Articles 1: Definition of Discrimination and Legislative Framework


Article 2: Policy Measures


Access to Justice


Article 3: Measures to Develop and Advance Women


Article 4: Temporary Special Measures to Accelerate Equality


Article 5: Sex Roles and Stereotyping


Violence Against Women (VAW)


Violence Against Women During Conflict Situations and their Access to Justice


Article 6: Trafficking and Exploitation


Article 7: Participation of Women in Politics and Decision-Making


Women, peace and security


Article 8: Participation at International Level


Article 9: Nationality


Article 10: Equality in Access to Education


Article 11: Employment


Article 12: Access to Health


Article 13: Economic and Social Rights


Women with Disabilities


Article 14: Rural Women


Article 15: Equality before the Law


Article 16: Marriage and the Family




Annual Action Plan


Access to Justice Clinic


Alternative Dispute Resolution


Banco Nacional de Comércio de Timor-Leste (National Bank of Commerce of Timor-Leste)


Comissão de Acolhimento, Verdade e Reconciliação (Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation)


Comissão da Função Pública (Civil Service Commission)


Community Health Centre


Community Learning Centre


Chega! National Centre


Comissão Nacional de Eleições (National Elections Commission)


Centro Nacional de Reabilitação (National Centre for Rehabilitation)


Centru Saúde Internamentu (Community Health Centres with beds)


Civil Society Organisation


Commission of Truth and Friendship


Demographic and Health Survey


Decent Work Country Programme


Domestic Violence


Environmental Impact Assessments


Emergency Obstetric and Newborn Care


Environmental Management Plans


Financial Management Information System


Family Planning


Gender-Based Violence


General Directorate of Statistics


Gross Enrolment Rate


Grupo das Mulheres Parlamentares de Timor-Leste (Female Parliamentarians of Timor-Leste Group)


Gender Responsive Budgeting


Hospital Nacional Guido Valadares (Guido Valadares National Hospital)


Inspeção Geral do Trabalho (General Inspectorate of Labour)


International Labour Organization


Instituto Nacional de Administração Pública (National Institute of Public Administration)


Instituto Nacional de Saúde (National Health Institute)


International Organisation for Migration


Law Against Domestic Violence


Labour Force Survey


Legal and Judicial Training Centre


Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries


Maternal Death Surveillance Response


Ministério da Educação, Juventude e Desporto (Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports) / (ex-MoE – Ministry of Education)


Ministry of Health


Ministry of Interior


Ministry of Justice


Ministério da Reforma Legislativa e Assuntos Parlamentares (Ministry of Legislative Reform and Parliamentary Affairs)


Mother Support Groups


Ministério da Solidariedade Social e Inclusão (Ministry of Social Solidarity and Inclusion)


Ministério do Turismo, Comércio e Indústria (Ministry of Tourism, Trade and Industry)


National Action Plan


Net Enrolment Ratio


National Employment Strategy


Non-Governmental Organisation


National Victims Association


Office of the Public Defender


Office of the Prosecutor General


Provedoria dos Direitos Humanos e Justiça (National Ombudsman for Human Rights)


Program Finance Management


Polícia Nacional de Timor-Leste (National Police of Timor-Leste)


Persons with Disabilities


Strategic Development Plan


Secretária de Estado para a Comunicação Social (Secretary of State for Social Communications)


Secretária de Estado para a Igualdade e Inclusão (Secretary of State for Equality and Inclusion)


Secretária de Estado da Formação Profissional e Emprego (Secretary of State of Vocational Training and Employment)


Serviço Integrado de Saúde Comunitária (Integrated Community Health Services)


Sistema Nacional de Cadastro (National Registration System)


Standard Operating Procedures


Sexual and Reproductive Health


Secretaria Técnica de Administração Eleitoral (Technical Secretariat for Electoral Administration)


Total Fertility Rate


Trafficking in Persons


Technical and Vocational Educational Training

UN Women

United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women


United Nations Development Programme


United Nations Population Fund


United Nations Children’s Fund


Universidade Nacional Timor Lorosa'e (National University of Timor-Leste)


Unidade de Planeamento, Monitorizacão e Avaliação (Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Unit)


Violence Against Women


Vulnerable Persons Unit


Water, Sanitation and Hygiene


World Health Organisation


1.The present report constitutes the 4th Periodic Treaty-Specific CEDAW Report for consideration by the CEDAW Committee and officially endorsed by the Council of Ministers on the 20th of November 2019.

2.The 2015 Concluding Observations were translated into Tetum for dissemination to relevant line ministries and brought to the attention of the public through a TV dialogue.

3.The report was prepared by the office of the Secretary of State for Equality and Inclusion (SEII) as the outcome of a close collaboration among all relevant line Ministries and national institutions (16 institutions). The National Human Rights Institution (PDHJ) and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) were also part of the preparation of the report through the national consultative workshop held in October 2019.

4.As the process of updating the Common Core Document has not been completed by the time of development of the present report, all necessary and relevant information was directly included in this treaty-specific document.

Articles 1: Definition of Discrimination and Legislative Framework

5.In lieu of a comprehensive law on gender equality, the Government systematically include specific articles on discrimination and equality in key legal acts such as the 2017 Law against Trafficking in Persons (Law N° 3/2017 – Art. 3), the 2016 Law on the Creation of the Social Security Contributory Regime (Law N° 12/2016 – Art. 6 and 7) or the 2017 Law establishing the Special Regime for Definition of Ownership of immovable Property (‘Land Law’, Law N° 13/2017 – Art.4).

6.In addition to the enactment of the bills on trafficking and land, the expropriation law (Law N° 8/2017) - including the real estate financial fund (Art. 66) – was passed in 2017. Regarding Civil Registration, the draft Code is now completed and going through further analysis and consultations prior to submission to Parliament.,

7.Various initiatives have been undertaken during the reporting period toward the adoption of a formal law regulating the relationships between customary and formal justice systems. The Ministry for Legislative Reform and Parliamentary Affairs (MRLAP) is now undertaking research and public consultations on how to create interactions between formal and customary justice systems for the development of a Traditional Justice Law.

8.Recognizing the importance of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) mechanisms in accessing justice, including for women, the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has developed a draft law on informal justice processes, or ‘mediation law’ to act as an umbrella law for all ADR practices. It is ready to be submitted for public consultation. In the development of the draft law, a specific seminar on ‘Gender Responsive Alternative Dispute Resolution’ was organized to ensure the consideration of women’s rights.

Article 2: Policy Measures

Access to Justice

9.The mobile court system remains the main channel to provide access to formal justice to rural communities by convening hearings in 9 municipalities where fixed courts are not yet established. The programme also contributes to introduce or enhance legal literacy to remote communities, including women, and promotes formal justice in these areas.

10.The number of cases assessed by mobile courts has been rising each year from 2015 to 2017 (about 10 per cent), totalling above 700 cases since 2018, representing 17 per cent of all criminal cases assessed in the first instance. Among criminal cases, the average of GBV cases between 2016 and 2018 varied between 46 per cent and 61 per cent, indicating the value of this programme for women victims of violence in rural areas. Overall, women represent about 33 per cent of the total beneficiaries of resolved cases (among approximately 3,000 beneficiary litigants).

Procedures for women for filling complaints

11.Complaints related to violence against women (VAW) are generally facilitated by the service providers’ Referral Network, established under the first National Action Plan against Gender-based Violence (NAP GBV). The Network guides and supports victims through the reporting (generally to the Vulnerable Person Unit (VPU) of the national police - PNTL), investigation and judicial processes. Complaints related to labour or education are generally addressed by the General Inspectorate of Labour under the Secretary of State for Vocational Training and Employment (SEPFOPE) and the General Inspectorate of Education under the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports (MEJD). Both are mandated to refer cases to the Court when no solution can be found through mediation.

12.Special attention was given to improve the filling complaint mechanism related to sexual harassment committed by public servants through innovative technology by developing the “ChatBot Rosa” since 2018.

13.Beside the formal justice system, two other pathways are generally used by community members to settle conflicts. These are ADR processes including customary dispute resolution (or Lisan/Adat) and non-customary ADR (mediation through Government institutions and civil society). They are both recognized by the formal legal system and considered legitimate by community members. Despite being mainly facilitated by men (although not exclusively), women still largely rely on these processes. The future Traditional Justice Law and the law on informal justice processes are expected to improve the connection between the different systems and the provision of ADR services.

Legal aid

14.Public legal aid is provided by the Office of the Public Defender - OPD (Decree-Law N° 10/2017), which is “responsible for providing full and free judicial and extrajudicial assistance to citizens who need it due to their economic or social situation” (Art. 1.1), covering both civil and criminal matters.

15.30 full-time public defenders (5 women) and an additional 5 trainees are currently operating in the 4 judicial districts. In the 2016–2019 period (until October 2019), the civil section of the OPD supported women in 46 cases, all related to divorce. In the same period, the criminal section supported women in 2,796 cases, all related to VAW.,

16.The Access to Justice Clinics (AJCs) programme, developed in response to the limited access to the formal justice system, especially for rural populations and piloted in 2 judicial districts (Suai and Baucau) since 2016, provides free legal information and consultation services (Decree-Law N° 10/2017 – Art. 22). It is structured as the OPD’s ‘extrajudicial division’ along with the pre-existing civil and criminal divisions.

