The launching of a Free Trade Zone on Santo is part of the Ministry for Tourism, Commerce, Industries, Trade, Cooperatives and Ni-Vanuatu Business’ 2019 plans.
Director General (DG) responsible, Roy Mickey Joy, confirmed this when he summarized some of the Ministry’s plans for this year.
DG Joy told 96BUZZ FM that the site is a 50-hectare land area outside of Luganville, which will be established to allow big businesses around the world to come and establish for years and be able to produce entirely for the export market, like in Fiji, Mauritius and Singapore.
He said that Vanuatu has decided to join in the exercise as well.
DG Joy said that the Ministry also has big plans for tourism. This has seen the Ministry negotiating with Lelepa landowners.
He said the Deputy Prime Minister, Bob Loughman who is also responsible for Trades and Tourism will meet with Lelepa landowners to agree on a particular project site.
The DG also mentioned that this year, Vanuatu will be receiving the first ever biggest Caribbean Cruise liner coming to Efate with an expected amount of 6,500 visitors to appear at the Port Vila main wharf.
This is the biggest number of tourists that Vanuatu has ever received in its cruise line schedules.
“We also have plans to support the Trade and Industry policy, so as to create employment and also to follow up on the Ministry’s discussion with the Australia and New Zealand Business Council to support issues such as the RSE workers and also to increase the number of workers to Australia and New Zealand on one end,” DG Joy said.
He added the policy will also allow the Ministry to mobilize and capitalize on the level of development coming in from Canberra and Wellington to support Vanuatu’s budgeted program.