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Vanuatu (2001)

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Vanuatu 2001 year

Administrative divisions 6 provinces; Malampa, Penama, Sanma, Shefa, Tafea, Torba
Age structure 0-14 years:
36.35% (male 35,822; female 34,299)

15-64 years:
60.43% (male 59,764; female 56,808)

65 years and over:
3.22% (male 3,348; female 2,869) (2001 est.)
Agriculture - products copra, coconuts, cocoa, coffee, taro, yams, coconuts, fruits, vegetables; fish, beef
Airports 32 (2000 est.)
Airports - with paved runways total:

2,438 to 3,047 m:

914 to 1,523 m:
1 (2000 est.)
Airports - with unpaved runways total:

1,524 to 2,437 m:

914 to 1,523 m:

under 914 m:
17 (2000 est.)
Area total:
12,200 sq km

12,200 sq km

0 sq km

includes more than 80 islands
Area - comparative slightly larger than Connecticut
Background The British and French who settled the New Hebrides in the 19th century, agreed in 1906 to an Anglo-French Condominium, which administered the islands until independence in 1980.
Birth rate 25.4 births/1,000 population (2001 est.)
Budget revenues:
$94.4 million

$99.8 million, including capital expenditures of $30.4 million (1996 est.)
Capital Port-Vila
Climate tropical; moderated by southeast trade winds
Coastline 2,528 km
Constitution 30 July 1980
Country name conventional long form:
Republic of Vanuatu

conventional short form:

New Hebrides
Currency vatu (VUV)
Death rate 8.38 deaths/1,000 population (2001 est.)
Debt - external $48 million (1997 est.)
Diplomatic representation from the US the US does not have an embassy in Vanuatu; the ambassador to Papua New Guinea is accredited to Vanuatu
Diplomatic representation in the US Vanuatu does not have an embassy in the US, it does, however, have a Permanent Mission to the UN
Disputes - international claims Matthew and Hunter Islands east of New Caledonia
Economic aid - recipient $45.8 million (1995)
Economy - overview The economy is based primarily on subsistence or small-scale agriculture which provides a living for 65% of the population. Fishing, offshore financial services, and tourism, with about 50,000 visitors in 1997, are other mainstays of the economy. Mineral deposits are negligible; the country has no known petroleum deposits. 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. The most recent natural disaster, a severe earthquake in November 1999 followed by a tsunami, caused extensive damage to the northern island of Pentecote and left thousands homeless. GDP growth has risen less than 3% on average in the 1990s. In response to foreign concerns, the government is moving to tighten regulation of its offshore financial center.
Electricity - consumption 32.6 million kWh (1999)
Electricity - exports 0 kWh (1999)
Electricity - imports 0 kWh (1999)
Electricity - production 35 million kWh (1999)
Electricity - production by source fossil fuel:



0% (1999)
Elevation extremes lowest point:
Pacific Ocean 0 m

highest point:
Tabwemasana 1,877 m
Environment - current issues a majority of the population does not have access to a potable and reliable supply of water; deforestation
Environment - international agreements party to:
Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 94

signed, but not ratified:
none of the selected agreements
Ethnic groups indigenous Melanesian 94%, French 4%, Vietnamese, Chinese, Pacific Islanders
Exchange rates vatu per US dollar - 143.95 (December 2000), 137.82 (2000), 129.08 (1999), 127.52 (1998), 115.87 (1997), 111.72 (1996)
Executive branch chief of state:
President Father John BANI (since 25 March 1999)

head of government:
Prime Minister Edward NATAPEI (since 16 April 2001); Deputy Prime Minister Serge VOHOR (since 16 April 2001)

Council of Ministers appointed by the prime minister, responsible to Parliament

president elected for a four-year term by an electoral college consisting of Parliament and the presidents of the regional councils for a five-year term; election for president last held 25 March 1999 (next to be held NA 2003); following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or majority coalition is usually elected prime minister by Parliament from among its members; election for prime minister last held 16 April 2001 (next to be held NA 2002)

election results:
Father John BANI elected president; percent of electoral college vote - NA%; Edward NATAPEI elected prime minister by Parliament with a total of 27 out of 52 votes

the government of Prime Minister Barak SOPE was ousted in a no confidence vote on 14 April 2001 and Edward NATAPEI was elected the new prime minister by Parliament
Exports 0 kWh (1999)
Exports $25.3 million (f.o.b., 1999)
Exports - commodities copra, kava, beef, cocoa, timber, coffee
Exports - partners Japan 32%, Germany 14%, Spain 8%, New Caledonia 7%, Australia 2% (1997 est.)
Fiscal year calendar year
Flag description two equal horizontal bands of red (top) and green with a black isosceles triangle (based on the hoist side) all separated by a black-edged yellow stripe in the shape of a horizontal Y (the two points of the Y face the hoist side and enclose the triangle); centered in the triangle is a boar's tusk encircling two crossed namele leaves, all in yellow
GDP purchasing power parity - $245 million (1999 est.)
GDP - composition by sector agriculture:


