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East Timor Facts

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Background: The Portuguese began to trade with the island of Timor in the early 16th century and colonized it in mid-century. Skirmishing with the Dutch in the region eventually resulted in an 1859 treaty in which Portugal ceded the western portion of the island. Imperial Japan occupied East Timor from 1942 to 1945, but Portugal resumed colonial authority after the Japanese defeat in World War II. East Timor declared itself independent from Portugal on 28 November 1975 and was invaded and occupied by Indonesian forces nine days later. It was incorporated into Indonesia in July 1976 as the province of East Timor. An unsuccessful campaign of pacification followed over the next two decades, during which an estimated 100,000 to 250,000 individuals lost their lives. On 30 August 1999, in a UN-supervised popular referendum, an overwhelming majority of the people of East Timor voted for independence from Indonesia. Between the referendum and the arrival of a multinational peacekeeping force in late September 1999, anti-independence Timorese militias - organized and supported by the Indonesian military - commenced a large-scale, scorched-earth campaign of retribution. The militias killed approximately 1,400 Timorese and forcibly pushed 300,000 people into West Timor as refugees. The majority of the country's infrastructure, including homes, irrigation systems, water supply systems, and schools, and nearly 100% of the country's electrical grid were destroyed. On 20 September 1999 the Australian-led peacekeeping troops of the International Force for East Timor (INTERFET) deployed to the country and brought the violence to an end. On 20 May 2002, East Timor was internationally recognized as an independent state.
Common Name: East Timor Local Official Name: Timor Lorosa'e [Tetum]; Timor-Leste [P
Abbreviated Name: East Timor Official Name: Republika Demokratika Timor Lorosa'e [Tetum];
Official Script Name: East Timor Local Common Name: East Timor
Former Name: Portuguese Timor Territory of:
Head of State: President Kay Rala Xanana GUSMAO
Government Type: Republic
Independence: 1975 November 28 (date of proclamation of independence from Portugal); note - 20 May 2002 is the official date of international recognition of East Timor's independence from Indonesia
Constitution: 2002 March 22 (based on the Portuguese model)
National Holiday: Independence Day, 28 November
International Organization Participation: Popular Council for the Defense of the Democratic Republic of East Timor or CPD-RDTL [Antonio-Aitahan MATAK] is largest political pressure group; dissatisfied veterans of struggle against Indonesia, led by one-time government advisor Cornelio GAMA (also known as L-7), also play an important role in pressuring government
Administrative Divisions: 13 administrative districts; Aileu, Ainaro, Baucau, Bobonaro (Maliana), Cova-Lima (Suai), Dili, Ermera, Lautem (Los Palos), Liquica, Manatuto, Manufahi (Same), Oecussi (Ambeno), Viqueque
Dependent Areas:
Legal System: UN-drafted legal system based on Indonesian law remains in place but will be replaced by civil and penal codes based on Portuguese law; these have passed and are expected to be promulgated in early 2006
Suffrage: 17 years
Executive, Legislative and Judicial Branches: Executive: Chief of state: President Kay Rala Xanana GUSMAO (since 20 May 2002); note - the president plays a largely symbolic role but is able to veto legislation, dissolve parliament, and call national elections; he formerly used the name Jose Alexandre GUSMAO head of government: Prime Minister Jose RAMOS-HORTA (since 10 July 2006); First Deputy Prime Minister Estanlislau Maria Alexio da SILVA (since 10 July 2006); Second Deputy Prime Minister Rui Maria do ARAUJO (since 10 July 2006) Cabinet: Council of Ministers Elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held 14 April 2002 (next to be held in May 2007) Election results: Kay Rala Xanana GUSMAO elected president; percent of vote - Kay Rala Xanana GUSMAO 82.7%, Francisco Xavier do AMARAL 17.3% Legislative: unicameral National Parliament (number of seats can vary, minimum requirement of 52 and a maximum of 65 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms); note - for its first term of office, the National Parliament is comprised of 88 members on an exceptional basis Elections: (next to be held in May 2007); direct elections for national parliament were never held; elected delegates to the national convention adopted a constitution and named themselves legislators instead of having elections; hence the exceptional numbers for this term of the national parliament Election results: percent of vote by party - FRETILIN 57.37%, PD 8.72%, PSD 8.18%, ASDT 7.84%, UDT 2.36%, PNT 2.21%, KOTA 2.13%, PPT 2.01%, PDC 1.98%, PST 1.78%, independents/other 5.42%; seats by party - FRETILIN 55, PD 7, PSD 6, ASDT 6, PDC 2, UDT 2, KOTA 2, PNT 2, PPT 2, UDC/PDC 1, PST 1, PL 1, independent 1 Judicial Branches: Supreme Court of Justice - constitution calls for one judge to be appointed by National Parliament and rest appointed by Superior Council for Judiciary; note - until Supreme Court is established, Court of Appeals is highest court
