PROBLEM DEFINITION: Consequence OF THE ECONOMIC CRISIS ON STATE FRAGILITY AND RISK OF CONFLICT IN TIMOR LESTE. The modern-day fiscal and economic crisis has started from developed western states, but it has shortly had indirect negative effects on the less developed portion of the universe doing singular effects for the planetary political stableness and security. In peculiar, the state of affairs of instability is more critical for delicate provinces. In fact, the crisis worsen the economic conditions of these state and accordingly deteriorates their political establishments and administration capableness. Fragile states constitute one of the chief concerns for international peace and security.

Timor Leste is in the list of delicate provinces harmonizing to World Bank ( WB ) . WB defines those provinces as characterized by “ weak policies, establishments and administration ” ( World Bank, Which states are LICUS? ) . To foreground the importance of the connexion between economic and political instability it is of import to detect that WB has late adopted the term “ delicate provinces ” , before those states were called Low Income Countries Under Stress ( LICUS ) . Therefore, the definition of breakability was conceived simply harmonizing to economic standards. On the contrary, the more general definition of delicate provinces gives infinite besides to the political failing of those states and to other causes of breakability. Fragile provinces, due to their institutional failing, are non to the full capable to vouch the control of the district and the population, nor to to the full execute the responsibilities and maps that derive from the societal contract.

The indexs of breakability can hold an internal or external beginning. The internal causes of fragilization are chiefly due to low degree of human and economic development. Some of the chief indexs are: struggles, dependance of economic system from a individual trade good, poorness, weak substructures, low degree of instruction, crisp societal cultural divisions and favoritism, low societal coherence, broad presence of condemnable activities, corruptness, presence of governmental and economic elite and absence of equal mechanisms of economic redistribution among population ( GSDRC, Structural economic and political causes and features of breakability ) . External international factors and tendencies can trip the fragilization of a state: diminution of international assistance, planetary liberalisation and denationalization, international communicating and multinational individuality, encephalon drain and migration, natural resources roar, trade and international monetary values daze, international economic tendencies ( Junne, talk notes 28th November 2009 ) .

Fragility and struggle trap

The theoretical account of “ Conflict Trap ” ( Collin et al. 2003 ) offers a utile tool of analysis of the nexus between economic tendencies and political stableness. In peculiar, it investigates the connexion between the degree of human economic development and the likeliness of happening of struggle.

The term “ trap ” indicates the barbarous circle kineticss that characterizes the correlativity between low human/economic development and struggle. Low economic and human development public presentations influence the hazard of struggles, struggles worsen the economic and human development conditions, in this manner the barbarous circle starts.

The internal indexs of breakability are closely connected with low human development and they reciprocally act uponing each other. Therefore, the procedure of fragilization can easy drive to the struggle trap ( Kim and Conceicao 1 ) .

. Loss of life

. Destruction of assets

. Forced migration

. Low investing in wellness and instruction

Low Human Development

. Low institutional capacity

. Low productiveness

. Low possible growing

. Decelerate growing


( Kim and Conceicao 4 )

State breakability and struggle ‘s causes in Timor Leste

Timor Leste is located in the oriental portion of Timor Island which is shared with Indonesia. The enclave of Oecusse-Ambeno ( in the western portion of the island, in Indonesia district ) is besides portion of Timorese national district. The state reached independency in May 2002 after a long period of Lusitanian colonisation, followed by Indonesian barbarous business. Timor Leste has a population of about 1.1 million people ( CIA, The universe Factbook Timor Leste ) , nevertheless late there has been an of import demographic growing ( IRIN, Timor-Leste: turn toing the babe roar ) . The demographic alteration might do change of the societal balance.

The procedure that led to the independency was influenced by the fiscal and economic crisis of the mid 1990 ‘s and by the station cold war conditions. The Indonesia government of Suharto was pushed toward a dialogue procedure with UN and Timorese leaders. In a referendum in grand 1999, the Timorese people expressed its will for independency. A violent struggle between Indonesian forces and Timorese armed opposition broke out. After one month, UN approved the deployment of a transnational force led by Australia: International Force for East Timor ( INTERFET ) . Since September 1999 until independency, East Timor had been under the United Nations Transitional Administration of East Timor ( UNTAET ) . In 2006 Timor Leste experienced new civil struggle. The control and the power of authorities became weaker and weaker. In response to this crisis an International Stabilization Forces ( ISA ) ( once more led by Australia ) and the United Nations Integrated Mission in Timor Leste ( UNMIT ) were deployed in late May and August 2006 and a delicate stableness was restored ( CIA, The World Factbook: Timor Leste ) . In February 2008, the Timorese president Jose Ramlos Horta and the premier curate survived to an onslaught by Rebel groups which surrendered in April 2008. Since so a certain stableness and peaceful atmosphere seem to be assured ( CIA, The World Factbook: Timor Leste ) . The international battle has been a cardinal component for the stableness of Timor Leste and for the procedure of state edifice.

