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This section outlines official Press and Media Statements issued by the Ministry of Information and Communications in addition to Press Releases from the Prime Minister's Office and other Government Ministries and Departments.

Tongan Prime Minister Joins Commonwealth Leaders Meeting in Perth

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30 October 2011. Lord Tu'ivakano, Tonga's Prime Minister was in Australia over the weekend, to partake in the 2011 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM), 28 - 30 October 2011.

Tonga joined heads of government from 54 commonwealth nations who meet under the theme - ‘Building National Resilience, Building Global Resilience'.

The biennial meeting was officially opened on Friday 28 October, by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the Head of the Commonwealth.

Tonga was one of eight Pacific island countries Tonga at CHOGM including Kiribati, Nauru, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.

Leaders reaffirmed their commitment to the values and principles of the Commonwealth and agreed to a series of actions to maintain the Commonwealth's relevance, ensure its effectiveness in responding to contemporary global challenges and to build resilient communities and economies.

CHOGM also addressed important issues for the Pacific - including climate change, food security and the continued challenges to the global financial system.

Before CHOGM started, Lord Tu'ivakano met with the Prime Minister of Singapore, HE Lee Hsien Loong on 27 October 2011. Prime Minister Lee expressed Singapore's renewed interest in closer relations with Tonga as well as extending a hand of friendship to Tonga and the Pacific region.

Both prime ministers agreed of the importance for small states to share their respective experiences and learn from each other. Lord Tu'ivakano welcomed Singapore's interest and felt that there was much to learn from Singapore's development experiences, especially in the area of maritime certification. They also discussed the challenges posed by climate change on small island states.
As one of nine new commonwealth heads of government, Lord Tu'ivakano was hosted by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II at a special luncheon at Perth Government House on Friday 28 October. That evening the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh hosted a banquet for all heads of government and their spouses.

Accompanying the Prime Minister at CHOGM was the Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Mr Mahe'uli'uli Tupouniua, Tonga's High Commissioner to Australia, HRH Prince Tupouto'a Lavaka, Tonga's High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, HE Dr Ngongo Kioa and senior government officials.

The next CHOGM will be held in Sri Lanka 2013, followed by Mauritius in 2015.

The Prime Minister and party will return to Tonga this Wednesday 2 November 2011.


Issued by the: Ministry of Information and Communications, Nuku'alofa, 2011.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 02 November 2011 10:08 )
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