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VIPA Consultation Meeting 18 October, IPDS Site Visit and Meeting 19 October 2017 and Other News.

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IPDS SITE VISIT AND MEETING 19 OCTOBER 2017

Ifira Port Development Services (IPDS) will organise a Discussion this week on the operations of Lapetasi Container Terminal after the takeover on 24 October 2017.

IPDS will take over the terminal on the 24October 2017 so at least all the trucking fleet will be dedicated to delivering and picking up containers rather than 1/3 to ½ the available time moving boxes here there and everywhere from Main Wharf Number Tri and Lapetasi.

The IPDS Site Visit and Meeting will take place at IPDS office on Thursday 19 October 2017 at 9am. Customs & Freight forwarders agents, Chamber of Commerce, and any businesses interested, are invited to attend the meeting of IPDS.

There will be firstly a site visit of IPDS followed by a meeting to see how we are going to move ahead and the opportunity to answer questions from businesses. The site visit will be restricted to no more than 25 people as it is a working construction site, however the view from the boardroom is all encompassing and an overview will be given at the presentation for those who did not do the site visit.

For more information, please call VCCI Reception on 27543, mobile phone 7123 967 or email [email protected] and confirm your attendance to the meeting by Monday 16 October 2017.

Consultation meeting VIPA Investment Bill 18 October 2017

VCCI wishes to advise that the VIPA Consultation Meeting has been deferred to Wednesday 18 October 2017, Moorings Hotel Conference Room, from 8.00am – 12.00pm.

For this purpose, a summary of the proposed Bill highlighting the differences between the existing VIPA Act and the new VIPA Investment Bill, with the existing VIPA Act and new VIPA Investment Bill are available from VCCI. You will see that the major part of the Bill relates to administration matters. The parts that relate to the VIPA Board and the role of VIPA (which connect to foreign direct investments) are summarized.

The Hon. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister responsible for VIPA, Hon. Joe Natuman, would like this consultation to take place for the reason that the Ministry of Tourism Trade Commerce Ni Vanuatu Businesses (MTTCNIB) is looking at taking the Bill before the parliament during the coming sessions.

For further information and confirm your attendance, you can contact by email VCCI Reception at [email protected] or by phone 27 543 or mobile phone 712 3967.

APPLY FOR CERTIFICATE IV PROJECT MANAGEMENT IN 2017

The Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) and Vanuatu Business Resilience Committee (VBRC) wish to advise that the National Advisory Board (NAB) climate finance working group, under the Ministry of Climate Change of Vanuatu, is pleased to invite the private sector, any businesses involved in climate change related activities, to submit up to 10 applications (Application Form + CV + Cover Letter + evidence of pass in English at Year 12/Form 6 or equivalent) for the Certificate IV Project Management Practical course starting mid-November 2017.

related activity is to offer and conduct the Certificate IV Project Management Practice, a formal course, in blended mode (online and face-to-face) aimed at anyone involved in the implementation of climate change adaptation/resilience projects.

Basic details:

  • Certificate IV in Project Management which can be used for membership of international Project Management bodies such as the Project Management Institute (PMI) and Australia Institute of Project Management (AIPM);
  • Minimum numbers of 10 private sector participants needed for course;
  • 4 units needed to complete the Certificate;
  • 5 days full time face to face in-country for 2 units then 2 months of online/distance learning assignments then another 5 days face to face to set up the final 2 units and 2 months of assignments**;
  • Delivered by USP Pacific TAFE who will send lecturers to Vanuatu for the face-to-face component; and
  • USAID Climate Ready project under NAB will support payment of tuition fees for candidates to participate in the course.

** The candidates, business owners or employees of businesses involved in climate change related activities, will need to attend two lots of 5-day blocks during the course period to undertake face-to-face teaching at USP Emalus Campus, Vanuatu.

For more information, please contact VCCI Reception by phone 27543 or mobile 7123 967, and by email [email protected]

Click here to view and download the following documents:-

Certification IV in Project Management Practice;

Pacific TAFE Handbook & Calendar information;

Participant Selection Criteria document; and

Project Management Application form

Applications must be submitted to Anna Bule [email protected] no later than Tuesday 31 October COB.

 

Quality Production Training to Encourage Quality Handicrafts in Tafea Province

The Business Development Services (BDS) Section of the Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) conducted a five days training workshop on Quality Production to members of Tafea Province’s handicraft sector from the 18th to 22nd September 2017 at the Lenaus Evacuation Centre in Lenakel, Tanna, see photo 1. The training was organised and funded by the Vanuatu Skills Partnership Program, formerly called the TVET Sector Strengthening Program, through its Tafea Skills Centre’s programs to meet sectoral skill development priorities.

The main objectives of the workshop was to encourage production of quality handicraft products that meet the quality needs of handicraft markets both local and overseas, to encourage product innovation in the production of crafts and to encourage and promote women and people with disability in business developments. This training is timely as Tafea is experiencing increases in tourist arrivals with the recently increased activities in the province. Recipients of this quality production training were 21 handicraft providers in the Tafea handicraft sector from Tanna, Futuna, Erromango and Anyietum. Participants comprise producers, designers and vendors of handicraft products.

The training focused on the following 3 main areas: 1) Quality standards, to encourage the participants to have some process for identifying quality needs customers such as tourist, local etc and put in place some product standards or specifications to guide their production for quality, 2) Product quality improvement, to encourage participants to improve the quality of the products they currently produce through advise on quality improvement points and quality unique areas of specific products, and 3) Product innovation, to encourage the participants to practice innovation in their production and venture into areas such as tribal jewelry, cane & bamboo, tribal paintings, stone & pottery, metal & recycle materials, gifts & novelties etc.

The VCCI was engaged to provide this training in Tafea Province following the experiences of Sanma Province in 2016 and Malampa Province few years ago where the same training was undertaken in Lakatoro, Malekula Island which led to the development of the now successful Malampa Handicraft Centre.

Photo – 1. Quality Production Training to Encourage Quality Handicrafts in Tafea Province

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Vanuatu Green Climate Fund Investment Program Survey

The Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) and Vanuatu Business Resilience Committee (VBRC) invite any interested businesses to connect to the link to the Vanuatu Green Climate Fund (GCF) Investment Program Survey to complete the short online survey http://bit.ly/2eQucPK

By completing the online survey, businesses express the private sector needs and interests in how the GCF investment priorities in Vanuatu should be allocated to mitigation and adaptation strategic impact areas in specific sectors and activities over the next 5 years.

SANDALWOOD INDUSTRY MEETING

On Wednesday September 28, a Sandalwood industry meeting was organized by the Pacific Horticultural and Agricultural Market Access (PHAMA) program bringing together the stakeholders of the Sandalwood industry throughout Vanuatu. Representatives from the public and private sector together with the PHAMA officers attended the one day meeting at the Department of Forestry conference room, Tagabe.

The Director for the Department of Forestry in his welcome remarks explained that the meeting was the first of its kind and thanked the PHAMA program for its financial support and organization of the meeting. PHAMA’s National Coordinator in Vanuatu, Dr. Rebecca Bogiri explained that PHAMA’s support for the Sandalwood industry began in 2016 after an initial scoping study identified some of the market access issues for the sector.

Mr. Andrew Piper, the program manager for PHAMA in the Solomon Islands made a summary presentation based on the Market Access Issues for Vanuatu Sandalwood Industry report. The report identified the strengths and weaknesses of the industry, the market access issues and provided recommendations to improve the market access for Sandalwood. Amongst the issues discussed were the need to develop grades and standards for the Sandalwood products, the need for domestic processing of logs and wood chips and the need to upgrade the testing facilities to perform tests that are relevant and specific for Sandalwood products.

The meeting concluded with a consensus to set up a Sandalwood Industry working group with regular meetings and to develop a strategy based on the report’s findings. Assistance was sought from PHAMA to develop a strategy for the Sandalwood industry and progress a scoping study into the auction system. The Department of Forestry, Industry and PHAMA will collaborate to create and structure a Sandalwood industry working group.

Photo 2: Hannington Tate, Director Forestry Department, MP Tomker Netvunei, sandalwood licencee and farmer and Steven Nilwo, sandalwood licencee and farmer

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Summary of Organic Policy Consultation Meeting

The organic sector policy consultation workshop in Port Vila took place on the 27th – 28th of September 2017 at Agriculture Department. The workshop and policy development is financially supported by the Pacific Organic & Ethical Trade Community (POETCom), Ministry of Agriculture Livestock Forestry Fisheries Biosecurity, Ministry of Tourism Trade Commerce Ni Vanuatu Businesses and the United Nations Development Programme. The International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) international consultancy agency was contracted to develop the organic sector policy for Vanuatu.

The two day workshop carried out a Strengths, Weakness, Threats and Opportunities (SWOT) analysis of the organic sector in Vanuatu. One of the strengths identified is the government policies and institutions that will facilitate and support the organic sector. However, the rising prices of the local produce in the domestic markets is one of the main threats for the developing an organic sector in Vanuatu.

A draft policy paper will be circulated at a later date as well as follow up meetings to review the document. There is an opportunity to develop a vibrant organic sector in the country and this will require huge support from all the stakeholders both from the private and public sectors.

