National Reserve Bank of Tonga. Photo/Kalino Lātū

Tonga’s banking system will continue to remain strong, according to the National Reserve Bank.

The Governor of the Reserve Bank, Sione Ngongo Kioa, said foreign reserves were projected to remain at a comfortable level and inflation was likely to remain below five percent.

Kioa said the banking system remained sound as banks continued to maintain a strong capital position supported by adequate profits.

Tonga’s economic performance remained positive in the medium term, but uncertainty about weather posed a risk.

Despite the largely positive outlook, there were some negative indicators in February.

While the volume of agricultural exports rose by 31.3 tonnes on the back of higher shipment of cassava and yam, the level of export proceeds for the month fell.

A slow down in construction activity slowed in February was reflected in fewer loans being extended to the construction sector while housing loans rose slightly.

Remittances dropped again in February due to lower private transfers for family support from abroad.

Container registrations declined, mainly due to a fall in the number of private containers.

Travel receipts fell in line with and decline in international air arrivals.

Meanwhile, electricity consumption increased in February, coinciding with a rise in the number of electricity consumers.

Foreign reserves declined in February 2019 by TP$5.5 million to TP$473.5 million, equivalent to 7.9 months of imports cover.

This was a result of higher import payments made over the month.

At its April meeting Reserve Bank of Tonga’s Board of Directors agreed to  maintain the monetary policy rate at 0%; to keep the minimum loans/deposit ratio of 80%;  maintain the Statutory Reserve Deposit ratio at 10%,  and  maintain the inflation reference rate at 5%.

The main points

  • Tonga’s banking system will continue to remain strong, according to the National Reserve Bank.
  • The Governor of the Reserve Bank, Sione Ngongo Kioa, said foreign reserves were projected to remain at a comfortable level and inflation was likely to remain below five percent.

1 COMMENT

  1. Makatu’unga pea mei he ngaahi fakamatala kuo fakahā atu ‘i ‘olunga´, ‘oku kei taau ke hokohoko atu pē ‘a e ngaahi tu’utu’uni ngāue fakapa’anga lolotonga´. ‘Oku kei fakahoko pē ‘e he Pangikē Pule´ hono siofi ke fakahoko ha ngaahi fokotu‘utu‘u ngāue te ne faka’ai’ai ‘a hono ngāue’aki ‘a e hulu ‘i he pa’anga ngāue ‘a e ngaahi pangikē, ke nō atu ki he ngaahi ngāue faka’ekonōmika fakalotofonua´, ke poupou mo pātoloaki ha tupu faka’ekonōmika ‘oku ma’uma’uluta mo tolonga. ‘Oku kei hokohoko atu ai pē ‘a e tokanga ‘a e Pangikē Pule´ ki hono muimui’i ofi e ngaahi fakalakalaka faka’ekonōmika fakalotofonua´ mo fakatu’apule’anga´, mo tu’u mateuteu ke liliu ‘a e ngaahi fokotu’utu’u ngāue fakapa’anga´ ‘o ka fiema’u.