17.After a year of implementation, 127 cases were registered by the two AJCs (92 land disputes, 30 other types of civil cases, and 5 criminal cases), benefiting to 251 community members (20 per cent women - likely to reflect the limited ownership of land by women). In the same period, AJCs also directly facilitated 108 mediation cases, 28 cases of which were resolved, benefiting to 56 community members (32 per cent women).

18.In the framework of the NAP-GBV and the Referral Network, CSOs are also providing important support and free legal aid to women victims of GBV.,

Human resources and training of justice actors

19.The Law N°1/2017 establishes a transitional regime for the recruitment of non‑Timorese magistrates and public defenders to be mainly integrated in the Legal and Judicial Training Centre (LJTC) as mentors or professors to respond to the qualified judicial human resources challenge, mitigating the Resolutions N° 29/2014 and 32/2014 related to the dismissal of international judges in 2014.

20.The MoJ signed in 2016 a new co-operation protocol with the Government of Portugal on the renewal of assistance to the justice sector which allowed for the re‑opening of the LJTC. At the time of writing, 6 international trainers and mentors are teaching in the LJTC (50 per cent women). The new statutes of the LJTC also make clear that the objective of recruiting international trainers is a transitional mechanism to train local human resources and strengthen the sustainability of the justice system.

21.The number of judges now reaches 35 (40 per cent women), the number of Tribunal’s Auditors reaches 30 (27 per cent women) and the number of Justice Officials/Court Clerks reaches 86 (27 per cent women). It is due to increase after the graduation of the 13 new trainees of the 6th LJTC course in December 2019. Moreover, the number of private lawyers has increased to 132 professionals.

22.A specific gender training for judges was organized and delivered by UN Women in October 2015. The Women Machinery took over this responsibility in 2017 for the 6th Course, providing a 4 days training as part of the complementary trainings to 35 private lawyers (20 per cent women) in 2017.

23.It has been observed since 2015 that direct references to CEDAW by judges in GBV and sexual violence cases has increased. Also, JSMP observed since 2016 that discriminatory comments or decisions against women have decreased and efforts from the courts to process pending GBV cases from previous years and ensuring new cases are processed in timely manner were praised.

Enhancement of women’s awareness of their rights and legal literacy

24.In addition to the ACJ legal information outreach, Government and State Institutions such as PDHJ are implementing legal literacy campaigns at community level on various topics. The annually celebrated 16 days campaign of activism against VAW also contributes to wide-spread advocacy on GBV issue.

Resources allocated to enhance access to formal justice

25.In 2015, an increase in the justice budget allocation (21 per cent) allowed for material and infrastructure improvements of districts courts such as the building of a specific room in the Oecusse district court for victims to privately consult with their lawyers and remain separated from the defendant. Material improvement included inter alia the procurement of additional cars facilitating mobile court proceedings.

26.While substantial financial resources were allocated to District Courts in the 2016-2019 period in order to maintain the accessibility of the formal justice system in rural areas, no significant infrastructure improvement was achieved in this period.

Article 3: Measures to Develop and Advance Women

National Women Machinery’s resources

27.Please refer to the 2018 Follow-up State Party report for comprehensive information regarding the National Women Machinery’s resources for the 2015–2018 period.

28.Efforts to improve the technical capacity of Gender Working Groups (GWG) toward a better implementation of gender mainstreaming principles, especially into budgeting and Annual Action Plans (AAPs), was implemented mainly between 2015 and 2017 through trainings reaching 369 public servants (60 per cent women).

29.A general gender training is being developed by SEII in collaboration with the National Institute of Public Administration (INAP) for the dissemination of gender principles within the Government. A manual was already developed, and trainings are expected to begin by 2020.

Monitoring mechanism of strategic plans on women’s rights and gender equality

30.Progress has been made to monitor public allocations for gender equality. The creation of a Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Unit (UPMA) under the Prime Minister’s Office through the Decree-Law N°22/2015 has been an important achievement in this view. UPMA is the monitoring mechanism to track Government implementation and investment via the ‘Road to the Future’ (Dalan Ba Futuru) database. In the framework of the Program Finance Management (PFM) reform, the development of a programme budgeting approach contributes to strengthen the Gender-Responsive Budgeting (GRB) system initiated since 2007.

31.A gender marker system is now included in the Government Financial Management Information System (FMIS) to facilitate the tracking of funds expended for the promotion of gender equality. While, the mechanism is still in development, UPMA and SEII already started to analyse line ministries’ quarterly reports submitted to Parliament. According to the 2019 1st trimester report, 16 per cent of the executed budget by the Government directly contributed to gender equality.

32.SEII, in coordination with UPMA and DFAT is also analysing the AAPs of most Government institutions and municipalities, incorporating indicators disaggregated by sex where relevant. 67 Government institutions’ AAPs, in addition to all municipalities’ AAP were analysed for 2020.

33.Moreover, SEII is an observer to the Budget Review Committee ensuring that all ministries and agencies allocate enough resources for gender equality as part of their overall budget submissions. Specific attention is given to the planning, budgeting and implementation of the 3 major gender policies at national level.

Collection of gender-disaggregated data to assess the impact of GRB and programmes on women

34.The General Directorate of Statistics (GDS), supported by international partners, has been increasing the availability of sex-disaggregated data in all of its publications, and gender-specific analyses have been published for most of the recent census and surveys conducted by the GDS.

35.On the administrative side, the 2017 Gender-Responsive Budgeting (GRB) policy note, developed with international support, and guiding the implementation of gender mainstreaming within the PFM reform, provides for the development of a solid system for collecting gender statistics and data by line ministries toward strengthening a performance orientation of the Government’s action. The development of the State FMIS and the ‘Dalan ba Futuru’ database are expected to facilitate this process by making accountable all public institutions on the implementation of their commitments within their sector.

Article 4: Temporary Special Measures to Accelerate Equality

36.(No significant update in the reporting period).

Article 5: Sex Roles and Stereotyping

37.According to the 2015 census data, the proportion of women aged 20–24 who were married or in a union before the age of 18 is close to 7 per cent, with wide variations between municipalities. On the other hand, the 2016 Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) found that 35 per cent of women aged 20–49 had married in their teens compared to 9 per cent of men. Regarding polygamy, the 2016 DHS revealed that 4 per cent of women reported their husband or partner had co-wives and 1 per cent of men reported having multiple wives (an increase compared to the 2009/2010 DHS).

Initiatives on early child and forced marriages and polygamy

38.At the request of the Female Parliamentarians of Timor-Leste Group (GMPTL) following the 2016 National Conference on Sexual and Reproductive Rights, the Government, UNFPA and Plan International conducted a research in 2017 to identify the root causes leading to teenage pregnancy and early marriage in the country. It showed that early marriages are generally the cause of teenage pregnancy. Nonetheless, the research also stresses that early marriage is not a positive social norm, suggesting that this issue could be addressed through sexual education and access to family planning for youth. ,

39.Regarding the polygamy issue, legal initiatives have been instigated such as the registration by the Civil Registry of all marriages in its various forms provided under the draft Civil Registration Code which intends to ensure the effective celebration of marriages according to civil law.

Awareness-raising programmes on discriminatory stereotypes and harmful practices

40.Awareness-raising is conducted through parenting education programmes conducted at community-level under the MSSI family related policies. These programmes, implemented in 2 municipalities, promote harmony in the family and challenge traditional patriarchal values during community sessions, especially by emphasizing the significant role of fathers and equal participation of men in the caring and rearing of their children.

41.Social norm change programmes implemented by NGOs under the NAP GBV framework also contribute to reduce discriminatory stereotypes. The Nabilan program from The Asia Foundation has been particularly active in this sector by implementing a community-based prevention methodology (SASA!) which encourages community members to think about the positive effects of balancing power in relationships between women and men.

42.Several initiatives targeting the media were implemented such as the development of a code of conduct for journalists including gender equality principles, TV and radio programmes aired, and social media used for wider dissemination.

Violence Against Women

43.The 2016 DHS findings on spousal violence within the 12 months preceding the survey indicate a rising trend in spousal violence compared to the 2009/2010 DHS (from 31 per cent in 2009/10 to 33 per cent in 2016). A similar trend is observed in terms of spousal sexual violence (from 2 per cent in 2009/10 to 5 per cent in 2016). The findings of the 2015 Nabilan baseline study (solely focused on VAW and conducted across all municipalities) seem to corroborate the rate of physical spousal violence (although slightly higher – 36 per cent), while the findings related to sexual spousal violence are significantly higher (31 per cent).

44.The trend on help-seeking behaviour between 2009/10 and 2016 is decreasing with about 24 per cent of women who experience violence seek help in 2009/10 as compared to 20 per cent in 2016. The 2015 Nabilan study reveals that 34 per cent of women had told someone about their experience of intimate partner violence (mostly to family members). Less than 25 per cent of these women had told people of authority.

45.On the positive side, the 2016 DHS findings indicate that the acceptance of wife beating is decreasing for both men and women (from 86 per cent in 2009/10 to 74 per cent in 2016 for women and from 80.7 per cent in 2009/10 to 51.6 per cent in 2016 for men). However, the findings of the 2015 Nabilan study show higher rate of acceptance (80 per cent for women and between 70 and 79 per cent for men).

National Action Plan on Gender-Based Violence 2017–2021

46.The Women Machinery initiated the process of revision of the first NAP GBV through a broad consultative process from April to July 2016. The new plan was officially adopted in February 2017.

