Outreach scheme raises TP$300,000 from Tongan-NZ members of retirement fund

The Manatukiʻapi retirement fund has raised more than TP$300,000 from Tongans living in New Zealand.

The National Retirement Benefits Fund set up the scheme to allow Tongans living overseas to open accounts as voluntary contributors or to top up their parents’ or other people’s retirement funds.

NRBF CEO Dr. Leimoni Taufu’i told Kaniva News the national body had so far registered 11,000 clients and about 600 businesses.

Tongans in New Zealand were the first in the diasporic community to participate in the Manatukiʻapi scheme in 2014.

On June 30, 2016 the New Zealand members deposited into their accounts a total of TP$290,831.41, Taufuʻi said.

In May this year Taufuʻi and the Chair of the NRBF, Rev. Dr Tēvita Havea, went to Australia in a campaign to include Tongans there in the scheme.

The programme “revives” the remittances and also triggered Tongans overseas to remember their family back home, Taufuʻi said.

“It is understood the fānau sent money home to their parents and family, but when that money arrived in Tonga it was all spent on social duties and the kavenga,” Taufuʻi said.

When they deposited money into the  Manatukiʻapi scheme that money would be preserved until the account holders had retired from their employments.

The holders would be paid the total amount and the accrued interest, Taufuʻi said.

The Tongan government board also paid monthly benefits to the elderly who were 70 and over through the Retirement Fund.

“In his address to the nation at the Opening of Parliament on June 2016, His Majesty King Tupou VI highlighted the challenges faced by his people which are health, education and economy,” he said.

“He emphasised the importance of health and the need for the National Retirement Benefits Fund to also include a health insurance scheme to assist in expanding coverage of social health protection so that the citizens of Tonga had a choice in healthcare.”

In its annual report for 2016 the organisation said it had raised TP$28.4 million since its establishment in 2012.

The main points

  • The Manatukiʻapi retirement fund has raised TP$300,000 from Tongans living in New Zealand.
  • The National Retirement Benefits Fund set up the scheme to allow Tongans living overseas to open accounts as voluntary contributors or to top up their parents’ or other peoples retirement funds.
  • NRBF CEO Leimoni Taufu’i said told Kaniva News the national body had so far registered 11,000 clients and about 600 businesses.
  • Tongans in New Zealand were the first in the diasporic community to participate in the ManatuKiʻApi scheme in 2014.

For more information 

National Retirement Benefits Fund

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