Tuvalu Photos

Around town

  • 27 October 2013

The population of all of Tuvalu is no bigger than a small town, but it still needs all the usual infrastructure to make it a nation.  Spread around Fongafale Island, the populated island of Funafuti Atoll, are the government building (the largest building in the entire country), the port, the airport, the schools, the hospital, the hotel and more.

The government building was donated by Taiwan, with Tuvalu being one of the few countries to afford it diplomatic recognition.  The only embassy in Funafuti is from Taiwan.  The Japanese donated the port and other civil infrastructure, and apparently a fire truck and a commuter bus.  The European Union has provided the water truck, which carts run off rainwater from the roof of the government building to large PVC water tanks at peoples’ houses around the island.  I met Australian navy personnel seconded to Tuvalu to assist with the Australian-donated navy patrol boat (which patrols one of Tuvalu’s best revenue sources – its fisheries), and some New Zealand policemen on the island to train the local constabulary. No doubt there are other international contributions, but it became clear quickly which countries donate what, and in some cases, readily apparent what they might expect in return.



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