19 Apr 2013

Pacific MPs discuss New Zealand aid programme

10:24 am on 19 April 2013

A Tonga opposition MP says parliamentarians need to discuss the sustainability of New Zealand's overseas aid.

Dr Sitiveni Halapua was speaking during the Wellington Pacific Parliamentarians Forum.

He says traditionally aid has been given to the government of the day, but he would like to see New Zealand take the lead in terms of thinking differently.

"Their counterpart governments are important but it is very important to know that the sustainability of what we are doing in the Pacific Islands because at the end of the day if we are not doing very well, that would also affect New Zealand. In terms of exploring how New Zealand foreign aid can be used by non government projects and organisations."

Sitiveni Halapua says the dependence on overseas loans for many Pacific countries is unsustainable.