5 Nov 2008

Vanuatu sees labour mobility becoming increasingly important to its economy

5:02 pm on 5 November 2008

Vanuatu's Government expects labour mobility schemes to become an increasingly important part of its economy.

Vanuatue provided the most workers in the first year of New Zealand's Recognised Seasonal Employer scheme, and expects to send several hundred more in the new season which is now underway.

Meanwhile a similar Australian labour mobility scheme gets underway in January.

Vanuatu Finance Minister, Sela Molisa, says he has been told by Australia that they may eventually require up to ten thousand workers.

"That will be really a big boost to the number of people going overseas for assistance work. If the New Zealand workers [who] now number about one thousand seven hundred go to two thousand, from Vanuatu, bringing in almost ten thousand dollars, then obviously if that number doubles in Australia, they will bring more and more money, remittances, amount of remittances to Vanuatu. That will be very good for the economy, especially if tourism starts reducing."