Fast-track future success – register now for PVIS Senior Secondary Scholarship Day

Port Vila International School (PVIS) is encouraging prospective local senior secondary students to register now to attend the School’s first Senior Secondary Scholarship Day on Friday 27 October to be considered for two full-tuition Senior Secondary PVIS scholarship Awards. See Photo 3.

The international school is offering the two Senior Secondary scholarships, valued at over 700,000VT annually, over a two-year period through the very generous support of ANZ Bank and Open Access College.

The ANZ Senior Secondary PVIS Scholarship will be awarded to a student who wants to study economics and have a future career in business.

The Open Access College Senior Secondary PVIS Scholarship will be awarded to the student who shows determination, wants to succeed, and demonstrates a passion for contributing back to the community.

Click here to download Media Release PVIS Scholarships.

For more information, please call Port Vila International School on 23837 or email [email protected]

Photo – 3. PVIS Student Council

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Vanuatu Business Resilience Committee Meeting 13 October 2017 and other News

VANUATU BUSINESS RESILIENCE COMMITTEE MEETING 13 OCTOBER 2017

Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) will hold a second meeting to discuss the establishment of a Vanuatu Business Resilience Committee (VBRC) on Friday 13 October 2017. Any businesses are invited to attend the meeting at VCCI.

The overall purpose of this meeting is to look at prospective options to enable in-depth engagement of private sector, along with NGOs and Government stakeholders with regards to the impact of climate change, with a particular focus on natural disasters events including current critical threats, including the disaster situation on Ambae, Ambrym, Gaua, Vanua Lava, Lopevi and Tanna. The meeting’s proposed agenda includes the Election of Executive Committee members, Chairman, Vice Chairman, and Secretary; the Review of draft VBRC Terms of Reference; and how VBRC can participate in the current disaster situation.

Meeting Date:  Friday 13 October 2017 

Time:  3pm              

Venue:  VCCI Conference Room

Please confirm your attendance by calling VCCI Reception by phone on 27 543, mobile phone 712 3967 or by email to [email protected]

 

Aid supplies – made in Vanuatu?

With the Ambae island volcano evacuation currently underway and memories of TC Pam still clear in our minds, we consider how innovation in manufacturing and procurement could help Vanuatu.

When Vanuatu suffers a disaster, we see two main financial effects on our business sector. First, a great deal of money leaves the country because government, companies and people import goods to make repairs. Second, large quantities of products are imported by disaster relief organisations.

With little cash and lots of goods being imported, businesses in Vanuatu can find it very hard to get back on their feet and to compete. Manufacturers are particularly badly hit. Too many businesses fail. The effects of the disaster are prolonged, causing hardship and even noticeable impacts on our GDP and future business prospects.

What if we could turn a crisis into an opportunity?

What if the products that people need to rebuild and that disaster relief organisations normally bring in could be manufactured and sold locally?

The Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) is very interested in this area. It is in the process of forming the Vanuatu Business Resilience Committee (VBRC). It has engaged with the National Disaster Management Organisation and the Australian Red Cross on a ‘Local Supplier Engagement’ initiative. Last week, VCCI met an organisation that is looking to take things a step further.

Field Ready

Field Ready is a humanitarian aid organisation that works on the local manufacturing of disaster relief supplies. It visited VCCI as part of an assessment trip for its new programme being supported by the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade called the ‘Australia Humanitarian Partnership’. The programme begins in January 2018 and will run until at least 2022.

Field Ready works in three ways: it surveys local manufacturers, not for what they make already but for what machines they have – to learn more about what could be made; they bring in specialist digital machine tools to complement existing capacity; and they provide remote technical assistance, training and freely available designs for local businesses to use. Because Field Ready’s work is all about local manufacturing, it builds capacity in (and never competes with) local businesses. Its work in Haiti, Nepal, Syria and the Caribbean shows that – for the right kind of item – manufacturing locally can be far cheaper, faster and better than using imports. This means that more people can be helped, more people survive and more people get exactly what they need.

There are some great potential synergies between their innovation and local manufacturers here. A lot of money is spent procuring and shipping disaster relief items into Vanuatu. Manufacturing these locally puts more money into our own businesses. It can help businesses get back on their feet faster. It can create jobs, and speed up recovery. New, modern manufacturing techniques can be learned by Vanuatu businesses and people, so that they can enhance their offer to their markets. An example of this is a very flexible new method called 3D Printing.

3D Printing in Vanuatu

Abi Bush, an engineer with Field Ready, carries a 3D Printer in her suitcase. Abi visited the Vanuatu Meteorology and Geohazards Department in Port Vila and met with the teams that maintain the weather stations around Vanuatu that are crucial in weather forecasting and cyclone early warning. Spare parts for the weather stations are hard to come by, and have to be imported – even a very cheap component can cost a great deal of money and time to ship to Vanuatu and then to install.

Abi met Patricia Mawa who leads the team. Patricia quickly identified a component they struggle to replace – a type of cable grip that prevents water seeping into the electronics. It can cost up to 16,500 Vatu, shipped twice a year. Abi took a photograph and quickly made a 3D model of the required component on her laptop. Abi plugged the 3D Printer into the USB port on her computer and clicked print. Total cost? Less than 5,000 Vatu. Time? 2 hours.

3D Printing is great for prototyping and small quantities of items. Field Ready’s work however can make use of a wide variety of manufacturing techniques – plastics moulding, carpentry, welding and metalwork, casting, soap making, stitching, fibre glass and much more. Field Ready is keen to hear from businesses that would be interested in exploring such ideas and in making disaster relief items here in Vanuatu.

If you would like to learn more about the humanitarian innovation of local manufacturing that Field Ready is bringing to Vanuatu in the coming years, please contact Andrew Lamb, Innovation Advisor at Field Ready, on [email protected] or Astrid Boulekone, General Manager at VCCI, on [email protected]

 

Photo 1 : A Vanuatu Meteo Geohazards Dept. weather station

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Photo 2 : A missing part!

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Photo 3 : A 3D model of the spare part designed by Abi Bush

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Photo 4 : A new 3D Printed spare part made in Vanuatu

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VALIDATION WORKSHOP FOR VANUATU YOUNG ENTREPRENEURS COUNCIL STRATEGIC PLAN

The validity of VYEC’s Strategic Plan was the focus of a validation workshop held at the Chamber of Commerce on Friday 6 October 2017.

Present are VYEC members, the VCCI, VYEC executive, Youth Challenge Vanuatu, VNYC, and Department of Youth and Sports whom are also VYEC’s stakeholders. The workshop was facilitated by VYEC’s consultant, Hannah Taleo.

The VYEC Strategic Plan, once endorsed, will be the Focus of VYEC to reach out and provide business trainings and services to all informal and formal young entrepreneurs throughout Vanuatu with the Technical support from VCCI and Vanuatu Government through the Department of Youth and Sports. The three Goals that the VYEC has determined to focus on are increase promotion, awareness and membership registration, improve access of support services to members and an enabling environment for young entrepreneurs is created.

The Vanuatu Young Entrepreneurs Council Strategic Plan will be launched during the National Dialogue event at the Convention Centre from 31 October to 3 November 2017.

 

Cost of natural disasters, business resilience top talks and other important meetings for this week

Cost of natural disasters, business resilience top talks

 

Felix Chaudhary, Fiji Times

Fiji Commerce and Employers Federation’s Nesbitt Hazelman (right) speaks at the Pacific Islands Private Sector Organization (PIPSO) Workshop at the end of July 2017 in Nadi. Picture: REINAL CHAND

THE impact of two recent natural disasters on the Pacific and the cost to two economies was discussed earlier this week at the Pacific Islands Private Sector Organisation’s Regional Capacity Building Training Sessions in Nadi.

The discussion followed a presentation by Lisa Kingsberry, from the Pacific Community’s (SPC) Building Safety and Resilience in the Pacific project, on the subject. Ms Kingsberry said after Tropical Cyclone Winston in February, 2016, 20 per cent of Fiji’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) was lost at an estimated value of $1.4 billion. She also said Cyclone Pam crippled Vanuatu’s economy with an estimated loss of VT$48.6 billion, representing 64 per cent of the country’s GDP.

During her presentation, Ms Kingsberry unveiled an interactive online toolkit designed to assist the private sector to be better prepared for natural disasters in the future. She said the Disaster Ready Business Toolkit was developed by SPC in partnership with private sector organisations, Fiji Business Disaster Resilience Council and PIPSO.

She said the interactive toolkit was hosted on the PIPSO website (www.pipso.org.fj/stayopen) and was an informative resource kit, outlining the impact of disaster on the private sector in the Pacific, whilst providing simple tools to support the region in strengthening its disaster preparedness into the future.

The meet also saw the launch of the the Pacific Business Resilience Network (PBRN), which will support national private sector organisations from across the Pacific to build resilience of businesses and communities.

The PBRN will provide coordination and provide a clear entry point for the private sector to access partners (such as Government) and resources, as well as serve as a platform to mobilise capacity building and other support.

VANUATU BUSINESS RESILIENCE COMMITTEE INCEPTION MEETING 6 OCTOBER 2017

Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) is pleased to convene any interested businesses and MSMEs to an inception meeting on Friday 6 October 2017 to discuss the establishment of a Vanuatu Business Resilience Committee (VBRC) as a result of a joint initiative, known as the Pacific Business Resilience Network of the Pacific Community (SPC) and United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Connecting Business initiative CBi.

