Home / AID PROGRAMS / Aid: New Zealand / Tonga-New Zealand bilateral signed for NZD$5.8million towards Tonga Energy Road Map's Village Network Project

Tonga-New Zealand bilateral signed for NZD$5.8million towards Tonga Energy Road Map's Village Network Project

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25 March, 2011  A Letter of Variation (LOV) was signed by the Prime Minister of Tonga, Hon. Prime Minister Lord Tu'ivakano and the New Zealand High Commissioner to Tonga Dr. Jonathan Austin. The LOV was with regards to the Grant Funding Agreement signed between the Government of Tonga and the Government of New Zealand on the 29th of January 2011 and increses the amount of grant to NZD$5.8million.

The grant is for the funding of stage one of the Tonga Village Network Upgrade, which will upgrade the low voltage electricity network in 17 villages in Tongatapu. The project will occur in the villages of: Kolonga, Afa, Niutoua, Haveluliku, Fatumu, Lavengatonga, Ha'asini/Hamula, Nakolo, Utulau, Ha'akame, Ha'alalo, Houma, Vaotu'u, Ha'utu/Fahefa, Kala'au, Ha'atafu, Puke.

Upon its completion the project will have provided:

  • 1,986 meter connections (including but not limited to houses, churches and businesses);
  • 1,949 supply lines single phase;
  • 37 supply lines three phase;
  • 50 km low voltage single phase;
  • 10 km low voltage three phase; and
  • 3,000 power poles.

Access to reliable energy services is a prerequisite for development. This current Project is expected to decrease line losses to a total of 10% on completion. It is estimated that around 274,030 litres of diesel will be saved and the implementation of Stage One will positively affect the lives of over 10,000 people in Tongatapu's rural villages.

Providing a reliable electricity service will create better living conditions and facilitate the initiation of economic activities. The primary benefits from access to electricity include improved education, human health, communication and entertainment, comfort, protection, convenience, and productivity.

The Project will generate greater earning potential for the rural and peri-urban villages. For example, a safe and reliable source of electricity can provide refrigeration that allows fishermen to freeze their fish. It will provide electricity for the use of sewing machines for business, or irrigation for their crops. It will increase the type and quality of business services that can be supplied to the villages. It will improve education as children and students may study in the evenings and will also save time spent on cooking, cleaning and other family chores.

The Project will enhance residential safety through improved lighting. It will greatly reduce the risk of electrocution, and also the risk of house fires on Tongatapu. It will increase modern communications that will help narrow the gap of computer literacy between those children in the urban areas and those in the rural.

The use of computers, audiovisuals, television and the internet will allow people to gain a greater understanding of the outside world which becomes increasingly important in a remittance based economy. It will enable global communication that will contribute in reducing social marginalisation.


Issued by the Ministry of Information and Communications, 2011.

Last Updated ( Saturday, 23 July 2011 00:46 )  

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