A new World Bank report has put the spotlight on the economic threat that non-communicable diseases pose the Pacific Islands.
The draft report, 'Pacific Possible: Health and Non-Communicable Diseases' was released at the Pacific NCDs' summit in the Tongan capital, Nuku'alofa, today.
It shows the economic burden if NCDs continue to rise in the Pacific.
The Bank said without action the economic loss from NCD deaths across 11 Pacific Island countries would reach up to 14 percent of GDP by 2040.
It also estimated a 40 percent increase in the economic cost of chronic sickness rates in the Pacific over the same period.
The Bank said the economic burden from NCDs is much greater in Pacific Island countries than the global average.
It said areas for action could include taxes on tobacco products and sugar-sweetened drinks.