15 Jan 2009

Tonga government to retain ownership of outsourced services and assets

6:42 pm on 15 January 2009

Tonga's Government says it will retain ownership in some of its services and assets, management and funding of which are being outsourced to private companies.

The Prime Minister Feleti Sevele has confirmed that the management of the Tonga National Centre and the Tonga Chronicle newspaper are being outsourced while the ownership of the assets remained with Government.

The Matangi Tonga website reports that three-year contracts with the new management are in place and will be reviewed.

Dr Sevele says that if the Chronicle is found to be operating well under the new management then "there may be a profit-sharing arrangement" and the government could eventually give up ownership.

In the meantime Government would continue to have an input in the editorial content of the 44-year old-Government-operated publication.

The successful applicant for the Tonga Chronicle , out of just two applications received, should be announced next week.