47.SEII is overseeing the monitoring process and is responsible before the Parliament. While still in development, a monitoring matrix tool has recently been launched to encourage line Ministries to report on the outcomes of their activities under the NAP-GBV. SEII will deliver its first outcomes report in 2020. According to the 2018 monitoring draft report, close to 350.000 USD was executed in 2018 for the implementation of the plan (representing only 17 per cent of the 2018 provisional costing).,


48.The awareness-raising strategy is provided under the Pillar I (‘Prevention of GBV’), covering various types of training and awareness-raising community sessions targeting security and justice actors, schools, community leaders and general community members. The revision of curricula and the distribution of related school materials was also undertaken by MoE under this pillar.

49.In the 2015–2016 period, the Women Machinery conducted 19 sessions in 7 municipalities as part of the socialization campaign of the Law against Domestic Violence (LADV). About 231.000,00 USD was executed in 2016 by line ministries under this pillar, representing 11 per cent of the overall policy expenditures. More activities were undertaken under the new NAP GBV, either conducted by Government or partnering CSOs, directly reaching close to 8,000 beneficiaries (about 55 per cent women) in 2018 with a particular focus on line ministries and schools.

Due diligence of the State on prevention and judicial process for all crimes against women

50.The Government is committed to address the GBV issue using the NAP GBV as the central strategy. Its prevention pillar intends to respond to the State obligation of prevention, and Pillar III on ‘Access to Justice for victims/survivors of GBV’ provides a global strategy and detailed activities to improve investigation, prosecution and compensation for victims.

51.In terms of investigation, the National Police (PNTL) General Command issued Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) in May 2017 which integrate a gender perspective and emphasize their role in prevention and response to GBV. The establishment in 2015 of a Working Group for the promotion of gender equality in PNTL allowed the development of the PNTL Gender Strategy 2018-2022 to ensure gender sensitive service delivery and responsive to victims of GBV.

52.Trainings on the needs of victims, incident report and referral coordination were delivered between 2016 and 2018 to the PNTL (especially to the VPU and Community Police) either by SEII, international partners or civil society.

53.While VPU data indicates a constant increasing trend in reporting sexual violence during the reporting period, the trend in reporting domestic violence (DV) is less clear although the trend seems to increase from 2017 to 2018 and the 2019 intermediary data record might indicate another rise., This may indicate that there is more awareness that DV is not acceptable, confirming the decreasing rate of acceptance of wife beating found in the 2016 DHS.

54.In relation to prosecution, a significant improvement in criminal case clearance by the Office of the Prosecutor General (OPG) was observed between 2013 and 2016 with a 27 per cent reduction of pending cases despite an increase of newly registered cases. This is due inter alia to the establishment of standards for individual performance assessment and the recruitment of new employees. As GBV cases comprise a great share of the criminal cases, these general improvements corroborate the State commitments toward an improved access to justice, including for women victims of violence. Nevertheless, formal access to justice for women experiencing DV remains a challenge, especially in rural areas.

55.While suspended prison sentences and fines are still the most common penalties applied in DV cases, the imposition of additional orders such as rules of conduct and the payment of civil compensation have raised since 2015 while nearly inexistent prior to this date. To date, these conditions mainly involve periodic reporting to the court so that the perpetrator does not simply feel free.

56.The granting of civil compensation for DV cases remains rare despite being granted in a limited number of serious offence against physical integrity cases.

Sexual violence within the family

57.Although marital rape or incest are not covered by specific provisions, family relationship – including de facto unions – is constituting of an aggravating factor in cases sexual aggression (art. 173 and art. 182 of the Penal Code), raising the minimum and maximum sentence incurred.

58.Despite these provisions, the sexual violence reporting rate remains low and the prosecution of rape within marriage is nearly inexistent in practice mainly due to the absence of reporting by victims.

59.Nonetheless, progress has been observed on the prosecution and sentencing of incest by the courts by concentrating on hearing cases that have been pending for a long time and processing all new cases in a timely manner.

Witness protection law

60.While occasional infrastructure developments contributed to improve the implementation of the 2009 Witness Protection Law, its overall implementation remains narrow due to minimal human and financial resources. Consultations are planned by the MoJ on this issue.

Care to victims of violence

61.In 2016, 86 per cent of the executed NAP GBV budget was dedicated to the protection pillar (‘provision of services’ pillar under the new NAP).

62.The MSSI Support programme for victims of GBV – granted based on Court decision – provides financial benefits and facilitates victim access to support services through the Referral Network. However, the programme is limited in scope (150 victims supported in 2018).

63.‘Safe Rooms’ are currently established in health facilities in 4 municipalities in collaboration between Government and CSOs, providing temporary accommodation (1 or 2 nights) for victims and survivors. PRADET’s safe room services reached and supported between 600 and 750 victims in 2018.

64.In addition, 6 new shelters (‘Uma Mahon’) and one Transitional House were established in collaboration between the Government and CSOs between 2014 and 2018, bringing the number of shelters available to 13 across the country. They provide accommodation for a longer period, as well as an integrated assistance to victims with the final objective to re-integrate them into their community.

65.The newly created ‘Hamahon’ mobile application, supported by development partners, provides information on services available to victims of GBV in support of the Referral Network to improve service delivery to victims.

Data collection system

66.Although researches such as the DHS and the Nabilan baseline survey have contributed to an improved amount of data on GBV, a unified administrative data system for GBV has yet to be established. In 2019, SEII began working on this issue with the Governance for Development (GfD) program and will receive training from social statisticians from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Violence Against Women During Conflict Situations and their Access to Justice

Justice for victims of sexual violence committed during the Indonesian occupation in 1999

67.Since most primary perpetrators remain outside the Timorese jurisdiction, no prosecution of perpetrators of sexual violence occurred during the reporting period. Nonetheless, the Government, in collaboration with civil society, has instead focused on responding to social justice and recognition aspirations of the National Victims Association (NVA).

Implementation of the CAVR and CTF recommendations

68.The Chega! National Centre (CNC) was formally established in 2016 by the Decree-Law N° 48/2016 and opened in 2017. It is an autonomous agency established to facilitate the implementation of the CAVR recommendations and the Indonesia–Timor-Leste Commission of Truth and Friendship (CTF) by advising the Government and with direct authority to implementing recommendations related to ‘Memory and learning’ and ‘Rehabilitation and healing’ (Art. 6.c and 6.d).

69.Survivors of sexual violence are considered among “the most vulnerable survivors of human rights violations” (Art. 6.a) and need to be considered a priority, consistently with the CAVR recommendations.

70.In early stages, the CNC mainly focused on ‘Memory and learning’, starting by re-introducing the Chega! Report to key Government ministers. In terms of ‘Rehabilitation and healing’, key initiatives conducted by CNC since 2018 in collaboration with civil society include: 1) Establishing the Solidarity Trust Fund Working Group; 2) Establishing the Psychosocial Working Group; 3) Participation in the Stolen Children’s Working Group which helped locate approximately 150 disappeared children, and organized reunions with their families; 4) Partnership with the NVA formalized in March 2019 which allows inter alia for the ongoing registration process of victims and database expected to be concluded by the end of 2019.

71.Government is providing financial support for women victims of violence during the conflict mainly through the funding of CSOs working with survivors and victims of the conflict such as ACbit and Fokupers. These organizations connect the victims with social and health services or engage them in activities focusing on livelihoods and memorialising female victims and survivors. However, no central institution oversees the support to the victims of the past conflict.

72.CNC is currently developing two projects in cooperation with the Government focusing on female victims of sexual violence during the conflict: 1) A cooperation framework with MoJ to facilitate the civil registration and provision of birth certificate to children of women victims of sexual violence during the conflict; 2) the development with Ministry of Health (MoH) of a health scheme for victims to get access to international health services, modelled on the veterans’ scheme.

Article 6: Trafficking and Exploitation

Legal and policy framework

73.The Law on Preventing and Combating Human Trafficking was adopted in January 2017 as Law N° 3/2017 under the initiative of the Counter Trafficking Inter‑Agency Working Group set up in 2016. A draft of the revised National Action Plan on Human Trafficking has already been developed with IOM support. However, as the National Commission to Combat Trafficking in Persons as provided under the new law is yet to be formally established, the new NAP has not yet been adopted.

74.In 2018 the MoJ, in coordination with district administrators and IOM support, initiated the dissemination campaign of the new law at municipal level. The workshops provide local NGOs, local authorities, police, etc. with an introduction to human trafficking issues especially on victim identification and protection.

Research and data collection on trafficking and prostitution

75.An awareness-raising campaign and training on data collection and monitoring of trafficking in persons (TIP) was delivered by IOM to law enforcement officers and relevant stakeholders. Moreover, a data-collection sub-working group linked to a monitoring and evaluation sub-working group are planned to be establish under the Trafficking Working Group.

76.A Migration Profile was publicized in 2019 which brings together mobility trends to develop strategies for migration management and strengthen the Government ability to respond to various migration challenges, including Human Trafficking. However, a comprehensive research on the prevalence of trafficking and exploitation of prostitution has yet to be carried out.

Investigation, prosecution and conviction of perpetrators of sexual exploitation of women and girls

77.More TIP cases have been prosecuted than in the previous reporting period. While 9 cases were confirmed in 2017 (sexually trafficked), 267 cases were unconfirmed in the same year. 64 new confirmed TIP cases were reported in 2018. 3 cases were prosecuted but none of them resulting in a conviction for the 2017/2018 period. In the whole reporting period, only one prosecution resulted in a conviction with attempted trafficking charges in March 2016.

