East Timor: UN, Indonesia decide to set up committee on border agreements

East Timor: UN, Indonesia decide to set up committee on border agreements

The United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET) and Indonesia have decided to set up a committee to help implement agreements on border issues reached at the national level.

The agreement for a Border Liaison Committee came out of the second series of talks held yesterday and today in Jakarta of the Joint Border Committee, which deals with boundary issues between Indonesia and East Timor and comprises UNTAET and government officials.

In other news, the East Timor Transitional Cabinet has decided to bill consumers for electricity use, which has been free of charge for nearly two years.

The Power Service is dependent upon the donor community for the more than $12 million a year it costs to provide East Timor with power and is now near bankruptcy. There are over 18,000 consumers in Dili alone.

"We need to rescue the Power Service in East Timor," Iain Hook, Director General of Infrastructure Department of the East Timor Transitional Administration, said today. "The first thing we need to do is to start receiving revenues. Donor countries will not invest in the Power Service any longer if they do not see that a sustainable system, including the creation of revenue, is being implemented."