The Prime Minister of Tonga, Hon Samuela ‘Akilisi Pohiva and the Government, have confirmed that Tonga is going to host the 16th Pacific Games in 2019. This statement was made to clear any confusion and doubts on whether Tonga is going ahead with the Pacific Games 2019.
“Getting the financial resources to fund the preparation for the Games is the utmost challenge for the Government and the Government is fully aware of this. As such, the Government is doing its best to seek financial assistance from donor and development partners and raise revenue for the Games,” the Hon Prime Minister has stated. “ At the same time, the Government is convinced of the benefits of hosting the games, not only in upgrading the level of sports and sporting facilities in Tonga, but also the benefits to the economy that the sport will bring.”
The Government has received funds from the New Zealand Government towards Teufaiva Stadium and discussions are underway with other donor and development partners to fund other sporting complexes, which are anticipated to be finalized and announced in the near future.
The Government is also currently finalizing the legal process for the implementation of the $100 pa’anga increase in Departure Tax and the 1seniti levy that will be imposed as part of the spread of the Pa’anga value on every purchase and sale of foreign currency, which is a reduction by 1 seniti from the two seniti originally proposed in response to raised concerns during the consultation with key stakeholders. These are the two revenue streams that Government has approved to raise funds for the Games.
The Government is working closely with the Tonga Pacific Games 2019 Organising Committee on the details of the plan for the Games with the constructions and preparation of venues and sporting facilities to start in 2016, as stated by the Hon Minister for Finance and National Planning.
The Government was encouraged to receive the support of other Pacific Island Countries that Tonga can host a successful Pacific Games in 2019, during the 15th Pacific Games 2015 held in Papua New Guinea in July.
The Government is therefore calling on the people of Tonga, here in Tonga and abroad for their support, as Tonga prepares to stage the 16th South Pacific Games 2019.
Issued by the: The Prime Minister’s Office, P.O. Box 62, Nuku’alofa, Tonga. Tel: (676) 24 644 Fax: (676) 23 888; For media enquiries- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org