Victim identification, referral, and assistance

78.Victims identification is generally done by MSSI’s field officers under its ‘assistance to vulnerable people’ mechanism in collaboration with the police. Cooperation between MSSI field staff, police and NGOs has improved through the referral network despite remaining weak specific knowledge on this issue.

79.In 2018, 115 sex trafficking victims were identified and referred to IOM and the 3 NGO-operated shelters for assistance. As most stakeholders acknowledge that victim identification remain a challenge, the Working Group is working toward harmonizing procedures through a SOP on victim identification.

Awareness-raising and training of law enforcement personnel and legal practitioners on trafficking

80.The First National Community Engagement Forum on TIP was conducted in 2018 and facilitated by IOM. Further sessions were delivered to law enforcement officers, and relevant stakeholders in various districts reaching up to 660 people by 2018.

81.Specific trainings to police and immigration services were delivered in the framework of the two major programmes – the IOM counter-trafficking program and the MIEUX initiative. 169 members of the border force (UPF) and other border employees were trained by IOM in 2018. Various training materials were also developed in 2018 under the MIEUX initiative. All these initiatives address victim identification and referral, psychosocial support (PSS).

Article 7: Participation of Women in Politics and Decision‑Making

Promotion of women’s representation in political life at national level

82.The current quota mechanism for the parliamentarian elections established in 2011 facilitated the elections in 2018 of 25 women (38 per cent), surpassing 35 per cent of women in Parliament for the third legislature in a row.

83.In 2014, the collaboration between Government institutions, National Parliament, political parties and civil society with international support resulted in the development of the Government’s strategy framework on women’s participation in political life. Under this framework, Women Congresses were organized in all districts in collaboration with local and international CSOs. Beyond raising awareness on politics and civic education among women, one of the main objectives of the programme is to identify women with potential to become candidates in local/national elections.

84.Other activities and media campaigns implemented at national level in this collaborative framework also contributed to improve women’s representation in politics and civic education through TV programmes and debates on women’s rights and gender equality.

85.Women’s participation at the executive level (Ministers/Secretaries of State) remains limited with only between 16 per cent and 21 per cent women in the last 3 Governments during the reporting period.

Promotion of women’s political representation, training and mentoring at local level

86.Strong efforts at local level also improved women’s representation in local governance. The “100% Hau Pronto” campaign - an innovative Government-NGO partnership with international support - led to the revision of the Suco (village) Law and the electoral process for Suco and Aldeia (hamlet) chief elections. Under the new law, each Suco Council must comprise one female delegate and one female youth representative and the participation of women candidates in Aldeia chief elections became mandatory (Law N° 9/2016 – Art. 65.2 and 65.3).

87.The campaign further encouraged and prepared women for leadership regardless of party affiliation, with the objective to increase the number of female candidates standing for the 2016 local elections. 300 women leaders were identified and trained in this view., As a result, there was a 20-fold increase in the number of women candidates (from 42 in 2009 to 319 in 2016) and the number of women elected as Suco chiefs rose from 11 in 2009, to 21 in 2016 (2.5 per cent to 5 per cent).

88.In terms of local administration, despite an encouraging 24 per cent rate of women as deputy administrator at the municipal level (2 out of 12 municipalities), there are no women administrators.

Remaining challenges

89.The most common issues for the participation of women in political life cited during the Women Congresses were: 1) The lack of support, mobilization and motivation from families and communities for women to become local leader, even among women themselves; 2) The still dominant patriarchal system within communities; 3) Communities do not yet have a good awareness to recognize the potential of women as natural leaders; 4) The lack of will from women to be candidate as they are not yet confident enough to become leaders and face the related responsibilities.

Women, Peace and Security

Development and adoption of the plan

90.The National Action Plan on UNSCR 1325 (NAP 1325) was officially adopted in 2016, showing the commitment of the Government to implement the full spectrum of the WPS resolutions. It is organized around four pillars (Participation, Prevention, Protection and Peacebuilding), with 12 Government institutions involved.

91.The plan was developed based on the experiences of Timorese women and men, learning from their experiences during and after the war and re-affirming that women continue to struggle to achieve justice and equal rights. As a policy document, it contributes to implementing key CAVR recommendations.

Implementation structure

92.The Ministry of Interior (MoI), as lead coordinator, strengthened the implementation structure which comprises a Steering Committee, four working groups (one per pillar), the M&E group and a Secretariat. In addition, 27 focal points (17 women and 10 men) have been appointed from the 12 Government institutions and 10 CSOs responsible for implementation, which jointly developed a costing matrix, identifying priorities for 2018–2020.

Budgeting and monitoring of the plan

93.After important investment in the 1st year of implementation, budget allocation were restrained in 2017/2018. The recent improvement of the GRB system - which includes a specific focus on the NAP 1325 - has translated into a 56 per cent increased allocation (estimated at USD 391,311 for 2019 compared to USD 221,342 in 2018).

94.After 2 years of implementation, 14 of the 47 activities under the NAP 1325 (33 per cent) were implemented across the 4 pillars of the NAP and 8 activities making progress to achieve the planned results by 2020. Progress is on track to achieve at least half of the plan’s results by 2020.

Implementation of the plan

95.Awareness-raising activities targeting community leaders and relevant stakeholders were conducted either by line ministries or CSOs, addressing issues such as GBV and conflict prevention within communities, transformative leadership of women or the memorialization of the role of women during the conflict, etc.

96.The MoI revised its approach to conflict prevention and resolution to ensure stronger involvement of women and vulnerable groups. They revised the 5-year strategy’s mission, vision, principles, goals aligning to the NAP 1325 targets and the SDGs. It also developed gender-responsive tools and training material, adapted with technical and financial support from UN Women. 10 women mediators - out of 34 - were operating in 2017 (to be raised to 18 out of 39 in 2019).

97.Social assistance provided to victims of past conflicts by MSSI and CSOs, the establishment of the Chega! National Centre or the inclusion of women in the community peace dialogues conducted by MSSI contribute to the realization of the peacebuilding objective of the NAP.

98.The National Defence Forces (F-FDTL) appointed a gender focal point in 2016 who started implementing trainings on WPS issues in the Peacekeeping Training Centre established in 2017.

99.Finally, the 2018-2022 gender strategy established and launched by PNTL fulfils various objectives of the NAP illustrated by the development of training activities to provide services according to the specific security needs of men and women, or in terms of participation by establishing a 15 per cent quota of women in each recruitment campaign within PNTL.Nonetheless, the current rate of women within PNTL already reached 15 per cent in 2018, representing a steady decline since 2001 (18 per cent).

Article 8: Participation at International Level

100.(No significant update in the reporting period).

Article 9: Nationality

101.(No significant update in the reporting period).

Article 10: Equality in Access to Education

102.Education for all is a key priority of the Government, included in the National 2011–2030 Strategic Development Plan (SDP).

Trends in access to Education

103.In 2015, 26 per cent of the population aged 6 years and over had never attended school, with a higher proportion among females (29.4 per cent) than males (22.7 per cent). The rate of attendance at school by age group however shows how access in education has improved significantly in recent times. Compared to previous years, in 2015 more youth were attending school, and were staying in school longer with 56 per cent of young people between 15 and 24 years old in school. According to administrative data, the enrolment trend of both boys and girls has been regularly raising at primary level, reaching a net enrolment rate (NER) of 86.1 per cent (Grosse enrolment rate – GER: 101.7 per cent) compared to 72 per cent in 2015. At general secondary level, enrolment rose from 45,500 students (51.8 per cent of girls) in 2015 to 49,582 in 2017 (54 per cent of girls) reaching a NER of 28.8 per cent (GER: 57.5 per cent). This has occurred even faster at vocational secondary education: from 6,022 in 2015 (41.2 per cent women) to 12.351 (40.6 per cent women) in 2017, reaching a NER of 7.4 per cent (GER: 14.3 per cent).

104.Moreover, the gender gap in education has been narrowed, improving or surpassing gender parity in education in almost all regions across the country. According to administrative data, girls to boys ratio reached 96.1 per cent at primary level, 117 per cent at secondary – indicating that there are more girls at the appropriate age in school than boys – and 68.5 per cent in vocational secondary level. According to the 2015 Census, the gender parity index was 1 at primary level, 1.21 and 1.20 at pre-secondary and secondary education respectively. The difference can be explained by the higher repetition rate of boys (5 per cent of boys repeated their 6th grade compared to 3 per cent of girls in 2016).

Efforts toward retention of girls in schools

105.A National Policy for Inclusive Education was adopted in 2017 by the Ministry of Education (MoE) through the Government Resolution N° 18/2017 which emphasises specific gender issues. Its main objectives are, inter alia, to improve enrolment rates at all levels of education, reduce the repetition and drop-out rate, strengthen non-formal learning programs and develop ahealthy environment, capable of protecting children's rights.

106.It provides to give special attention on “Teacher training in identifying students at risk of failing or dropping out of school”and promotes school-parents and school-community collaborationthrough the Parent’s Councils already established in all schools across the country. Moreover, MSSI, supported by UNICEF, raises parents’ awareness through community sessions, radio shows and local theatre productions to reinforce positive parenting messages, especially in remotes municipalities of Viqueque and Ermera, reaching more than 25,000 parents and caregivers between 2017 and 2018.

107.The policy also aims to promote “the importance of girls' education and awareness of communities in this regard” as well as to “strengthen gender equality-oriented socialization at an early age”. Efforts have been undertaken by the MEJD, supported by UNICEF, to develop community-led learnings through community pre‑schools as a way of reaching children in remote and isolated communities to increase access to education and raising awareness of parents on the importance of education. In 2015, the Gender Parity Index at this level of education was strongly in favour of girls (1.70).