71% (1999 est.)
GDP - per capita purchasing power parity - $1,300 (1999 est.)
GDP - real growth rate -2.5% (1999 est.)
Geographic coordinates 16 00 S, 167 00 E
Highways total:
1,070 km

256 km

814 km (1996)
Household income or consumption by percentage share lowest 10%:

highest 10%:
Imports 0 kWh (1999)
Imports $77.2 million (f.o.b., 1999)
Imports - commodities machinery and equipment, foodstuffs, fuels
Imports - partners Japan 52%, Australia 20%, New Caledonia, Singapore, New Zealand, France, Fiji (1997 est.)
Independence 30 July 1980 (from France and UK)
Industrial production growth rate 1% (1997 est.)
Industries food and fish freezing, wood processing, meat canning
Infant mortality rate 61.05 deaths/1,000 live births (2001 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 2.5% (1999 est.)
International organization participation ACCT, ACP, AsDB, C, ESCAP, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFC, IFRCS, IMF, IMO, Intelsat (nonsignatory user), IOC, ITU, NAM, Sparteca, SPC, SPF, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNMIBH, UNTAET, UPU, WFTU, WHO, WMO, WTrO (observer)
Internet Service Providers (ISPs) 1 (2000)
Irrigated land NA sq km
Judicial branch Supreme Court (chief justice is appointed by the president after consultation with the prime minister and the leader of the opposition, three other justices are appointed by the president on the advice of the Judicial Service Commission)
Labor force NA
Labor force - by occupation agriculture 65%, services 32%, industry 3% (1995 est.)
Land boundaries 0 km
Land use arable land:

permanent crops:

permanent pastures:

forests and woodland:

11% (1993 est.)
Languages English (official), French (official), pidgin (known as Bislama or Bichelama)
Legal system unified system being created from former dual French and British systems
Legislative branch unicameral Parliament (52 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)

last held 6 March 1998 (next to be held NA 2002)

election results:
percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - VP 18, UMP 12, NUP 11, other and independent 11; note - political party associations are fluid; there have been four changes of government since the November 1995 elections

the National Council of Chiefs advises on matters of custom and land
Life expectancy at birth total population:
60.95 years

59.58 years

62.39 years (2001 est.)
Literacy definition:
age 15 and over can read and write

total population:


48% (1979 est.)
Location Oceania, group of islands in the South Pacific Ocean, about three-quarters of the way from Hawaii to Australia
Map references Oceania
Maritime claims measured from claimed archipelagic baselines

contiguous zone:
24 NM

continental shelf:
200 NM or to the edge of the continental margin

exclusive economic zone:
200 NM

territorial sea:
12 NM
Merchant marine total:
54 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 1,067,384 GRT/1,330,543 DWT

ships by type:
bulk 23, cargo 7, chemical tanker 3, combination bulk 2, container 1, liquefied gas 3, petroleum tanker 2, refrigerated cargo 7, vehicle carrier 6

includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Australia 2, Canada 1, China 1, France 1, Greece 1, Hong Kong 1, Japan 22, Netherlands 1, Norway 1, Switzerland 1, US 4 (2000 est.)
Military branches no regular military forces; Vanuatu Police Force (VPF; includes the paramilitary Vanuatu Mobile Force or VMF)
Military expenditures - dollar figure $NA
Military expenditures - percent of GDP NA%
National holiday Independence Day, 30 July (1980)
Nationality noun:
Ni-Vanuatu (singular and plural)

Natural hazards tropical cyclones or typhoons (January to April); volcanism causes minor earthquakes
Natural resources manganese, hardwood forests, fish
Net migration rate 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2001 est.)
Political parties and leaders Melanesian Progressive Party or MPP [Barak SOPE]; National United Party or NUP [Willie TITONGOA]; Union of Moderate Parties or UMP [Serge VOHOR]; Vanuaaku Party (Our Land Party) or VP [Edward NATAPEI]; Vanuatu Republican Party [Maxime Carlot KORMAN]
Political pressure groups and leaders NA
Population 192,910 (July 2001 est.)
Population below poverty line NA%
Population growth rate 1.7% (2001 est.)
Ports and harbors Forari, Port-Vila, Santo (Espiritu Santo)
Radio broadcast stations AM 2, FM 2, shortwave 1 (1998)
Radios 62,000 (1997)
Railways 0 km
Religions Presbyterian 36.7%, Anglican 15%, Roman Catholic 15%, indigenous beliefs 7.6%, Seventh-Day Adventist 6.2%, Church of Christ 3.8%, other 15.7%
Sex ratio at birth:
1.05 male(s)/female

under 15 years:
1.04 male(s)/female

15-64 years:
1.05 male(s)/female

65 years and over:
1.17 male(s)/female

total population:
1.05 male(s)/female (2001 est.)
Suffrage 18 years of age; universal
Telephone system general assessment:


satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Pacific Ocean)
Telephones - main lines in use 4,000 (1996)
Telephones - mobile cellular 154 (1996)
Television broadcast stations 1 (1997)
Terrain mostly mountains of volcanic origin; narrow coastal plains
Total fertility rate 3.19 children born/woman (2001 est.)
Unemployment rate NA%
Waterways none
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