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The Oil Resources Of Timor-Leste: Curse Or Blessing?

Author

Listed:
  • Lundahl, Mats

    () (Stockholm School of Economics)

  • Sjöholm, Fredrik

    () (European Institute of Japanese Studies)

Abstract

Timor-Leste is among the youngest nations in the world. It started its independence under difficult circumstances: poverty is widespread, education is poor, the industrial sector is non-existent, and political turbulence is on the rise. On the positive side, future oil revenues are predicted to be substantial, which could potentially be of large help in Timor-Leste’s strive for development. This paper examines critically the possibility for Timor-Leste to use oil revenues to achieve economic development. It describes how difficult it is to estimate the future revenues because of volatile prices, territorial disputes, and insufficient seismological mapping. It continues with a discussion of the “resource curse”: the difficulty of combining natural resources with economic development. Moreover, the particular challenges for Timor Leste’s development are dealt with at some length, as are possible ways to avoid the resource curse.

Suggested Citation

  • Lundahl, Mats & Sjöholm, Fredrik, 2006. "The Oil Resources Of Timor-Leste: Curse Or Blessing?," EIJS Working Paper Series 229, Stockholm School of Economics, The European Institute of Japanese Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:eijswp:0229
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. McKeown, Timothy J., 1999. "Case Studies and the Statistical Worldview: Review of King, Keohane, and Verba's Designing Social Inquiry: Scientific Inference in Qualitative Research," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 53(01), pages 161-190, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

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    Keywords

    Timor-Leste; Oil; Resource Curse; Economic Development;

    JEL classification:

    • L71 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Primary Products and Construction - - - Mining, Extraction, and Refining: Hydrocarbon Fuels
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products
    • O53 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Asia including Middle East

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