The overall purpose of this meeting is to look at prospective options to enable in-depth engagement of private sector, along with NGOs and Government stakeholders with regards to the impact of climate change, with a particular focus on natural disasters events. A specific agenda item will cover current critical threats, including the disaster situation on Ambae, Ambrym, Gaua, Vanua Lava, Lopevi and Tanna.

The meeting’s proposed draft agenda hereafter:

1.       Update on NDMO and FSAC actions in Ambae, Ambrym, Gaua, Vanua Lava, Lopevi   and Tanna

2.       How VBRC can participate

3.       Election of Executive Committee members: Chairman, Vice Chairman,  Secretary

4.       Draft VBRC Terms of Reference submitted for review

Meeting Date:  Friday 6 October 2017    

                 Time:  3pm     

                Venue:  VCCI Conference Room

Please confirm your attendance by calling VCCI Reception by phone on 27 543, mobile phone 712 3967 or by return email to [email protected]

PENAMA CELEBRATIONS ORGANISING COMMITTEE CALL TO BUSINESS HOUSES

The PENAMA Celebrations Organising Committee (PCOC) which successfully organized the Penama Day Celebration about a week ago, all along with the organisers of Reggae Fire, KivHan and Fes Napuan is organising a Humanitarian Music Show as a Fund Raiser towards all the victims of Ambae, Ambrym, Gaua, Motalava, Lopevi, and Tanna during these sudden volcano eruptions.

We are sending out our message to all the business houses in Port Vila and Vanuatu to come and support this call. We are pleased to receive anything big and small, in kind donations or cash to be collected starting from Monday 2 October 2017 till Friday 6 October 2017and on the day of the event which is Saturday 7 October 2017 at Saralana Park. The event will run for the full day.

The PENAMA Celebrations Organising Committee aims at packing three (3) containers with in kind donations to be handed over to the Hon. Ham Lini, Minister of Climate Change, on Saturday 7 October 2017 at Saralana Park. The National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) of the Ministry of Climate Change will be in charge of disseminating these in kind donations to the victims of these sudden volcano eruptions. These containers are positioned at NDMO area, Ministry of Climate Change.

Our contact person is James Tabinok, the Vice-President of this event, and he is also Business Finance Trainer within the VCCI. You can reach him by email at [email protected] or call him by mobile phone on 532 5882 for further information. You can also contact VCCI Reception by email at [email protected] or call on 27543 and 712 3967.

 

PIPSO Survey to Agribusinesses to access finance and other assistance extended

The Pacific Islands Private Sector Organisation (PIPSO) in Suva, Fiji, in partnership with the Pacific Community (SPC), is carrying out a survey to ascertain the ease and difficulty which SMEs agribusinesses such as those producing or using coconuts products, access finance and other forms of assistance. This e- survey is for any SMEs agribusinesses to complete online as the deadline has been extended to Friday 6 October 2017.

PIPSO understands that most of the producers, farmers and SMEs are not fully aware of the other various forms of assistance that are available locally, regionally and internationally to assist them in their business or farming.

VCCI is a member of PIPSO and is the National Private Sector Organisation (NPSO) representing Vanuatu.

VCCI is requesting and encouraging any agribusinesses in Vanuatu to complete the PIPSO online survey, which should take less than 10 minutes to answer 9 questions, and to do it as soon as possible this week till Friday 6 October 2017.

The survey to access finance from commercial banks and other financial institutions and other forms of assistance will help PIPSO understand the constraints faced by SMEs and producers and publicize all funding facilities that are available including those from financial institutions. Furthermore it will provide the results of these studies to these organizations to improve accessibility of loans, grants and other assistance to SMEs in agribusiness.

Please click the link below to complete the survey questions and it will only take you less than 10 minutes. https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/FSFVGC9

If you have not done it yet, we would be really grateful if you could complete the survey by Friday 6 October 2017.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact by email Primal Narayan at [email protected] or Alisi Tuqa at [email protected] at the Pacific Islands Private Sector Organisation (PIPSO) office in Suva, Fiji.

Port Vila gearing up for Pacific Week of Agriculture

Pacific Week of Agriculture (PWA) will be taking place in Port Vila exactly two weeks from today in three (3) different locations. Originally the first ever PWA was to take place in one location at the Vanuatu National Convention Centre. Due to circumstances beyond the PWA Taskforce Committee’s control, the one week event will now be staged in three different locations from 16 to 20 October 2017.

Only side events allocated to the training of farmers with the involvement of Chefs, will take place at the National Convention Centre from 16 to 18 October 2017. A key highlight – the Agritourism Festival, which will include Agritourism Trade Fair and Trade Show will be held at the Independence Park. Members of the public, visitors, business and trade enthusiasts are most welcome to the festival.

So far 27 local businesses producing and selling various products including fibreglass, timber, non-food items; food and beverages, cosmetics, jewellery, arts and crafts, clothing, agriculture supplies, manufacturers, processors, tourism service providers, and productive sector businesses, have confirmed their participation.

Up to 20 stalls are allocated to food stalls, which will mostly feature local agriculture produce. Business booths and food stalls will promote, showcase, and sell Made-in-Vanuatu goods and dishes. There will also be booths for public and private institutions and regional organisations to display information and awareness documents to the general public. A Trade Show will be held on 18 October 2017 at Independence Park, while the meetings of Heads of Agriculture and Forestry and Ministers of Agriculture and Forestry will be held from 19 to 20 October 2017 at the Iririki Island Resort.

The one-week event will create synergies between agriculture and tourism sectors, and improve supply linkages in value chains of agricultural products between the farmers from the productive sector on the one hand, and the Chefs and Tourism operators on the other hand. The main objectives of these synergies are to work together on how to provide a consistent quality and quantity supply of organic agricultural products by farmers to chefs and tourism operators, including meals cooked from local vegetables and fruits in bungalows, bars, takeaways, restaurants, and hotels.

How to market and promote the use and consumption of high value local agricultural products to tourists, visitors, and local consumers is of significant value to the economic development of Vanuatu.

If you wish to have booth to promote, showcase, and sell Made-in-Vanuatu goods and dishes, please contact now Ian Bani at Department of Industry by email at [email protected] or by phone on 33415.

Complete EDF 11 Template for 3 Products before 2 October 2017 and other News

COMPLETE THE EDF 11 TEMPLATE FOR 3 PRODUCTS BEFORE 2 OCTOBER 2017

This is a reminder for Vanuatu businesses involved in farming production and in processing in value addition of one of these 3 products, beef, coconut, vegetables and fruits, to foster the rural areas development, you can complete a project proposal under the European Development Fund (EDF) 11 for Vanuatu based on the template provided by the Department of Industry for the set up and development of value chains for these 3 products to develop and grow the existing businesses. For project proposals on production of quality produce of coconut, vegetables and fruits, and cattle, the concerned departments to be contacted are the Department of Agriculture and or the Department of Livestock. The template document for EDF 11 project proposals is available from the Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Any businesses can get it from the VCCI by email at [email protected] or call by phone on 27543 and mobile phone 7123 967. For more information on how to complete the template, you can contact Donalyne Naviti by email at [email protected] or phone on 33415 before 2 October 2017.

Leaders laud Private Sector Dialogue at Forum meeting

The Private Sector Dialogue (PSD) was held in Apia, Samoa on Tuesday 5 September 2017 to coincide with the 48th Annual Pacific Islands Forum Leaders’ conference. Thirty-eight delegates attended the dialogue representing the private sector of the Pacific Island Countries making up the Pacific Forum. Howard Politini, Chairman of the Pacific Island Private sector Organisation (PIPSO) chaired the Dialogue with the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat’s Glynis Miller and Shiu Raj as secretaries. New Zealand was represented by Peter Kiely, Chairman of Pacific Chairs and Paul Pledge, General Manager of Tradestaff Global, both nominated by the New Zealand Pacific Business Council. The morning session was primarily around rehearsing the Private Sector Dialogue presentation at the leaders meeting for the following day with more substantial regular matters to be discussed in the afternoon sessions. The first session was led by Mr Raj and focused on financing mechanisms for the private sector followed by SPREP (South Pacific Regional Environment Programme), the Green Climate Fund (GCF) and the Green Energy Fund (GEF). The final session was on the harmonisation of business processes led by Mr Kiely, who gave a regional update. A Private Sector Steering Committee was elected at the meeting, as agreed at the Pacific Islands Forum Economic Ministers Meeting (FEMM) held in Suva earlier in the year. The elected committee of seven included Mr Pledge from New Zealand. The Private Sector Dialogue with the Forum Island Country leaders was held the next day as part of the leaders’ engagement programme. Key issues were discussed around this year’s theme which was Blue Pacific – Ocean of Commerce, Challenges and Opportunities. A new format which was based on two speakers from the Private Sector Dialogue and two from the leaders and an open dialogue between one nominated member from the Pacific Island Countries’ private sector and the attending leaders covered diverse topics of importance to business. The leaders widely acknowledged the Private Sector Dialogue papers as “first class” and members of the private sector said they felt better informed after attending the dialogue. The group thanked Fredrick Kamusiime of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat for his efforts at organising the exercise. For more information please email Dev Nadkarni, PTI NZ Marketing & Communications Manager at [email protected] Please note, the correct email address for Dev Nadkarni of PTI NZ is [email protected]

Going for gold – being the best you can be!

