The Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Australian Infrastructure Financing Facility for the Pacific (AIFFP) and the Governments of Australia and Tuvalu Monday, 17 June 2024 participated in a handover ceremony of Nui Island Boat Harbour to the local community as part of the Outer Island Maritime Infrastructure Project.

The Minister of Public Works, Infrastructure and Water, Ampelosa Tehulu Government of Tuvalu led the ceremony. He was joined by Senior Country Officer from ADB’s Tuvalu Pacific Country Office, Letasi Iulai and Brenton Garlick Australian High Commissioner to Tuvalu.

“The Government wishes to thank the Asian Development Bank and AIFFP for financing this important and transformative project,” said Minister Tehulu. 

“The project will contribute tremendously to the safe transportation of the people and supplies from the ship to the island which has been a big problem in the country for so long.”

“On behalf of all, the Falekaupule community members, I would like to say a very special gratification and a very big, massive thanks to ADB and AIFFP for the good hard work done for our boat harbour,” said Nui Island Chief, Sapakuka Kapai.

“The new boat harbour will be a lifeline for the people of Nui Island,” said Regional Director of ADB’s Pacific Subregional Office, Aaron Batten. “Improving connectivity and maritime safety between the outer islands and the main island of Funafuti is critical for improving access to essential services and driving economic growth.”

“Australia is proud to deliver this vital piece of maritime infrastructure in partnership with the Asian Development Bank and the Government of Tuvalu. This project demonstrates Australia’s commitment to investing in quality and resilient infrastructure to support local communities,” said Brenton Garlick.

The Nui Island Boat Harbour was constructed to high standards with in-built mitigation measures against climate change and disaster. The small-scale habour includes a wharf, a navigation channel, a boat ramp, a community building (Maneapa), shoreline reclamation and a wharf-mounted crane. These facilities will provide for safe and efficient transport of people and goods.

The overall project, which is largely focused on the construction of small-scale maritime port facilities in the outer islands, will make the transfer of people and goods safer and more efficient. The project will help develop Tuvalu’s transport, fishery, and tourism sectors.

The Tuvalu Outer Island Maritime Infrastructure Project is a partnership of ADB, the Government of Australia through the Australian Infrastructure Financing Facility for the Pacific (AIFFP), and the Government of Tuvalu, as part of their ongoing shared commitment to supporting quality infrastructure principles that meet the highest international quality standards, are fit for purpose for country context, are future proof and resilient, and reflect value for money and local participation.

The project is funded by a US$63.72 million grant from the Asian Development Fund, which provides grants to ADB’s lowest-income and most vulnerable developing member countries. The Government of Australia has provided US$15 million through their Australian Infrastructure Financing Facility for the Pacific. Least Development Fund of Global Environment Facility provides US$0.5 million grant. The Government of Tuvalu also contributed US$7.2 million, bringing the total cost of the project to US$86.42 million.

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