108.The MEJD carried out an analysis of classrooms for each school, forming the basis of a sanitation and hygiene (WASH) strategy (2020-2025). It provides the minimum standards with separate and adequate sanitation facilities for girls. Overall, the MEJD estimates that 9,000 new toilets are needed and 2,700 need to be rehabilitated.

109.Generally, significant progress was observed. While 70 per cent of public schools had an improved water source in 2016, this rate has raised to 78 per cent among the 1,426 schools in 2019, providing water to 90 per cent of students in public schools. School-community cooperation was also enhanced through the creation of School Water and Sanitation (BESI) Teams comprised of teachers, parents and students to monitor and repair minor damages.

Physical violence

110.A comprehensive research on violence against children in and around educational settings was commissioned by the MoE, the Commission for the Rights of the Child and UNICEF and conducted in 2015 in partnership with international and a national CSOs. Findings suggest that physical violence perpetrated by teachers is a generally accepted practice, primarily for the purpose of punishment. 71 per cent of children reported having experienced physical violence by a teacher at school in the last 12 months. In addition to age, experiences of physical violence were also associated with gender (75 per cent for boys / 67 per cent for girls). The research findings also suggest that priority was generally placed on resolving the situation through mediation and other restorative means.

111.Following the adoption of ‘Guidelines on Technical Teaching and Learning Methodology’ in 2015 which refrains teachers from using violence, the Inclusive Education policy reiterated the MEJD commitment toward“nonviolent measures to manage student behaviour”..Thus a ‘Discipline Regulation’ (Government Decree N° 29/2017) was adopted in 2017 followed by a set of ‘Interpretative Standards for the determination of faults […] and their gravity’ (Ministerial Diploma N° 4/2018, MoE) as a practical tool to ensure appropriate implementation of the disciplinary procedure. A socialization campaign on these new regulations was conducted by the General Inspectorate of MEJD.

112.Several initiatives were conducted regarding safe transportation – mostly focused on urban areas – although not specific to the education sector. A first campaign to eliminate VAW in public transports and public spaces was implemented in Dili in the framework of the 2016 16 days campaigns of activism against VAW. More recently, the ‘Safe Cities’ campaign on sexual harassment led by UN Women was launched in the 2 major urban areas of the country (Dili and Baucau).

Sexual violence and sexual harassment in schools (policy, reported cases and sanctions)

113.Experiences of sexual violence in educational settings were low (9.7 per cent girls / 7 per cent boys) compared to other types of violence. Sexual comments and touching by teachers, and sexual harassment by other children were the most common forms of sexual violence experienced in school. Eight girls (no boys) reported being raped at school (1 per cent). An additional 3 per cent also reported that they knew of a case where a teacher had offered favours or money to a student in exchange of sex.

114.While sexual violence might have been underreported in the survey due to the stigma and the normalisation of sexual harassment of girls, formal reporting is nearly inexistent., Where sexual violence is reported, informal or ‘restorative’ resolutions were generally prioritised over a criminal justice response.,

115.The new discipline regulations authorize conciliation process as “an ancillary measure to disciplinary procedure” to restore peace while considering the best interests of the student (Art. 50). However, it also makes clear that “the conciliation procedure is not a substitute for establishing disciplinary liability and may run in parallel” (Art. 51).

Disciplinary process and data from the General Inspectorate of Education

116.Following the new disciplinary regulations, the school leaders must refer any reported case of violence to the General Inspectorate at municipal level. It is then generally referred to the Public Service Commission (CFP) to determine “mistakes and scale” and the possible administrative sanction. In case of minor mistake, transfer is generally applied. For severe issues, the case is referred to the police.

117.At the time of writing, 33 and 5 cases were processed by the General Inspectorate respectively in 2018 and 2019. In 2018, 8 cases were related to physical violence, out of which 7 cases were resolved by the Inspectorate and 1 was referred to the police. Only 1 sexual violence case was processed by the Inspectorate in 2018 and referred to the CFP. 5 cases were processed by the Inspectorate in 2019 (3 cases of physical violence and 2 cases of sexual violence).

Re-entry policy

118.The 2017 Inclusive Education policy highlights “the right of pregnant girls to continue to attend school, […] thus eliminating the existing stereotype”. The policy aims at raising awareness among adolescent mothers and the school community about the importance of finishing education and to strengthen education programs on reproductive health as well as to develop a specific legal regulation and a plan of action on re-entry of pregnant girls and young mothers in formal education.

119.Although a formal specific re-entry policy has yet to be adopted, the MEJD, in consultation with SEII, has issued a temporary measure through a formal circular to ensure that female students are allowed to return to school after childbirth. Accordingly, in 2019 the ministry facilitated the reintegration in school of 6 young mothers. Disciplinary sanctions are provided against teachers or school leaders who deny the right to young mothers to reintegrate the education system. Further consultations led by the MEJD in coordination with SEII, CSOs and the Church are being conducted, to develop the formal policy.

120.In addition, Community Learning Centres (CLC) were already established in 9 municipalities to support people who have dropped-out of education to reconnect and complete basic school equivalency. The CLCs will gradually include secondary school equivalency as well.

Sexual and reproductive health and rights programmes in education

121.The new school curricula currently in development for pre-secondary and secondary levels aims to integrate SRH education (‘Learning about Myself’ module). It has been piloted in 10 schools in 7 different municipalities. ToT for teachers and education professionals has also been delivered by the MEJD with UNFPA’s support.

122.Youth that are out of school are also targeted through the development of a manual on healthy relationships, supported by UNFPA, to be used in Youth Centres, to transfer knowledge on SRH.

123.These initiatives however were not comprehensive in scope. Despite a legal and policy environment broadly supportive of reproductive health education, cultural taboos and low capacity of teachers on this issue make it difficult to implement and are not systematically addressed by teachers.


124.64.4 per cent of the adult population (ages 15 and over) is literate (68.7 per cent for men / 60.2 per cent for women). The gender gap between young men and women (84.7 per cent and 84.1 per cent respectively) is narrower and the higher rates than adult literacy indicate that access to basic education has improved. Nonetheless, in rural areas, literacy remains far lower and the gender gap wider (58.8 per cent of men and 48.8 per cent of women) than in urban areas (89.7 per cent of men and 85.8 per cent of women).

125.The new curriculum specifies that the medium of instruction in early basic education is Tetum (which contributed to improve literacy programs) and establishes a carefully planned introduction to literacy in Portuguese. Nonetheless, the 2012-2015 Mother Tongue Based Multilingual Education pilot project has demonstrated that children’s academic performance improves when they receive early basic education in their primary local language.

126.Literacy programs for out-of-school children and continuing education is addressed by a new National Program for Equivalence to Basic Education (Decree-Law N° 30/2016). A curriculum and related learning materials were developed and disseminated in the 9 already established CLCs, and a teacher training process appropriate for mature students was conducted. Flexible delivery methods are offered to students to enable youth and adults to continue learning while attending work, family, or other responsibilities. 110 Equivalency Programs teachers were trained and 1670 students (55 per cent women) mostly coming from rural areas had participated by January 2017, gaining essential skills in linguistics (Tetum and Portuguese).

Article 11: Employment

Labour related trends

127.The trend based on 2010-2013-2016 Labour Force Surveys (LFS) indicates that the working age population rose from 627,000 in 2010 to 696,200 in 2013, up to 724,500 in 2016 (representing around 60 per cent of the population). Of these numbers, labour force participation rose from 30.6 per cent in 2013 to 46.9 per cent in 2016, with a significant reduction in the gender gap (from 21.3 per cent women and 39.7 per cent men in 2013 to 40.6 per cent women and 53 per cent men in 2016). Among the working-age population, the share of subsistence foodstuff producers has meaningfully reduced (from 23.5 per cent women and 27.8 per cent men in 2013 to 11.9 per cent women and 18.2 per cent men in 2016). However, from those in the labour force, the trend of vulnerable employment has increased from 54.5 per cent in 2013 to 58.0 per cent in 2016, with a rate significantly higher among women (73.6 per cent in 2016) compared to men (47.2 per cent).

128.An increase in secure wage employment of the total employments (from 30 per cent to 41 per cent) has been observed between 2010 and 2013 (although more rapid for men than for women)., Beyond the overall limited formal employment opportunities, two important factors contribute to limit women’s participation in the labour force: gender roles and family duties, as well as education attainment.

129.In 2016, 1.6 per cent women held a managerial position (2,000 women) compared with 3.4 per cent men (6,100 men). As such, the share of women holding such position has been constant between 2013 and 2016 (about 30 per cent through all occupation groups).

Ratification of ILO Conventions

130.After the ILO Constitution in May 2015, the ILO Conventions 111 and 100 were ratified by the Parliament on the 5th of August 2015 through the Parliament Resolutions N° 11/2015 and 12/2015, then depositing the instruments of ratification to the ILO Director-General on the 10th of May 2016.

Programmes related to women access to employment

131.The two major labour related policies developed in the reporting period include gender concerns. The 2016-2020 Decent Work Country Programme (DWCP) intends to improve access to employment services and opportunities in the private sector and the National Employment Strategy (NES) 2017 - 2030 aims at “increasing the current low labour force participation […], in particular women”.

132.The Secretary of State for Vocational Training and Employment (SEPFOPE) is on track to achieve the establishment of career guidance and employment centres (CEOPs) under the DWCP in each municipality with the objective to have at least 30 per cent women counsellors trained by 2020.

