9 Oct 2007

Niue Trust Fund now fully operational after administrative details agreed in Wellington

7:10 pm on 9 October 2007

Niue will be able to draw on its trust fund in two years' time.

The first meeting of the three countries involved in the Fund, New Zealand, Australia and Niue was held today in Wellington.

The Niue Premier, Young Vivian, says the principals put in place the administrative procedures for the fund and from October 2009 the island will be able to draw on the interest earned.

Mr Vivian says access to the money will bring confidence in the long term sovereignty of the island.

He says it will become part of their budget planning.

"It will help with some of the major projects that we are thinking about, and in general, I think that the major areas, the basics of what the government should be doing in education, in health, and other things."

The Niue Trust Fund currently holds 20 million US dollars, but Young Vivian says there will be campaigning for this to be increased.