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Is the first “failure” in the first year? Featured

PM Taur Matan Ruak met Former President Jose Ramos Horta in Prime Miister Office, Dili (24/05) PM Taur Matan Ruak met Former President Jose Ramos Horta in Prime Miister Office, Dili (24/05) Photo Prime Minister Media

Tempotimor (DILI) - The eighth government led by Prime Minister Taur Matan Ruak celebrated one year of his government on June 22.

The president of the Popular Liberation Party (Partido Libertasaun Popular) was installed by the President of the republic Francisco Guterres Lú - Olo at the Palacio Nobre Lahane, Dili, Timor - Leste. According to the 2015 Census, about 51.24% of the population is under the age of 20. This means that, in the next 5 to 10 years, hundreds of thousands of young people will enter the labor market, with the legitimate aspiration of creating their own way of life in a dignified way, in a just economy that values their work.

With this in mind, the private sector, regardless of its vocation and dimension, is and will continue to be one of the main drivers of the national economy, guaranteeing the creation of employment and, as such, constituting one of the major factors to combat poverty and improve the social capital of nation. 

The government of Taur Matan Ruak came up with a highly-ambitious program to build Timor-Leste into a country with economic income and will open around 300,000 jobs in five years, and 60,000 in one year. But for almost a year, his government has not been able to realise its promise to create 60,000 new jobs. These programs and promises have no real results.

“We have the great ambition of keeping the unemployment rate in single digits, with the creation of 300,000 new jobs (an average of 60,000 a year); to reduce poverty by 10%; and to ensure economic growth above 7%, sustained by the progressive increase of the private sector by a minimum of 10% per year,” he promised when he presented his program in the national parliament on July 24 last.

“But we know that the viability of these macroeconomic objectives depends on our ability to implement the great options of the plan and the rigorous execution of the budget, with rigor, effectiveness and efficiency, promoting the saving of means or resources and avoiding the expense or superfluous expenses”.

This is the political promise of Taur Matan Ruak, who almost failed to realise it. So far, there have been many comments about the Matan Ruak government with the incompleteness of several ministers in his government, and the answers he told the public that he would discuss with the President to immediately resolve or provide solutions to cabinet members who were still rejected by the president until now.

Calculated from his term of office since June 2018 to the present, he has almost met 48 times with President Lú - Olo, but the results have not yet been made about several cabinet members who have not been inaugurated. With the incompleteness of some of these cabinets, the result is not having the chance to realise his promise to open 60,000 jobs every year. Former President José Ramos Horta questioned the government plan to absorb the unemployment rate in the country. “I do not know, why they make this promise 60.000 jobs a year, difficult to create,” he said. 

Moreover, the president of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Oscar Lima, said, the country’s economic situation seemed very slow and getting worse because of political deadlock for almost two years.

Lima added, the government alone cannot create 60,000 new jobs per year, how can the private companies do it? “It is very difficult to recruit new workers, except to reduce workers because the economy is not working well,” he said. Now, all East Timorese are waiting for this eighth government to realise its promise to open 60,000 jobs every year.

Today, the country of 1.3 million people still faces extreme poverty. Leaders including Kay Rala Xanana Gusmão, who was East Timor’s first President from 2002 to 2007 and Prime Minister from 2007 to 2015, have focused on big-ticket infrastructure projects to develop the economy, funding them from a dwindling amount of oil riches.

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Last modified on Saturday, 29 June 2019 10:56
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