East Timor Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri, Australian Prime Minister John Howard and Australian Foreign Minister Alexander Downer after signing the treaty in 2006

East Timor has won a significant moral victory in the Timor Sea dispute, with Australia agreeing to scrap the controversial 2006 Timor Sea treaty. However, East Timor’s hope that this now spells the beginning of the end of that dispute, much less that it will secure the country's economic future, might be overly optimistic.