East Timor and Australia this week signed a treaty at the U.N. setting their maritime boundary for the first time and striking a deal on sharing an estimated $65 billion in potential revenues from the Greater Sunrise gas fields in the Timor Sea.

For impoverished East Timor, with a population of just 1.3 million, development of the fields is crucial—its main source of revenue since 2004, the Bayu Undan gas field, is set to run out of gas by 2022.

The treaty signing in New York on March 6 marked the first conciliation under the U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea—a process UN Secretary-General António Guterres said could offer other countries a path toward resolving contentious maritime boundary disputes.

At current market prices, the Greater Sunrise reserves would be worth more than 23 times East Timor’s annual GDP of $2.8 billion.

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