The president of the newly formed Media Association of Tonga (MAT) says the body is necessary to help journalists operate in the current political and social environment.
Lady Luseane Luani heads MAT, which was created during last week's Pacific Islands News Association meeting in Tonga.
Earlier in the month Tonga had dropped two places in a set of global media freedom rankings and a prominent local commentator declared the situation in the country was the worst he had seen in 30 years.
Lady Luseane said local journalists needed a strong network to back them up.
"We really need an association to help us, to pull us together, to be united in our task as journalists. Especially at this time in Tonga, we are facing a lot of challenges in our field of work especially on reporting," she said.