12 Jun 2019

Tonga govt argues against King's comment about lack of vision

5:39 pm on 12 June 2019

Tonga's finance minister says the government has a clear economic vision for the country, despite the king saying there did not appear to be one.

Tonga's King Tupou VI

Tonga's King Tupou VI Photo: RNZ Pacific/ Indira Stewart

Pohiva Tu'i'onetoa told Parliament the vision was part of the Tonga Strategic Development Framework, which runs from 2015 - 2025.

Mr Tu'i'onetoa's comments come after King Tupou VI stated the economy suffered from a lack of vision during his opening throne speech last month.

Kaniva Pacific reported the minister told the House the government had created nine goals under the national vision as launch pads for implementing its economic activities for the next three years.

The minister referenced an improvement of services made under public sector reform.

He said the government sectors were expected to follow these reforms according to laws and guidelines to encourage better public services and good governance.

Mr Tu'i'onetoa said these could only work in a good governmental and political structure and the six new bills the government recently submitted were part of the vision for reform.

The minister also cited said better education and health delivery and support through developments including work to install a government sponsored satellite company.

Mr Tu'i'onetoa said the government was also working to develop the informal sector with at least 80 percent of the country involved.