STRUGGLING EAST TIMOR LOOKS FOR INVESTORS

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, Oct. 1) - East Timor's president Xanana Gusmao says his country is battling poverty and badly needs investment in basic institutions.

He has told a meeting of Southeast Asian industry leaders in Singapore that the main challenges facing East Timor include building a good judicial system, developing good government and combating corruption.

He says the concept of citizenship is still being developed in the world's newest independent state.

According to aid agencies, East Timor is one of the world's poorest countries, with 40 percent of its people unable to meet basic needs.

The average person subsists on 50 US cents a day.

Mr Gusmao says foreign investors should look to East Timor for opportunities to start up factories and businesses.

He says he hopes countries such as Singapore can provide expertise on establishing a legal framework to facilitate investments.

October 8, 2003

Radio Australia: www.abc.net.au/ra

 

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