Venidora Oliveira – The 2015 General State will continue to prioritize infrastructure development with the government believing there hasn't been a significant progress in the quality of roads and bridges across the country.
Prime Minister Kay Rala Xanana Gusmao said quality infrastructure will contribute towards sustainable economic growth and improve services delivery to the people.
PM Gusmao added there is interest out there from major investors to invest in Timor-Leste but lack of adequate infrastructure is a major impediment to them doing so.
"I think all of us want to fix infrastructure across the country and we have began observing results in our exclusive economic zone," said PM Gusmao at the National Parliament.
Member of Parliament MP Aurelio Ribeiro, from Commission E (infrastructure, transport and communication) agreed with the government's decision to allocated large portions of the state budget for 2015 for infrastructure development.
"It makes sense because even our farmers yield good crops; if the roads are damaged they won't be able to access markets," said MP Ribeiro.
He added the tourism sector also suffers because of poor infrastructure development and that tourists won't come if roads are bad. "So we must fix roads in rural areas."
Meanwhile MP Inacio Moreira said in 2014 the parliament approved $156.413 million to fix roads and the bridges across the country.
"We keep prioritizing our efforts into infrastructure. This demonstrates the government hasn't been able to solve infrastructure woes in one year despite the large amounts of funds allocated," said MP Moreira.
He added in 2015 the government has allocated some $156.891 million to fix the nation's infrastructure in particular focusing on roads and bridges.