Timor-Leste provides 1.7 million dollars for the allocation of “basic staple foods”

Timor-Leste provides 1.7 million dollars for the allocation of “basic staple foods”

Coordinator Minister for Economic Affairs, Joaquim Amáral (Image/MKAE)

DILI, august 19, 2020 (TATOLI)– The Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs (MCAE), Joaquim Amaral, revealed the Commission of economic recovery has now issued a proposal to the Government. The proposal is to allocate US$71 million  for a basket of “basic staple foods,” which will be provided by the government to the entire population in Timor-Leste.

“All citizens, without discrimination, will receive a shopping voucher. If certain people want to donate their voucher to others, they can donate it to people in need,” Minister Amaral said at the Government Palace.

According to Mr Amaral, the measures will encourage citizens to purchase local products and motivate agricultural producers to increase their production.

“The Government’s policy is, as such, for the population to buy food from local markets. This measure allows our farmers to produce on a larger scale while ensuring they have more buyers,” he said.

The Executive will allocate the funds for this project in the proposal of the State General Budget during 2020.

“The measure will be implemented in November and December, if the budget is approved in October 2020,” he said.

He added that the MCAE is making preparations as well as dissemination campaigns to agricultural producers to provide them with appropriate tools for the cultivation of different products, whilst letting them know that there will be an increase in customers.

“These measures aim to respond to the essential needs of citizens, support informal sector workers, increase jobs and incomes and ensure the participation of companies in the market,” said Fidélis Magalhães, at the Government Palace in Dili.

He also said the “basic basket”, will consist of both food and hygienic items, this will be available for all citizens and residents in Timor Leste.

“The basic basket is a choice and a new alternative. The Government will grant a shopping voucher to all Timorese citizens so they can obtain necessary goods, especially local products”, he said.

Journalist: Maria Auxiliadora

Publisher: Zezito Silva/Nick Kettle

Translation: Nelia Borges


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