Category Archives: Vanuatu

APJC 2015

  • Fellows and Fasilitators of APJC Training (Photo courtesy of APJC)

    Fellows and Fasilitators of APJC Training (Photo courtesy of APJC)

    I am here in Melbourne with 16 other colleagues from Indonesia, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Tonga, Timor Leste and my own country Solomon Islands for the Asia Pacific Journalism training 2015. It has been quite an experience learning new information, meeting new people and adapting slowly to the cold weather. For the past two weeks we’ve been getting to know from our very expert presenters about leadership, reporting on the economy, and now mobile journalism! We’ve been learning from each other as well. It’s been exciting! We are heading to Canberra this Sunday so there’s more to come! I am certainly looking forward to it. Bring it on APJC!! Tagio tumas! 👍👍👍


Starting new Newspaper

It’s been almost a month since the end of the fellowship program we attended at the Asia Pacific Journalism Center in Melbourne.

All the fellows who participated in the five weeks (six for Indonesian colleagues) program are back at work and I suppose implementing what learned from the fellowship.

This may be a shock to some. But I haven’t been back to my place of work since being back in Port Vila, the Vanuatu capital where I am.

Instead, I’ve ventured into media business. A colleague and myself, both used to work for Capitol FM107 radio and the company’s weekly Vanuatu Times newspaper, have started our own newspaper.  (Tried to affix a pix of the front page of issue 1 on this space, but internet connection keeps being interrupted).

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Doing Business in Vanuatu

Doing Business In Vanuatu

Jonas Cullwick

Vanuatu is ranked number 60 on the World Bank ranking for ease of doing business in countries around the world in 2011, down one place from 59 last year.

But  according to the statistics from the World Bank businesses in Vanuatu find it harder to trade and export their products overseas compared to those in Fiji. The World Bank ranks Vanuatu at 142 on trading across borders while Fiji is ranked 103.

On how easy it is to start a business, the two countries are about the same with Fiji ranked 103 and  Vanuatu 4 points down at 107.

However, it is more than twice as easy to close a business in Vanuatu at 50 than in Fiji ranked 117. The reason for this Dionisia might be able to fill us in on.

Dealing with construction permits is also easier in Vanuatu ranked 21 to Fiji 58.

However, it is twice as easy to register a company in Fiji at rank number 50 to Vanuatu 108.

It is also twice as easy to get credit assistance in Fiji to Vanuatu, and investors are also better protected in Fiji than in Vanuatu.

Vanuatu, 19 is ranked just a few points better than Fiji, 22 on paying taxes, but Fiji’s ranking of 63 on enforcing contracts is better than Vanuatu’s on 76.

Low internet social networking particpation from Vanuatu

Compared to other South Pacific island countries, Vanuatu has one of the lowest number of people who use social networking tools such as Blogs, Facebook, My Space, YouTube and Twitter.

by Asthma Helper

The result of a survey on the number of Facebook users in the region in 2010 was released to participants of the Asia Pacific Journalism Centre AusAID ALA Fellowship on Reporting the Economic Life of the Communities by Alex Wake, Journalism Lecturer at Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology.

From the survey Vanuatu has a total of 4,940 people on Facebook.

This is the same for Tonga whose population is one-third of that for Vanuatu.

In comparison, nearby New Caledonia with the same population as Vanuatu has 54,220 Facebook users.

For other countries:

  • Fiji – 83,040
  • PNG – 21,220
  • Australia – 8-million plus.

There are a number of factors for the comparatively low number of Facebook users in Vanuatu.

One of these is that generally, Ni-Vanuatu are not easily keen on sharing their thoughts and views in such a public arena.

But most importantly though, it is the issue of lack of access to computers and communications capacity, which is the main hindrance in this case, I believe.

Now, you will find that students studying overseas such in Australia, New Zealand, New Caledonia, Fiji, and further abroad are those that make up the bulk of the four thousand Ni-Vanuatu and other people in the country now on Facebook.

This issue is a classic example of the important need for the Government, the Telecommunication Regulatory Authority, Telecom Vanuatu Limited and Digicel to address this issue.

What do you think can and should be done to increase the number of Ni-Vanuatu having access to the internet and the social networking sites?