17 Mar 2018

US farmers show interest in Vanuatu seasonal workers

2:01 pm on 17 March 2018

Farmers in the United States have indicated they are interested in engaging ni-Vanuatu workers on seasonal employment on their farms.

This was conveyed to the Daily Post newspaper by MP Francois Chani, the government's Special Envoy on Labour Mobility.

Farmers in California on the US West Coast, relayed their interest to Mr Chani through the farmers' network with farmers on Vanuatu's Seasonal Work Program with Australia.

He said he would be meeting with representatives of these farmers towards the end of this month, indicating the farmers' need for seasonal workers was relatively urgent.

"I will be discussing with them where government can come in on the idea and what will be government's position because I can talk all I want, but at the end of the day i will need the Government to support this idea."

Mr Chani said the visa issues were yet to be fleshed out, but indicated it was good to see a new potential labour market emerge for ni-Vanuatu.

"It will be good to have a different avenue for labor mobility because we have the same partners all the time - New Zealand, France and Australia. It's good to venture out of this circle a little it and see what happens," the MP said