The Political Economy of Petroleum Dependency

Author/s (editor/s):

Guteriano Neves

Publication year:


Publication type:

In Brief

Petroleum dependency has become a hot public policy topic in Timor-Leste. The tendency is to focus on financial aspects, which relate to the prediction that the Bayu-Undan gas field will run out soon. Although this is the most pressing issue (at least for the short and medium term), this In Brief examines the political–economic side of oil dependency, focusing on how it affects state–society relations, and the state’s role in overall economic development. The paper is informed by my experience as a staff member in the president’s office, including public policy discussions I have had and my discussions with people in various settings.

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