133.Various initiatives are being implemented to support local potentials through cash transfer programs and business trainings implemented either directly by the Government (MTCI/SEII), or with Civil Society support, for the development of business activities to the benefit of women’s groups. Employment intensive investment programmes targeting especially rural populations such as the ‘Road 4 Development’ and the ‘ERA Agro-Forestry’ programmes contributed to important achievements in terms of rural development and women’s inclusion. In 2018, 30 per cent of worker’s days generated were reserved for women and close to 50 per cent of the contractors trained and awarded contracts were women-owned firms.

134.Gender principles and women’s employment are also integrated in the legal framework and strategies related to the development of the private sector and financial inclusion. As part of the National Strategy for Financial Inclusion, the creation of the Small and Medium Business Credit Guarantee System (SGC) by the Central Bank of Timor-Leste (BCTL) aims at promoting small and medium-sized enterprises, and is required to facilitate youth and women entrepreneurship (Decree-Law N°23/2017 - Art. 11.f).

135.IADE scaled up its entrepreneurship and training programs with 1,111 trainees (45 per cent women) in general business in 2016. Moreover, the trend in female enrolment in TVET education in non-traditional careers (construction and automotive trade) sectors has been slowly raising (21 per cent in 2014, 29 per cent in 2015), while the proportion of women engaged hospitality and administration trainings is generally higher. Overall, during the 2014-2018 period, the proportion of women involved in TVET training programs reached 57 per cent across all professional training sectors.

136.According to SEPFOPE’s data for the 2014-2018 period, 39 per cent of women were able to access employment after completing a training program. Nonetheless, the overall proportion of trainees’ entry into employment in the same period is limited (about 13 per cent), especially due to the limited formal labour opportunities, notably in rural areas.

Social security coverage and maternity protection

137.The first comprehensive and contributory social security scheme for the working-age population was officially adopted in 2016 (Law N° 12/2016) and began to operate in August 2017. It is mandatory for all workers in the private formal and public sectors and offers provisions for old age, invalidity (Decree-Law N° 17/2017), maternity, paternity (Decree-Law N° 18/2017) and death (Decree-Law N° 19/2017).

138.72,789 workers were already enrolled and covered in 2019 at the time of writing, representing about 20 per cent of the labour force. Close to 66 per cent of registered workers are from the public sector, about 33 per cent from the private sector and 0.5 per cent individual workers. Women represent 32 per cent of the total registered workers. As of October 2019, parenting benefits have been already paid to a total of 1,147 beneficiaries (about 74 per cent maternity and 26 per cent paternity) while the survivor's pension was paid to 708 beneficiaries (87.5 per cent men and 12.5 per cent women).

139.As an important share of women participating in the labour force are in vulnerable employment with no formal work arrangements, it is unlikely that they have access to this scheme, representing a clear limitation.

140.The development of a draft law on domestic workers by SEPFOPE in collaboration with women’s organizations and unions or the rural public work programs represent progresses towards access to formal work arrangements for these specific categories of vulnerable workers which include an important share of women.

Monitoring of working conditions of women

141.The General Inspectorate of Labour (IGT) oversees the monitoring the working conditions of workers through inspection visits. In the 2016-2019 period, visits were conducted in 5,725 companies, for a total of 74,726 workers covered (about 22 per cent women).,

Labour related complaints processed by the General Inspectorate of Labour

142.After an active socialization campaign of the law in the 2012-2015 period (following the adoption of the Labour Code), efforts were maintained in the 2016–2019 period (reaching more than 1,500 participants - about 40 per cent women).

143.In the 2016-2019 period (until Oct.), IGT received 427 complaints, for a total of 721 cases treated which required the direct intervention through inspection visit (137 complaints (32 per cent) filed by women). Overall, most cases are related to work contract, minimum salary, and overtime work and are directly settled through the intervention of the inspectors. A small proportion (9 per cent in the 2012–2017 period) were redirected to the directorate of labour relations for mediation/conciliation, and a limited number of cases were cancelled by the worker after finding agreement with the employer.

144.In terms of curative measures and sanctions, the IGT has a 3 options range. A notification to the company can be issued prior to a possible visit where necessary (Termus Notifikasaun). In case of confirmed irregularity observed by the IGT, a warning can be delivered to the company to fix the issue (Auto Adverténsia). Finally, in case of significant issue observed, the inspectorate imposes a fine (Auto Notísia). The trend in terms of fines imposed to companies has been drastically raising every year in the reporting period.,

Gender pay gap

145.According to the 2016 Mini Labour Force Survey, monthly median wages for male reached 235.9 USD per month and 184.0 USD for women. As such, the gender pay gap is 22 per cent.

146.Factors may include the over-representation of women in typically lower paying industries and occupations, such as hospitality and administration, as well as the high rate of women working part-time (29 per cent of employed women compared to 13 per cent of men in 2013).

Article 12: Access to Health


147.The legal framework related to abortion has not been revised in the reporting period.

Trends in sexual and reproductive health indicators

148.Significant progress on SRH has occurred in the reporting period, particularly in relation to the reduction of maternal and infant mortality rates. Between the 2010 and 2016 Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS) the maternal mortality ratio (MMR) has reduced from 557/100,000 to 195/100,000 live births, the pregnancy-related mortality rate (PRMR) reduced from 557/100,000 to 218/100,000 live births, infant mortality rate (IMR) has reduced from 45/1,000 to 30/1,000 child births, and children under-5 mortality rate reduced from 64/1,000 to 41/1,000 births.

149.Moreover, 49 per cent of births took place in a health facility (more than double than the 2009-10 proportion), the proportion of births attended by skilled health personnel increased from 30 per cent to 57 per cent, and the rate of women making four or more antenatal care visits increased from 55 per cent to 77 per cent.

150.Important to note that Census trend line for both 2010 and 2015 Census are consistently higher than the 2009-10 and 2016 DHSs’ data. However, both DHSs and Census show a clear declining trend in child and maternal mortality.

Access to basic health care

151.In 2017 the health infrastructure included 6 hospitals, 71 health centres, 43 maternity clinics, 318 health posts and 469 SISca (Integrated Community Health Services) representing a 66 per cent increase compared with 2010. Nonetheless, ‘Distance to health facility’ and ‘Having to take transport’ remains cited by 46 per cent and 44.4 per cent of women as a significant challenge to accessing health care (58 per cent and 56 per cent respectively for women living in rural areas).

152.In terms of health practitioners, there were 2,007 in the country as of 2017, an improvement of about 15 per cent compared with 2010 supported by the Government of Cuba and the creation of a School of Nursing and Midwifery at UNTL. The physician density is thus 0.63 per 1,000 inhabitants, exceeding the WHO minimum standards, while the non-doctor service delivery staff density reaches 1.12 per 1,000 inhabitant which remains below the minimum standards (with wide variations between municipalities).

153.Gender related factors are also contributing to inequity in accessing health care. For example, a common barrier cited by women was the inability to obtain permission from their partner to go for treatment. Variations are also observed based on women’s educational level or their socio-economic group.

154.The “National Family Health Program” implemented by MoH since July 2015, supported by development partners, intends to bring a “Comprehensive Service Package of Primary Health Care” to the household, providing home visits, clinical consultation, treatment and referrals by health professionals. In May 2017, medical teams had visited 94 per cent of households and registered data of 84 per cent of the population at individual level.

Sexual and reproductive health services

155.Despite improvements in basic health care, adequate reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health (RMNCH) services remain an issue. While the number of Comprehensive EmONC (Emergency Obstetric and Newborn Care) facilities already met the UN standard in 2015, 7 municipalities had no EmONC facility and at least one third of all CHCs were more than two hours distance from any EmONC facility. Overall, there were 3.4 EmONC and 2.6 Comprehensive EmONC functional facilities per 500,000 of population. The number of Basic EmONC facilities raised from 2 in 2015 to 11 in 2019.

156.Standards and treatment pathways for care during birth and immediate postpartum period were updated in 2016 and disseminated through ToTs generally targeting Community Health Centres (CHC) staff. Since 2018, 5 batches of training were conducted for a total of 50 midwives and 10 doctors. Additional efforts contributed to strengthen the capacity of training institutions by appointing a full time EmONC training coordinator and designated staff from the National Institute of Health (INS) as training focal point. Capacity of the Clinical Training Site (HNGV) for improved skilled care on EmONC, including on the management of the complication cases, was enhanced resulting in minimum referral to hospitals.

157.Furthermore, after encouraging results of the 2013 ‘Liga Inan’ pilot project in 1 municipality, its coverage was expanded to all municipalities with the financial support of the Australian Government. This innovative programme facilitates communication between pregnant mothers and health providers by mobile phone, increasing access to SRH services and emergency health care, and improving awareness-raising and counselling services, particularly in rural and remote areas. 16,452 women are currently enrolled and a total 53,112 women benefited from this service since 2013. By July 2016, significant improvements were observed in facility delivery rate and post-partum care for women enrolled in the programme.,

Maternal death review

158.A road map was established in 2014 by the MoH for the development and implementation of a Maternal Death Surveillance Response (MDSR) System. In 2015, the Maternal Death Review process was established in all hospitals and expanded beyond since 2017. In 2016, verbal autopsy reporting, including for intrapartum and immediate postpartum, was introduced through SOPs. Health workers from the 6 hospitals were trained accordingly on the new MDSR system as well as health workers at community level, local authorities, community leaders, NGOs on the SOPs.