Party Leaders: Associacao Social-Democrata Timorense or ASDT [Francisco Xavier do AMARAL]; Christian Democratic Party of Timor or PDC [Antonio XIMENES]; Christian Democratic Union of Timor or UDC [Vicente da Silva GUTERRES]; Democratic Party or PD [Fernando de ARAUJO]; People's Party of Timor or PPT [Jacob XAVIER]; Revolutionary Front of Independent East Timor or FRETILIN [Francisco Guterres Lu OLO]; Social Democrat Party of East Timor or PSD [Mario CARRASCALAO]; Socialist Party of Timor or PST [Pedro da COSTA]; Sons of the Mountain Warriors (also known as Association of Timorese Heroes) or KOTA [Clementino dos Reis AMARAL]; Timor Democratic Union or UDT [Joao CARRASCALAO]; Timor Labor Party or PTT [Paulo Freitas DA SILVA]; Timorese Nationalist Party or PNT [Abilio ARAUJO]
International Disputes: UN Mission of Support in East Timor (UNMISET) has maintained about 1,000 peacekeepers in East Timor since 2002; East Timor-Indonesia Boundary Committee continues to meet, survey, and delimit the land boundary, but several sections of the boundary especially around the Oekussi enclave remain unresolved; Indonesia and East Timor contest the sovereignty of the uninhabited coral island of Pulau Batek/Fatu Sinai, which prevents delimitation of the northern maritime boundaries; many refugees who left East Timor in 2003 still reside in Indonesia and refuse repatriation; Australia and East Timor agreed in 2005 to defer the disputed portion of the boundary for 50 years and to split hydrocarbon revenues evenly outside the Joint Petroleum Development Area covered by the 2002 Timor Sea Treaty; dispute with Australia has hampered creation of a southern maritime boundary with Indonesia
Illicit Drugs:  
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Location of East Timor: Southeastern Asia, northwest of Australia in the Lesser Sunda Islands at the eastern end of the Indonesian archipelago; note - East Timor includes the eastern half of the island of Timor, the Oecussi (Ambeno) region on the northwest portion of the island
Continent: Asia Land Area Total: 15,007 sq km 
Region: South East Asia Land Area Land: 0 sq km
Capitol City: Dili Land Area Water: 0 sq km
Latitude: 8 50 S Border Boundary Land: 228 km
Longitude: 125 55 E Border Boundary Coastline: 706 km 
Arable Land: 8.20 % Pastures: 0.00 %
Crops: 4.57 % Woodlands and Forests: 0.00
Highest Elevation: 0 m Location:
Lowest Elevation: 0 m Location:
Largest City in East Timor: Dili Dili Largest City Population: 0
Threatened Species: 0
Environmental Issues: widespread use of slash and burn agriculture has led to deforestation and soil erosion
Environmental Agreements:
Irrigated Land: 1,065
Bordering Countries: Indonesia 228 km
Natural Resources: gold, petroleum, natural gas, manganese, marble
Geographical Terrain: mountainous
Comparative Area of East Timor: slightly larger than Connecticut
East Timor's Geography: Timor comes from the Malay word for "East"; the island of Timor is part of the Malay Archipelago and is the largest and easternmost of the Lesser Sunda Islands.

 Timorese CLIMATE
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General Climate: Tropical; hot, humid; distinct rainy and dry seasons.
Natural Hazards: floods and landslides are common; earthquakes, tsunamis, tropical cyclones
 Timorese ECONOMY
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Economic Overview: In late 1999, about 70% of the economic infrastructure of East Timor was laid waste by Indonesian troops and anti-independence militias, and 300,000 people fled westward. Over the next three years, however, a massive international program, manned by 5,000 peacekeepers (8,000 at peak) and 1,300 police officers, led to substantial reconstruction in both urban and rural areas. By the end of 2005, all refugees either returned or resettled in Indonesia. Non-petroleum GDP growth was held back in 2003 by extensive drought and the gradual winding down of the international presence but recovered somewhat in 2004. The country faces great challenges in continuing the rebuilding of infrastructure, strengthening the infant civil administration, and generating jobs for young people entering the work force. The development of oil and gas resources in nearby waters has begun to supplement government revenues ahead of schedule and above expectations - the result of high petroleum prices - but the technology-intensive industry does little to create jobs for the unemployed, because there are no production facilities in Timor and the gas is piped to Australia. The parliament in June 2005 unanimously approved the creation of a Petroleum Fund to serve as a repository for all petroleum revenues and preserve the value of East Timor's petroleum wealth for future generations.
GDP: $370,000,000 USD Currency: US dollar
GDP per Capita: $400 USD Currency Code: USD
GDP Growth Rate: 1.00 %
Currency Exchange Rate History: The US dollar is used.
