Statistical information Vanuatu 1996Vanuatu

Map of Vanuatu | Geography | People | Government | Economy | Energy | Communication
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Vanuatu in the World
Vanuatu in the World


Vanuatu - Introduction 1996
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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.

Vanuatu - Geography 1996
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Location: Oceania, group of islands in the South Pacific Ocean, about three-quarters of the way from Hawaii to Australia

Geographic coordinates

Map reference

Total: 14,760 km²
Land: 14,760 km²
Comparative: slightly larger than Connecticut
Comparative note: Includes more than 80 islands

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 2,528 km

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

Climate: Tropical; moderated by southeast trade winds

Terrain: Mostly mountains of volcanic origin; narrow coastal plains

Extremes lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
Extremes highest point: Mount Tabwemasana 1,877 m

Natural resources:
Hardwood forests

Land use

Land use
Arable land: 1%
Permanent crops: 5%
Permanent pastures: 2%
Forests and woodland: 1%
Other: 91%

Irrigated land: NA

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards


Vanuatu - People 1996
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177,504 (July 1996 est.)
173,648 (July 1995 est.)

Growth rate:
2.17% (1996 est.)
2.22% (1995 est.)

Noun: Ni-Vanuatu (singular and plural)
Adjective: Ni-Vanuatu

Ethnic groups:
Indigenous Melanesian 94%
French 4%
Vietnamese, Chinese, Pacific Islanders

Languages: English (official), French (official), pidgin (known as Bislama or Bichelama)

Presbyterian 36.7%
Anglican 15%
Catholic 15%
Indigenous beliefs 7.6%
Seventh-Day Adventist 6.2%
Church of Christ 3.8%
Other 15.7%

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years:
40% (male 36,409; female 35,105) (July 1996 est.)
41% (male 36,128; female 34,819) (July 1995 est.)

15-64 years:
57% (male 51,969; female 48,901) (July 1996 est.)
56% (male 50,456; female 47,320) (July 1995 est.)

65 years and over:
3% (male 2,802; female 2,318) (July 1996 est.)
3% (male 2,708; female 2,217) (July 1995 est.)

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate:
2.17% (1996 est.)
2.22% (1995 est.)

Birth rate:
30.57 births/1000 population (1996 est.)
31.26 births/1000 population (1995 est.)

Death rate:
8.84 deaths/1000 population (1996 est.)
9.06 deaths/1000 population (1995 est.)

Net migration rate:
0 migrant(s)/1000 population (1996 est.)
0 migrant(s)/1000 population (1995 est.)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: a majority of the population does not have access to a potable and reliable supply of water
Current issues Natural hazards: tropical cyclones or typhoons (January to April); volcanism causes minor earthquakes
International agreements: party to_Biodiversity, Climate Change, Endangered Species, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution; signed, but not ratified_Law of the Sea

Air pollutants

Sex ratio
At birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
Under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 1.21 male(s)/female
All ages:
1.06 male(s)/female (1996 est.) Infant Mortality Rate:64.6 deaths/1000 live births (1996 est.)
66.3 deaths/1000 live births (1995 est.)

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 60.13 (1996 est.), 59.71 years (1995 est.)
Male: 58.27 (1996 est.), 57.9 years (1995 est.)
Female: 62.09 years (1996 est.), 61.61 years (1995 est.)

Total fertility rate:
4.01 children born/woman (1996 est.)
4.14 children born/woman (1995 est.)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access


Major infectious diseases

Obesity adult prevalence rate

Alcohol consumption

Tobacco use

Children under the age of 5 years underweight

Education expenditures

Definition: age 15 and over that can read and write (1979)
Total population: 53%
Male: 57%
Female: 48%

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Vanuatu - Government 1996
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Country name
Conventional long form: Republic of Vanuatu
Conventional short form: Vanuatu
Former: New Hebrides

Government type: Republic

Capital: Port-Vila

Administrative divisions: 6 provinces; Malampa, Penama, Sanma, Shefa, Tafea, Torba

Dependent areas

Independence: 30 July 1980 (from France and U.K.)

