Vanuatu daily news digest | 28 December 2014

There has not been a lot of hard news around in the last week. The unexpected simply has not happened. Thus, the absence of Digest bulletins. However, you may still appreciate a number of items culled from VBTC and Daily Post which have to some extent filled in the gap. So here goes …

The Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF) of the World Trade Organization has voted 315 million vatu towards the reconstruction of the Port Vila waterfront sea wall. It is an important element in the Vanuatu Tourism Infrastructure Project. Tourism DG Ailile said the EIF recognition will improve Vanuatu’s ability to achieve sustainable development.

Australian High Commissioner Jeremy Bruer highlighted the main areas of Australian assistance to Vanuatu in an end-of-year address: health and education were high on the list, education being jointly developed with New Zealand. Developing the economy is also very important he said, especially with island roads development and the Port Vila Urban Development Project. This latter concentrates on town roads, footpaths and drainage.

The Vanuatu Expo Committee is working with the Department of Industry, the Tourism Office and VIPA to consider ready-made products to exhibit at the European World Expo Milano 2015. The Vanuatu pavilion is expected to be completed in about two weeks.

Labour Commissioner Kaluat has advised that work permits will not be as easily obtained as heretofore for foreign labour in this coming year in view of the Government’s intention to have ni-Vanuatu occupying 50% of the workforce. Many will be surprised that target was not met long ago.

MV Southern Star, the object of a badly managed Vanuatu aid request, has been sent to the bottom, a thousand metres down, like its equally un-lamented cousin, Northern Star, between Pango and Devil’s Points.