5 Aug 2013

Vanuatu expects airport company will build resorts and casino

4:58 am on 5 August 2013

The Vanuatu government says it expects a Singaporean company it wants to develop the country's airports will also build and operate resorts, including one with a casino.

Vanuatu Trade Development has signed a memorandum of understanding with the government for the development of airports on Tanna, Malekula, Santo and possibly Pentecost, as well as building a new main airport for the country on Efate.

The company is to fund the deal, set at 350 million US dollars, with the government effectively underwriting it.

The deputy prime minister Edward Natapei says the company needs a 50 year deal to pay for its huge investment.

"We have decided to give them that. We hope when the start operating we hope that they will also be investing in resorts because that is probably where they will hopefully be able to accommodate all the tourists coming in. They are also looking at the possibility of establishing a casino in the resort."

The deputy prime minister, Edward Natapei.