4 Jul 2012

Tonga plans new benefit scheme for elderly

12:25 pm on 4 July 2012

The Tongan government has announced plans for a new social benefit scheme for the elderly.

The Finance Minister, Lisiate 'Akolo, says the scheme, due to be implemented in September, will cost about 900,000 US dollars a year, with people 75 years of age or older receiving about 40 dollars a month.

Radio Tonga reports the Minister as saying the benefit can be financed from within the current budget.

Based on the last census more than 2,000 people would qualify for the benefit.