Structural transformation and jobs in Timor-Leste

Structural transformation is described as the reallocation of economic activity across broad economic sectors such as agriculture, industry and services. A key feature of structural transformation is an increase in the share of employment in industry and services with concurrent reduction of workers in the agriculture sector. Typically, a large segment of the labour force in low-income countries is engaged in subsistence agriculture.

Timor-Leste is at an early stage of its nascent structural transformation. Between 2010 and 2013, significantly larger number of jobs were added in the non-agricultural sectors (36,560) compared to the agriculture sector (12,070). In wholesale and retail trade alone 16,553 jobs were added. The employment share of agriculture has more or less remained unchanged.