Dili (Agenzia Fides) - The Catholic Church in East Timor is calling on the population to take part in the forthcoming general census, scheduled for autumn 2022, which will officially start next August 15th. The Office of Statistics team, led by Director Elias dos Santos Ferreira, in his capacity as Chairman of the Technical Commission for the 2022 Census, recently met with the Archbishop of Dili and Cardinal-Elect, Virgilio Do Carmo da Silva. Both agreed on the usefulness of the initiative and the need for all Timorese citizens to participate. In a message addressed to the population, the archbishop said: "The data from individuals and households that will be collected and processed at the national level will help the government to formulate appropriate policies and programs", and urged citizens to take action to participate.
The 2022 Census, which will take place from 4 September to 5 October across the country, and it will be the fourth of its kind in East Timor after the 2004, 2010 and 2015 censuses. According to legislation, the census takes place every five years.
The purpose of the general census is to count and characterize the resident population of East Timor, as well as to record the existing dwellings and their habitability. This is done through comprehensive collection of data and information and statistical processing of the collected data.
The government of East Timor committed US$3.1 million for the census and requested additional funding from international UN organizations such as UN Women, the World Food Program and the United Nations Population Fund. According to the census conducted in East Timor in July 2015, the total population was 1,167,242 inhabitants, an increase of 9.46 percent since 2010, while the Timorese population is currently estimated at around 1.3 million.
East Timor, Asia's youngest democracy, covers the eastern half of the island of Timor, while the western half belongs to Indonesia. The country has an area of 15,000 square kilometers and 97% of the population are Catholics. May 20th this year marked the 20th anniversary of East Timor's independence from Indonesia, which had occupied the country for 24 years. (SD/PA) (Agenzia Fides, 11/8/2022)