will also support feasibility studies and detailed designs for possible future road improvements linked to the Dili-Ainaro corridor.

An emergency maintenance and response system will also help the Government plan for managing extreme weather events, such as landslides and heavy rain.

The project is being implemented by the Ministry of Public Works and is being financed with US$60 million from the World Bank—an IDA grant of US$20, an IDA Credit of US$25 million and an IBRD loan of US$15 million. The Government of Timor-Leste will contribute US$53 million to the project. #End# Source: World Bank Press Release 14 July 2014

01 July 2014

Contract for the Establishment of National Registry and of the Registry of Land Parcels in Timor-Leste

01/07/2014 Extract from Extraordinary Meeting of the TImor-Leste Council of Ministers of 30 November 2013 - Following the approval, on last October 7th, of the Resolution approving the Procurement Process for the project of Establishment of the National Registry, the Council of Ministers approved, at this extraordinary meeting, the terms for the contract to be signed with Grupo Media Nacional’s consortium – GMN, Holding and Arm Apprize. Source: Presidency of the Council of Ministers V Constitutional Government Dili, November 30th 2013 Press Release