Vanuatu has many unique economic and social advantages, bolstering the Island Nation’s reputation as a key regional and   international destination for investors to do business. Learn about the key facts and rankings about Vanuatu.

The Government

Vanuatu uses what is called “the Westminister model” of Government.

Vanuatu has a Parliamentary democracy political system which is currently headed by a President who has primarily ceremonial powers and who is elected for 5-year terms by a two-thirds majority of an electoral college.

The Parliament of Vanuatu is unicameral and has 52 members who are elected by popular vote every four years, unless earlier dissolved by a majority vote of a three-quarters quorum or by a directive from the President on the advice of the Prime Minister.

The Executive

The Prime Minister and the Council of Ministers constitute the executive Government. The Prime Minister, who is the head of Government, is elected by a majority vote of a three-fourths quorum of the Parliament. The Prime Minister, in turn, appoints the Council of Ministers, whose number may not exceed a quarter of the number of Parliamentary representatives.

Head of State or the President: Pastor Tallis Obed Moses became the ninth Elected President of the republic in 2017. The President is elected for a fixed term of 5 years.

The Judiciary – The Supreme Court and the Subordinate Courts

The Supreme Court of Vanuatu is the superior court of Vanuatu and is based in Port Vila. With the exception of the Chief Justice, all members of the judiciary are appointed by the President of Vanuatu, who acts on the advice of the Judicial Service Commission, pursuant to Article 47(2) of the Constitution of Vanuatu).

The inhabitants of Vanuatu are called Ni-Vanuatu in English, using a recent coinage. The Ni-Vanuatu are primarily (98.5%) of Melanesian descent, with the remainder made up of a mix of Europeans, Asians and other Pacific islanders.

The 2016 post PAM mini- census enumerated 138,265 males and 134,194 females, representing a sex ratio of 103 males per 100 females. The urban population was 67,749 people (24.9% of the total population), and includes the towns of Luganville in Sanma.  The average population density for Vanuatu was 22 people/km².

Population Growth (2016)2.30%
Total population272,459
    Urban Population67,749
    Rural Population204,710
Population density22
Sex Ratio103
Dependency Ratio83
Median Age20
Source: Vanuatu National Statistics Office

Gross Domestic Product (GDP) 2014

GDP Growth%2014/20132.3
GDP (Current Price)VT M201479,109
GDP (Constant Price)VT M201461,400
Per Capita GDPVT M20140.262
Money Supply (M1)VT M201542,658
Official Foreign ReservesVT M201633,495
Source: Vanuatu National Statistics Office   

Trade Statistics 2016

Total ExportsVT M20165,446
Total ImportsVT M201645,766
Trade DeficitVT M2016-40,320
Major Importing Country   
AustraliaVT M20169,156
FijiVT M20164,723
Major Exporting Country   
AustraliaVT M2016949
New CaledoniaVT M2016491
Source: Vanuatu National Statistics Office   

Consumer Price Index

All Groups CPIIndex2016146.7
All GRoups CPI – Change%20160.9
Port VilaIndex2016147.2
Source: Vanuatu National Statistics Office   

Facilitation of External Trade, Free Trade Agreements and Regional FTA’S (Free Trade Agreements)

Currently Vanuatu is a signatory and party to a sub-regional and regional free trade agreements, the MSGFTA and PICTA whilst negotiations on EU-EPA and PACER Plus is still underway which is expected to be completed soon.

MSG (Melanesian Spearhead Group Free Trade Agreement)

Vanuatu is a party to the MSG FTA which is a sub-regional Free Trade Agreement between Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Fiji and the Solomon Islands.

PICTA (Pacific Island Countries Trade Agreement)

Although Vanuatu has signed and announce its readiness to the PICTA agreement, as one of the least developed nations within the Pacific forum island countries, the tariff reduction timeframe  comes into effect on January 1st 2009. 

PACER (Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Cooperation)

Vanuatu has not yet signed the PACER agreement. It is envisaged that a decision to formally ratify the PACER will be determined after negotiations are schedule to complete on December 2014.

ACP EU EPA (Africa Caribbean Pacific European Partnership Agreement)

Vanuatu is actively participating with other Pacific Island Countries in the EPA regional meetings and negotiations with the EU. 

WTO (World Trade Organization)

Vanuatu’s accession package was approved on the 26th of October 2011 and on the 24th of August 2012 WTO welcome Vanuatu as its 157th member. 


Accordion Content

 Literacy and Education2009 Census
Literacy rate (15+)84.8
Literacy rate (15-24)92.1
Tertiary Education3.8
Primary Education51.5
Secondary Education26.4

Source: Vanuatu National Statistics Office

Accordion Content