A series of short practical articles on transforming our society through business. Businesses, especially very small, small and medium sized businesses are the lifeblood of the Pacific. They provide for our needs, employ our people, energise our communities, help us fulfil our potential and provide a future for our young people. Businesses have the power to transform our world one step at a time. Business leaders have a responsibility to use that power wisely, ethically and responsibly. During this short series of articles Chris Elphick looks at the transformational power of business. Today the focus is on healthy staff, happy staff – productive staff. Most of us will have in place systems for ensuring that our staff know what is needed of them. At the very basic we must have up-to-date and relevant job descriptions; induction procedures; proper contracts and terms & conditions of employment; transparent pay policies; some form of performance review and training. Transformational businesses go way beyond that – they focus on the health and wellbeing of all their people by following these simple steps:     1.  A strategy for improving people’s health and wellbeing is clearly defined and understood.   Owners and managers must have a clear and consistent understanding of health and wellbeing, which is appropriate to the organization and they make sure the organisation has a clear purpose and vision supported by a strategy for improving its performance. They should also ensure the health and wellbeing strategy or plan is based on the assessment of people and organisational needs and is supported by appropriate and well communicated policies.   2.  Activities are resourced to meet the organisation’s health and wellbeing needs. Owners and managers should make sure that the organisation has the resources it needs to implement health and wellbeing plans. They should be able to describe how the health and wellbeing of the organisation’s people is supported in an appropriate and fair way, reflecting their different needs.     3.  Owners and managers should be able to describe strategies they have in place to support work-life balance to meet the needs of the organisation and its people.   This might include working hours, travel to work, food, working conditions, time off.   4.  Strategies for people’s health and wellbeing are designed to promote equality of opportunity and work-life balance. The health and wellbeing of the organisation’s people must be supported in an appropriate and fair way, reflecting their different needs.     5.  Owners and managers should be able to describe strategies they have in place to support work-life balance to meet the needs of the organisation and its people.   The capabilities managers need to lead, manage, develop and support people’s health and wellbeing needs are clearly defined and understood.   6.  Owners and managers should be able to describe the knowledge, skills and behaviours managers need to lead, manage and develop people effectively, and the plans        they have in place to make sure managers have these capabilities. Everyone must know what they are expected to do to support health and wellbeing and managers are provided with the help they need to develop their capabilities.   7.  Managers are effective in leading, managing and developing, and supporting their health and wellbeing needs. People’s contribution to the organisation should be recognised and valued. People are encouraged to take ownership and responsibility by being involved in decision making and are given relevant information about health and wellbeing. This means that the organisation’s approach to people’s health and wellbeing is effective.   Investment in people’s health and wellbeing makes a difference to the performance of the organisation. Owners and managers should be able to explain the impact their health and wellbeing activities have had on the organisation and how they use this information to develop future plans.   9.  Improvements are continually made to the way health and wellbeing is managed and developed. Owners and managers should be able to show that they are continuously reviewing their health and wellbeing activities and make improvements where necessary. They should be able to explain how they use people’s feedback as part of the review of the organisation’s approach to health and wellbeing. These nine steps provide a framework for you to create a healthy and happy workplace with a focus on the health and wellbeing of your people – do this and productivity and profitability will take care of itself!!     Coming next – part six of our Going for Gold series – social responsibility of business.   Chris Elphick is Director of Learn.fast Pacific, supporting the development of a range of businesses and organisations in Vanuatu, Fiji, Solomons and other Pacific countries. He is an experienced business mentor and has years of experience of working with Small & Medium Enterprises. Learnfast Pacific works in close association with business support organisations throughout the Pacific. If you have a business issue for Chris to comment on please contact him at [email protected]

MOU between Vanuatu Government and VCCI, Vanuatu Young Entrepreneurs Council Strategic Plan 2018 – 2020 & Other News

MOU BETWEEN VANUATU GOVERNMENT AND VCCI 

The Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) has requested officially in its letter of 14 September 2017 to the Hon. Prime Minister, a meeting between Hon. Prime Minister and VCCI Councillors to introduce a proposed MOU between the Vanuatu Government and VCCI.

VCCI would like to reply positively to the Hon. Prime Minister’s public call for the VCCI to work with the Vanuatu Government. To show its goodwill to work together to achieve the mutual goal of economic development, VCCI has requested a meeting to introduce a proposed MOU between the Vanuatu Government and VCCI, and to discuss how the Vanuatu Government and VCCI could work together.

VCCI also submitted the request to have a meeting between the Vanuatu Government represented by both Hon. Prime Minister and Hon. Deputy Prime Minister, who is also Minister of Trade, and the VCCI Councillors, on a regular basis to discuss the 3 main issues which need urgent attention from both the Vanuatu Government and VCCI.

This proposed approach was submitted to the Hon. Prime Minister for consideration to improve the working relationship between the Vanuatu Government and VCCI to the next level to achieve an effective and efficient public-private partnership.

 

Vanuatu Young Entrepreneurs Council (VYEC) developed its first Strategic Plan 2018 – 2020

The Vanuatu Young Entrepreneurs Council (VYEC) was officially launched in November 2016, as an initiative to promote youth employment and young entrepreneurship in Vanuatu. Working together with the Vanuatu National Youth Council (VNYC), Employment Services Vanuatu (ESV) and Digicel Vanuatu, the ILO and the Pacific Youth Council supported the VCCI to establish the VYEC during the Youth Economic Empowerment Forum in early September in 2016. Similar initiative have been undertaken in Fiji, Solomon Islands and Tonga, in line with the 10 year Pacific Youth Development Framework (PYDF) 2014 – 2023, that include youth employment as its first priority and youth entrepreneurship a key outcome area.

As most of the Pacific Islands countries, Vanuatu has a young population with a median age of 22 years. In this regard, the youth share of the working age population between 15 to 24 years is around the range of 20%. While young workforce is a potential and talent resource of a country, it also poses challenges if they do not have the required skills and experience to access the workforce, or simply there is not enough job available for them.

Young people are full of enthusiasm or eagerness to be successful, they are creative and have time and physical strength. Yet, it may not be easy for young people to set up businesses, to start with, they need the capital and some basic skills. However, access to finance and business support and development services are among the common challenges face by the young entrepreneurs. To assist in overcoming these challenges, the VYEC was created as part of the VCCI, as a national platform to come together to network, to share ideas and best practices, more importantly to be able to influence policy development affecting youth and young entrepreneurs to be more conducive for them to grow.

Being part of VCCI, in addition to having policy influence, there could be opportunities for young entrepreneurs to be trained by the VCCI various business development programme, and mentoring support from the senior members of VCCI. Such programmes enable young entrepreneurs to enhance their business skills and expand their business networks. For VCCI, VYEC is the nursery of the future leaders.

In less than a year, the VYEC has managed to register more than 100 young entrepreneurs as members, had its AGM, and elected the office bearers. A series of activities were undertaken including training for the members, design of VYEC logo, development of its constitution, and more are being lined up including participation at the national youth forum scheduled after mid-October 2017 at the National Convention Centre, showcase of YEC member products and services during the Pacific Mini games in Port Vila in December 2017.

With the support from the ILO, the VYEC has developed its first strategic Plan 2018 – 2020 through assessment, consultation and the strategic planning workshop held in Port Vila on 13 & 14 September 2017. The strategic plan lays out the vision, mission, value statement and the strategic goals of the VYEC, among others include improved access of support services to members and creating an enabling environment for young entrepreneurs. With this new strategic direction, the VCCI and VYEC will be working together to represent the rights and interest of young entrepreneurs in Vanuatu to further promote and empower them to be recognised as equal partners in driving the economic development of Vanuatu.

 

PIPSO Survey questions to Agribusinesses to access finance and other assistance

The Pacific Islands Private Sector Organisation (PIPSO) in Suva, Fiji, in partnership with the Pacific Community (SPC), is carrying out a survey to ascertain the ease and difficulty which SMEs agribusinesses especially with those producing or using coconuts products, access finance and other forms of assistances. This e- survey is also extended to any SMEs in the agriculture, livestock, fisheries and forestry sectors.

PIPSO understands that most of the producers, farmers and SMEs are not fully aware of the other various forms of assistance that are available locally, regionally and international to assist them in their business or farming.

VCCI is a member of PIPSO and is the National Private Sector Organisation (NPSO) representing Vanuatu.

VCCI is requesting and encouraging any agribusinesses in Vanuatu to complete the PIPSO online survey, which should take less than 10 minutes to answer 9 questions, and to do it as soon as possible this week.

The survey to access finance from commercial banks and other financial institutions and other assistance will help PIPSO understand the constraints faced by SMEs and producers and will publicize all funding facilities that are available including those from financial institutions. Furthermore it will provide the results of these studies to these organizations to improve accessibility of loans, grants and other assistance to SMEs in agribusiness.

Please click the link below to complete the survey questions and it will only take you less than 10 minutes.

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/FSFVGC9

We would be really grateful if you could complete the survey before Friday 22 September 2017.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact by email Primal Narayan at [email protected] or Alisi Tuqa at [email protected] at the Pacific Islands Private Sector Organisation (PIPSO) office in Suva, Fiji.

 

Leaders laud Private Sector Dialogue at Forum meeting

The Private Sector Dialogue (PSD) was held in Apia, Samoa on Tuesday 5 September 2017 to coincide with the 48th Annual Pacific Islands Forum Leaders’ conference.

