WFP Timor-Leste Country Brief, May 2020

Situation Report
Originally published
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In Numbers

US$ 0.60 m six months (June – November 2020) net funding requirements

Operational Updates

• After the second ‘State of Emergency’ ended on 27 May, 2020, the Government extended it for another 30 days until 26 June 2020, mainly due to the increase in confirmed cases of COVID-19 in neighboring Indonesia, particularly in West Timor. Since 10 May 2020, there have been no new cases of COVID-19 identified in Timor-Leste.

• On behalf of humanitarian and health communities, WFP is launching WFP Aviation services on 14 June 2020 between Kuala Lumpur and Dili, to ensure that humanitarian workers, the UN, the broader humanitarian community, and medical personnel are not restricted by commercial transport airlines closures. In the absence of commercial flights, WFP will also rapidly provide access for common logistics services to UN agencies to transport medical supplies procured on behalf of the Government, ensuring that they reach the areas where they are most needed, in full compliance with COVID-19 protocols.

• The Ministry of Health launched the 2020 Timor-LEste Food Security and Nutrition Survey, with technical and financial support from WFP, UNICEF, and donors like the EU and the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA). This launch started with a refresher training for 64 enumerators from all 13 municipalities, after having been put on hold since March, due to COVID-19.

• WFP is continuing to track incoming shipments of food items from the private sector and monitoring the shipping schedule in coordination with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ). In May, WFP recorded a monthly import of 21,000 mt of rice from Vietnam into Timor-Leste.

• To reduce COVID-19 economic impacts, local markets have reopened in several municipalities, except in Covalima and other areas close to the Indonesian border. This situation makes these municipalities more vulnerable to food insecurity. Currently, commercial vehicles are providing services but with restrictions in place to observe MOH COVID-19 protocols.

• For severe nutrition challenges – WFP continues to work with the Ministry of Health to scale up the existing targeted supplementary feeding programme, aimed at improving nutrient intake for children under 5, and pregnant & lactating women.

• WFP is collaborating with the Ministry of Education Youth and Sports and KOICA, on plans to deliver a nutritious take-home food basket (and/or back to school incentives) to students and their families affected by the school closure imposed by the COVID19 crisis.