19 Oct 2014

Niue celebrates 40 years of self-govt

1:16 pm on 19 October 2014

The Premier of Niue says the country is grateful for the support it has received from New Zealand over the years as it celebrates 40 years of self-government.

The Niue cultural section at the annual Pasifika Festival in Western Springs Park in 2010.

The Niue cultural section at the annual Pasifika Festival in Western Springs Park in 2010. Photo: PHOTO NZ

Niue became independent in free association with New Zealand on 19 October 1974.

The island state will mark the occasion with public holidays on Monday and Tuesday, and events are being held in New Zealand this weekend.

Niue's premier, Toke Talagi, said the biggest impact has been the migration of Niuen people to New Zealand.

He said that had leveled off recently due to improvements in job opportunities as foreign investment has picked up.

Mr Talagi said Niue had no agenda for full independence at this stage and was focusing on trying to reduce emigration and developing the economy.

"In my view, we've done the infrastructure. We're now looking at getting more seats on the plane and building more accommodation and building a strong economy."

He said Niuens also valued their New Zealand citizenship.