16 Jun 2014

Tongan finance ministry says aid level is manageable

7:43 am on 16 June 2014

Tonga's finance ministry says it's not concerned about the high level of foreign aid in the new budget.

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Photo: files

The budget was handed down late last week and the Minister of Finance, 'Aisake Eke, allowed for 59 per cent of the budget being provided by foreign aid.

In the 2012 assessment, the International Monetary Fund described the Tongan economy at a "high risk of external debt distress", which was reclassified down to moderate last year.

The CEO of the finance ministry, Tetafu Moeaki, says despite concerns over the repayments of the $50 million US dollar loan from China for the rebuilding of Nuku'alofa, the current debt level is manageable.

"Prior to being rated moderate risk since July 2013, it would have been a serious concern but after the improved ranking by the bank and the IMF of Tonga as now a moderate risk, we have considered other factors where it's a level more manageable."

The CEO of Tonga's finance ministry, Tetafu Moeaki.