Vanuatu’s Employment Stabilization Payment to end 15 Sept

The Vanuatu Government’s Employment Stabilization Payment (ESP) will end on 15 September and there will be no new applications accepted after this date.

 The ESP is a package designed specifically to assist people who have lost their jobs as a result to the COVID -19 pandemic.  

 Employees of companies that were affected and qualified for assistance each received a total of 30,000Vt monthly beginning March to July 2020.  

 At the end of August, about 340 companies from all over Vanuatu benefited from the Employment Stabilization Payment. 

 To date over 6,000 employees have received at least a payment.  

 Majority of companies that have benefited from the package are from the Tourism sector.  

 Initially the government allocated some VT 2.5 Billion to this package but to date, not all funding has been spent.  

 Not all companies that have applied will qualify, given the government decision to still uphold its eligibility criteria to only focus on the most affected business sectors.  

 For companies that have applied but have not received any payment, since March, it is most likely they are disqualified and will not be able to receive any payments. 

 The Council of Ministers has agreed that once the policy ends, remaining funds will be shifted to strengthen the productive sector, with the intention of ensuring that everyone has at least enough healthy local food to eat given the closure of international borders and the increase in unemployment rate.  

 Internal trading of local cash crops as well as excess produced can be shipped to the markets for sale and that could be potential source of revenue for those between interisland can also become a source of income for our people 

 Business owners and individuals should not confuse themselves with the Small and Medium Enterprise Grant (SMEs).  

 This package is still ongoing for another few more months before it ends.  

 The Ministry of Finance is still processing payments under this category and business individuals who believed they have met the criteria can still submit an application.  

 While a lot of payments have been rolled out, a huge number of applicants are yet to receive a payment.  

 Applicants who have lodged an application but are yet to receive a payment can contact the Ministry of Finance, stimulus package team for updates on their application. 

Meanwhile Provincial Governments are being urged to submit Business License Data registries for all their business operating in their provinces so payments could be made.  

 The Government will continue to provide further updates on other progress made regarding other packages allocated under the announced Economic Stimulus package policy.