6 Oct 2004

Niue population tally unofficially 1,766

4:53 pm on 6 October 2004

The Niue government has released preliminary population figures, which show there are more than 1,700 people on the island.

The Minister for Economic Development, Bill Vakaafi-Motu Foou, says the head count of 1,766 is as of September the 7th.

He says there were reports that the the population figure was between a 1,000 and 1,200, but the latest figures have answered those reports.

"that means that the detractors are way off line. There is a lot of accusations that people are leaving Niue for one reason or another. We believe the population we have at the moment will remain and some people, temporarily off island, will return s things improve."

The Minister of Economic Development Bill Vakaafi-Motu Foou.

The Minister however, would not say when the final figures would be released.