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Tonga - unique among Pacific nations - never completely lost its indigenous governance. The archipelagos of "The Friendly Islands" were united into a Polynesian kingdom in 1845. Tonga became a constitutional monarchy in 1875 and a British protectorate in 1900; it withdrew from the protectorate and joined the Commonwealth of Nations in 1970. Tonga remains the only monarchy in the Pacific.


Oceania, archipelago in the South Pacific Ocean, about two-thirds of the way from Hawaii to New Zealand

Natural Resources

fish, arable land

Population - distribution

English and Tongan 87%, Tongan (official) 10.7%, English (official) 1.2%, other 1.1%, unspecified 0.03% (2006 est.)
NUKU'ALOFA 25,000 (2014)
Conventional long form
Kingdom of Tonga
Conventional short form
Local long form
Pule'anga Fakatu'i 'o Tonga
Local short form
constitutional monarchy
Geographic coordinates
21 08 S, 175 12 W
Time difference
UTC+13 (18 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Daylight saving time
+1hr, begins first Sunday in November; ends second Sunday in January
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
Tonga has a small, open island economy and is the last constitutional monarchy among the Pacific Island countries. It has a narrow export base in agricultural goods. Squash, vanilla beans, and yams are the main crops. Agricultural exports, including fish, make up two-thirds of total exports. Tourism is the second-largest source of hard currency earnings following remittances. Tonga had 53,800 visitors in 2015. The country must import a high proportion of its food, mainly from New Zealand.
External debt stocks
US$ 173,405,000
Total tax rate (% of commercial profits)
Real Interest Rate
Manufacturing, value added (% of GDP)
Current Account Balance
US$ -32,502,494
Labor Force, Total
Employment in Agriculture
Employment in Industry
Employment in Services
Unemployment Rate
Imports of goods and services
US$ 264,179,207
Exports of goods and services
US$ 76,316,766
Total Merchandise Trade
FDI, net inflows
US$ 12,632,019
Commercial Service Exports
US$ 69,893,539
squash, coconuts, copra, bananas, vanilla beans, cocoa, coffee, sweet potatoes, cassava, taro and kava
tourism, construction, fishing
squash, fish, vanilla beans, root crops
Japan 16.1%, US 15.5%, Fiji 12.8%, NZ 12.6%, South Korea 11.1%, Samoa 10.8%, Australia 7.5%, American Samoa 6.8% (2015)
foodstuffs, machinery and transport equipment, fuels, chemicals
Fiji 37.6%, NZ 21.2%, China 14.1%, US 6.4%, Australia 4.5% (2015)
Country Risk Rating
Business Climate Rating

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