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Vanuatu Issues - 2024


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Disputes - international

Vanuatu-France: both claim Matthew and Hunter Islands, two uninhabited islands east of New Caledonia

Trafficking in persons

tier rating: Tier 2 Watch List — Vanuatu does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking but is making significant efforts to do so; these efforts included sentencing four traffickers to prison, following their conviction in the previous reporting period; however, the government did not demonstrate overall increasing efforts, compared with the previous reporting period, to expand its anti-trafficking capacity; for the fourth consecutive year, authorities did not identify any trafficking victims and did not provide protection services to victims; for the third consecutive year, officials did not investigate any trafficking crimes; the government also did not conduct public awareness campaigns or administer anti-trafficking training for law enforcement officials; therefore, Vanuatu was downgraded to Tier 2 Watch List (2023)

trafficking profile: human traffickers exploit domestic and foreign victims in Vanuatu, and traffickers exploit victims from Vanuatu abroad; individuals from Bangladesh, China, the Philippines, and Thailand are exploited in Vanuatu; workers from China may have been forced to work in Vanuatu at projects run by Chinese companies; traffickers target migrant women in the hospitality and tourism sectors and low-skilled foreign workers in high-risk sectors, such as agriculture, mining, fishing, logging, construction, and domestic service; Chinese and South Asian migrant women are at risk for labor trafficking in bars, beauty salons, and massage parlors; Bangladeshi criminal groups lure Bangladeshis with false promises of jobs in Australia, then exploit them in forced labor in construction in Vanuatu; women and girls may be at risk of debt-based coercion in sex trafficking and domestic servitude to pay back the husband’s family for the “bride-price payments” they made to the bride’s family; children are exploited through “child-swapping” used to pay off debts, or by taxi drivers who may facilitate their exploitation in commercial sex; forced labor and child sex trafficking occur on fishing vessels in Vanuatu; LGBTQI+ individuals are vulnerable to trafficking; children may experience conditions indicative of forced labor in the illegal logging industry and in newspaper sales (2023)

NOTE: The information regarding Vanuatu on this page is re-published from the 2024 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Vanuatu 2024 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Vanuatu 2024 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 04 May 24, Copyright © 2024 ITA all rights reserved.