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        New Legal Regime for Timor-Leste Oil and Gas Investment

Council of Ministers, Timor-Leste Government

17 December 2004

The Council of Ministers of the Timor-Leste Government yesterday officially approved a competitive and transparent legal regime for the development of the new nation's known and potential petroleum resources.

The proposed regime will enable Timor-Leste to work with qualified companies to develop petroleum resources in onshore and offshore areas outside the Joint Petroleum Development Area, established by the Timor Sea Treaty. To date, Timor-Leste has benefited only from petroleum development in the JPDA.

The approval of the regime follows several months of consultation with the community in Timor-Leste, and industry, on a complete draft of the legal regime.

The new petroleum regime approved by the Council of Ministers comprises:

  •  the Timor-Leste Petroleum Law

  •  a model production sharing contract (PSC) entered into under the Petroleum Law

  •  the Timor-Leste Petroleum Tax Law

The legislation is scheduled to be considered by the National Parliament over the next few weeks.

In addition, the Timor-Leste Government has developed in cooperation with the Australian Government a complementary legal code for the Joint Petroleum Development Area (JPDA), comprising a Petroleum Mining Code and a related model PSC.

Mr. Gregorio de Sousa, Secretary of State for the Council of Ministers, said the regime was a transparent, competitive and stable model for the development of the nation's oil and gas resources.

He commended the Prime Minister, Mari Alkatiri on his role in guiding the development of the laws. He also thanked the team of national and international advisers who had worked hard to bring together a world class regime for this vitally important sector.

Mr. de Sousa said to date the Government had achieved a great deal in helping to develop the nation's petroleum resources.

The Council of Minister has given in-principle support to establishing a Petroleum Fund for the management of petroleum revenues, and legislation for this purpose is expected early next year.

More information on the Petroleum Fund, which was established in September 2005.

More information on Petroleum Regime, which enacted in July 2005.

The Timor-Leste Institute for Development Monitoring and Analysis (Lao Hamutuk)
Institutu Timor-Leste ba Analiza no Monitor ba Dezenvolvimentu
Rua D. Alberto Ricardo, Bebora, Dili, Timor-Leste
P.O. Box 340, Dili, Timor-Leste
Tel: +670-3321040 or +670-77234330
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