GDP of Agriculture: 25.40 % GDP of Industry: 17.20 %
GDP of Services: 57.40 %  
Inflation Rate: 0.00 % Population in Poverty: 42.00 %
Unemployment Rate: 50.00 % Tourism: 0.00 visitors each year
Consumption by lowest 10%: 0.00 % Budget Revenue in USD: $107,700,000 USD
Consumption by upper 10%: 0.00 % Budget Expenditures in USD: $73,000,000 USD
Electricity Production: 0 kWh Electricity Exports: 0 kWh
Electricity Consumption: 0 kWh Electricity Imports: 0 kWh

Electricity Production by Source:
Fossil Fuel Electricity Production: 0.00% Nuclear Electricity Production: 0.00%
Hydro Electricity Production: 0.00% Other Electricity Production: 0.00%
Oil Production: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Production: 0 cu m
Oil Consumption: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Consumption: 0 cu m
Oil Exports: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Exports: 0 cu m
Oil Imports: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Imports: 0 cu m
Proven Oil Reserves: 0 barrels Proven Natural Gas Reserves: 0 cu m
External Debt: $2,200,000,000 USD Received in economic aid: $0 USD
  Donated in economic aid: $0 USD
Agricultural Products: coffee, rice, corn, cassava, sweet potatoes, soybeans, cabbage, mangoes, bananas, vanilla
Primary Industries: printing, soap manufacturing, handicrafts, woven cloth
Industrial Growth Rate: 8.50 %
Import Amount in USD: $202,000,000 USD - food, gasoline, kerosene, machinery
Import Partners:
Export Amount in USD: $10,000,000 USD - coffee, sandalwood, marble; note - potential for oil and vanilla exports
Export Partners: Indonesia 100%
GINI Index: 38.00%
Labor Force Number of People: 0
Labor Force by Occupations:
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Radio Broadcast Stations: 0 Number of People with Radios: 0
Television Broadcast Stations: 0 Number of People with Televisions: 0
Number of People with Mainline Telephones: 0 Number of People with Mobile Phones: 0
Internet Service Providers: 215 Internet Users: 1,000
Internet Country Code: .tl Newspapers: 0
Two Letter Country Code: TT Weights and Measures:
Phone Country Code: +670 Electricity Voltage: Volts
Telephone Systems:
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Highways: 2,500 km Railways: 0 km
Gas And Oil Pipelines: 0 km Waterways: 0 km
Airports: 3 Heliports: 9
Motor Vehicles: 0 per 1,000 people CO2 Emissions: 0 Metric Tons of CO2 per year
  Per capita CO2 emissions: 0.00 Metric Tons of CO2 per year
Merchant Marines:
Ports and Harbors: Dili
 Timorese PEOPLE
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Population: 1,062,777 people type - nationality Birth Rate: 26.99 births per 1,000 people
Population Density: 0.00 people per sq km Death Rate: 6.24 deaths per 1,000 people
Population Growth: 2.08% per year Fertility Rate per Women: 3.53 babies born per woman
Population Male 0-14: 196,293 Population Female 0-14: 189,956
Population Male 15-64: 328,111 Population Female 15-64: 315,401
Population Male 65+: 16,072 Population Female 65+: 16,944
Population 0-14: 36.30% Literacy Rate: 58.60%
Population 15-64: 60.60% Literacy rate of Males: 0.00%
Population 65+: 3.10% Literacy rate of Females: 0.00%
Population that is Male: 52.50 % Population that is Female: 47.50%
Life expectancy at birth in years: 66.26 years Infant mortality rate - baby deaths per 1000 births: 45.83 Babies die per 1,000 births
Life expectancy at birth for Males: 69.96 years Life expectancy at birth for Females: 68.67 years
Rate of AIDS/HIV infection: 0.00% Number of people living with AIDS or HIV: 0
Number of people who died of AIDS: 0
Disease Risk:
Net Migration Rate per 1,000 people: 0.00
Nationality: Timorese
Ethnic Groups: Austronesian (Malayo-Polynesian), Papuan, small Chinese minority 
Primary Language: Tetum
Other Languages: Tetum (official), Portuguese (official), Indonesian, English note: there are about 16 indigenous languages; Tetum, Galole, Mambae, and Kemak are spoken by significant numbers of people
Primary Religion: Roman Catholic 90%
Other Religions: Muslim 4%, Protestant 3%, Hindu 0.5%, Buddhist, Animist
 Timorese MILITARY
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Branches: East Timor Defense Force (Forcas de Defesa de Timor-L'este, FDTL): Army, Navy (Armada)
Manpower Fit to Serve: 18 years
Manpower Available: 458,267 People
Manpower Fit to Serve: 381,955 People
Amount of Manpower Available each Year: 25,178 People per year
Expenditures: $4,400,000 USD per year
Expenditures as a Percentage of GDP: 0.00
Note: Phrasebase uses a variety of sources when compiling the facts and information presented above. This information is continually updated throughout the year.
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