8 Mar 2011

Tonga's outer islands to benefit from cheaper shipping costs

8:26 am on 8 March 2011

Tonga's outer islands are expected to benefit economically through cheaper shipping costs.

The government has announced that wharfage fees for inter-island cargo are being cut by 65 percent.

Head of the Grower's Federation, Viliami Tiseli, says it will make it more affordable for farmers and growers in the outer islands to transport their local produce to sell on the main island of Tongatapu.

"I think it will significantly help the farmers and the growers, the majority of the people in the outer islands they are relying solely on their produce, it will help not only their financial positions but also help the economic position of the outer islands as well."

Viliami Tiseli.

The Friendly Islands' Shipping Agency, which serves Tonga through its new inter-island ferry, has already reduced its cargo rates.