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The AIFFP is partnering with the Asian Development Bank and the Government of the Kingdom of Tonga to upgrade one of Tonga’s main transport and supply gateways.

Upgrading Tonga’s international port Queen Salote International Wharf of Nuku’alofa Port in Tonga.

Upgrading Tonga’s international port

Nuku’alofa, Tonga

Signed and Announced

AUD31.25 million

Delivery partners

Government of the Kingdom of Tonga
Asian Development Bank

We’re working with the Asian Development Bank and the Government of the Kingdom of Tonga to provide climate-resilient upgrades to the Queen Salote International Wharf (QSIW) of Nuku’alofa Port.

QSIW includes four wharves, with the project reinstating wharf one – an international container and cargo terminal – which is currently not in operation. It also involves extending wharf two by a further 50 metres and installing new navigation markers, moorings and buoys. Repairs to the container yard and improvements to port service systems are also planned.

Upgrades to four wharves

Wharf two extended by 50 metres

The project includes measures to reduce the impacts of climate change, including building a concrete seawall and strengthening existing rock walls to protect against sea level rise, upgrading port access roads including installation of solar powered lighting, upgrading rainwater harvesting systems and improving stormwater drainage.

With Tonga vulnerable to natural hazards, the upgrades to QSIW will also support the provision of life saving products and services and continued trade during and after emergencies.   

The project partners are also supporting Ports Authority of Tonga to improve its operational practices, develop an asset maintenance plan and through training on port operations, environmental sustainability, health and safety and security.

Our financing includes an AUD31.25 million grant towards the $138.3 million project with the ADB, ensuring the project does not add to Tonga’s sovereign debt burden.

Climate-resilient design

and improved port safety

AIFFP contribution

AUD31.25 million

(AUD million)
(USD million)
Variable interest rateTenor

* Indicative rate of AUD/USD = 0.64, exact AUD amount depends on exchange rate at disbursement.


Tonga is an archipelago of more than 170 islands dispersed across 700,000 square kilometres of the southern Pacific Ocean. As a small island nation, Tonga is highly dependent on imports of strategic commodities including fuel and food.

The port is a key component of Tonga’s economic infrastructure, providing a major gateway for transport and the distribution of imports and exports.

With more than 98 per cent of imports arriving by sea, Tonga is reliant on this service for shipping for food and other imports. As the key port, it is critical for access to international markets for exports with the port providing vital connectivity both domestically in Tonga and internationally.

QSIW is critical in the event of major natural catastrophes, such as Tropical Cyclone Harold in 2020 and the 2022 volcanic eruption, for provision of life saving products and services, and in the ability to support the economy through exports after a climate event. The proposed upgrades to the QSIW will deliver climate-resilient design, improved port safety and security compliance and expand shipping capabilities to facilitate increased international operations. The upgrades are in line with Tonga’s development goals to include safer, more reliable, and more affordable transport infrastructure and services.