european union

France and EU commit over 471 million vatu to the National University of Vanuatu

This operation, financed by a grant from the French Development Agency (FDA) represents a major strategic issue in Vanuatu's education and digital development policy.

The National University of Vanuatu is the country’s first national university.

Through this funding from the FDA, France is supporting the Government of Vanuatu in the structuring of its national multilingual university by supporting the development of its infrastructure, training offer, its governance, its human resources, and its technical, digital and pedagogical means.

New Pacific-wide initiative targets greater exports and trade

The EUR 10.5 million SAFE Pacific project is funded by the EU and will be implemented by the SPC's Land Resources Division. The project will target increasing production and exports through improved compliance with international trade standards and by adopting approaches that foster greater production for domestic and regional markets.

EU suspends visa free-travel with Vanuatu

Passport sales account for more than a quarter of Vanuatu's government revenue—they made up 35 percent of its revenue in 2020—but the EU has criticised the scheme for its lack of due diligence, including the granting of citizenship to criminals.

An EU proposal to suspend the visa waiver agreement was finalised last week.

Vanuatu Business Resilience Council chair Glen Craig said he estimated the golden passports scheme, which allows people to buy passports for $US130,000, could drop in sales by 80 to 90%.

Vanuatu aims to restore relations with EU over the Visa Waiver arrangement

A statement from PM Loughman said the EU Visa Waiver arrangements are a vital element in the success of the Citizenship Programme.

He said the Vanuatu Government acknowledges that there is merit in the concerns raised by the EU and understands that it is natural for the EU to raise concerns given the Bilateral Agreement between the EU and the Republic of Vanuatu on Visa Waiver arrangements.

EU parliament elects youngest ever president

Ms Metsola, 43, has a record of being anti-abortion, but has billed herself as pro-LGBT rights.

The Maltese national takes over the role from David Sassoli, 65, who died last week after a serious illness.

She is one of three women in the top EU jobs, along with the heads of the European Commission and Central Bank.

But taking questions from journalists on Tuesday, she was asked more than once about her views on women's reproductive rights.

Pacific Community members welcome European Union as Permanent Observer

On 1 August 2021, SPC’s member countries and territories welcomed the EU as the first Permanent Observer in the history of the Pacific’s largest development organisation.

EU unveils sweeping climate change plan

A dozen draft proposals, which still need to be approved by the bloc's 27 member states and the EU parliament, were announced on Wednesday.

They include plans to tax jet fuel and effectively ban the sale of petrol and diesel powered cars within 20 years.

The proposals, however, are likely to face months of negotiations.

The plans triggered serious infighting at the European Commission, the bloc's administrative arm, as the final tweaks were being made, sources told the AFP news agency.

Government calls for stars’ help on post-Brexit EU touring

British acts are no longer guaranteed visa-free travel in the EU and face large fees to tour in some countries.

Many, including Sir Elton, have warned the restrictions could "threaten the future success of British music".

Lord Frost said the government would benefit from their assistance.

He said it would be "extremely helpful" if musicians and music industry bodies could "use their relationships" within the EU "to encourage those governments to be less restrictive".

EU pleas for Forum to stay united

In February, the five Micronesian members of the Forum announced they would leave in protest at the failure of the organisation to appoint their nominee for secretary general of the regional body.

Instead of choosing Marshall Islands diplomat, Gerald Zackios, the Forum chose former Cook Islands prime minister, Henry Puna.

The Pacific delegation for the EU has issued a statement, saying it believed a strong Pacific Islands Forum, as the premier political regional organisation for the Pacific, was fundamental for this region.

EU urged to adopt 'vaccine passports'

The idea of such a document, likely to be a certificate, would be to permit those who have been vaccinated to travel freely within the EU.

The proposal was put forward during a virtual discussion between EU leaders.

But a vaccine passport faces opposition from some of the bloc's 27 member states.

France and Germany say such documents could be premature because data on the efficacy of vaccines in preventing a person from carrying or passing on the virus is incomplete.