In 1998 the University’s Centre for
Asia-Pacific Studies began to co-host seminars on development issues in East Timor such as health, sustainable development, education and agriculture with the Australia-East Timor Association. At one of these seminars in December 1998, Jose Ramos Horta, International representative of the
Concelho Nacional Resistencia Timorense
(CNRT) suggested that VU co-host an international seminar on Strategic Development Planning for East Timor with the CNRT.