formerly a poRTuGuese colony, East Timor (or Timor Leste) occupies the eastern half of the island of Timor, along with the enclave of Oecussi, on the northwest coast of the island. It has a land area of 5,743 sq. mi. (15,007 sq. km.), with a population of 947,000 (2005 est.), and a population density of 166 people per sq. mi. (64 people per sq. km.). Forests, with a small timber industry, cover much of the country. Much of the arable land is used for subsistence farms and small coffee plantations, and coconut, cloves, and cocoa are also grown commercially. Because of the undeveloped nature of the country, and the low standard of living, the rates of carbon dioxide emissions are extremely low, measured at 0.2 metric tons per person in 2002 and 2003.
During a visit to the island around 1901, an Australian chemist, traveling to find new pharmaceutical products, spotted deposits of oil, but attempts to locate oil on land during the 1930s never found any substantial supplies. However, during the 1980s, vast oilfields were found offshore in the Timor Sea between East Timor and Australia. Jointly developed by Australia and Indonesia, East Timor lay claim to these fields after its independence in 1999.
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