The PSD in progress in Apia.

Thirty-eight delegates attended the dialogue representing the private sector of the Pacific Island Countries making up the Pacific Forum. Howard Politini, Chairman of the Pacific Island Private sector Organisation (PIPSO) chaired the Dialogue with the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat’s Glynis Miller and Shiu Raj as secretaries.

New Zealand was represented by Peter Kiely, Chairman of Pacific Chairs and Paul Pledge, General Manager of Tradestaff Global, both nominated by the New Zealand Pacific Business Council.

The morning session was primarily around rehearsing the Private Sector Dialogue presentation at the leaders meeting for the following day with more substantial regular matters to be discussed in the afternoon sessions.

The first session was led by Mr Raj and focused on financing mechanisms for the private sector followed by SPREP (South Pacific Regional Environment Programme), the Green Climate Fund (GCF) and the Green Energy Fund (GEF). The final session was on the harmonisation of business processes led by Mr Kiely, who gave a regional update.

A Private Sector Steering Committee was elected at the meeting, as agreed at the Pacific Islands Forum Economic Ministers Meeting (FEMM) held in Suva earlier in the year. The elected committee of seven included Mr Pledge from New Zealand.

The Private Sector Dialogue with the Forum Island Country leaders was held the next day as part of the leaders’ engagement programme. Key issues were discussed around this year’s theme which was Blue Pacific – Ocean of Commerce, Challenges and Opportunities.

A new format which was based on two speakers from the Private Sector Dialogue and two from the leaders and an open dialogue between one nominated member from the Pacific Island Countries’ private sector and the attending leaders covered diverse topics of importance to business.

The leaders widely acknowledged the Private Sector Dialogue papers as “first class” and members of the private sector said they felt better informed after attending the dialogue. The group thanked Fredrick Kamusiime of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat for his efforts at organising the exercise.

For more information please email Dev Nadkarni, PTI NZ Marketing & Communications Manager at [email protected]

 

CONSTRUCTION ISSUES ON ROAD WORKS

The Vanuatu Project Management Unit has advised VCCI that the PVUDP is not a USD55 million project. It is a USD39 million project funded mostly from Australian grant of USD31 million, an ADB loan of USD5 million, and a Vanuatu Government contribution of USD3.1 with a total of USD39 million.

Because of delays in implementation and fluctuating foreign exchange rates since the signing of the agreement in 2012, the project did lose some funds which was unfortunate. The VPMU reiterates there are no reductions as alleged to reduce the funds to USD11 million! There are no reports available of any missing funds because all funds are being expended on key PVUDP infrastructure projects already visible to everyone through Phase 1 Road Works, Community Sanitation Facilities for 7 communities in Port Vila and 1 Septage Treatment Facility opened recently. See the link https://www.adb.org/countries/vanuatu/main

Furthermore all VPMU projects are procured under ADB guidelines and do not come under the Central Tenders Board. This is by virtue of a Council of Minister’s decision No. 34 of 2015. The wisdom behind this decision by COM should be clear as there have been so many instances of bad practices in the past because of dodgy procurement guides under CTB.

One can wonder a loss of USD28 million is still a lot of money for Vanuatu and this money was ought to be spent on road works for the people of Vanuatu. Does it mean that delays in implementation and fluctuating foreign exchange rates since 2012 including the services of a consultant Roughton International can make Vanuatu not having a good number of its roads not properly tar sealed with no potholes due to a loss of USD28 million. What really happened since 2012 and why an amount of USD28 million was not being spent on the actual road works? Who really benefited from USD28 million if it was not the people of Vanuatu?

Going for gold – being the best you can be!

A series of short practical articles on transforming our society through business.

Businesses, especially very small, small and medium sized businesses are the lifeblood of the Pacific. They provide for our needs, employ our people, energise our communities, help us fulfil our potential and provide a future for our young people. Businesses have the power to transform our world one step at a time. Business leaders have a responsibility to use that power wisely, ethically and responsibly.

During this short series of articles Chris Elphick looks at the transformational power of business.

Today the focus is on how we organise our businesses with our customers in mind.

All businesses have systems and processes. A system is the overall “thing”, or a core element, you’re looking to have and/or implement in your business. It’s something that helps your business run. The processes are all the things you do in order to make any given system work most efficiently. A system helps run your business. In fact, your entire business is a system in-and-of-itself. But within the system that is your business, there are multiple other systems that help make up your business. Processes are what you use to run your systems

They provide the framework for what we do – our guidelines for using our resources, skills and talents. They must also enhance the value we provide to our customers.

The reality is that often our systems are out-of-date, ineffective and the responsibility of no-one.

Going for Gold businesses are lean businesses – Simply, lean means creating more value for customers with fewer resources. A lean organisation understands customer value and focuses its key processes to continuously increase it. The ultimate goal is to provide perfect value to the customer through a perfect value creation process that has zero waste.

Follow this ten-point plan:

Lean thinking is the way we do business, not an additional add on.

It involves everything – how we can do our jobs smarter and better and provide greater value to our customers.

Lean systems reduce waste – waste time, poor communications, out of date systems, poor training, overlaps and gaps in responsibilities, unclear roles, poor planning, waste of energy and fuel. The reality is that every time we waste anything we are throwing money away!

Reducing waste gives us more money to spend on our people or on improving the business.

Make someone responsible for each system – their role is to make sure it is kept current and reviewed regularly.

Ask for feedback from staff, customers, suppliers and other stakeholders and use that feedback to make improvements to your systems.

Pay special attention to your customer facing systems – reception, voicemail, website, Facebook page, business cards, brochures and leaflets – do they attract or repel!

Why does the system exist? Who is it for? Is it for you or your customers? Do you close early to suit you or your customers? Are your ordering or delivery systems designed to suit you or your customers?

Can technology help you streamline the way you do things and improve your efficiency?

Finally, make sure your meetings are lean and fit for purpose. They can be huge time wasters and demotivators if people are sitting through boring, long, irrelevant meetings that they do not see as relevant to themselves. Lean meetings must be short, focused, prepared for, lead to action, engage the right people and be interesting to all participants.

Effective systems and processes will help us deliver better services and products quicker and with less waste to all our customers. This in turn will lead to sustainable and profitable businesses.

Coming next – part five of our Going for Gold series – focusing on our people and their health..

Chris Elphick is Director of Learn.fast Pacific, supporting the development of a range of businesses and organisations in Vanuatu, Fiji, Solomons and other Pacific countries. He is an experienced business mentor and has years of experience of working with Small & Medium Enterprises. Learnfast Pacific works in close association with business support organisations throughout the Pacific.

If you have a business issue for Chris to comment on please contact him at [email protected]

Complete The EDF 11 Template For 3 Products Before 2 October 2017 And Other News.

COMPLETE THE EDF 11 TEMPLATE FOR 3 PRODUCTS BEFORE 2 OCTOBER 2017

For Vanuatu businesses involved in farming production and in processing in value addition of one of these 3 products, beef, coconut, vegetables and fruits to foster the rural areas development, you can complete a project proposal under the European Development Fund (EDF) 11 for Vanuatu based on the template provided by the Department of Industry for the set up and development of value chains for these 3 products to develop and grow the existing businesses.

For project proposals on production of quality produce of coconut, vegetables and fruits, and cattle, the concerned department to be contacted is the Department of Agriculture and or the Department of Livestock.

The template document for EDF 11 project proposals is available from the Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Any businesses can get it from the VCCI by email at [email protected] or call by phone on 27543 and mobile phone 712 3967.

For more information on how to complete the template, you can contact Donalyne Naviti by email at [email protected] or phone on 33415 at the Department of Industry to submit the complete template document for EDF 11 before 2 October 2017.

 

PACER PLUS FOR VANUATU

The private sector was astounded to learn the Council of Ministers had reversed its position on PACER PLUS without any further consideration in spite of the overwhelming position of these businesses which will be affected by this decision.

The VCCI understands that PACER PLUS will be good for Australia and New Zealand but the private sector is dismayed that the Council of Ministers has decided not to work in the best interests of Vanuatu.

What is the reason for the change of decision of the Council of Ministers to sign the PACER PLUS agreement this month?

If the private sector development is not a priority for the Vanuatu Government, a number of businesses are considering relocating their businesses to Samoa or Fiji where they are welcomed to invest and set up their businesses in a conducive environment.

The businesses in Samoa and Fiji have reported to Vanuatu businesses that their respective Government in Samoa or Fiji is very much switched on to the private sector development, interests and needs. It is ready to back up any sectors investment with strong and committed support to help them to establish a business in their country.

The Vanuatu Government now has a reputation of being a difficult country to start a business and maintain. The potential introduction of income tax will remove one of the last reasons investors will choose Vanuatu over other Pacific Island countries.

STARTING OF NATIONAL INDUSTRIAL POLICY REVIEW PROCESS

The Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) has been informed that the Industry Department has started the National Industry Policy (2011) review process today with the first consultation mission for the next 60 days.

The policy review process is funded by the Governance for Growth (GFG) Program and the contract is being awarded by the Government, after due process, to Mr Anders Johnson as the International Consultant in partnership with Whitesfield Partners. Mr Roy Pakoasongi, in the same process, has also being awarded the contract as the National Consultant.

In the week beginning 11th September 2017 for the next 60 days, consultation processes will begin and at some stage VCCI will be involved and participate through providing the private sector views.

