New Bureau of Standards to assist with quality control of imports and exports

Vanuatu Deputy PM Joe Natuman and officials at the opening of the new Bureau of Standards, Wednesday 17 August 2017. Photo: Pacific Community

Vanuatu Deputy PM Joe Natuman and officials at the opening of the new Bureau of Standards, Wednesday 17 August 2017. Photo: Pacific Community

Trade Minister and Deputy PM Joe Natuman opened the Vanuatu Bureau of Standards yesterday. Minister Natuman explained to those at the opening that it is important that Vanuatu has quality standards for products it exports and imports. Vanuatu’s agricultural products especially must be subject to stringent quality standards. The Bureau of Standards office will enable quick answers to exporters and foreign importers as to requirements.

The Department of Cooperatives has a new Read the rest of this entry »


Tanna kastom shines on the Oscars red carpet

Red carpet kastom – directors and cast of Tanna at last night's Academy Awards in Los Angeles, USA. Photo: @tannamovie/Twitter

Red carpet kastom – directors and cast of Tanna at the Academy Awards ceremony in Los Angeles, California USA last night. Photo: @tannamovie/Twitter

Just to have been nominated for an Oscar is still something to celebrate even if Tanna did not win the foreign language film winning category. Iranian film The Salesman has won the category. Nevertheless it generated enough excitement to have a powerful kastom dance from Tanna take over the foyer of the National Convention Centre in Port Vila during live streaming of the Oscars ceremony here yesterday afternoon, where Tanna stars Dain and Wawa were guests of honour. Dain told Len Garae of Daily Post he “never dreamed the movie would make it to Port Vila let alone as far as Hollywood”.

A different kind of Vanuatu matter has also received media coverage in the United States — Read the rest of this entry »

Vanuatu kava export quality gets big boost from amended Kava Act

Vanuatu's noble kava varieties

Vanuatu’s noble kava varieties

Amendments to the Kava Act are now gazetted. The Acting DG of Agriculture, Timothy Tumukon, is reported as saying “First and foremost the amendment will be used to clean up the kava export industry especially since there has been extensive media coverage of kava exports in the recent past.” Daily Post reports him saying there were issues involving kava quality as well as individuals who trade the product overseas. Vanuatu Daily Digest is committed to assisting Vanuatu’s noble varieties of kava achieve the international recognition they merit.

“We have pinned our hope on this amendment to be able to Read the rest of this entry »

Vanuatu kava export shipment returned from NZ due to contamination with impurities

kava shell

Happy new year to all our readers and welcome to 2017!

Vanuatu’s regional leadership of kava production and export has been dealt a blow with news this week of a shipment of adulterated kava being returned from New Zealand. Vanuatu’s primacy in the industry began with the recognition of Vanuatu as the original site of domestication of kava, the large number of noble kava varieties established here, and 2002’s Kava Act designed to protect consumers from poor quality kava. In 2016 Vanuatu was given responsibility for the FAO’s Codex Alimentarius research into the crop. Vanuatu’s main export competitor, Fiji, only established similar kava consumer protection legislation last year, and has many fewer noble varieties.

Over 600kg of dried, ground kava in a container exported by JPO Kava Export was returned from New Zealand as adulterated, reports Daily Post. Director of Vanuatu Biosecurity Dept Timothy Tumukon says the shipment looked to be mixed with ‘makas’—bark and root residue added to increase the Read the rest of this entry »

Opinion: PACER Plus is a poor deal for Vanuatu businesses that we should walk away from

Vanuatu says no to PACER Plus

As negotiations for PACER Plus, the proposed regional free trade agreement between Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Island Countries draw to a close, we can now see what it contains—and more importantly, what it means for Vanuatu producers. Read the rest of this entry »

Govt considers income tax above Vt500,000; Noble kava varieties boosted by national campaign

Kava plant

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Vanuatu daily news digest | 20 January 2013

The plot thickens. After this blog broke the story last Friday, Radio Vanuatu News and Daily Post took the news of Foreign Minister Alfred Carlot and Phocea claimant Vu Anh Quan Saken meeting in Papua New Guinea a step further this morning. The Vanuatu Government says it is not aware of Minister Carlot’s visit to PNG, announced Government Public Relations Officer, Jeff Joel Patunvanu, after it was revealed that PNG Police are likely to arrest Carlot in relation to a transnational crime. This came to light after the arrival in PNG and arrest of Vu Anh Quan Saken and Charles Henry Saken on Thursday. Both are wanted in Vanuatu in connection with the mega-yacht Phocea saga. This is the luxury sailing boat in Vila Harbour detained by the Vanuatu Ports and Harbours Director despite the efforts of Prime Minister Sato Kilman to have the vessel released.

PNG authorities became suspicious about the Sakens’ arrival on a chartered Boeing 737 at Port Moresby’s Jackson airport after PNG officials received correspondence from the Vanuatu Ambassador to the European Union in Brussels requesting clearance for the Sakens, who were said to be both holding Vanuatu diplomatic passports. The Sakens made an unusual request for the 737’s crew to sleep on board during its stopover in Port Moresby, but this was denied by the PNG aviation authorities. PNG Police suspect there are quantities of cash on board as the Sakens arrived with large sacks, saying they would clean the plane, which had come from the Maldives and Singapore. The two Sakens were carrying false identity documentation and claimed they were in PNG on a private mission with Minister Carlot.

Reproduced below is a letter from the Embassy of Papua New Guinea requesting clearance for the Sakens:

Request from Brussels PNG embassy for flight clearance for Vu Anh Quan Saken and Saken Charles Henry, 11/01/2013

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