MIL-OSI Asia-Pac: Convention between the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste and the Portuguese Republic on Social Security

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Source: Government of Timor-Leste

MIL OSI Translation. Melanesia: Timor-Leste Portuguese to English –

Presidency of the Council of Ministers

VIII Constitutional Government

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Dili, June 29, 2022

Press release

Convention between the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste and the Portuguese Republic on Social Security

In view of the high mobility that currently takes place in the labor market, at an international level, with many workers residing and exercising professional activity in foreign countries, it is essential to negotiate agreements between States, aimed at ensuring the rights to decent work, with social protection, regardless of the country where the worker is located.

Timor-Leste currently has a large number of nationals living and working abroad, with remittances from emigrants representing an important income for the budget of many Timorese families. However, and because social security systems differ from country to country and, in the case of contributory systems, a guarantee period is required to access social benefits, many workers are not entitled to these benefits, even having contributed for some time. either in the foreign country, or possibly also in Timor-Leste.

Thus, due to the number of citizens involved and in view of the excellent historical relations between the two countries, the governments of Timor-Leste and Portugal decided to conclude a Convention on Social Security, whose signature took place today, on June 29, 2022, by the Madam Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Social Solidarity and Inclusion of Timor-Leste and by the Secretary of State for Social Security of Portugal, on behalf of the respective governments, with full powers granted to do so.

The aforementioned Convention covers all workers and nationals of both countries, includes contributory and non-contributory social security systems, and has two fundamental objectives: on the one hand, the aggregation of the contributory periods completed in the two countries, allowing to “add” the working time and social security deductions in both countries, for the purpose of complying with the guarantee deadlines for access to social benefits under contributory schemes; on the other hand, to ensure equal treatment between the citizens of the two countries, allowing the citizens of one country residing in the other country to benefit from the same rights and be subject to the same obligations as the nationals of that country of residence.

The Convention already covers all the benefits of the social security system approved in Timor-Leste, of the contributory and non-contributory systems, and the equivalent benefits of the social security system of Portugal. In other words, it includes old-age, disability and survivors’ pensions and parental allowances under the contributory scheme, as well as social old-age and disability pensions (SAII) under the non-contributory scheme. It is also expected that new benefits, which aim to protect other situations, such as illness or unemployment, will be integrated when they are approved in Timor-Leste.

Thus, with this Convention, and when it is ratified, Timorese citizens living in Portugal will be entitled to non-contributory benefits from the Portuguese social security system, while they are resident in that country, under exactly the same conditions as a Portuguese citizen. On the other hand, Timorese workers carrying out professional activities in Portugal, and making social security discounts in that country, will see that working time and discounts counted in their contributory career, for the purpose of complying with the period necessary to be entitled to contributions under the contributory scheme.

The Convention on Social Security signed today between Timor-Leste and Portugal represents, therefore, an important step, insofar as it protects the citizens and workers of both countries, and allows for the mobility of work. THE END

 

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and/or sentence structure not be perfect.

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