China and TL deepen bilateral cooperation: Chinese National Day

China and TL deepen bilateral cooperation: Chinese National Day

President of Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste, José Ramos Horta (Photo Tatoli/Antonio Daciparu)

DILI, 30 september 2022 (TATOLI) – China and Timor-Leste celebrated the 73rd Anniversary of the Founding of the People’s Republic of China, in the capital Dili, where the President of the Republic, Jose Ramos Horta, and the Chinese Ambassador to Timor-Leste, Xiao Jianguo pledged to deepen bilateral cooperation.

“The relations between Chinese and Timorese people go back a long time. It’s said that as earlier as the 10th century, sandalwood was traded back from Timor to China,” President Horta said during the commemoration of the Chinese National Day, in Dili, on friday.

Horta said others come and went but China always stood firm with the people of Timor-Leste: “China was the first country to establish diplomatic relations with Timor-Leste after we gained independence in 2002.”

He said since then China has continued to support Timor-Leste in many ways: “In my inauguration speech, on may 20 this year, as the President of the Republic, I committed my country to promote the continued development and strengthening bilateral relations with China.”

“Over the years, China has provided aid to Timor-Leste in many areas, including education, infrastructure development, and indispensable public building,” Horta said.

During the last decade, the total value of imports from China to Timor-Leste tripled in value, from US$25.5 million in 2010 to US$69.2 million, in 2019.

“In terms of export, in 2019, the value of Timor-Leste export to China was only US$19.5 million. Recently, we have seen an increased interest from China in Timorese coffee and we hope that it will continue. In addition, the Chinese buyers had also paid interest in some of the other rich agricultural production, such as vanilla, etc.,” Horta said.

“Tomorrow, october 1st marks the 73rd anniversary of the Founding of the People’s Republic of China. On the occasion, I wish to congratulate the Chinese people, President Xi Jinping, the whole government of China, ambassador Xiao, the Chinese Embassy staff, and the respective families,” Horta expressed his congratulations messages.

He said China played an indispensable center role in the development of the region and the world: “As a global, economic, financial and diplomatic leader, and a permanent member of the UN Security Council, China has a great responsibility in promoting and defending dialogue for the preservation of the regional and the global peace.”

“We have heard the concern expressed by some part of foreign media about the prospect of closer ties between Timor-Leste and China. China and Timor-Leste have always pursued a foreign policy, mutual respect, and sustainable development,” emphasized Horta.

Horta said Timor-Leste’s foreign policy is to build a good neighbor to all and of having zero enemies in the world.

“The Principle of China’s foreign policy are: mutual respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, mutual non-aggression, non-interference in each other’s internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit, and peaceful coexistence,” said Horta.

“We hope that the people’s republic of China will continue in its peaceful policy approach, charity, friendship, and cooperation in the region and the rest of the world,” Horta continued.

At the same place, Ambassador Xiao Jianguo said that China and Timor-Leste enjoyed a time-honored contact and friendship.

“Over the past 20 years, the two sides have supported and trusted each other with steady development of bilateral relations and increasingly deepening practical cooperation,” he said.

Xiao explained that China has extended assistance and support in various areas following Timor-Leste’s independence struggle, nation, and state building, and development processes that have taken place ever since: “A friend in need is a friend indeed.”

China is always standing firmly with Timor-Leste in very difficult times or in a time of urgent need. In particular, during the Covid-19 pandemic, China was the first country to extend its helping hand and was the first country to dispatch a chartered flight to deliver a large quantity of anti-epidemic supplies to Timor-Leste. When the catastrophic floods hit Dili, in April last year, China also offer emergency and humanitarian assistance.

“We always attach great importance to the bilateral relations, and regard Timor-Leste as our good neighbor, a good friend, and good partner, set our bilateral relations an example of mutual respect, equality, mutual benefit, and common development among all countries, big or small,” Xiao added.

He concluded that China will always be a friend of Timor-Leste and will stay committed to consolidating the current achievements between the two countries, and is willing to uphold the original aspiration of establishing diplomatic ties with Timor-Leste, continue the traditional friendship, the enriching connotation of bilateral relations, expand practical cooperation of the two countries under the “Belt and Road Initiative.”

China welcomes all stakeholders, including Timor-Leste to get involved in Global Development Initiative (GDI) and Global Security Initiative (GSI) for a better world in the future.

Both Timor-Leste and China are also committed to the eradication of poverty nationally and internationally.



Journalist: Filomeno Martins 

Editor: Nelia Borges 


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