Family Planning and fertility

159.Despite increased use of modern contraceptive methods among married women between 2010 and 2016 (from 21 per cent to 24 per cent) – with comparable rates between rural and urban areas (25 per cent vs 23 per cent respectively) – Family Planning (FP) is still not a common practice and the trend is moderate.

160.Among currently married women, the unmet need for contraception has decreased from 32 per cent in 2009-10 to 25 per cent in 2016, while the met need has slightly increased from 22 per cent to 26 per cent. However, the total demand for FP among married women remains relatively limited and decreased slightly from 54 per cent in 2009-10 to 51 per cent in 2016 (correspondingly, 49 per cent of married women considering having no need for FP).

161.The 2016 DHS data on women’s needs and demand for FP includes data on all women, including sexually active unmarried women. When considering all women, the total demand for FP drops to 32 per cent (which includes about 16 per cent women with met needs and about 16 per cent with unmet needs). When considering solely sexually active unmarried women the total demand escalates to 81 per cent, out of which more than 90 per cent have unmet needs.

162.Regarding fertility, despite a decrease from an average of 5.7 children in 2009-10 to 4.2 children in 2016, the Total Fertility Rate (TFR) remains among the highest rates in the region.

163.While physical barriers related to accessing medication and contraceptives remain significant, especially in remote areas, other barriers such as cultural constraints limit access to FP modern methods. Although contraceptives are provided for free in public health facilities, these services are mostly reserved to women who already have children. People without children or unmarried people might not be offered FP services due to moral and religious considerations.

Underage pregnancies

164.In 2016, 7 per cent of teenagers aged 15-19 have begun childbearing, 5 per cent have given birth and an additional 2 per cent are pregnant with their first child (1 per cent of teens had sexual intercourse before age 15). Among women aged 20–49, 9.3 per cent gave birth by the age of 18., The findings of the teenage pregnancy research show that young women have little agency in the decision to engage in sexual relationships. The relatively high rate of teenage pregnancies, and issues such as maternal mortality due to unsafe abortion, baby abandonment or infanticide tend to confirm these findings.

165.As knowledge on reproductive health is particularly low among women, the SRH and rights education programmes are expected to contribute to a reduction in the occurrence of these issues. However, the sensitivity on this subject remain a barrier in their implementation.,


166.The prevalence of stunting has declined from 58 per cent to 46 per cent between 2010 and 2016. The prevalence of underweight children has also declined, from 45 per cent to 40 per cent. However, the prevalence of undernourished children has increased from 19 per cent to 24 per cent. Prevalence of stunting, undernourishment, and underweight are slightly lower in girls (43 per cent, 22 per cent, and 38 per cent, respectively) than boys (48 per cent, 26 per cent, 43 per cent, respectively). The rates are generally higher in rural areas.

167.The National Nutrition Strategy 2014-2019 developed and led by MoH has a focus on pregnant women and children under two-years to reduce the burden of malnutrition. It includes a Costed Operational Plan to enable tracking of expenditure on nutrition by sector.

168.The Nutrition Collective Impact Pilot (2015-2019), known as 'Hamutuk', is contributing to improve the nutrition situation by coordinating more than 20 Government institutions and NGOs from multiple sectors to reduce the prevalence of stunting in children under two-years of age. Under this programme, women's groups are recognised for outstanding actions to promote and improve nutrition in their communities.

169.The MEJD and Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MAF) are planning to significantly reform agricultural secondary schools and develop a nutrition-sensitive curriculum. This aims to build the capacity of rural youth and encourage women to engage in small livestock production for self-consumption and income generation to help increase the consumption of animal food sources.

170.Mother Support Groups (MSG) were established in partnership between the MoH, the European Union and UNICEF. These aim to empower mothers and families by supporting them to promote key home practices that focus on nutrition to improve maternal and child health. The groups promote women’s important roles in their community as well as encouraging men to participate to improve mothers’ and children’s health.

Article 13: Economic and Social Rights

Efforts toward a universal social security system

171.The General Social Security Scheme adopted in 2016, replaced the transitional scheme and complements the 25 already existing transitional and non‑contributory social protection programs. This is the first social scheme that aims to cover all workers and their families. The scheme provides generous benefits compared to international standards. However, its coverage is mainly benefiting to those in formal employment (which encompasses a minority of women).

172.People with disabilities, including women, are eligible for the Allowance for the support of the Elderly and Invalid (SAII) established in 2008, which is currently the most comprehensive social protection program and provides a monthly cash benefit of 30 USD per month. While 93 per cent of the total population aged 60 or older was benefiting from this scheme in 2017 (54 per cent women / 46 per cent men), about 20 per cent of the total disabled population is benefiting from it (48 per cent women and 52 per cent men) due to limited awareness and operational issues.

173.In 2016, the creation of the National Institute for Social Security was established to centralize the implementation of all social security schemes. In addition, MSSI initiated a large participatory dialogue from 2016 to 2018 to develop the first National Social Protection Strategy (2019-2030). As most of the social protection programs were developed in isolation without a broad strategic vision, the strategy aimed to achieve a more efficient and integrated social protection system. Officially adopted in November 2018, the strategy sets the goals and actions related to social protection. In this framework, a Bilateral Cooperation Program was signed with the Government of Portugal from 2019 to 2022, which includes the establishment of a Social Security Reserve Fund to ensure the sustainability of the system.

Bolsa da mãe programme

174.In 2015, about 16 per cent of households were headed by females (around 32,000 households), a fairly stable rate since the 2010 census. To cover this vulnerable population, the ‘bolsa da mãe’programme was expanded, both in terms of beneficiaries and benefit amount, receiving an important increase in investment, covering from 15,000 households in 2011 (overall budget: 2.5 million USD) to 61,705 households (29 per cent of total households) in 2017 and provided benefits to more than 183,000 children (32 per cent of total children) for a budget close to 9 million USD. The benefits reach 5 USD per month per child, up to a maximum of 3 children per households.

175.Significant poverty reduction for female-headed households was observed, which has occurred at a faster pace than for male-headed households. However, the bolsa da mãe’s relatively low benefit level potentially limits the programme’s impact on poverty reduction in the poorest households.

Strategy on women’s economic empowerment and financial inclusion

176.Collaboration among the Government toward women economic empowerment has been strengthened under the new phase of the Maubisse Declaration on Rural Women (2018–2023), which commits the Government to improve rural women’s lives through several measures such as access to credit or trainings.

177.In this framework, in 2019, the President announced 1.5 million USD funding for the new Rotative Cash Transfer programme to support rural women’s groups to develop small businesses. The programme provides $10,000 USD to 11–12 women’s groups per municipalities which are trained in business development to build sustainable businesses.

178.Although the Maubisse Declaration does not include indicators yet, the GRB system coordinated by UPMA requires Line Ministries to monitor and report on activities implemented under the Declaration. However, more socialization is still needed to encourage Government to invest funding into this initiative.

179.As an important aspect of economic empowerment, the Central Bank of Timor-Leste (BCTL) developed and adopted the National Strategy on Financial Inclusion 2017-2022. The strategy attaches a great importance on women’s access to quality and affordable financial service by promoting and including women-focused action plans.,

Financial inclusion of women

180.In 2018, while 65 per cent of the adult population had some access to any financial service (mainly banking and Other Deposit Taking Institutions - ODTIs) with variation across municipalities, the gender breakdown of clients in the financial sector shows that ODTIs’ clients are mostly women (88 per cent female clients), while clients of other financial services providers are more balanced between women and men (53 per cent female clients for banks and 49 per cent female clients for Credit Unions).

Women with Disabilities

Legal and policy framework

181.After the adoption of the National Policy in 2012 and a related 2014-2018 NAP on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (PwD) covering 10 sectors, MSSI is now conducting the consultation process to develop the 2nd phase of the NAP (2020–2024).

182.MSSI is working with the Association of Persons with Disabilities (ADTL) toward the development of a specific law and a National Disability Council for implementing and monitoring the NAP. Beside the legal and institutional frameworks, MSSI is also working toward the ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). However, this request could not yet be considered by the Council of Ministers to date.

Awareness-raising campaigns and capacity building programmes

183.The International Day of PwD is celebrated annually in all municipalities, increasing awareness and visibility of PwD to the general public. A broad National Seminar on disability issues is also held annually by the MSSI, contributing to awareness raising among policy makers.

184.At community level, awareness-raising activities are conducted on a regular basis by the National Centre for Rehabilitation (CNR) through its SRIKAR programme. Civil Society, supported by MSSI and the PHD program, is also very active on this matter.

185.The CNR is also providing continuing capacity building of its employees, especially in rehabilitation healthcare area. A training needs analysis was undertaken by RHTO, resulting in capacity building programmes for Organizations of Persons with Disabilities (DPOs) staff. Finally, collaboration between the PNDS programme and RHTO led to disability inclusion training for PNDS facilitators to improve disability inclusive development in rural areas.

Access to inclusive education for women and girls with disabilities

186.Only 33 per cent of disabled young females aged 5–24 years are in school, while 55 per cent never attended school (with similar rates for young men). Among those who attended school, the drop-out rates are also much higher among children with disabilities. As a result, only 15.3 per cent PwD are literate with a significant gap between gender (10.5 per cent for women / 20.5 per cent for men).

187.In response, the 2017 Inclusive Education Policy and the 2016 National Youth Policy identify young PwD as a priority target group for educational support.

