Tonga

Pacific Mental Health Surveys project on mental health challenges in Pacific countries to launch soon

A new research project by Waipapa Taumata Rau | University of Auckland researchers and Pacific partners aims to investigate mental health challenges in Samoa, Tuvalu, and potentially Tonga as these countries navigate the Covid-19 pandemic and the climate crisis.

Pacific travel gathering steam for summer as Kiwis look to reconnect and relax

After more than two years of the Covid-19 pandemic and border closures, the Hunga-Tonga Hunga-Ha'apai volcano eruption and tsunami, this trip was going to be special.

He was taking a big group of 15, including his mother, son, his two sisters and their children.

“It’s Christmas, and it’s a time for family – we’re all just looking forward to being back home together,” he said.

“Mum is really looking forward to seeing her sister who is old now, so we just want to spend as much time with her as we can.

 

Business end of Oceania womens Nations Cup

First up, Samoa take on New Caledonia, followed by the top-ranked side in the competition, Papua New Guinea, playing Tonga.

On Sunday, hosts Fiji play the Cook Islands, and finally Solomon Islands play Tahiti for the final semi-final spot.

The winners of the final which takes place next weekend gain a spot in the Women's World Cup Playoff tournament in New Zealand early 2023.

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Kiwis urged to 'go for it' as Solomon Islands, Vanuatu reopen to tourists

The Solomon Islands and Vanuatu will open on July 1, with Samoa and the Federated States of Micronesia a month later on August 1.

Vanuatu government says proposal to deliver air services for Tonga would be a ‘win-win’

Vanuatu Prime Minister Bob Loughman has asked Tongan Prime Minister Siaosi Sovaleni to sign an air services agreement.

Loughman said such an agreement could come into effect in a “post Covid” world.

Vanuatu’s Covid travel restrictions will be lifted on 1 July.

Loughman said the proposal would entail a “a win-win for our national airlines and governments, post-COVID.”

Such an agreement would allow Air Vanuatu to ensure that fares between the two Island nations, Australia and New Zealand would remain stable.

Fijian Drua and Moana Pasifika's success benefits national teams

With the objective of increasing the competitiveness of the international game, World Rugby has part-funded the franchises to provide an impactful environment and pathway that will ultimately benefit Fiji, Samoa and Tonga on the biggest stage – Rugby World Cup.

The selection of 43 players for the Pacific Nations Cup from Moana Pasifika and Fijian Drua is an important step in that journey, providing each union with the benefit of access to a group of players performing in an environment geared towards achieving success at international level.

Pacific Maritime Safety Programme approved for another four years

The programme delivers maritime safety initiatives to seven Pacific Island countries – Cook Islands, Kiribati, Niue, Samoa, Tokelau, Tonga and Tuvalu.

The funding, from 1 July 2022 to 30 June 2026, marks the fourth phase of the programme.

The PMSP is a Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade programme, funded through the International Development Cooperation programme and delivered by Maritime NZ.

Double feast of Oceania rugby tournaments in Auckland

Six men's and 6 women's teams will participate in the Oceania Rugby Super Sevens, with Australia, Fiji, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and Tonga to be joined by an invitational Oceania side.

That competition will take place between June 24 and 26.

Two weeks later, the annual Oceania Rugby Women's 15s Championship will make a return after three years of cancellations due to the pandemic.

Next stage unveiled in battle for Oceania club supremacy

The revised competition format, which was adapted in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic to reduce travel requirements on teams, is split into two phases.

Stage one will determine which clubs contest stage two, which will be an eight-team centralised finals tournament scheduled for August this year.

Fiji, New Caledonia, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu will stage home and away playoffs – involving the champion and runner up from their respective national league – through June, from which each winner will secure qualification to the finals tournament.

More than 1000 athletes to compete in Pacific Mini Games

Super typhoons, the withdrawal of government support and Covid-19 have disrupted the event which will now take place from June 17-25. It was originally due to be held in May/June 2021.

The hosts and Fiji lead the delegations with 125 athletes apiece.

Solomon Islands has 117 athletes while New Caledonia has 109. The smallest delegations are Norfolk Island and American Samoa with three each.

The 20 Pacific nations and territories attending and their number of athletes are: