Summary from the Premier’s radio chat to the nation several weeks ago.
Asia Development Bank – The government could be looking for funding from the ADB in the order of $20 million repayable in 20 years or so. A priority for this funding would be the resealing of the airport to ensure that the flights in support of tourism would continue. A team from ADB has already visited the island and appeared to be impressed with Niue’s effort to generate its own source of revenue.
Air New Zealand – Government is now in talks with the carrier to continue providing the service to the island. Premier told his listeners that there is talk of adding another flight during the peak of the tourist season, making a total of three flights a week. However he expressed some doubt if the island has the necessary accommodation in place. There could be room for building another hotel he said with Scenic to manage. The fact that there is speculation about a third flight shows there is growing confidence in the tourism industry according to the Premier.
Information Technology – The Indian Government has shown interest in assisting the island with its IT developments and is prepared to send a Minister to Niue for further discussions. In addition to a visit by the Minister from India, other countries who will be sending their ambassadors or high commissioners in the coming months include USA, China and Australia.
Things Electrical – The government’s intention is to install sufficient solar panels by the end of next year to meet 80% of the island’s power requirements. And in a move that could see a further reduction in fossil fuel, government will be experimenting with 3 electricity powered vehicles. Japanese entrepreneur Taichi Fox, part owner of Kai Ika Restaurant, has been asked by the Premier to look for a suitable model.