188.Orientation training and mentoring for key education stakeholders was delivered under the PHD program to improve teaching approaches for PwD. A total of 87 education service providers (about 30 per cent female) were trained. Mentoring and capacity building on disability responsive learning methods for school leaders, teachers and mentors were implemented in 228 schools as of June 2017, potentially impacting 15,000 students.

189.Finally, the Dili CLC provides tailored education to students with visual and hearing impairments.

Access to health for women with disabilities

190.The CNR, established in Dili, is the largest service provider dedicated for PwDs. Its SRIKAR outreach programme is doing important work of identification of PwDs in rural areas. By 2017, 30 per cent of the identified PwDs were referred to the CNR when necessary. The programme also includes assistance through the provision of wheelchairs (117 beneficiaries – 43 per cent women), orthopaedic prothesis (168 beneficiaries – 30 per cent women), etc. A mapping of existing services and referral pathways for PwD in all municipalities was conducted in 2017.

191.The evaluation of PNDS infrastructure projects,, especially roads and bridges projects, revealed an improved access to health services for 41 per cent of the PwD beneficiaries interviewed. Furthermore, water supply related projects also revealed encouraging results in terms of improved health for PwD. Nonetheless, general access for PwD to most infrastructures and transport, especially in rural areas remains a challenge.

Measures to address violence against women with disabilities

192.No specific data on violence against women with disabilities is available. However, the new NAP GBV (2017-2021) recognizes the vulnerability of women with disabilities toward violence. While the capacity to respond to their specific needs is limited, the CNR has recently been included in the GBV referral network to improve referral of women with disabilities victims of violence.

193.The 2018–2020 UN joint project ‘Empower for Change’ programme was developed to support the Government and key national institutions such as the CNR or the judiciary, CSOs and DPOs towards reducing harmful attitudes that perpetuate tolerance of discrimination against PwD, especially women and girls, and strengthening capacities of service providers. In this framework, 2 DPOs are developing a toolkit on GBV against PwD, supported by a technical committee including representatives from Government, the GBV Referral network members and DPOs.

194.Despite positive steps at policy level, effective implementation remains a challenge with strong barriers for PwDs, especially women, and a lack of funding and understanding of disability issues limiting the reach of support services, especially in rural areas. As such, the participation in all areas of life for PwDs is still significantly limited.

Article 14: Rural Women

195.As the official national registration process (SNC) is ongoing at the time of writing, precise data relating to land ownership for women is not yet available. Nonetheless, estimations generally report that men individually own more land than women.

196.The recently passed Land Law determines that land ownership should guarantee equal land rights between men and women and forbid any form of discrimination in land ownership, access, management, administration, enjoyment, transfer or disposition of land ownership (Law N° 13/2017 – Art. 4). Nonetheless, gender disparities in land access are still prevalent and reflect sociocultural norms and practices.

Adoption of the land laws and formal equality in access to land between women and men

197.The Special Regime for the Definition of Ownership of Immovable Property (or ‘land and property law’) and the law on Expropriation for Public Utility (or ‘Expropriation Law’) were passed in 2017 respectively as the Laws N°13/2017 and N° 8/2017. The Real Estate Financial Fund has been included under the Expropriation Law (art. 66). A Decree-Law is further expected for its regulation.

198.The land law also provides for the protection of vulnerable groups (Art.5). Attention has been taken to align these laws with the international Human Rights standards. As such, both laws, directly refer to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the CEDAW Convention.

199.While the land law encourages for declaration of joint ownership for couples (art. 32.7), women face various barriers in the registration process due, inter alia, to their literacy level (generally lower than men) and a lack of information on the process, challenging their formal rights to land ownership. The issue is exacerbated for vulnerable women such as young mothers, especially those who have been abandoned or have left their partner, and elderly widows.

Legal framework on eviction and compensations

200.Besides promoting the principles of legality, justice, equality, proportionality, impartiality and good faith in the procedure of expropriation (art. 8), the Expropriation Law also provides that any expropriation procedure must consider the special needs of vulnerable groups. This includes taking reasonable steps to ensure that information, consultation and participation by such groups is abided by to promote the right to equality and non-discrimination (art. 10).

201.The law requires that the standard of living of parties affected by the expropriation should be at least equal to their previous standard of living (art.8.4) and expropriation must follow the principle of fair compensation on financial costs resulting from the expropriation as well as the principle of compensation for other non-equity values (art.57). Priority is given to compensation through the delivery of alternative real estate (or land reallocation) to prevent the loss of livelihoods.

202.Finally, individuals are given the possibility of resorting to arbitration (art. 43) when there is disagreement regarding the amount of compensation, and direct appeal to the court when they consider that the concept of public utility is not fulfilled (art.54/55).

Protection of the interests, consultation and compensation of local communities and rural

203.The Decree-Law N° 5/2011 recognizes the specific relation between the environment and the Timorese people requiring an Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA) and an Environmental Management Plans (EMP) for all infrastructure projects. These initiatives must consider and address the social and economic impacts on affected communities, which includes undertaking a consultation process.

204.In the case of the Tasi Mane Project, EIAs and EMPs were conducted and developed in 2012 involving consultations which largely aimed at informing the community about the plan. An extended land title registration and clearance was conducted in close coordination with the National Directorate of Land & Properties and Cadastral Services. Communities were offered two options for financial compensation in addition to resettlement. As of 31st December 2018, a total of 342 hectares of land were already compensated out of the 1,113 hectares required for the construction of the Suai Supply base project. Training and skills development programmes were also planned for local communities to maximize participation of local labour.

205.However, no specific incentive nor socio-economic impact study of the overall project or on the compensation process for women has been undertaken to date. As such, it is unclear whether this community consultation process has benefited rural women.

Rural women access to opportunities, basic services and infrastructure

206.At political level, the Government made an important commitment in favour of rural women through the 2015 Maubisse Declaration. This Declaration was approved by the former Prime Minister alongside nine State institutions, who agreed to take action toward improving rural women’s lives. It comprises a set of measures to guide Government’s action to ensure that the principles of inclusion, tolerance and gender equality are adhered to and to strengthen the capacity and socio-economic power of rural women and PwDs in rural areas.

207.The commitment was renewed in October 2018 for a 5 years’ timeframe (2018–2023), now involving 16 institutions, including the BNCTL. The monitoring process was strengthened through its inclusion in the GRB mechanism.

208.At the operational level, the PNDS programme is contributing to facilitate women’s access to services, infrastructure and opportunities. The PNDS process seeks to involve the whole community in the planning, decision-making, implementation, operations and maintenance of local infrastructure. A priority of the project is to build infrastructure needed by the whole community (including women, the elderly and PwDs). By 2018, women represented 40 per cent of the participants in the PNDS socialization processes, up to 45.5 per cent of Community Management Teams selecting the priority projects; 33.5 per cent of PNDS staff at sub-national level after receiving training; and 29 per cent of workers on construction projects.

209.In terms of infrastructure, by 2018, 26 per cent of the projects built under PNDS came from women priorities and it is estimated that women represent 52 per cent of the beneficiaries of the overall 1,369 built infrastructure projects, benefiting a total exceeding 220,000 households. The projects relate to basic services in various sectors such as Water & Sanitation; Road, Bridge and Flood Control; Education, Culture & Sports; Health; Agriculture & Food Security.

Article 15: Equality before the Law

210.(No significant update in the reporting period).

Article 16: Marriage and the Family

Civil registration and registration of marriage in its various forms

211.The reform of the civil registration and the overall legal framework on marriage and family laws was considered as a priority in the framework of the legislative reform process.

212.In this framework, it is under discussion to incorporate the rules of marriage and family into an autonomous law to improve knowledge of the law and its application, and to promote the “monogamous character, consensual rules, equality and the rights and duties of the law”.

213.Most specifically on civil registration of marriage, the draft Civil Registration Code provides that local delegations of the National Directorate of Civil Registration and Notary are responsible for the transcription/recording in the civil registry of catholic and traditional marriages (art. 12.3.d.) to create the necessary conditions for the effective celebration of marriage according to civil law. Although the draft Civil Registration Code is yet to be passed due to extended consultations and analysis, the final draft is now ready for presentation before the Council of Ministers.

Minimum age of marriage

214.The amendment of the Civil Code for a raise of the minimum age of marriage is under discussion.


215.The divorce system has not been amended in the reporting period. However, beside the litigious divorce system, which involves a “culpable violation of conjugal obligations”, the Civil Code prioritizes ‘divorce by mutual consent’ which is a no fault-based divorce system (art. 1652).

Internuptial period

216.No amendment was processed related to the art. 1494 of the Civil Code on the internuptial period during which a man or a woman is not allowed to marry again. As such, the internuptial period remains at 180 days for men and 300 days for women, unless the woman can provide a judicial declaration that she is not pregnant.

Legislation related to de facto unions

217.De facto union has not been legally recognized to date.

Legal system for practical administration of land

218.Following the national registration process and the land law provisions (art. 32.7), married couples are encouraged to make a joint land title by making a statement and taking a photo together on their land plots.

219.In the process of declaration of ownership, “agreements resulting from negotiation or mediation in which the parties have agreed on the definitive transfer of the property rights over immovable property shall be valid for the purposes of the declaration of title” (art. 32.5).

220.In case of remaining conflict, the Land Law (art. 39.2) suggests that it will be “settled by administrative decision” conducted by the Land and Property Commission which will start operating in 2020. The Decree-Law establishing the Commission provides that arbitration processes must ensure not to violate women’s rights.