Over the past 10 years, Conservation International has helped establish over 20 Marine Protected Areas and recently their first Marine Protected Area Network in Atauro Island. As a young nation, Timor-Leste requires the financial and technical capacity to ensure these areas are adequately protected.
Timor-Leste is one of the youngest and fastest-growing countries in the world. Half of the population is under 29 years old. As the need for employment opportunities increases, the country must address increasing pressure on its ecosystems.
Timor-Leste’s waters boast exceptional biodiversity, including extensive fisheries and healthy coral reefs. Twenty-five species of whales and dolphins frequent Timor’s waters — one of the highest records of cetaceans in the world.
Timor-Leste has a high potential for community-based nature tourism. This is one of the most viable sustainable development pathways for this young nation in need of employment opportunities.