9 Feb 2010

Despite recession, Tokelau population remains stable

3:35 pm on 9 February 2010

Tokelau's Ulu, Foua Toloa, says the population numbers are remaining stable on the three atolls despite the economic recession.

At the General Fono in just over a week, Mr Toloa will hand over the rotating leadership to Kuresa Nasau, the Faipule of the island of Atafu.

He says the people are keen to remain at home and in fact there are problems catering for the numbers who want to come home and reconnect with their culture, especially over Christmas:

"There is huge influx during holidays of Tokelauns from New Zealand wanting to come back. The only problem that is holding everyone coming back is the poor transportation that we have. Let me given you an example, like last year there is about 400 or 500 people on Fakaofo. There was almost 200/300 people that came as visitors during December, January, February."

Mr Toloa says they are hopeful something solid and definite will come about in regards to the shipping service by the end of February