Vanuatu is an archipelago of 83 islands spread over 1000 km with rich volcanic soils and generally favourable growing conditions. Of the country’s annual USD $835 million GDP, tourism (and related services) is the largest industry sector contributing approximately 60% to national income, while 26% is generated through agriculture.
Of the country’s 260,000 population, approximately 75% are involved in some way with agriculture. Approximately US $35 million is generated through agricultural exports. Vanuatu’s main export commodities include coconut products (copra AUD $5 million, coconut oil AUD $5 million), kava (AUD $10 million), beef (AUD $4 million) and cocoa (AUD $3 million).
Production of agricultural and horticultural products outside of the main commodities is primarily for the domestic market, although spices, coffee and some semi-processed products (canarium nut, tamarind, tamanu oil), and marine ornamental fish are exported.
While Vanuatu has a large flagged-fishing fleet, onshore fish processing and exports are relatively limited. This may expand in the future. Handicrafts and other value-added products (natural oils and cosmetics) are proving popular among tourists and offer a ‘new export pathway’ for local communities.
Central to the PHAMA approach is the development of strong public-private partnerships between governments and private sectors to help manage market access. Market Access Working Groups (MAWGs) have been established by PHAMA with in the core PHAMA countries. Members of these MAWGs include private sector representatives (e.g. exporters and producer groups) and relevant government agencies responsible for elements of market access (e.g. Departments of Quarantine, Trade, Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry).
To broaden engagement with the private sector, PHAMA has also facilitated the establishment of Industry Working Groups (lWGs) specific to each of Vanuatu' s key ex port industries: kava, cocoa and beef. MAWGs and IWGs provide the link between producers, industry and government.
PHAMA’s strategy in Vanuatu is to focus on improving market access for the main existing export industries kava, cocoa and beef, and to promote value-adding opportunities relating to the expanding tourism market (e.g. handicrafts). The development of IWGs is key to this approach. Current focus areas include:
The Industry and its significance Kava is the third largest export commodity in Vanuatu, generating an estimated VUV807 million (AUD 10 million) in annual export earnings, and providing income to over 30,000 households across many of the country’s islands. Livelihood income is generated from kava through direct export of kava chips, local sale in “nakamals”...Read More
Tourism is Vanuatu’s largest industry (by value) and has experienced significant growth, particularly the cruise ship sector. Every year Vanuatu receives, on average, 240,000 cruise ship and 110,000 air passengers, mainly from Australia and New Zealand. Handicrafts are an important trade product for the tourism industry in Vanuatu.Read More
The Industry and its significance Cocoa is one of Vanuatu’s main exports, with more than 1,500 tons exported annually. It is an important cash crop: 25% of rural households in Vanuatu are involved in cocoa production. Most cocoa is produced by smallholder farmers based in the northern islands of Vanuatu and then exported by three...Read More