The existing industrial policy will be revised. How will the production and trade in goods develop in Vanuatu, a country which has signed 3 trade agreements whether it be regional or multilateral for the purpose of importing more goods?

It is anticipated that the Industry Department will listen and take into account the views and recommendations given by the Vanuatu Manufacturers and Exporters Association to amend the National Industrial Policy where necessary during the consultation process, then amend the Industrial Development Act accordingly, or will it continue to ignore the position of the manufacturers and or exporters of Vanuatu?

 

CONSTRUCTION ISSUES ON ROAD WORKS AND TENDER BIDS TO SUPPORT LOCAL BUSINESSES

The construction industry key stakeholders through the Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) have raised serious concerns about why the initial funds allocated to the Port Vila Urban Development Plan (PVUDP) project which was US$55 million, have now been reduced to US$11 million. They would like to know the rationale and reasons for this significant reduction of funds which had been allocated to the actual road works, drainage system and public toilet facilities. If Vanuatu Government had in fact US$55 million at its disposal to spend on road works, drainage system, and public toilet facilities, would all the roads of Port Vila and peripheral areas been tar sealed properly and there would be no potholes on these roads?

Is there a public report on how the funds of US$55 million allocated to Port Vila Urban Development Plan (PVUDP) project were spent? For transparency and good governance purposes, VCCI is requesting the access to the public report on how the funds of US$55 million allocated to Port Vila Urban Development Plan (PVUDP) project were spent.

The construction industry key stakeholders through the VCCI are also complaining about the need to reform the National Tender Bids law under the Government Contracts and Tenders Act CAP 245 to protect local construction businesses from unfair entry of competitors in the national market and avoid a monopoly situation. It is urged for businesses involved in the construction industry sector that they must be registered in Vanuatu with ten years of residency before they can apply for a National Tender Bid.

For International Tender Bids, Vanuatu legislation needs to ensure in the international tender bid offer documents that any construction and infrastructure development projects must have at least 30% of works be sub-contracted to local businesses, with 50% of people employed being Ni Vanuatu employees.

These important points were raised by VCCI at the last National Trade and Development Committee meeting on 21 July 2017 for the NTDC to review these queries and act upon them to protect the development and growth of Ni Vanuatu construction industry.

The VCCI would be very pleased if the Government could consider these serious concerns and act upon them so they can be included in the progress report at the next National Trade and Development Committee meeting on 8 November 2017.

Going for gold – being the best you can be!

A series of short practical articles on transforming our society through business.

Businesses, especially very small, small and medium sized businesses are the lifeblood of the Pacific. They provide for our needs, employ our people, energise our communities, help us fulfil our potential and provide a future for our young people. Businesses have the power to transform our world one step at a time. Business leaders have a responsibility to use that power wisely, ethically and responsibly.

During this short series of articles Chris Elphick looks at the transformational power of business.

Today the focus is on transformational planning – effective planning that makes a difference.

‘If something needs fixing, lace up your shoes and get organising’ Barack Obama, 2017

There have been countless articles written on the need to plan in business – we all know that failing to plan is very close to planning to fail. We may have a business plan. We may have been on courses to help prepare one.

However just having a plan does not mean that it will help our business grow yet alone help transform the world around it. It is like a shiny new tool box in the boot of our car – it might look lovely but unless we know how to use the tools inside it is almost useless.

Business plans are not academic exercises and neither are they things we produce for others. Business plans are simply one element of a robust planning process which should be central to the way we run our business. Effective planning is how we create transformational business success and there are seven key stages.

Planning needs to be the link between your people and your vision and ambition – it is the process by which you will engage everyone to realise that vision.

Planning is an active and practical process which should engage and excite people. Planning sessions might be held in the shop or the café or the factory – the closer they are to the action the more real they will be and the more they are likely to result in things happening.

Planning must be fun – we know that children are unlikely to learn unless they are having fun, why should it be any different for adults at work?

Planning must lead to real action and real change – plan it, do it, review it. You won’t get it right all the time but if you procrastinate and do nothing you won’t get it right any of the time!

Planning should be a collaborative process – two heads are almost always better than one. We must involve the people who will be affected by the plans – our staff, our customers, our suppliers, our community.

Planning should be a challenging process – if it is easy then it is likely that little will change. Planning for transformational change requires us to get out of our comfort zones, change our habits and look at the future in a new way. Remember, a comfort zone is a beautiful place but nothing ever grows there!

Finally, transformational planning should be the way we run our business and relate to our staff and customers. Everyone should be involved in planning all the time – not when the bank manager wants a business plan! That is not planning, merely satisfying the needs of a third party.

If we believe in the transformational power of business, then we need to plan for that to be the case. Proper preparation prevents poor performance – time invested in planning at the start of a process will be worth its weight in gold at the end. Because planning is an active collaborative process it means that there will be times when we need to change the plan – what we are unlikely to change is the ultimate goal. If one path proves to be impractical or too difficult or too costly then we have to choose another – that is the essence of planning.

As business owners we are the captains of our ship – we need to steer the ship in the right direction. We need to consult others, seek their opinions, get different views on the direction we are taking, work together to find another path. We need to make good use of the expertise and experience available to us. That is planning in action. A collaborative approach that engages the minds and bodies of all those around us who have some sort of intertest in the direction our ship is heading!

‘We were born to win, but to be a winner we must plan to win, prepare to win and expect to win’ Zig Ziglar, American motivational speaker and businessman.

Coming next – part four of our Going for Gold series – organising our business for the customer.

Chris Elphick is Director of Learn.fast Pacific, supporting the development of a range of businesses and organisations in Vanuatu, Fiji, Solomons and other Pacific countries. He is an experienced business mentor and has years of experience of working with Small & Medium Enterprises. Learnfast Pacific works in close association with business support organisations throughout the Pacific.

If you have a business issue for Chris to comment on please contact him at [email protected]

 

Register a Booth At The Pacific Week of Agriculture, AgriTourism, Meeting on 5 September 2017 And Other News.

REGISTER A BOOTH AT THE PACIFIC WEEK OF AGRICULTURE, AGRITOURISM, MEETING ON 5 SEPTEMBER 2017

Vanuatu is preparing to host the first Pacific Week of Agriculture (PWA), bringing together to Port Vila agritourism stakeholders from 22 countries of the Pacific, from 16 to 20 October 2017. The event is expected to attract several hundred farmers from agriculture, livestock, forestry, and fisheries, agribusiness entrepreneurs, policy-makers, development partners and representatives from producer organisations, financial institutions, the private sector and the tourist and hospitality trade.

This was made known to local businesses who attended a presentation last week at the VCCI on the event by the PWA National Coordinator Howard Aru. “This is a huge event and an excellent opportunity for us to showcase Vanuatu to the region and globally” stated the PWA National Coordinator Howard Aru.

The PWA will consist of four big events at the National Convention Centre, the Pacific Agri-tourism Festival, the regional partnership trade fair from 16 to 18 October 2017, then the Heads of Agriculture and Forestry Meeting and the combined Ministers Meeting of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and Pacific Community (SPC) from 19 to 20 October 2017.

“We are seeking private sector support and involvement in the coordination, organisation and participation of the event” said the PWA National Coordinator. Local businesses can participate in the 3 day trade fair by showcasing their business and selling products in booths which are available inside and outside of the event venue. “We are wanting a list of potential business participants for the events as soon as possible as time is running out” said Howard Aru.

A PWA update meeting with interested Agritourism Businesses will be held at VCCI with Howard Aru on Tuesday 5 September 2017 at 3.30pm.

For more information on PWA Media/Communications Focal Point, you can contact Kiery Manassah by email on [email protected]

For more information on PWA Social Media, you can contact Alcina Charlie by email on [email protected]

To register your name for a booth, you can contact VCCI Reception by email at [email protected] or by phone on 27543 or mobile phone 712 3967 before 7 September 2017.

Vanuatu Cocoa Association Created

While the Vanuatu cocoa industry forms only a small part of the world production of this commodity, significant challenges exist in producing consistent volumes of quality cocoa and determining appropriate prices that reflect world prices and promote and reward product quality. In the face of these issues, Vanuatu cocoa growers remain positive in their outlook for the future of Vanuatu’s cocoa industry and in improving the quality and quantity of cocoa grown and produced locally.

The formation of a Vanuatu Cocoa Industry Association (VCIA) was a natural step for the industry to take to maintain the current momentum, which looks to ensure this small but growing commodity develops in a managed and sustainable way. The purpose of the group is to provide a well-coordinated and united voice on key issues for the industry.

The newly-registered association was established out of the former Cocoa Industry Working Group (CIWG) that was set up by the Pacific Horticultural and Agricultural Market Access (PHAMA) Program in 2013. The CIWG was forged on the principles of mutual respect and building effective and stronger partnerships between the public and private sectors, including the Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), Vanuatu Agricultural Research and Technical Centre (VARTC), and two non-government organizations (NGOs) namely World Vision (WV) and Adventist Development Research Agency (ADRA).

Through these partnerships, representatives from the private sector that consisted of growers and exporters, and the Government of Vanuatu through the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Forestry, Fisheries and Biosecurity and the Ministry of Trade, Industry, Commerce and Tourism have been able to plan and organize the necessary support activities for the industry. These meetings were made possible through the support of the PHAMA Program, an initiative of the Australian and New Zealand governments.

