Infrastructure development is fundamental to a sustainable and prosperous Vanuatu. Around 230, 000 people are scattered over about 80 widely distributed islands, and, as 80% of which live in the rural areas, they are somewhat heavily disadvantaged due to poor quality of infrastructure network. In order to prosper our people and businesses economically and socially, there is need for a safe and integrated transport infrastructure network of roads, wharves, airports and related services. Further, as far as safety of people is concerned, the government must endeavour to meet its obligations to comply with international standards. Due to our geography, we face the challenge of building and maintaining transport infrastructure and services efficiently and economically.
The government will continue to leverage partnerships with international donors, partner governments, the private sector and our communities. The synergy between the stakeholders and government contributes to policy developments and appropriate strategies to ensure equitable and efficient response to the needs of our people in both rural and urban areas. A strong and stable government is also required to respond to demands in cost-effective and timely manner.
The government must ensure an economy based on equitable, sustainable growth that creates jobs and income earning opportunities accessible to all people in rural and urban areas. Thus, an integrated and accessible infrastructure network is required for connecting activities of all sectors of society. Our people expect the government to provide transport infrastructure for easy access to social services and to stimulate economic activities.
These expectations also grow with the growth of tourism, agriculture, and other key industries building back after the devastation of Cyclone Pam. Businesses also continuously need safe and reliable infrastructure network to enable them to be more productive and continue to deliver in support of the government. These developments will further impose immense demand for the provision of a sustainable infrastructure network and services throughout the country.
But our people expect limited government resources to be put to better use. In this environment of limited resources and tight fiscal boundaries, a sound policy driven environment is critical for the government to use its resources more efficiently. Through this plan I encourage my Ministry and its partners to rise to this challenge.
Hon. Claude Christophe Antonie Emelee, Minister of Infrastructure & Public Utilties
There are three departments under the Ministry of Infrastructure and Public Utilties: Civil Aviation Authority of Vanuatu, Department of Ports & Marine and Public Works Department. Find out more about each department below..
Civil Aviation Authority of Vanuatu
The Civil Aviation Authority of Vanuatu is a statutory body under the Ministry of Infrastructure and Public Utilities which oversees all aspects of the Republic of Vanuatu's civil aviation system including regulating access to the 30+ airports and landing which provide critical aviation infrastructure to the country's 65+ inhabited islands. CAAV's mandated purpose is to ensure the safety of all people who engage in, benefit from or otherwise may be impacted by civil aviation within the nation's sovereign airspace. This being the case, CAAV is also the primary regulator of autonomous flying drone operations within Vanuatu airspace.
Civil Aviation Act of 1999 & 2005 (Consolidated 2006)
The Department of Ports and Marine, which is under Ministry of Infrastructure & Public Utilities, is responsible for the implementation of the Shipping and Ports Acts which regulates the Republic of Vanuatu's Ports of Entry, interior ports, the role of harobourmasters who oversee those ports and additional related aspects of maritime operations within the country.
Ports Act comprised of legislation dated 1957-1998 (Consolidated 2006)
Public Works Department is dedicated to contributing to the achievement of the national development goals by providing safe, reliable and affordable infrastructure. Primary task of the department is to manage, maintain and develop the major national transport infrastructure assets – roads, ports and airports.
For more information about Public Works Department visit www.pwd.gov.vu.
There are two regulators under the Ministry of Infrastructure and Public Utilties: Office of the Maritime Regulator and Commissioner of Maritime Affairs Office.
Office of the Maritime Regulator
Following four years of reforms in the Maritime Sector, a new independent government owned entity has been formed to regulate the maritime sector of Vanuatu. The office of the Maritime Regulator to operate as “Vanuatu Maritime Regulator” or VMR came into existence on the 1st of July 2017 under the provisions of its enabling legislation; the maritime sector regulatory Act No. 26 of 2016.
For more information regarding the Office of the Maritime Regulator, please visit their website.
Commissioner of Maritime Affairs Office
Functions and powers of the Commissioner of Maritime Affairs Office are described under the Vanuatu Maritime Authority Act. The proper management and oversight of maritime vessel registration (cargo, fishing, passenger and pleasure vessels) are a primary responsibilty of this is office.