Government of Timor-Leste and the International Labour Organization sign agreement to support the COVID-19 fund

Dili, Timor-Leste, 26th of May 2020: The Government of Timor-Leste, represented by the Ministry of Finance, and the United Nations’ International Labour Organization (ILO) signed an agreement to channel donor funding directly into the COVID-19 Fund.

Through the agreement, titled “Leaving No One Behind in Timor-Leste’s COVID-19 Response- Financial Support for the Implementation of the Cash Transfer Scheme for Low-Income Households”, the ILO will provide $748,000 to support the operational costs that will be incurred through the implementation of the approved “$100 Uma ba Kain” program.

The program was established as part of the Government’s emergency response and will be funded through the $150 million COVID-19 Fund that was created to respond to the effects of COVID-19 in Timor-Leste.

The program is a direct cash transfer that will provide Timor-Leste’s vulnerable households with supplemental income to offset the economic effects of the State of Emergency.

The funds will be channeled directly into the COVID-19 Fund, thus allowing for improved coordination, reporting, and a reduction of administrative costs. The Acting Minister of Finance, Her Excellency Sara Lobo Brites stated, “this partnership is not only addressing an urgent need in a time of crisis, but it is also an leading example of a truly country-owned, country-led, and use of country system partnership…It is our sincere hope that other development partners in Timor-Leste will take note of the ILO’s approach”.

The government of Timor-Leste thanks the ILO for this initiative, and hopes that this cooperation with ILO and others UN agencies will be further strengthened in the future.