Vanuatu is ranked the most vulnerable country in the world to natural disasters and the effects of climate change. Economic growth has traditionally been driven by tourism, public spending on infrastructure, private sector construction activities, and aid flows. The largely rural population is engaged in subsistence farming and limited
production of copra, beef, cocoa, and kava for export.
In March 2020, the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic forced the Government of Vanuatu to close the country’s borders, leading to a collapse in tourism revenues and high socioeconomic costs. In April, Vanuatu was struck by Cyclone Harold, which caused significant crop losses and had cascading effects on employment and the economy.
ADB will focus its assistance to Vanuatu on helping to improve public financial management, transport, urban infrastructure, renewable energy, disaster risk management, water and sanitation, access to finance, and social protection.