Subject: LUSA: Portuguese Support to Continue for 3 Years

17 Apr 02 21:10 East Timor: Portuguese Support to Continue for 3 Years

Portugal`s foreign minister said Wednesday that Lisbon`s new government, which took office earlier this month, would continue to support East Timor financially for the next three years.

Antonio Martins da Cruz was speaking to reporters in Lisbon after a meeting with Timor`s Foreign Minister Jose Ramos Horta.

A Portuguese foreign ministry team will visit Timor next week to undertake a joint study with Timorese officials on which needs best fit Lisbon`s resources, Martins da Cruz said.

Ramos Horta called to the Portuguese business sector to invest in Timor, which "offers many opportunities".

Private investment in Timor was still limited, said the Timorese diplomat, but this was natural and the Dili government was working to establish conditions to interest investors.

Meanwhile, a diplomatic source has told Lusa that Portugal`s first ambassador to Timor on independence will be Rui Quartin Santos, currently Lisbon`s envoy in Cape Verde.

CJB/HM -Lusa-

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