National holiday: Independence Day, 30 July (1980)

Constitution: 30 July 1980

Legal system: Unified system being created from former dual French and British systems

International law organization participation


Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch
Chief of state: President Jean Marie LEYE (since 2 March 1994) was elected for a five-year term by an electoral college consisting of Parliament and the presidents of the regional councils
Head of government: Prime Minister Maxime Carlot KORMAN (since 23 February 1996) was elected by Parliament from among its members; Deputy Prime Minister Donald KALPOKAS (since 23 February 1996) was appointed by the prime minister from among members of Parliament; note_Prime Minister VOHOR resigned 7 February 1996 when faced with a no-confidence vote in Parliament; Parliament then convened an extraordinary session and voted 30 to 20 to elect Maxime Carlot KORMAN as the new prime minister
Cabinet: Council of Ministers; appointed by the prime minister, responsible to parliament

Legislative branch: Unicameral Parliament:Elections last held 30 November 1995 (next to be held NA November 1999); results_percent of vote by party NA; seats_(50 total) UMP 17, VP 14, NUP 9, MPP 5, TU 2, Na-Griamel Movement 1, Friend Melanesian Party 1, independent 1; note_after the election, a coalition was formed by the Union of Moderate Parties and the National United Party to form a new government on 14 December 1995, but political party associations are fluid
Note: The National Council of Chiefs advises on matters of custom and land

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

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AsDB, C, ESCAP, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFC, IFRCS, IMF, IMO, Intelsat (nonsignatory user), IOC, ITU, NAM, Sparteca, SPC, SPF, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WFTU, WHO, WMO

Diplomatic representation

Flag descriptionflag of Vanuatu: 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

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Vanuatu - Economy 1996
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Economy overview: The economy is based primarily on subsistence farming which provides a living for the bulk of the population. Fishing and tourism are the other mainstays of the economy, with 43,000 visitors in 1992. 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.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate: 2% (1994 est.)

Real gdp per capita ppp

Gross national saving
Gdp composition by sector of origin

Gdp composition by end use

Gdp composition by sector of origin

Agriculture products: Export crops_coconuts, cocoa, coffee, fish; subsistence crops_taro, yams, coconuts, fruits, vegetables

Food and fish freezing
Wood processing
Meat canning

Industrial production growth rate: Growth rate 3.4% (1993 est.), 8.1% (1990; accounts for about 10% of GDP

Labor force: 66,597 (1989 est.)
By occupation Agriculture: 65%
By occupation Services: 32%
By occupation Industry: 3% (1995 est.)
Labor force

Unemployment rate: NA

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Revenues: $74.8 million (1994 est.), $90 million (1989 est.)
Expenditures: $76.1 million, including capital expenditures of $NA (1994 est.), $103 million, including capital expenditures of $45 million (1989 est.)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: Calendar year

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices

Central bank discount rate

Commercial bank prime lending rate

Stock of narrow money

Stock of broad money

Stock of domestic credit

Market value of publicly traded shares

Current account balance

total value. $24.6 million (f.o.b., 1994 est.)
$14.9 million (f.o.b., 1991)


EU 32%
Japan 29%
Australia 11%
New Caledonia 7% (1993)

Total value:
$78.6 million (f.o.b., 1994 est.)
$74 million (f.o.b., 1991)

Machines and vehicles
Food and beverages
Basic manufactures
Raw materials and fuels

Australia 41%
France 15%
Japan 9%
NZ 11%
Fiji 6% (1992)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external:
$38.2 million (yearend 1993)
$40 million (yearend 1992)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: Vatu (VT) per US$1_114.40 (January 1996), 112.11 (1995), 116.41 (1994), 121.58 (1993), 113.39 (1992), 111.68 (1991), 116.57 (1990)

Vanuatu - Energy 1996
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 30 million kWh

Electricity consumption
Per capita: 181 kWh (1993)

Electricity exports

Electricity imports

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

Vanuatu - Communication 1996
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system: 3,000 telephones
Local: NA
Intercity: NA
International: 1 INTELSAT (Pacific Ocean) earth station

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Vanuatu - Military 1996
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Military expenditures

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Vanuatu - Transportation 1996
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 31
2438 to 3047 m: 1
15-24 to 2437 m: 1
Under 914 m: 17
914 to 1523 m: 11

Airports with paved runways

Airports with unpaved runways






Merchant marine
Total: 112 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 1,587,286 GRT/2,173,970 DWT
Ships by type: bulk 38, cargo 29, chemical tanker 3, combination bulk 1, container 3, liquefied gas tanker 5, livestock carrier 1, oil tanker 6, refrigerated cargo 16, vehicle carrier 10
Note: A flag of convenience registry; includes 21 countries among which are ships of the U.S. 19, Japan 37, Netherlands 10, China 4, UAE 3, Greece 6, Canada 4, Hong Kong 6, Russia 2, Australia 2 (1995 est.)

Ports and terminals

Vanuatu - Transnational issues 1996
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Disputes international

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs

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