Thursday, 29 October 2009

Providing the US Military a Chance to Buy Local

Local vendors organized by PDT sell their handicrafts to visiting US troops.

Peace Dividend Trust’s (PDT) micro-matchmaking (M3) Manatuto district representatives Benigno Umberto Carvalho and Fransisco Remedios Quintao understood that with just over a week in town, members of the US armed forces had limited time to spend locally. And so, within a few hours of arriving on the shores of Timor-Leste, the military members camped in Manatuto were met by the M3 team who introduced PDT’s micro-matchmaking service. The troops were very receptive and quickly voiced their interest in purchasing locally produced Timorese handicrafts. On October 17th, less than a week later, Mr. Carvalho and Mr. Quintao organized a group of eight suppliers who personally traveled to the US encampment and came away with over $100 in immediate revenue. With around half of Timor-Leste's population living below the poverty line of USD 0.88 per day, transactions such as these can substatially improve a family's standard of living.

PDT’s micro-matchmaking team now works in 9 of the 13 districts (all except Aileu, Dili, Ermera and Liquica), facilitating the spending of international dollars in Timor-Leste’s rural areas where a little goes a long way. Since its establishment in 2007, the team has assisted with over 7,000 transactions, directing $4.5 million into the local economy.

Thursday, 22 October 2009

PDT Pioneers SMS application in Post Conflict Timor

Read the full story here.

Friday, 9 October 2009

Introducing Dili's Newest Form of Transit Service - FlyBus, a Business on the Move.

Running a small guesthouse in Taibessi, Dili, Mr. Carlos Alberto Soares and Mrs. Maria João Soares often found their patrons requesting a reliable method of transportation to the airport in Dili. A few personal drives to the airport later, the Soares couple realized an unfilled demand in the travel sector: an airport shuttle that you can count on. Thus, the couple decided to create the enterprise FlyBus, the “reliable way to get to the airport!”

Owned by Mr. Soares and managed entirely by his wife Maria, Flybus has a fleet consisting of one bus and a driver but is expected to grow as demand increases. For now, it provides Timor-Leste with a unique service that has been generating much attention. In addition to shuttling travelers back and forth, to and from the airport, FlyBus runs day tours throughout all of Dili. For more information about the company or to make a reservation, call +670.750.8585, or send an email to You can also follow FlyBus of Peace Dividend Trust’s online database service,

Mr. Carlos Alberto Soares and Mrs. Maria João Soares, founders of FlyBus.

Thursday, 8 October 2009

An Alternative Type of Agriculture in Timor-Leste

Recently constructed greenhouses in Lequitura, Aileu

The USAID operated program "Private Sector Development" is developing a different sort of agriculture in Timor-Leste. The project has allowed Timorese entrepreneurs to submit applications for a tender in the field of agribusiness, which provides an opportunity to construct and run greenhouses specified to raise high grossing crops. One important goal of the project is to shift the Timorese agricultural sector away from a purely subsistence based economy and into a more lucrative field.

Peace Dividend Trust’s Tender Distribution Service (TDS) also has had a part in the program’s operations by releasing information on the Tenders Iha Timor-Leste (Tenders in Timor-Leste) blog website, advertising USAID's request for the materials needed for the construction of the greenhouses. TDS is one of PDT's core services in Timor-Leste, in addition to Business Verification, Matchmaking and Micromatchmaking. To date this year, PDT has advertised over 475 tenders available to the local community, facilitating transactions that ensures dollars are spent locally.

Thursday, 1 October 2009

Programs to Build Timor-Leste

AusAID is currently promoting three programs geared towards stimulating private sector growth in Timor-Leste. Two of these, East Timor Community Assistance Scheme (ETCAS) and The Human Rights Small Grants Scheme, are offering Timorese organizations a valuable opportunity to procure funds to be invested locally. The third program, the Australian Development Scholarship (ADS), is providing Timorese nationals a chance to continue either their undergraduate or postgraduate study in Australia, cultivating appropriate skills for working in a developing nation.

For more information on these opportunities, visit any of PDT’s offices in Dili, Baucau, Covalima or Viqueque, or check out