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East-Timor looking for investors in Macau

For Special Economic Zone, East-Timor is looking for investors in Macau

Macau Daily TImes
02/09/2013 07:49:00

The former Prime Minister of East-Timor, Mari Alkatiri, has visited Macau in the hope of attracting investment for the special zones project under development in his country. Last Friday, he presented the project to various Macau businessmen, in the name of the government of Timor-Leste.

The special zones project shares similarities with the MSAR, with select regions of East-Timor being granted executive, administrative and financial autonomy. One of these zones will be created in Oecussi and the project may later be extended to the islands of Ataúro or Lautem.

Mari Alkatiri believes that Macau can participate in the development of these special zones in East-Timor. “If Macau has such an economy, such a private sector and such a dynamic private investment, it certainly has investors and doors are open for that,” he told Radio Macau. The former Prime Minister added that Macau is a partner of Timor-Leste, representing “an input and output door for China” as well as “a platform for the relationship between the Portuguese-speaking countries community.”

According to Radio Macau, the former Prime Minister hinted he that had already received several intention letters from partners in Macau, regarding the first phase of the project. However, he did not disclose further details concerning the names and sectors of those entrepreneurs willing to invest in Timor-Leste.

However, Alkatiri was willing to confirm that Chinese investors have already demonstrated their interest.

“I was approached by potential investors from China before coming to Macau. So great entrepreneurs and state companies have already gone there [Timor-Leste], alongside the Bank for External Development,” he explained.

According to Mari Alkatiri, the legislation allowing for the development of the project will be ready by December. A total of EUR2 billion will be invested by the private sector, while EUR950 million will be provided by the public sector. The return on investment is expected to be between 9 and 12 percent by 2030.