COVID-19: Timor Leste border set to open every 17 days

COVID-19: Timor Leste border set to open every 17 days

National Parliament, Thursday night (March 26)(Image/Egas Cristovao)

DILI, 12 august 2020 (TATOLI)-Timor-Leste Prime Minister Taur Matan Ruak revealed that the Government  decided to open the border once every seventeen (17) days in order to control the quarantine sites.

“the Government changed the entrance date for the movement of people in the land border. before the new case was announced the changed was made to two hours a week which now set to open every 17 days ,” PM Taur Matan Ruak confirmed during the declaration of State of Emergency during Parliament.

According to Him, the extend of date is because the team recorded the people in quarantine  have reached maximum number which is proving difficult to control.

“currently there are 400 people in mandatory quarantine, it is very difficult because sometimes their bed sheets are not being washed, dirty covers were not changed and other people were using the same dirty items. for such reason the Government has decided after a lot of thought that people who cross the land border and quarantine sites, to have two days free for cleaning by the staffs,” he said.

The PM also added that the space for quarantine are so limited.

Despite this, the government has continued to authorize the import of goods.

“The import of goods will be continued, it is known that if we stop the import then there will be an increase in the price of goods within the country,  we need a big quantity of goods, but if the goods minimize then the price will begin to increase,” he explained

Government is trying to manage between the fighting of the Virus and the impact from the disease to the country’s economy.

“These two factors are very difficult, because the Government not only needs to manage the disease but also the people without food, and this level of management no other countries in the world have successfully reached, but Timor-Leste with many difficulties is going to be the country to manage it,” he underlined that the Government has set two measures for the economic impact.

Mr. Matan Ruak  said to manage the economic and social impact, Timor-Leste has identified and adopted a two-step solutions and forecasted the budget needed to implement them.

The Establishment measure is cost $140 million and the recovery measure for the first step is included in the general state budget of 2020, which will be executed in November and December 2020.

But there are measures that need to adapt, the government has spoken with its development partners, Embassies and Companies with workers who are going to their countries to return to TL to support the economy within the country as the government will allow them step by step to coming in to TL.

he also acknowledge if the government will not allow them to return to TL, all the big construction projects and other activities will not going well.

“we ask them to return although we know to it is high risk but we are having good partnerships and will be able to manage everything,” he said.

Despite the government is decided to implement the State of Emergency only for the border areas.

“We strengthen the implementation measure only at eight post of the borders, four in Oé-cusse and other four between Salele and Batugade,” he said.

Journalist: Antónia Gusmão

Editor: Julia Chatarina/Nickle Kettle


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