Sangster Saulala’s one million dollar agricultural fund

Watermelon plantation as part of Tonga agro-export strategy 12 May 2011Tonga has invested ToP1 million on an agricultural fund so government can support growers by government dealing directly with exporters.

Tonga’s agricultural minister Sangster Saulala told APEN of this development when asked to comment on an MP’s call for government to support Tongan growers efforts to access NZ retail produce market channels.

Recently a Tongan finance ministry delegation to NZ, including Tongan agricultural ministry officials, met NZ produce retail markets.

Tonga’s government will deal directly with exporters says Sangster Saulala.

Another budget will pay for another initiative – the recruitment of a Tongan trade representative in Auckland the agriculture minister said.

293736_Honolulu MealTicket dining pass 300 x 250 banner HONMTSangster Saulala has also set up an agricultural sector group which appears to overshadow the Tongan Growers Federation, which used to claim 1200 members.

Tonga’s agricultural minister, Speaker and the MP, ‘Aisake Eke, made their comments on the produce export issue during breaks in the Pacific Parliament they and several other MPs are attending at Parliament in Wellington.

From Anthony Haas, at Asia Pacific Economic News Bureau at the Press Gallery in the New Zealand Parliament for the Pacific Parliamentary and Political Leaders Forum, 18-22 April 2013.

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