RDTL and UNDP present proposed New Country Programme to stakeholders

06 Feb 2014

imageH.E. Ivo Valente, Vice Minister of Justice, H.E. Isabel Amaral Guterres, Minister of Social Solidarity, - H.E. José Luís Guterres, Minister of State and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, Knut Ostby, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative, H.E. Nino Pereira, Secretary of State for Industry and Cooperatives, Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Environment and Noura Hamladji, UNDP Country Director a.i. at the Strategic Stakeholders meeting. PHOTO: FELISBERTA DA SILVA/UNDP TL

Continued strength in governance with increased focus on resilience and sustainable development for vulnerable populations

Dili – The Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste (RDTL) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) today unveiled UNDP’s proposed new Country Programme for the five-year period 2015-2019, detailing a multi-dimensional initiative closely aligned to the country’s Strategic Development Plan (SDP) in the areas of Resilience, Sustainable Development, and  Governance. The result of numerous consultations with key stakeholders, the Programme builds on the momentum of the country’s key achievements during the past decade and UNDP’s strength in the areas of early recovery and institution building while at the same time increasing the organization’s focus on the human development needs of vulnerable populations. The meeting was presented in partnership with the Ministry of Finance. (Lee versaun Tetum iha ne'e)

Stakeholders from all areas of government and the development community gathered to review and assess the accomplishments, progress and lessons learned from the previous Country Programme (2009-2013) and achieve consensus on the key issues, programme areas and cooperation strategies for the new programme.

“Today’s discussion offers an important opportunity to take stock of the impressive progress my country has achieved on the long road from independence, to the country we are today and the vision we hold for tomorrow as embodied in the Strategic Development Plan,” said H.E. José Luís Guterres, Minister of State and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, in his opening remarks. “For almost 15 years, UNDP has proven itself to be a valued partner in my country’s quest to realise the aspirations laid out in the Plan, and we look forward to further cooperation as together we strive to create a prosperous, strong and inclusive Timor-Leste.”

“Since 1999, UNDP has stood with Timor-Leste, from her quest for independence to the development of a prosperous and inclusive nation,” said Knut Ostby, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative. “In the next Country Programme, we look to build on past accomplishments in state and institution building to enhance the effectiveness, relevance and efficiency of the democratic governance institutions. At the same time we will shift towards more sustainable development and resilience, linking more tightly poverty reduction with environmental stewardship and equitable social development.”

Leaders from the Ministries of Social Solidarity, Justice, and Commerce laid out the proposed new Country Programme, as well as offered both a review of the many achievements of the past Programme (2009-2014) and the challenges that lay ahead. Highlights from the proposed 2015-2019 Country Programme include:

Resilience-building

H.E. Sra. Isabel Amaral Guterres, Minister of Social Solidarity, opened the Country Programme presentations with a focus on Resilience-building which includes social cohesion and peacebuilding, disaster and climate risk management, and disaster preparedness and response. In this area, UNDP will work to strengthen the policy frameworks and institutional capacities of national and sub-national governments for more inclusive and equitable social and environmental policies, ensuring social cohesion and increased resilience to shocks. UNDP will work jointly with the World Bank to reduce the vulnerability of people living in areas threatened by climate change and environmental disaster by building the human and institutional capacities in the government and civil society to implement disaster and climate risk management measures and develop preparedness systems at the national, regional and local level.

The joint work will also focus on building the resilience of local communities to adjust their existing agricultural practices and natural resources management to climate change. UNDP will work closely with key counterparts within the framework of the Government’s SDP as well as other related national plans of actions, such as the National Adaptation Program of Action (NAPA) and National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs).

Sustainable Development

Accomplishments and new initiatives in the area of Sustainable Development, which will focus on jobs and livelihood, environmental stewardship and climate change, were presented by H.E. Mr. Nino Pereira, Secretary of State for Industry and Cooperative of the Ministry of Commerce Industry and Environment. UNDP will build on its leadership in environment, particularly climate change, to provide coherent support for the sustainable development of the country, focusing on employment and livelihoods for the most vulnerable populations, especially women. This will include providing policy and technical support to the government to achieve structural transformation of productive capacities at the national, sub-national and institutional level.

Projects that support the sustainable management of natural resources, ecosystems services and waste, renewable energy especially for the remote areas, the development of small and medium enterprises, particularly social businesses, and increased access of the poorest segments of the population to financial services will play a significant role in the new Programme. UNDP will also support the government to scale up action on climate change through the development of gender-sensitive national strategies and plans of actions that focus on those most vulnerable to economic, social and environmental shocks.  All these activities are designed to be both sustainable and drive job creation and livelihood promotion.

Governance

H.E. Ivo Valente, Vice Minister of Justice, presented the Governance sector including rule of law, public oversight and accountability, deconcentration and decentralization and citizen participation. UNDP will lead the United Nations and the development partners’ efforts to further develop and consolidate democratic governance institutions, systems and processes to make them more inclusive and responsive. This will include building on its existing partnerships with the key governing institutions of oversight, accountability and inclusion to respond to their emerging needs and fill the remaining capacity gaps to deliver more effectively.

Recognizing that citizens, particularly women, still have limited opportunities to engage in and influence the policy and decision-making processes that impact their lives, UNDP will support policy implementation and capacity development, and promote participatory approaches at the regional and district level to improve access to services and enhance citizens’ influence in decision-making processes.

In attendance were more than 100 stakeholders who included senior representatives of the Government of Timor-Leste, senior officials of Ministries and their technical focal points, senior representatives of state institutions such as the National Parliament of Timor-Leste, the Civil Service Commission, the Provedoria and the Anti-Corruption Commission, representatives of Non-Governmental Organizations, Civil Society, Development Partners, and staff of UNDP and other UN organizations.

Feedback and recommendations from today’s discussion will be integrated into the proposed Country Programme with revisions to be shared with Government and development partner counterparts. The final Programme is expected to be formally presented to UNDP’s Executive Board in June this year.

About UNDP: UNDP partners with people at all levels of society to help build nations that can withstand crisis, and drive and sustain the kind of growth that improves the quality of life for everyone. On the ground in 177 countries and territories, we offer global perspective and local insight to help empower lives and build resilient nations.

In Timor-Leste, UNDP provides technical advice and assistance to build strong and capable public institutions at national and sub-national levels in justice, parliament, human rights, anti-corruption, police, economic development, environmental management and disaster risk management that bring development, peace and justice to the population and reach out to the poor and vulnerable sections of society.