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Jakarta Post

Timor Leste 'wants to contribute', not be burden to ASEAN

Timor Leste 'wants to contribute', not be burden to ASEAN President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo (left) accompanies Timor Leste President Francisco Guterres Lu Olo in inspecting the honor guard during his visit to Bogor Palace in West Java on June 28, 2018. Guterres' visit to Indonesia was his first-ever since taking office just a day prior. (Antara/Puspa Perwitasari)
Dian Septiari
Auckland, New Zealand   ●   Mon, July 15, 2019

Timor Leste wants to contribute to ASEAN and not be a burden to it, one of the country's high-ranking officials said recently, as Southeast Asia's smallest economy waits for the regional grouping to determine next year whether to offer the country full-fledged membership.

Timor Leste Secretary of State for Cooperatives Arsenio Pereira da Silva said on Saturday that his government was highly committed to joining the Southeast Asian trade bloc and that Dili would ensure its admission won’t put a damper on one of the world’s fastest-growing regions.

“When our heroes were still fighting in the jungle [for independence], they envisioned that we were going to be part of ASEAN as well as other regional organizations,” he told The Jakarta Post at the Pacific Exposition event in Auckland, New Zealand....

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