DILI, TIMOR-LESTE – Citizens of Timor-Leste may soon have access to business loans from commercial banks using moveable assets as collateral, as a result of an initiative cofinanced by the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
Participants at an ADB-supported consultation meeting were told today that the Government of Timor-Leste is proposing to introduce secured transactions reforms to promote broader access to finance and improve the enabling environment for business in the country.
“Once the new secured transactions reforms are in place, people will be able to secure loans to start or grow a business using moveable assets such as construction machinery, farm equipment, inventory, or accounts receivable,” said Andrea Iffland, Regional Director of ADB's Pacific Liaison and Co-ordination Office in Sydney Australia. “The reforms will contribute to the government’s efforts to improve efficiency and the ease of doing business.”
Representatives from the private sector and civil society attended today’s meeting, which was held to seek stakeholder feedback on proposed secured transactions reform.
Getting adequate access to financial services is a major constraint to economic growth in Timor-Leste. The Pacific Private Sector Development Initiative (PSDI), cofinanced by ADB and the governments of Australia and New Zealand, is providing the government with technical assistance to help boost business development by modernizing business laws and improving access to finance.
The reforms are being implemented through the Secretary of State for the Support and Promotion of the Private Sector (SEAPRI). A Discussion Paper is being circulated by SEAPRI in Portuguese, English and Bahasa Indonesia. The paper outlines technical aspects of the reform and seeks feedback from stakeholders by December 1 2014. For a copy of this paper, contact SEAPRI or download at http://bit.ly/1usra4L.
Other ADB-supported secured transactions reform initiatives have been implemented in Marshall Islands, Solomon Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Papua New Guinea, Tonga and Vanuatu.
ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members – 48 from the region. In 2013, ADB assistance totaled $21.0 billion, including cofinancing of $6.6 billion.