Dili, Timor-Leste (June 11, 2024) – President José Ramos-Horta held talks with Finland’s Ambassador to Timor-Leste on Tuesday, with both sides expressing interest in bolstering cooperation between the young nation and European partners.

In a readout following Ramos-Horta’s meeting with non-resident Ambassador Pakka Kailhilahti at the Presidential Palace, the Finnish envoy said they exchanged views on global issues and Timor-Leste’s economic development.

Praising PM’s Ukraine Peace Talks Role Kailhilahti praised Prime Minister Xanana Gusmão’s participation at the recent Geneva Peace Conference on Ukraine, saying Timor-Leste’s perspectives aligned closely with those of both small and large countries on many points.

The ambassador said discussions also focused on Timor-Leste’s economic and development outlook, with Finland aiming to identify potential areas for cooperation, support and business opportunities in the young Southeast Asian nation.

“More Opportunities” With Europe According to Kailhilahti, the meeting opened up “more opportunities” for collaboration not just bilaterally between Finland and Timor-Leste, but also potentially involving Germany and the broader European Union.

For his part, President Ramos-Horta welcomed the prospect of strengthening ties with European partners, the ambassador noted.

The meeting comes as Timor-Leste continues efforts to drive economic growth and development after regaining independence in 2002 following years of Indonesian occupation. The country has increasingly engaged European nations and the EU as partners in recent years.