DILI, 24 september 2021 (TATOLI) – The Minister of Health, Odete Maria Freitas Belo, and the Ambassador of the European Union to Timor-Leste, Andrew Jacobs, yesterday, co-chaired a Political Dialogue on Nutrition Strategy.

The Nutrition Policy Dialogue brought together the Government, Parliament, Ministry of Health, UNICEF, the European Union, civil society, development partners, and other relevant stakeholders.

In her intervention, Minister of Health, Odete Maria Freitas Belo informed that: “Nutrition is important and is particularly crucial for children to grow up healthy. It is a child’s right to grow up healthy and strong. Well-nourished children grow up to become healthy adults, who will contribute to the country’s socio-economic development.”

Nutrition has long been the center of EU support for Timor-Leste. Through the “Partnership for the Improvement of Nutrition in Timor-Leste”, the EU had financially and technically supported the Ministry of Health in the implementation of the National Nutrition Strategy, intending to strengthen Primary Health Care services and Nutrition for the people.

The EU has committed to supporting Timor-Leste, through UNICEF with €4.8 million (US$5.6 million) to provide technical support to the Ministry of Health and other relevant ministries to improve the nutrition services, focusing on prevention and management of malnutrition and common diseases; food diversification and behavior change; and breastfeeding practices.

European Union Ambassador to Timor-Leste, Andrew Jacobs said: “The Political Dialogue provides the opportunity for an open discussion on the status, direction, and challenges of the reforms of Nutrition and Public Financial Management on effective coordination between different parties, and on progress in implementing the support provided by the EU and others, and its alignment with the Government’s strategy and policy.

The discussions covered the current Nutrition Policy (Food and Nutrition Survey 2020), Strategic Plan for Nutrition (2021-2025) in the context of Consolidating the National Action Plan for Nutrition and Food Security in Timor-Leste.

 

Journalist: Filomeno Martins 

Editor: Nelia Borges Rosario

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