macrohistory & world report

Republic of Vanuatu


Republic of Vanuatu with its capital Port-Vila
in the South Pacific Ocean

World Factbook as of November 2014: "This South Pacific island economy is based primarily on small-scale agriculture, which provides a living for about two-thirds of the population. Fishing, offshore financial services, and tourism, with nearly 197,000 visitors in 2008, are other mainstays of the economy... A small light industry sector caters to the local market. Tax revenues come mainly from import duties. Economic development is hindered by dependence on relatively few commodity exports, vulnerability to natural disasters, and long distances from main markets and between constituent islands. In response to foreign concerns, the government has promised to tighten regulation of its offshore financial center. In mid-2002, the government stepped up efforts to boost tourism through improved air connections, resort development, and cruise ship facilities. Agriculture, especially livestock farming, is a second target for growth. Australia and New Zealand are the main suppliers of tourists and foreign aid."

Wikipedia, November 3, 2014: More than 80% of the population lives in "rural, isolated villages with access to their own gardens and food supplies." (Good photographs on Wikipedia.)

The British Government advises (2014):

Vanuatu lies on the Pacific 'Ring of Fire' and regularly experiences seismic and volcanic activity, with over 2,000 seismic events reported each year.

Most visits to Vanuatu are trouble-free. The main types of incidents for which British nationals require consular assistance in Vanuatu are for replacing lost or stolen passports and petty crime. Crime rates are low, but increasing; make sure your accommodation is secure and avoid visiting isolated locations alone.

Estimated per capita GDP
2013: $4,800


July 2014: 266,937
July 2011: 224,564
July 2005: 205,754

Birth / death rates
2014: births 25.69, deaths 4.14
2011: births 20.85, deaths 7.43

Net migration rate
2014: More people leaving than arriving, a net loss of 1.5 per 1,000.

Infant mortality (deaths before the age of one year per 1,000 live births, a remarkable improvement if 2011 figure is correct)
2014: 16.41 deaths
2011: 46.85
2005: 55.16


Average life expectancy at birth, another big improvement.
2014: 72.72 years
2011: 64.7 years
2005: 62.49

Literacy (age 15 and older)
2011:males 84.9%, females 81.6%
1999 census: 74%

Protestant 69.3, Roman Catholic 15 percent. Other 15.7 percent


More than 80 islands, about 65 of which are inhabited. Southeast of the Solomon Islands, north of New Caledonia and west of Fiji, together equivalent to 109.5 by 109.5 kilometers or roughly 68.5 miles. Tropical.


Chief of state is a presidents elected for a five-year term by an electoral college consisting of parliament and the presidents of the regional councils. A unicameral parliament with 52 members elected by popular vote for to four-year terms.

Capital: Port-Vila.

Recent History

The British and French together administered the islands until independence in 1980.

The World Factbook

Copyright © 2009-2013 by Frank E. Smitha. All rights reserved.