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MEDIA
RELEASE
Dili, 2 February, 2017

Timor-Leste ranked first in South East Asia in 2016 Democracy Index
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The Democracy Index 2016, published by the Economist Intelligence Unit on the 25 of January, has ranked
Timor-Leste as the top country in South East Asia based on a consideration of electoral process and
pluralism, the functioning of the Government, political participation, political culture and civil liberties. The
index attempts to provide “ a snapshot of the state of democracy worldwide for 165 independent states and
two territories”.
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In the 2016 Index Timor-Leste was ranked 1 in South East Asia, 5 in Asia and 43 of all states assessed.
The country score for the last four years has remained steady at 7.24 out of 10 in an environment where
almost half of the countries covered have registered a decline in their scores between 2006 and 2016.
Timor-Leste scores highly in regards to our electoral process and pluralism, which reflects our free and fair
elections, universal suffrage, efforts to ensure the freedoms of voters and arrangements for an orderly
transfer of administrations.
Government Spokesperson, Minister of State Agio Pereira, noted “international measuring tools, such as the
Democracy Index, are constantly faced with the challenge of ensuring accuracy. However, what we do see
clearly reflected in the index and in other international measures is that our freedoms set out in the
Constitution, particularly in regard to our electoral process and pluralism, are being firmly upheld. As we
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approach the Presidential election on the 20 of March and the Parliamentary elections later in the year, we
again embrace and affirm these rights, mindful that in many parts of the world citizens are not afforded such
rights and responsibilities.”ENDS

Agio Pereira
+670 77045002
agio.pereira@cdm.gov.tl
govtlmedia@gmail.com

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