Government officials worry new status will result in a cut in aid and could hurt the country’s growth prospects

The tiny nation of the Cook Islands is set to become the first among the Pacific islands to graduate to “developed” status, in a move that some government officials are calling their “worst case scenario”.

Some 99.99% of the Cook’s territory is made up of ocean, with its 15 islands spread out over an area of nearly 2m sq km.

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