17 Mar 2008

Niue asks expatriates to help with funding for Forum summit

4:30 pm on 17 March 2008

The Niue Government is asking the 20,000 Niueans living in New Zealand to help support the island host the Pacific Islands Forum summit.

Niue's Finance Minister, Fisa Pihigia, says this comes after an approach to the New Zealand Government for financial assistance for the event was rebuffed.

Mr Pihigia says New Zealand will give technical and logistical support but he says he is very annoyed no additional money will be provided.

He says they will have to redirect some of next year's budget spending and hope for support from other sources.

"I am just asking the people of Niue here in New Zealand if they can assist in any way, but the Government has to come up with the amount [one point one million NZ dollars] in order to run a successful Forum, and I am confident that the Niue Government will come up with the money, because I believe the Australian Government has pledged over two hundred thousand [NZ dollars] towards the cost."

Fisa Pihigia