18 Feb 2015

Luganville MP urges promotion of Santo as hub

11:09 am on 18 February 2015

An MP in Luganville in Vanuatu's north has welcomed the government's decision to approve the renovation of the local wharf.

Santo, Vanuatu

Santo, Vanuatu Photo: RNZ / Johnny Blades

As the capital of Vanuatu's biggest island, Espiritu Santo, and the country's second major town, Luganville is a significant regional agriculture port and a focus of increasing tourism development.

Kalfau Moli, who has been outspoken on the need for more resources to be allocated to Santo, says the government has finally recognised that Luganville is an important economic hub for Vanuatu.

"The wharf is by far one of the biggest developments which Luganville or the north of the country has witnessed for over 35 years. So it is good for all of us, but the other issue we have is to make sure that the wharf is promoted as a hub."

Kalfau Moli says he hopes Vanuatu's airline seeks to tap into Santo's potential with increased regional partnerships.

The wharf renovation groundbreaking ceremony was held last week.

Luganville's wharf is to be extended by about three-hundred metres, allowing two cruise ships to dock simultaneously.

The construction work will be undertaken by a Chinese company, Shanghai Construction Group, and is expected to end in 2017.