Pacific Resource Infrastructure Facility (PRIF)

Established in 2008 to provide technical assistance, research and knowledge products on key infrastructure issues to Pacific island countries

and as a coordination facility for the principal development partners in the region.

Assessment of the Economic Impact of Cruise Ships to Vanuatu

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The World Bank Group, DFAT-Australia, and Carnival Australia have partnered to conduct this study of the economic impact of cruise ship tourism in Vanuatu.

Data gathering and analysis for this study was carried out by Net Balance Management Group. Over the past 10 years, Vanuatu’s cruise arrivals have grown by 15% per year. Cruising to Vanuatu has been buoyed by an advantageous location within a few days’ sail of Australia, a varied destination offering centred on Port Vila, and consistently positive passenger feedback. In 2013, more than 240,000 people arrived in Vanuatu by cruise ship.

This translates into 490,000 passenger days. The goal of this study is to quantify the economic impacts of cruising and to provide data on the cruise sector’s effect on economic activity. The study then identifies a set of investment opportunities that can help to increase the economic benefits of cruise tourism in Vanuatu. This report, therefore, seeks to provide a platform that can be used by government, the private sector and donor partners to support further strategic, targeted development of cruising. Data on tourism, and by extension on cruise tourism, is not readily available in Vanuatu.

This report is an attempt to capture initial economic information about the cruise industry and to provide a point of departure for additional research into the economic, social and environmental impacts of the cruise sector.