Our Perspective

The wellbeing of Timor-Leste’s young people is pivotal to the success of the young nation Timor-Leste

25 Sep 2016

image Timorese youth are pivotal to the success of the young nation Timor-Leste.

By Claudio Providas, Country Director of UNDP Timor-Leste ‘The wellbeing and success of Timor-Leste’s young people is pivotal to the success of the young Nation of Timor-Leste’, said H.E. Mr. Agio Pereira in his key note speech from July 2016 at a conference held at Flinders University, Australia. The future of Timor-Leste and its sovereignty rests on the wellbeing of its younger generation. World leaders are increasingly acknowledging that GDP alone cannot provide a full picture of a country’s performance. The UN Secretary General noted in 2012 the shortcomings of using wealth alone as an indicator. As individuals, we are a part of our families, communities and our nation. We are also a part of the eco-system. Our wellbeing is shaped by many factors and the role of the state in improving the lives of citizens is fundamental. The public policies and programs success however cannot simply be measured based on economic terms. Enhancing wellbeing means providing people the opportunities and means to live a healthy, happy and satisfactory life. In the context of sustainable development this requires that similar opportunities are being preserved for future generations to come. UNDP’s Human Development Reports are at the forefront at steering the global  Read More

A very high portion of Timor-Leste’s population is young. How can we unlock their full potential?

16 Jun 2016

image Timor-Leste is one of the eleven countries in the Asia Pacific region blessed with a large portion of young people.

By: Claudio Providas, Country Director of UNDP Timor-Leste Timor-Leste is one of the eleven countries in the Asia Pacific region blessed with a large portion of young people. Almost 70 per cent of its population is young people aged under twenty-five. Many of these young people are neither studying nor working. The unemployment rate is on the rise. Young people are often perceived as the group who causes ‘problem’, but they are actually the next generation of decision makers, leaders and workers who if educated, skilled and employed, will help boost the economic growth and sustainable development of this country. If we don’t invest in youth and priorities their meaningful and productive participation in the economy and society now, we will lose the opportunity to have a better and prosperous future. Our recent Regional Human Development Report 2016 (RHDR) explores how governments can take this great demographic opportunity to nurture the potential of young people, boost their productivity through decent work opportunities, and achieve government’s’ commitments to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The report calls the governments to take three policy actions to empower youth and boost economic gains through productive employment: Policy Action 1: Invest in basic capabilities such as  Read More

Changing Climate: Do the Timorese need to worry about it?

22 Mar 2016

image Climate resilient small infrastructure built in suco Leguimea, Ermera to prevent flood and landslide

“One of the top 10 countries most at risk of disaster…; Annual mean temperature consistently increasing at a rate of about 0.0160C per year; Sea level rising at the average rate of 6-9 mm per year, and in over 100 years the sea level rise may reach 76cm; Pacific Ocean acidification increasing in Timor-Leste’s water; Agriculture sector contributes to 65% of the total national greenhouse gas emissions; Vulnerable communities have limited COPing mechanisms and adaptive capacities; El Niño worsening water availability and causing intensified water scarcity, food security and health impacts” The above information on Timor-Leste have been shared by researches and assessments for the last 10 years or so. Who is the target audience? Are we contributing to better prevention? Adaptation? Policies or behavioral change? How well are the different target groups informed about the looming climate change risks and its impacts to their livelihood, development work, health, nutrition, ecosystems and the future generations, and where are we as a nation in preparing ourselves against these odds? Questions as these are valid and more importantly, more and more people have started asking such questions, and answers are due.  Every other year seems to have a record of high temperature. Just  Read More

A New Era of Opportunity

17 Dec 2015

By Ban Ki-moon Seventy years ago, the United Nations was created from the ashes of the Second World War.  Seven decades later, in Paris, nations have united in the face of another threat – the threat to life as we know it due to a rapidly warming planet.  Governments have ushered in a new era of global cooperation on climate change – one of the most complex issues ever to confront humanity.  In doing so, they have significantly advanced efforts to uphold our Charter mandate to "save succeeding generations". The Paris Agreement is a triumph for people, the environment, and for multilateralism.  It is a health insurance policy for the planet.  For the first time, every country in the world has pledged to curb their emissions, strengthen resilience and act internationally and domestically to address climate change. Together, countries have agreed that, in minimizing risks of climate change, the national interest is best served by pursuing the common good.  I believe it is an example we could gainfully follow across the political agenda. The victory in Paris caps a remarkable year.  From the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction to the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development, from the  Read More

From Millennium Development Goals to Sustainable Development Goals: A new joint commitment to create progress for everyone

29 Sep 2015


Today, most people live a better life than what their parents and grandparents experienced. There are many reasons for this, but one important factor is our global efforts for human development. It has worked! But in spite of good results so far, there are many remaining challenges and we know we can do better. One thing we know has worked is the focus of our common energies on jointly agreed goals, and the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are giving us that new, joint focus. The 17 new Sustainable Development Goals and its corresponding 169 targets are meant to build on and succeed the 8 Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and serve as the foundation of the post-2015 development agenda. Although some of the MDG targets were reached, others, such as halving the number of people affected by hunger, or the target of halting and beginning to reverse the spread of HIV/Aids by 2015, has not been met. The SDGs will continue to build on the achievements of the MDGs and has declared ambitious targets in three highly interlinked areas, namely, to end poverty through inclusive and equitable economic growth, transform lives with broad-based social inclusion, and protect the planet and environment  Read More