From an economical position, Timor Leste occupies the 162nd place of the Human Development index out of 182 states ( UNDP, HDI Report 2009 Timor Leste ) . The Timorese economic system is based basically on Oil and gas exportation ( CIA, The World Factbook: Timor Leste ) . The chief agricultural merchandise is coffee. The bulk of labour force is employed in agricultural sector, while the industrial and services sectors are developing ( UNDP Timor Leste, Timor Leste at a glimpse ; CIA, The World Factbook: Timor Leste ) . Timor Leste is confronting a state of affairs of widespread poorness, about 42 % of the population is below poorness line and the rising prices rate is estimate to be at 7,8 % ( CIA, The World Factbook: Timor Leste ) . The oil gross allows the authorities to keep a certain economic stableness and financial balance. However, the hazard is that Timor economic system becomes wholly dependent on Oil and the grosss deducing from natural resources will non be used for the variegation of the economic system, the development of other sectors and for cut downing poorness. One of the chief jobs the state has to face is the structural failing of substructures ( UNDP Timor Leste, Crisis and Prevention recovery ) . Reconstruction, economic and political security are the chief jobs Timor Leste is managing ( Security Council 19/02/2009, Timor East est aujourd’hui en paix ) . Other challenges concern the creative activity of occupation chances, publicity of instruction, breaking public wellness conditions ( Security Council 19/02/2009, Timor East est aujourd’hui en paix ) .

From this analysis of the Timorese background is possible to deduce four chief groups of indexs of internal breakability of Timor Leste:

Timor Leste has late put to an terminal its colonial/occupation experience. Its political and institutional traditions are non solid.

Timor is still in a station crisis transitional stage. Social protection, services and security need to be strengthen together with administration capacities and societal coherence.

Human development is low: poorness is widespread, instruction rate is low, substructures need to be rebuilt, violent episodes of 2006 have showed internal division between eastern and western portion of the state that if non decently addressed might reoccur.

Timorese economic system tends to be based about entirely on oil and gas grosss ( IMF, Democratic Republic of Timor Leste: selected Issue 12 ) . However, this state of affairs exposes the state to the monetary values fluctuation and to the hazard of formation of governmental and economical elites commanding the resources.

Those indexs constitute the possible root causes of future struggles, they are besides index of the general exposure of Timor Leste. At this respect, the battle of UN is still cardinal. The UNDP in Timor Leste is presently implementing a undertaking of Crisis Prevention and Recovery ( CPR ) with the purpose of turn toing the “ structural causes of struggle and natural catastrophe ” and the job listed above ( UNDP Timor Leste, Crisis bar and recovery ) .


External international tendencies can be the trigger causes of breakability and can represent the get downing point of the barbarous circles of the struggle trap. Timor Leste is a delicate province and is extremely vulnerable to the hazard of struggle. Government and international organisations ‘ attempts in the procedure of state edifice can be negatively affected by the international economic crisis which can cut down the institutional capacity and lead to the struggle trap.

From this analysis, the undermentioned research inquiry emerges:

To what widen is the international economic crisis impacting the procedure of state edifice and stabilisation in Timor Leste?

From this chief research, the undermentioned sub-questions derive:

To what widen is Timor Leste exposed to the crisis?

To what extend has the fiscal crisis affected the internal indexs of breakability and development?

How have the Timorese governmental establishments and international histrions reacted in footings of countermeasures and policies? And are they effectual?

Is there a concrete hazard of falling in the struggle trap?

These inquiries will be answered through the analysis of the struggle in Timor Leste. Particular attending will be dedicated to the last decennary and in peculiar to the international intercession and attempts for the stabilisation and Reconstruction of the state. The procedure of state edifice will be described

In the visible radiation of the state of affairs of institutional and economical breakability of Timor Leste, the effects of the crisis will be examined by taking into history the undermentioned factors: capital flows and foreign investings, fluctuation of oil monetary values and international trade, international fiscal assistance and support, migration and remittals. These factors have an indirect impact on the authorities and international histrions ‘ capacity in supplying societal services, protection and security. The probe on the effectivity of the countermeasures and policies will follow. In the terminal, the overall impact on political stableness and hazard of falling in the mechanism of the struggle trap will be assessed.


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