China To Fund $14 Million Road Reconstruction In Niue

Premier outlines plans to other major infrastructure projects to be paid for by overseas aid

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, May 23, 2017) – The reconstruction of Niue's roads is to be paid for with Chinese aid money.

The island's premier Sir Toke Talagi said engineers and consultants from China have been on the island preparing for the fix-up which would cost nearly $US14 million ($US13.86).

Sir Toke said the money was a grant not a loan.

"It'll be a grant based on what they give us on an annual basis, all accumulated over the past ten years or so, because we haven't been able to draw on those funds therefore they've agreed that perhaps that's how it should be funded," he said.

Sir Toke said China will start work on the roads in December next year.

Sir Toke had outlined other plans for infrastructure development on the island as he heads into his fourth term as premier.

He said aid would be sought to replace the island's water reticulation system projected to cost about $US1.4 million.

He said capital would be put aside to replace all of the island's ageing power transformers within the next ten to 20 years.

Some money had been committed by New Zealand and the UN to repair them but about $US1.4 million more was needed.

He said the planned undersea internet cable to Niue would be paid for partly by New Zealand and partly with borrowings from the interest of the Niue Trust Fund, established by Australia, Niue and New Zealand in 2006.

Interest from the fund would also be used to inject $US1.4 million every year into the Niue Development Bank for the next four years to ensure it had sufficient resources for lending.

Radio New Zealand International
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