9 Aug 2011

Tonga leader beginning first New Zealand/Australia tour Tuesday

9:51 am on 9 August 2011

The prime minister of Tonga, Lord Tu'ivakano, arrives in New Zealand today for talks with the New Zealand government.

The New Zealand prime minister, John Key, says the visit's a chance to thank Lord Tu'ivakano personally for the generosity both his government and the people of Tonga have shown towards the victims of the Christchurch earthquake.

Lord Tu'ivakano will meet Mr Key tomorrow and will hold separate meetings with the foreign affairs and defence ministers.

The Tonga prime minister will attend a Pacific Islands Forum lecture at the University of Auckland's Fale Pasifika on Thursday.

He will be in New Zealand for four days and then visit Australia where'll meet prime minister Julia Gillard and the president of the World Bank, Robert Zoellick.