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Tonga’s economy projects decrease with 1.1 percent due to devastation from TC Gita

Radio & TV Tonga, Nuku’alofa, 10/05/2018

The Minister of Finance and National Planning – Pohiva Tu’i’onetoa says Tonga’s economy is projected to decrease with 1.1 percent from last year’s economic prediction.

Hon. Minister says the prediction for Tonga’s economy for the current fiscal year 2017/2018 was 4 per cent but due to the devastation from TC Gita, the economy bears its brunt.

He adds, the beginning of the current financial year, Tonga had major projects such as infrastructure, more export from the agricultural sector and more cruise ships docking at the Nuku’alofa Harbor, with the expectation that will remain firm for this year.

However, with Tonga’s vulnerability to natural disasters, the economy is now forecast at 2.9 percent.

Meanwhile, many infrastructure projects are to be implemented by the end of the year, so in that case Tonga’s economy could reach 3.9 percent in the year 2018/2019.

Hon. Minister says, Gita brought many damage to the country, with houses torn apart so as classrooms, sinking fishing boats, and impacting the agricultural sector.

He adds there are donors from the foreign countries assisting Tonga with the recovery effort after the cyclone but the Cabinet is prioritizing the needs from the church schools such as maintenance works to their classrooms which is needed to be done as soon as possible.

Minister also highlights that Tonga is second to the most vulnerable countries to the negative impacts of natural disasters.

© Radio and Television Tonga News