It should be noted that the support of the PHAMA Program, through the (VCIA), has enabled the cocoa growers to address quality issues such as smoke-tainted beans through the construction and use of 23 solar driers. Providing technical assistance and linking these farmers with overseas buyers and markets is also part of the support being offered by the program.

As a result of the program’s support, there have been significant improvements in cocoa management and production processes along with increased interest in the planting of cocoa. There has also been increased international interest from cocoa buyers and chocolate manufacturers in purchasing Vanuatu cocoa beans.

The first formal meeting of the newly formed and registered association was held in Port Vila in August to elect the chairperson and board of trustees. The association is keen to continue with the good work already achieved and to keep the momentum going on what is an expanding and developing industry.

Vanuatu’s pristine, natural skincare products at Auckland Gift Fair 2017

With Christmas just four months away, Pacific Trade Invest (PTI) New Zealand has invited four Pacific companies to showcase their wares at the Auckland Spring Home and Gift Fair from August 27 to 29. The annual one-stop trade-only show is held at the ASB Showgrounds in Greenlane. It attracts hundreds of exhibitors vying to attract buyers and retailers stocking up for Christmas.

Vanuatu natural oils and skincare products maker The Summit Vanuatu is one of four Pacific Island companies being featured at the fair. Pacific Trade Invest (PTI) New Zealand invited the four companies to participate in the show hosting them at a specially themed ‘Pacific Hub’ stand.

The show comes close on the heels of the Auckland Food Show where PTI NZ featured nine companies from five Pacific Island companies at a similarly themed Pacific Hub stand.

Speaking about the participation of four companies at next week’s trade-only show, PTI NZ Trade Development Manager Joe Fuavao said, “We currently have a successful food and beverage programme in place for our Pacific Island companies. Our participation at the Spring Gift and Homeware Fair is to develop a platform for Pacific Island companies in the craft, cosmetic and skincare sectors to promote their products to New Zealand buyers.

“As trade-only event, this is a great opportunity for our Pacific exporters to meet key decision makers in the business responsible for purchasing products. We welcome the four Pacific companies and look forward to working with them at the Spring Gift and Homeware Fair.”

Based in Vanuatu’s capital Port Vila, The Summit uses only natural ingredients sourced from Vanuatu’s pristine islands to create its range of sandalwood based, tamanu, lime and nangai oil skin care products.

The ingredients are all organically grown, which is what makes them popular with tourists to Vanuatu who visit the company’s distillery. However, what equally impresses visitors and buyers of the products is the fact that they are grown by hundreds of small-holder farmers using traditional organic practices.

“Customers appreciate the top-quality product we produce, achievable by the traceability of the key ingredients and our small batch production policy. Our beautiful products contain no artificial ingredients, no artificial fragrances, no parabens, nor animal products. They are tested on blissfully happy friends,” the company’s director Sandra Mazzucco told Pacific Periscope.

“Whilst organic, natural and beneficial ingredients are a major factor and point of difference to our products, it is the socio-economic impact of improved lifestyles and increased livelihoods for the small-holder farmers that is vitally important,” she added.

The company lays much store by the pristine ingredients and the locals who grow them. Says Ms Mazzucco: “Our key botanical ingredients are sourced from traceable local trees and plants, nurtured and loved by their growers. Vanuatu benefits from a superb collection of plants, which have been used for centuries, and we have put together a small sample to share in their all natural, all-encompassing magic.

“Sandalwood and other tropical essential oils, which are highly beneficial to the skin as also to the mood, are distilled at our artisan steam distillery in Port Vila and then combined with other 100% natural ingredients in our health and skincare range.”

The Summit Vanuatu makes creams, balms, soaps and sandalwood hydrosol based health and body products at its distillery on site, by hand, in a facility where production processes can be observed by visitors.

The company takes naturalness and sustainability beyond its products into its packaging, too. The products are packaged in handcrafted boxes using clean recycled cardboard and handmade rosettes.

“The Summit Vanuatu takes pride in its earth to oils enterprise. We work at a grassroots level, actively supporting ethical and fair-trade farming and fully promoting sustainability, then take it through to creation of a 100% pure and natural superior quality product,” Ms Mazzucco said.

Speaking of the company’s participation in next week’s show in Auckland, Ms Mazzucco said, “We will utilise this opportunity to ‘showcase’ our range of products to a more regional marketplace, which aligns itself perfectly to our overall future development plans.”

Ms Mazzucco will be representing The Summit Vanuatu along with her co-director Terry Adlington at the Auckland Spring Home and Gift Fair, which will be held at the ASB Showgrounds in Greenlane, Auckland. This is the first time that the company is showcasing its products in New Zealand, though it does sell products here through its online store.

“We hope to receive good interest and feedback on our product range and hope to engage with an agent or distributor,” Ms Mazzucco said.

The Summit Vanuatu is a past participant of the PTI NZ Path to Market Programme, which is designed to help potential exporters from the Pacific Islands gain a better understanding of the New Zealand market. It is an export capability programme combining a range of export facilitation services to help export ready and export capable businesses to enter New Zealand.

For more information, please email PTI NZ Trade Development Manager Joe Fuavao at [email protected]

 

EXPORT CAPACITY WORKSHOP NZ PTI IN JULY 2017 

Pacific Trade and Invest NZ in conjunction with VCCI conducted the one day workshop to assist business owners who are thinking of entering the export market particularly to NZ on 21 July 2017 in Vanuatu. Aimed at businesses that see the export market as a growth opportunity, the objective is to increase business owner’s knowledge and build capability to be successful in the export market.

The workshop was the first step in a 6 step Pacific Path to Market program of the Pacific Islands Trade Invest (PITI). This Path to Market program was organised by Pacific Trade Invest New Zealand in association with the Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce (VCCI). The VCCI identified and recommend potential exporters for the PTI NZ Path to Market Workshop. The workshop was jointly delivered by NZ PTI Trade & Investment Commissioner Michael Greenslade and Trade Development Manager Ian Furlong.

About 23 business persons attended the workshop. They are involved in kava production, fruits and nuts processing, oils and beauty products, food processing, manufacturing and value-adding of locally made Vanuatu products with export potential. Few of the participants are from the export support sectors such as money transfers, business advisory services, customs and logistics operators.

The one day workshop covered areas and concepts identified as challenges for local businesses getting ready for the export market. These include packaging and labelling, marketing and finding agents in the export destination, successfully selling products, costing, pricing and profitability.

Few of the business who participated are seen by the facilitators as already at the level for export. They are encouraged to participate in future NZ PTI and other trade fairs. Similar workshops would be conducted in the future to build capacity and prepare local businesses to meet export readiness requirements.

Aelan Chocolate And Selected Cocoa Producers at Le Salon Du Chocolat 2017 In Paris and Other News

AELAN CHOCOLATE AND SELECTED COCOA PRODUCERS AT LE SALON DU CHOCOLAT 2017 IN PARIS 

Vanuatu is now on the map for fine chocolate! Alean Chocolate Makers (ACM), the leading industry in fine chocolate making in Vanuatu, has two of the cocoa producers they are working with who have been selected as some of the fifty best cocoa producers in the world! ACM ensured that they entered the competition Cocoa of Excellence 2017 early 2017 and received the confirmation of the selection of the two of the four samples sent this month.

ACM and the selected cocoa producers are now invited to attend the Le Salon du Chocolat in Paris, France, at the end of October 2017 as they are selected for the International Cocoa Awards. ACM is really pleased that Mabong Naki from South West Bay and George Moli from Malo got their beans selected for this prestigious competition that recognizes the best cocoa beans in the world for fine chocolate. These are the beans used to produce the AELAN origin chocolate of Malo and Malekula. ACM is a social responsible business for which ACTIV Association is the main shareholder at 80% and reinvests the benefits of the sales of the fine chocolate into the support to the cocoa producers to improve the quality of the beans and improve the livelihoods of the producers.

ACTIV has been working since 2010 with the cocoa producers with the support of ACIAR (Australian Center for International Agriculture Research) and more recently World Vision for Malo. AELAN Chocolate Makers was set up in 2013 to create a new opportunity for the Vanuatu cocoa beans by value-adding the cocoa beans into fine chocolate and increasing the income to the cocoa producers.

This selection is a big achievement for Mabong Naki and George Moli and a real opportunity for all the cocoa producers in Vanuatu. AELAN is now looking to bring Mabong Naki and George Moli to Paris and find a distributor in France for the AELAN chocolate and continue to generate more revenues to assist more cocoa producers.

AELAN chocolate will be soon distributed in New Zealand and the Netherlands and will have locally a new range of chocolate with the adding of the local nuts (nangai and natapoa), fruits and spices.

Another good reason to purchase the local ALEAN 70% dark chocolate from the islands of Epi, Malekula, Malo and Santo. You can find them in 45g, 65g or 100g bars. For more information, visit the Activ Association websites activassociation.org and aelanchocolate.com, and the facebook pages activassociation and aelanchocolate, or contact Activ Association by email at [email protected]

 

BUSINESS PRESENTATION MEETING ON PACIFIC WEEK OF AGRICULTURE, AGRITOURISM, 31 AUGUST 2017

The Pacific Week of Agriculture (PWA) 2017, is a major event of Vanuatu organised jointly by the Ministry of Agriculture and Ministry of Tourism, Trade and Industry with the support from the Pacific Community (SPC) and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).

