2015 Timor-Leste Update: Terms of Inclusion: Timor-Leste in the Region

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Looking beyond Timor-Leste’s borders, the terms of Timor-Leste’s inclusion in its immediate geographic region remain a work in progress. Membership of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) remains a high, although as yet unrealised, national priority. Relations with China are warm and growing. Political, economic and social relations with Timor-Leste’s large neighbour and former administering power Indonesia are close and interdependent. Looking eastwards, relations with Timor’s other large neighbour, Australia are cordial if not completely untroubled while links with Pacific Island countries have been sporadic. What are the key drivers of Timor Leste’s approach to its immediate region? How is policy decided in this area? Will the appointment of a new Prime Minister prompt any changes of approach?

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