Like anywhere in the world, a downturn in the economy can create pressures on the Government’s social responsibility at a time when the population is facing its greatest social needs. We are also facing social changes which mean that the traditional system which has protected our vulnerable including the elderly in the past is coming under greater strain.
In line with the proposed scheme, in July 2012, the Government of Tonga, with the support from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR) will begin a pilot of social services to the most vulnerable elderly in a specified pilot area on Tongatapu and the outer islands. This pilot project will allow the Government to gather lessons learned to better serve our elderly in the future.
The Ministry of Finance & National Planning, in conjunction with the Statistics Department, has started to investigate the operational feasibility, financial affordability and cultural implications of a scheme designed to fulfil government’s social aim of addressing poverty/hardship and vulnerability facing our senior citizens, and creating resilience and empowering them by supporting their consumption needs. It is intended that in the early part of 2012/13, the Ministry of Finance & National Planning will also seek the assistance of Ministry of Internal Affairs in developing the analytical framework as well as seeking technical assistance from Asian Development Bank (ADB) in scoping and implementing this project.
Ministry of Finance Tonga,Phone: +676 23066, Fax: +676 26011, Address: P.O. Box 87, Nuku'alofa, Tonga