Asian Development Bank

ADB, Vanuatu sign $5 million grant to boost transport projects

Vanuatu’s Minister of Finance and Economic Management Johnny Koanapo and ADB Pacific Department Director General Leah Gutierrez signed the agreement, which will fund assessments, planning, and capacity building for implementing transport sector projects.

“Vanuatu is vulnerable to natural hazards, and we must protect our transport sector assets to ensure they do not deteriorate,” said Koanapo. “This ADB support will enhance the readiness of Vanuatu’s transport projects and allow us to be prepared in times of extreme weather and disasters.”

ADB, New Zealand helping Vanuatu expand interisland shipping

The route, which will go to Santo province, has completed bidding and contract award processes and is expected to be operational by the end of this month.

The new route is part of the Shipping Support Subsidy Scheme, which was established in 2012 by the Vanuatu Interisland Shipping Support Project (VISSP) thanks to financing from the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the New Zealand Aid Programme, and the Government of Vanuatu.

ADB, Australia help strengthen Public Financial Management in Pacific

ADB is providing US$2 million and Australia US$390,000 (in equivalent AUD$500,000) in additional financing to the program which was established in June 2020 to support the Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, Niue, Samoa, Tonga, and Tuvalu.

“The additional financing from the Government of Australia is highly appreciated and will be used to expand the scope of the assistance to Fiji where reforms will focus on strengthening public financial management practices in Fiji,” said Regional Director of ADB’s Pacific Subregional Office in Fiji Masayuki Tachiiri.

ADB launches digital health guide for Pacific

 The Digital Health Implementation Guide for the Pacific sets out a clear pathway for countries seeking to implement and invest in digital health. The primary audiences for the user-friendly guide are Pacific health managers and those working in information and communication technology in the health sector.

Vanuatu Government marks start of Brenwe hydro works

Prime Minister Bob Loughman Weibur officiated the ground-breaking ceremony on 7 May of the Vanuatu Energy Access Project (VEAP). Funded by ADB and the Government of Vanuatu, it is the country’s second major hydro power project.

The Prime Minister was joined by the Minister of Climate Change, Bruno Leignkon and Asian Development Bank Unit Head, David Fay, as well as Minister for Justice, Esmon Saimon and community leaders of Northwest Malekula at a ceremony hosted by the people of Unmet and surrounding communities.

ADB has five-year urban development plan for Pacific

It has a road map which identifies major constraints for the delivery of urban services in the Pacific, including fragile economies, limited public land and capacity issues.

The bank also found women and girls having less access to services and resources.

The road map will be used to guide, among other things, the design and implementation of sustaining urban services, such as water supply, sanitation, hygiene, and waste management.

It will also improve spatial planning and help prepare for climate change including flood and drought management.


ADB tips Pacific return to growth in 2021

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) says Pacific member economies contracted by 5.8 percent in 2020 due to Covid-19 but it forecasts a recovery by year's end.

The ADB tips 1.4 percent growth but notes that is contingent on a return of tourism, a start of delayed construction, and the resumption of labour mobility and international trade.

But the bank's Pacific economist Rommel Rabanal said not every country will return to growth and that there are ongoing risks.

ADB backs Vanuatu shipping to remote islands

The loan agreement was signed this week between the bank and Vanuatu government through the Ministry of Transport and Public Utilities.

The loan would cover a period of 13 years towards the cost of the Vanuatu Inter-Island Shipping Support Project.

Part of the funding would be used for the provision of services to Banks and Torres, the Northern part of Vanuatu.

A contractor will be selected by a bidding process to provide a monthly service between Luganville and specific points in Banks and Torres.


Vanuatu signs US$1.5 million grant to support response to COVID-19

The Minister of Finance and Economic Management and ADB Governor, Johnny Koanapo Rasou, signed the US$1.5 million grant agreement Friday, at the Ministry of Finance and Economic Management.

“While Vanuatu remains COVID-19 free, cases in the Pacific are still rising, and this grant will allow Vanuatu further strengthen its ability to mitigate and contain the disease from entering the country,” said Lotte Schou-Zibell, Regional Director of ADB’s Sydney office which is managing ADB operations in Vanuatu.

ADB provides $1 million in relief for Vanuatu after Cyclone Harold

The cyclone affected Ambrym, Malakula, Paama, Ambae, Pentecost, Maewo, Malo, and the large island of Espiritu Santo, where the country’s second-largest city, Luganville, is located.

“As we grapple with the COVID-19 crisis, we must be vigilant and responsive to natural disasters that may occur at any time,” said ADB President Masatsugu Asakawa. “Our Pacific developing member countries are among the most vulnerable countries, globally, to the effects of climate change and ADB stands ready to provide further assistance for Vanuatu to rebuild following the cyclone.”