Créditos Photo by Thomas Vuillemin on Unsplash
Publicado en Febrero 8, 2023

The Launch of Timor Leste’s Climate Public Expenditure Review

In a groundbreaking collaboration between the Ministry of Finance and UNDP Timor-Leste, the country has successfully completed its inaugural Climate Public Expenditure and Institutional Review (CPEIR), spanning the crucial years from 2018 to 2021.

This significant study delves deep into the climate-related policies, institutions, and expenditures championed by the government across sixteen key sectors earmarked for Timor-Leste's holistic development. It marks a pivotal step towards enhancing the nation's capacity to strategically allocate resources and effectively manage climate risks, showcasing a dedicated commitment to sustainability and resilience.




The Climate Public Expenditure and Institutional Review (CPEIR) represents a pioneering approach to comprehensively analyze a country's public expenditures in relation to climate change. This innovative tool employs both qualitative and quantitative methodologies to systematically examine how government spending intersects with climate-related initiatives.

Through the CPEIR, a detailed picture emerges of how public funds are allocated across various budget organizations, government programs, and policies, shedding light on their efficacy in addressing climate challenges. It serves as a vital resource for policymakers and stakeholders, offering evidence-based insights to inform decision-making processes and drive targeted interventions towards building climate resilience.

By providing a thorough understanding of the financial landscape surrounding climate action, the CPEIR plays a crucial role in advancing sustainable development agendas and fostering informed policy responses to the pressing challenges posed by climate change.

In his opening remarks, Rui Gomes, Minister of Finance said, “We have come to learn through this study that in recent years Timor-Leste’s climate-relevant public expenditure has been on a declining trend. This finding makes sense given the political changes and budgetary impasse suffered by the government since 2017. As a new country we need stability and sturdy guidance towards social, infrastructural, and economic development, affording that, however, in recent years has been a challenge. The sufferer has been public at large, especially the farmers, women, and children, who are victims of the impact of climate change. So, what do we do? Do we leave the fate of our people at the whimsy of politicians in the parliament? That can’t be an option, not an acceptable one to the remotest extent. Towards that end, we are very appreciative of the study’s recommendation of introducing climate budget tagging within our public financial management system. We are a democracy, and we are fully committed to protecting our hard-earned democratic processes and liberties.”

Climate Public Expenditure and Institutional Review is a useful tool for better national planning and budgeting, especially in terms of identifying and tracking budget allocations that respond to climate change challenges. For Timor-Leste, climate finance is a matter of survival to mitigate existing and future losses and damages that potentially threaten lands, infrastructure, and livelihoods. Failure to allocate critical finance today may transform into losses and damages to lives and livelihoods tomorrow. UNDP supports Timor-Leste and other countries, particularly SIDS, on the climate emergency, and advocates for additional financial commitments to mitigate the effects of climate change.

Ms. Munkhtuya Altangerel, UNDP Resident Representative stated, ‘’Timor-Leste is one of the most vulnerable countries to climate-induced disasters. Climate change is expected to have a range of significant impacts, including altering rainfall patterns, altering the onset of seasons, sea level rise, and increasing the intensity and the frequency of extreme climate events, these impacts are all expected to have negative impacts on economy and livelihood, such those we experienced last April (Seroja, Easter Flood). The country requires coordinated efforts to increase efficiency and transparency of the existing resources and to mobilize additional climate finance from all public and private sources’’.

The latest report, the CPIER Timor-Leste 2022, has undertaken a comprehensive review of sixteen sectors categorized into three clusters: the Social cluster (encompassing health, education, etc.), the Infrastructure cluster (including roads, WASH, ports), and the Economic Development cluster (covering agriculture, petroleum, tourism, etc.). Delving into every government and donor project/program documented in budget records over the past four years, the report aims to identify any expenditures related to climate-relevant activities.

The findings of the review are illuminating. Despite the challenges faced in 2021, the analysis reveals that climate-relevant expenses remained significant. High climate-relevant expenditures accounted for 2.31 percent of GDP, while medium climate-relevant expenses amounted to nearly 6 percent of GDP. These figures underscore the government's commitment to addressing climate-related issues and investing in initiatives aimed at bolstering resilience and sustainability across various sectors of the economy.

The event wrapped up with a technical presentation delivered by Climate Public Finance Consultant, Ms. Bushra Ferdous Khan, followed by extensive discussions centered on enhancing the effectiveness of public spending towards climate change adaptation. Among the participants were distinguished figures including the Minister of Petroleum, Minister of Health, Minister of Agriculture, Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs, Vice-Minister of Tourism, Secretary of State for Environment, Secretary of State for Civil Protection, alongside representatives from pertinent government line ministries, the Central Bank of Timor-Leste, UN Agencies, Development Partners, Private Sector entities, and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs).