Dili, March 20, 2024, The President of the Republic, J. Ramos-Horta, launched USAID’s Advance Food System and Nutrition (Avansa SAN) project in Timor-Leste together with the Minister of Agriculture, Eng. Marcos da Cruz, U.S. Chargé d’Affaires Marc Weinstock and other guests, at Timor Plaza today.

The objective of Avansa SAN is to continue promoting and developing climate-smart agriculture, crop diversification, supporting small enterprises and the agri-food industry, campaigning on dietary diversity with communities, including advocating for community access to healthy foods to improve nutrition for all, especially in the municipalities of Aileu, Dili, Ainaro, and Ermera with a total project budget of $15 million.

Therefore, according to the Head of State Horta, it is very important to develop rural agriculture so that there can be self-sufficiency in food quality. “I think everyone in Timor-Leste already knows, my number one concern is agriculture, food security, nutrition so that we can eliminate undernutrition for children,” said the Nobel Peace Prize laureate J. Ramos-Horta.

President Ramos-Horta also expressed his appreciation and gratitude for the referred program, and declared that he always has confidence in USAID’s programs because they always work together, especially on agricultural issues. With the commitment and leadership of the U.S. in Timor-Leste and USAID’s Avansa SAN program, it will be successful together with the Timorese State.

Avansa SAN will be implemented by the National Cooperative Business Association CLUSA International (NCBA CLUSA) in collaboration with 27 farmer groups in 14 villages in the identified municipalities.