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FAO in Timor-Leste

The Ministry of Finance ready to fund Drought Risk Management Actions in the Agriculture Sectors

Group disccusion "Drought Risk Management Actions in the Agriculture Sectors" of Workshop

FAO facilitated an inter-ministerial workshop on Agriculture Drought Risk Management held at the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MAF) on the 25th and 26th of June 2019. The two days event was attended by the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MAF) Disaster Risk Management/Climate Change Adaptation (DRM/CCA) Task Force members as well as representatives of the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Social Solidarity and Inclusions, the Civil Protection State Secretariat and the National Disaster Risks Management Directorate.

The workshop followed a series of technical consultation by the Task Force aiming at formulating a National Drought Risks Management Plan in the Agriculture sector and was the occasion to outline the financial and operational mechanisms to address drought risks in Timor-Leste.

The Ministry of Finance Director of Budget, Mr. Francisco provided details on the eligible Government structures, at central and Municipality levels, for the national contingency fund. He said that ‘there are different mechanisms to finance MAF drought management plan. Some mechanisms already exist within MAF and can be consolidated. When more funds are required in the event of natural disasters affecting the agriculture sector such as drought, flood, pests and others, the national contingency funds can be mobilized. The allocation of these funds is managed by the Ministry of Finance.

The representative Director General of the Ministry of Interior, Mr. Martinho Fatima Chief Department of NDOC , said that ‘it is very encouraging that work is progressing at the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries so that the Government is being better prepared and able to respond to natural disasters that are particularly affecting our farmers. The task force has worked hard over the past month and I also would like to thank FAO for the technical assistance. My Minister looks forward to the complete drought management plan’.

FAO Assistant Representative, Mrs. Paula Lopes da Cruz, supported the efforts and said that ‘more than 130,000 households have been negatively affected by drought over the past decade and therefore could not harvest agriculture produces. The drought management plan developed by MAF will be important for the agriculture sector.’

MAF Secretary General, Mr. Cesar José da Cruz, encouraged the participants to the workshop and said that ‘the Ministry is expecting a complete drought management plan for validation soonest so that the mechanisms can piloted during the next cropping season’.