Public Debt Reaches 50% Of Tonga's Gross Domestic Product

Fiscal Year 2018 expenditures set to rise 17%

NUKU‘ALOFA, Tonga (Matangi Tonga, Oct. 2, 2017) – Tonga’s public debt at the end of the current 2017 fiscal year is estimated to be equivalent to half of our Gross Domestic Product GDP (about TOP$444.7m [US$200 million]), according to an updated version of the Asian Development Outlook ADO 2017, published by the Asian Development Bank at the end of September.

Government operating expenditures during the FY2017 Fiscal Year are expected to be at a low of 0.4% of our GDP.

However during the FY2018 government expenditure will increase by 17.0%. The increase is to improve sports facilities, maintain existing roads, government buildings, and the commence of repaying of a large loan that Tonga received a decade ago from a state-owned bank in the People’s Republic of China.

The September issue of the Asian Development Outlook 2017 is an update of the April ADO 2017.

According to the updated ADO 2017, the 45 members of the Asian Development Bank, including Tonga, need to mobilize USD$1.7 trillion annually to meet their infrastructure needs. It suggested that a public-private partnership could help fill the financing gap by allocating risk to the party best able to manage it.

The ADO 2017 is convinced that a success of the approach depends on governments identifying projects suitable for it, engaging qualified private partners, and instituting the right process.

Matangi Tonga Magazine
Copyright © 2017 Matangi Tonga. All Rights Reserved

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