16 Mar 2012

Tonga government vows to pay back loans

11:52 am on 16 March 2012

The government in Tonga says it wants to pay most of its US$177 million dollar debt off, and generate money in other ways.

Radio Tonga news reports that most of Tonga's multimillion Pa'anga loan was given by foreign partners from China and Germany.

The loans were arranged by the previous Government.

The largest one from China was 69 million US dollars, which went towards the reconstruction of Nuku'alofa after the 2006 riots.

The Deputy Prime Minister, Samiu Vaipulu says the government would like to pay off at least a third of the debt.

He says after that, the government will be able to develop the nation by generating money through tax and duty.

He says discussions are underway to find alternative ways to pay back the loan.

Mr Vaipulu says that now the government relies on foreign donations rather than loans.