20 Oct 2011

State of emergency expected to last for some time in Tuvalu

8:12 am on 20 October 2011

A member of the New Zealand aid team operating in drought stricken Tuvalu believes the country's state of emergency won't be lifted for some time.

Development manager with the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Willy Morrell, has been in Tuvalu for the last eight days and says the situation is fragile despite 50 millimetres of rain earlier in the week.

Mr Morrell says with the water desalination programme still to reach its peak they are managing to get by in regard to day to day water demands.

He says the Tuvalu government is yet to decide on the future of its state of emergency but there's much work still to be done.

"It's going to take a concerted effort from both the New Zealand government and our partners. I think realistically its going to take some time to slowly work our way out the situation we're presently in."

Willy Morrell.