20 Mar 2015

Tonga borrows from World Bank for disaster resilience

3:38 pm on 20 March 2015

The Tongan government is to borrow over 8 million US dollars from the World Bank.

Matangi Tonga reports that under the Tongan law, government loans of more than 7.4 million dollars must be approved by parliament which occurred this week.

The Minister of Finance 'Aisake Eke says the loan will enable government to implement programs that will help Tonga become more resilient to natural disasters.

Proposed disaster resilience programs include making sure that people will have access to essentials such as food and water.

Dr Eke says Tonga has 40 years to repay the loan.

There is a 10 years grace period when government will pay only the 0.75% service charge or interest.

Meanwhile it was also revealed in the Legislative Assembly that 116.2 million dollars or 66.7% of Tonga's external loan debts is to the Export-Import Bank of China.