    Na‘e tali ‘e he Poate ‘a e kau Talēkita ‘a e Pangikē Pule Fakafonua ‘o Tonga´ hili ‘enau fakataha ‘i he ‘aho 30 ‘o ‘Epeleli 2019, ke kei hokohoko atu ai pē ‘a e ngaahi tu’utu’uni ngāue fakapa’anga lolotonga´ ‘a ia ‘oku hā atu ‘i lalo´. ‘Oku fakataumu’a eni ke ngāue’aki ‘a e hulu ‘i he pa’anga ngāue ‘a e ngaahi pangikē, ki hono tuku atu ‘a e ngaahi nō ki tu’a ke ne faka’ai’ai mo pātoloaki ‘a e tupu faka’ekonōmika ‘a e fonua´.
    a. Ke kei hoko atu pē hono ta’etotongi ha tupu (interest) ‘i he ngaahi ‘akauni pa’anga ngāue ‘a e ngaahi pangikē´ (Exchange Settlement Account) ‘oku fakahū ‘i he Pangikē Pule´ (zero interest rate policy);
    e. Ke ‘oua ‘e toe ma’ulalo hifo ‘i he peseti ‘e 80 ‘a e lahi e ngaahi nō ‘oku tuku atu ‘e he ngaahi pangikē
    ‘o fakahoa ki he lahi ‘o ‘enau ngaahi fakahū pa’anga´ (loans/deposit ratio);
    f. Ke kei tauhi pē ‘a e lahi ‘o e pa’anga ‘a e ngaahi pangikē fakakomēsiale, ‘a ia ‘oku tu’utu’uni fakalao ke tauhi ‘i he Pangikē Pule´ (Statutory Reserve Deposit) ‘i he peseti ‘e 10; pea
    h. Ke tu’uma’u pē ‘a e tu’unga ’o e hikihiki ‘i he totongi ‘o e ngaahi koloa´ (inflation reference rate) ‘i he peseti ‘e 5.
    Na’e fakahā ‘e he Kōvana ‘o e Pangikē Pule´, Sione Ngongo Kioa, ‘i he’ene lipooti fekau’aki mo e tu’unga lolotonga ‘o e ‘ekonōmika ‘a e fonua´, ‘oku hā mai ai ‘a e fetō’aki ‘a e ngaahi ngāue faka’ekonōmika fakalotofonua´ ki he mahina ko Fepueli. Na‘e kake ‘a e uta atu ki muli ‘o e ngoue´ ‘aki ‘a e toni ‘e 31.3 makatu’unga mei he lahi ange hono ‘uta atu ‘o e ngoue foha΄ hange ko e manioke mo e ‘ufi. Kaekehe, na’e ‘ikai hoamalie eni mo e holo ‘a e pa‘anga hū mai mei hono uta atu ki muli ‘o e ngoue ‘i he mahina ‘o ha mai mei ai ‘a e toloi hono ma’u mai ‘o e pa‘anga hū mai mei he uta atu ‘o e ngoue΄. Na’e māmālie ‘a e ngaahi ngāue langa΄ ‘i Fepueli, ‘o hā mei heholo ‘a e ngaahi nō ki he tafa’aki langa fakapisinisi´. ‘I he taimi tatau, na’e hiki si’i e ngaahi nō fale taautaha´. Na’e holo ange ‘a e ngaahi koniteina na’e lesisita΄ ka etautefito ki he ngaahi koniteina fakataautaha. Na‘e holo ‘a e pa‘anga hū mai mei he fefolau‘akiˊ, ‘o fenāpasi ia mo e holo ‘i he tokolahi ‘o e kakai na’e tū‘uta vakapuna mai ki Tonga΄ni. Na’e lahi ange hono ngaue’aki ‘a e ‘uhila ‘i Fepueli ‘o fenapasi mo e hiki hake ‘a e ngaahi konisiuma ki he ‘uhila.
    ‘Oku kei ‘i he tu‘unga lelei pē ‘a e fai fatongia ‘a e ngaahi pangikē fakakomēsiale´, ‘a ia ‘oku kei hokohoko atu pe ‘a e mālohi fe’unga pē ‘a e ivi ‘enau pa’anga ngāue´ pea ’i he tu‘unga fakafiemālie pē ‘a ‘enau ngaahi tupu´ (profitability). Na’e kake ‘a e pēseti ‘o e ngaahi nō ‘i hono fakahoa ki he lahi ‘o e ngaahi fakahū pa‘anga´ (loans/deposit ratio) ‘i he māhinaˊ ni ki he pēseti ‘e 76.0 mei he peseti ‘e 74.8 ‘i he mahina kuo ‘osi΄. Na’e makatu’unga ‘a e hiki ‘i he māhinaˊ mei he holo ange ‘o e fakahū pa‘anga´ ‘i he ngaahi nō na’e tuku atu´. Neongo ‘oku kei ma’ulalo pē ‘eni ‘i he pēseti ‘e 80 kuo tu’utu’uni’i ‘e he Pangikē Pule´ ke a’usia ‘e he ngaahi pangikē fakakomēsiale´, kā ‘oku mahino mai ‘oku ‘i ai ‘a e fakalakalaka kimu’a ’a e tu’unga ko eni´ ‘i he ta’u´, ‘aki ‘enau nō atu ki tu’a ‘a e hulu ‘i he’enau pa’anga ngāue´. Na‘e hiki hake mo e ‘avalisi ‘o e totongi tupu ‘i he nō mo e fakahū pa’anga´ (weighted average interest rate spread) ‘i Fepueli tupu pea meiˊ he hiki ‘i he ‘avalisi ‘o e totongi tupu ‘i he nō (weighted average lending rate) mo e ‘avalisi ‘o e totongi tupu ‘i he fakahū pa‘anga´ (weighted average deposit rate).
    Na’e holo hifo ‘a e tu’unga ‘o e pa’anga talifaki ‘i muli´ (foreign reserves) ‘aki ‘a e $5.5 miliona ki he $473.5 miliona, ‘o fe‘unga ia mo e māhina ‘e 7.9 ‘o e koloa mo e ngaahi ngāue hū mai mei muliˊ. Na’e makatu’unga ‘a e holo ko eni mei he lahi ange ‘a e ngaahi totongi ki he koloa hū mai mei tu’apule’anga.
    ‘I Fepueli 2019 ko e hikihiki ‘i he totongi ‘o e koloa fakalukufua na’e kei ma’ulalo pe ia ‘i he lekooti ‘i hono hiki’aki ‘a e peseti ‘e 3.2. Ko e hikihiki ‘i he totongi koloa fakaloto fonua mo e totongi koloa hū mai na’e makatu’unga ia mei he kau kiai ‘a e poini fakapeseti ‘e 3.8 mo ‘ene holo ‘i he poini fakapeseti ‘e 0.5 ki he hikihiki fakata’u ‘i he totongi koloa. Ko e hiki ‘i he ta’u he totongi koloa fakalotofonua na’e makatu’unga ‘i he totongi ‘o e koloa me’akai, tapaka, falekai mo e hotele pea ko e koloa hu mai leva na’e holo ia makatu’unga mei he ma’ulalo ‘a e totongi ‘i he sekitoa fefononga’aki mo e tafa’aki ki he ngaahi ngāue.

    ‘Oku fakafuofua ‘e he Pangikē Pule´ ‘e kei tupu pē ‘a e tu’unga faka’ekonōmika ‘a e fonua´ ‘i he kaha’u´, kā ‘e malava uesia ‘a e fakafuofua ko ‘eni´ mei he ngaahi feliuliuaki ‘i he tu’unga ‘o e ‘ea´. Ko e pa‘anga talifaki ‘i mulí´ ‘oku fakafuofua ‘e kei ‘i he tu’unga fakafiemālie pē, pea ‘oku ‘amanaki ‘e hokohoko atu ai pē ‘a e holoholo ‘o e hikihiki ‘i he totongi koloaˊ ke ma’ulalo pē he pēseti ‘e 5. Ko e ngaahi pangikē ‘oku fakafuofua te nau kei ‘i he tu’unga fakafiemālie pē.

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