27 Sep 2019

Cooks wants funding access for countries moving to OECD status

6:19 am on 27 September 2019

The Cook Islands Deputy Prime Minister says there's a need for countries advancing to 'OECD developed nation status' to retain access to concessional finance.

The Cook Islands is set to advance next year.

Mark Brown said the OECD makes its decisions purely on income and what is not taken into account is the vulnerability of small Pacific countries to natural disasters.

He said the wealth these countries have created can be destroyed in a day, as shown by the devastation wrought by hurricanes on Caribbean states over the past two years.

"They had very great difficulty in acquiring development assistance to rebuild because of that status, so there needs to be a revisit, if you like, on the criteria that the OECD places on countries like us, to include a Vulnerability Index to allow us to still access concessional financing."

Cook Islands Finance Minister Mark Brown

Cook Islands finance minister Mark Brown Photo: Cook Islands News