Project for Promotion of Grace of the Seas for Coastal Villages in Vanuatu, Phase 2


The Republic of Vanuatu (hereafter referred to as ‘Vanuatu’) is one of the small Island developing states (SIDS) which forms an archipelago of 83 Islands in the South Pacific.

Due to limited resources, the main industries are agriculture and stock breeding. Tourism is the main service industry. Difficulty in transportation on and between the Islands hinders economic progress. The GNI is US $ 1,600 (2005, World Bank). The economy depends on foreign-affiliated industries, such as beef, copra, and tourism. Vanuatu is categorized as a Least Developed Countries (LDC) by the United Nation. Poverty and disparities between regions are major development issues. There is a substantial income differential between Urban and Rural areas. Moreover the remoteness of the Islands is a major problem with about half of the population in rural areas living on an income of less than US $1.00 per day.

Depending on the area, access to food can be limited, and there are problems of malnutrition. The proportion of the population that lives near stock breeding areas can have access to animal protein. However, the population in coastal areas depend on coastal resources such as shell fish and crustaceans for protein.  Some of the resources have being depleted or exhausted through over fishing. As a result, there is an urgent need is to encourage the recovery of these coastal resources. This can be done through seeding and the maintenance of the environment with the re-establishment of a community-based coastal resources management system.

Against this backdrop, the Vanuatu Government officially submitted to the Japanese Government a request for technical cooperation for comprehensive coastal resource management. In response to this request, the Japanese Government dispatched a basic study term in 2003, a short-term expert in 2004 and an ex-ante evaluation study team in May 2005 to study the current Fisheries situation in Vanuatu, thereby assessing the issues and needs for coastal resource management and to discuss the cooperation concepts with the Department of Fisheries. As a result, a project framework was designed to improve the techniques of the propagation or culture of important species and to put these into practice under a community-based resource management system.

The phase 2 of the project aims to provide efficient coastal resource management through a participatory approach in communities with technical assistance of the Vanuatu Fisheries Department (VFD). The project has three main components: (i) a baseline survey of communities’ coastal fisheries resource management and the socio-economy of coastal fishing communities (between December 2011 and September 2012; completed); (ii) pilot activities as support measures for coastal fisheries resource management, community livelihood improvement, and participatory resource monitoring (between October 2012 to December 2013; ongoing as of this writing); and (iii) regional workshops on coastal fisheries resource management (expected between January and November 2014).

Click to access the project website here.

Click the video below to view the most recent YouTube video on the catching squids: