Sunday, May 10, 2009

Time to invest in Timor-Leste?

Finance ministers tend to be dour, uninspiring figures. Just look at the last two incumbents in Britain.

Emilia Pires, finance minister of Timor-Leste (East Timor), one of the world's newest and smallest countries, definitely does not conform to the stereotype.

With a Masters from the London School of Economics and experience at the UN and World Bank, she has all the necessary qualifications. But she's also an impassioned advocate for her nation as it strives to leave years of military occupation and social and political strife in the past.

I met the feisty minister at the ADB annual meeting in Bali last week, where she told me why it's time to start investing in Timor-Leste, with its abundant natural resources and stunning landscape, which she described as being like the Switzerland of Asia.

1 comment:

  1. That would be the Switzerland of Asia that was a basket case of the Portuguese imperio? Since independence the Timorese have not inspired confidence. I could have done without the assassination attempts on Jose Ramos-Horta or Xanana Gusmao. They are rare in Switzerland too.