Vanuatu Govt eyes positives of PACER Plus as national consultation opens

How much will Vanuatu export commodities benefit from Pacer Plus? These details are yet to be worked out. Photo: Tanna Coffee

How much will Vanuatu export commodities benefit from Pacer Plus? These details are yet to be worked out. Photo: Tanna Coffee

Daily Post today led with PACER Plus and an implied commitment by Australia and New Zealand to provide Readiness Packages to each signing country of A$7.7 million. Reminding the two big neighbours of this commitment, Former Trade Minister Ham Lini said the Vanuatu Government is of the firm view that PACER Plus has the potential to provide a platform for economic transformation and diversification of our economy. The project is development oriented to facilitate economic growth and sustainable development in the Forum Island Countries. Minister Lini was addressing a one-day start to the national consultation at the Holiday Inn.

Radio Vanuatu News today at lunchtime led with an item on visa-free travel for Vanuatu passport holders to Russia and to Venezuela is now possible. And visa-free travel also applies for Russian and Venezuelan nationals to Vanuatu.This follows the signing of agreements to this effect at the United Nations this week by Foreign Minister Leingkone.

Vanuatu further setting and ensuring world standards for kava as used as a beverage, by the Codex Alimentarius Commission, in Vanuatu this week, also led Daily Post news today. North American, island country and Australian and New Zealand members of the Codex Commission all endorsed Vanuatu as the co-ordinator of the project for a further term during their meeting at the Le Lagon Hotel.

The Income Tax Consultation started this week at the National Convention Centre has also been extensively reported by all media in a way which only the big titles can handle. Civil servants comprised the biggest group present. The Secretariat of the Revenue Review Governance Committee said the Tax Consultation had “received a balanced and mixed response, Tuesday, and also from the Opposition,” Daily Post reported. Feedbacks are all going to be considered as the consultation proceeds.

Unelco has presented a cholesterol machine to the Health Department. In the past it has not been possible to make a test for cholesterol because the Central Hospital has lacked the costly equipment. What Unelco has handed over cost approx. Vt 600,000 and is presently being used to test cholesterol levels of hospital staff.

A fish market like the former Natai is soon to be a feature of the Federation premises at Tebakor. No date for works was given, but an agreement for joint commitment was made between Agriculture and Public Works senior personnel. It is part of government moves to build up the primary production sector of the economy.