It includes the Pacific Agritourism Festival from 16 to 18 October 2017 at the National Convention Centre with Vanuatu Agritourism key stakeholders, Businesses operating in the sectors of Agriculture, Livestock, Forestry, Fisheries and Tourism.

The Pacific Agritourism Festival is followed by the regional Pacific Week of Agriculture events from 19 to 20 October 2017 with Pacific Heads and Ministers of Agriculture and Forestry Meetings at the National Convention Centre.

Click here to access the Pacific Week of Agriculture 2017 flier from 16 to 20 October 2017.

Business are invited to attend the Business Presentation Meeting of PWA 2017 at VCCI Conference Room on Thursday 31 August 2017 at 2.30pm. Howard Aru, the National Coordinator of PWA, will come to explain what the programme is, how the businesses of Vanuatu will be able to participate in the event to promote, display and sell their products.

For more information, you can contact VCCI Reception by email at [email protected] or by phone on 27543 or mobile phone 7123967.

 

BUSINESS MEETING ON SMALL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT BILL 31 AUGUST 2017

This is a reminder that a consultation meeting on the Small Business Development Bill between the Cooperatives Department, VCCI Council and businesses will be held on Thursday 31 August 2017 at 3.30pm at VCCI Conference Room. The Director of Cooperatives Department Ridley Joseph will come to explain the proposed bill. All businesses are invited to attend the meeting.

Please click to view and download Small Business Development Bill

For more information about the Small Business Development Bill, you can contact VCCI Reception by email at [email protected] or by phone on 27543 or by mobile phone 7123967.

 

PROCUREMENT SURVEY FOR BUSINESSES WITH VANUATU RED CROSS

This is a reminder that the Red Cross Societies of Vanuatu and Australia are working together with the overall disaster response sector in the Pacific islands region to increase and improve procurement from local businesses in times of disaster, and increase and strengthen partnerships with the local business community for disaster preparation and response. As part of this they have partnered with the VCCI this year to assist in the creation of the Vanuatu Business Resilience Committee (VBRC).

To further assist this effort, Vanuatu and Australia Red Cross would appreciate if you can take the time to answer a short survey on behalf of your business, to provide information so that the initiative truly meets local needs. The survey is about local business experiences with disasters, and supplying goods and services to disaster response organizations. It will provide feedback to inform the development of the working relationship between the disaster management and business sectors, and guide the work of the VBRC to strengthen local business resilience. It will take you about 10 minutes to complete. All information will be held in confidence and individuals will not be identified, answers will only be used in summary form. The survey will be available online until the 31st of August 2017.

To access the procurement survey of Red Cross Society, businesses are asked to complete the survey form online by clicking on the link https://goo.gl/forms/uCzMUpgYW5iBaIBl1

For more information on the project or this survey, or if you have any questions, please contact: Luke Johnston (Project Adviser)   Email: [email protected]  Mobile: 7744917

 

LARGE COMMERCE COUNCILLOR VACANT POSITION IN VCCI COUNCIL

The Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce (VCCI) is looking for a large commerce business to represent the Large Commerce sector in the VCCI Council, as the Large Commerce Councillor. The business would have a Class D1 or D2 business licence.

If you are interested to submit your candidacy for the Large Commerce Councillor position and wish to receive more information on this vacant position, you can complete a VCCI Councillor Candidacy Form and return it to the VCCI Reception.

For more information, please contact VCCI Reception by email at [email protected] or by phone 27543 or by mobile phone 7123967 before Thursday 31 August 2017.

 

Ready for Business’ Youths Complete Business Training at VCCI

Ten youths completed a month’s long business training with the Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) on Friday 18th August 2017. The training is part of the Ready for Business Program of the Youth Challenge Vanuatu (YCV).

Starting a business or engaging in self-employment is increasingly seen as part of a strategy to address the youth employment challenge. While that is true, however, on average young people find it more difficult than adults to engage in business because they have less capital in the form of skills, knowledge and experience, collaterals and less access to business networks.

In the training program, the youths developed skills for entrepreneurship in identifying small business opportunities in their local areas, analyzing and identifying the most suitable business idea and planning out how the business would operate. Sessions also covered the practical skills of sales and marketing focusing on product differentiation, pricing techniques, location and channels for sales and simple techniques for promoting products and their businesses. The training also covered the general business essentials of good customer service, record keeping, business ethics and manners, developing networks with other businesses, suppliers and legal requirements for operating a formal business.

At the end of the training each youth participant developed a business plan applying what they gained in the program. Their business plans forms a key instrument to guide their businesses and access a small business grant provided by the YCV Ready for Business Program.

 

EXPORT CAPACITY WORKSHOP NZ PTI IN JULY 2017

Pacific Trade and Invest NZ in conjunction with VCCI conducted the one day workshop to assist business owners who are thinking of entering the export market particularly to NZ on 21 July 2017 in Vanuatu. Aimed at businesses that see the export market as a growth opportunity, the objective is to increase business owner’s knowledge and build capability to be successful in the export market.

The workshop was the first step in a 6 step Pacific Path to Market program of the Pacific Islands Trade Invest (PITI). This Path to Market program was organised by Pacific Trade Invest New Zealand in association with the Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce (VCCI). The VCCI identified and recommend potential exporters for the PTI NZ Path to Market Workshop. The workshop was jointly delivered by PTI NZ Trade & Investment Commissioner Michael Greenslade and Trade Development Manager Ian Furlong.

About 23 business persons attended the workshop. They are involved in kava production, fruits and nuts processing, oils and beauty products, food processing, manufacturing and value-adding of locally made Vanuatu products with export potential. Few of the participants are from the export support sectors such as money transfers, business advisory services, customs and logistics operators.

The one day workshop covered areas and concepts identified as challenges for local businesses getting ready for the export market. These include packaging and labelling, marketing and finding agents in the export destination, successfully selling products, costing, pricing and profitability.

Few of the business who participated are seen by the facilitators as already at the level for export. They are encouraged to participate in future PTI NZ and other trade fairs. Similar workshops would be conducted in the future to build capacity and prepare local businesses to meet export readiness requirements.

 

Business Meeting on Small Business Development Bill 31 August 2017 And Other Meetings.

BUSINESS MEETING ON SMALL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT BILL 31 AUGUST 2017

VCCI wishes to inform that a consultation meeting on the Small Business Development Bill between the Cooperatives Department and VCCI Council and businesses will be held on Thursday 31 August 2017 at 3.30pm at VCCI Conference Room. The Director of Cooperatives Department Ridley Joseph will come to explain the proposed bill. All businesses are invited to attend the meeting.

Please click to view and download Small Business Development Bill

For more information about the Small Business Development Bill, you can contact VCCI Reception by email at [email protected] or by phone on 27543 or by mobile phone 7123967.

PROCUREMENT SURVEY FOR BUSINESSES WITH VANUATU RED CROSS

The Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry has been advised that the Red Cross Societies of Vanuatu and Australia are working together with the overall disaster response sector in the Pacific islands region to increase and improve procurement from local businesses in times of disaster, and increase and strengthen partnerships with the local business community for disaster preparation and response. As part of this they have partnered with the VCCI this year to assist in the creation of the Vanuatu Business Resilience Committee (VBRC).

To further assist this effort, Vanuatu and Australia Red Cross would appreciate if you can take the time to answer a short survey on behalf of your business, to provide information so that the initiative truly meets local needs. The survey is about local business experiences with disasters, and supplying goods and services to disaster response organizations. It will provide feedback to inform the development of the working relationship between the disaster management and business sectors, and guide the work of the VBRC to strengthen local business resilience. It will take you about 10 minutes to complete. All information will be held in confidence and individuals will not be identified, answers will only be used in summary form. The survey will be available online until the 31st of August 2017.

Click on this link to access the survey https://goo.gl/forms/uCzMUpgYW5iBaIBl1

For more information on the project or this survey, or if you have any questions, please contact: Luke Johnston (Project Adviser)   Email: [email protected]  Mobile: 7744917

 

INVITATION FOR BUSINESS WOMEN TO REGISTER BEFORE 25 AUGUST 2017 FOR AUSTRALIA AWARDS WOMEN TRADING GLOBALLY

Are you a woman who owns and operates a successful small business? Do you wish to learn about international trade and how you might be able to embark on the pathway of growing your business into new international markets?

The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, under its Aid for Trade and Australia Awards programs, and in partnership with the Export Council of Australia, has pleasure in inviting you to participate in a short course ‘Australia Awards: Women Trading Globally’ .

The course is offered to Pacific women with their own business who are ‘export ready’.

During the course participants will:

•           learn about doing business in and with Australia

•           connect with other women entrepreneurs from across the Pacific and Australia

•           enable you to grow your business and expand internationally.

The program consists of one week of training in Brisbane and one week of training in Sydney, Australia.

This two week residential Australia Awards short course is funded by the Australian Government.

Requirements:

•           You own and operate a successful business or you play a leading role within your business

•          You reside in one of these countries: Fiji Vanuatu Solomon Islands Samoa Tonga Papua New Guinea Kiribati Nauru Federated States of Micronesia Marshall Islands Cook Islands Niue Tuvalu Tokelau Palau

•           You have a strong command of English—spoken and written

•           Your business has export capabilities

•           You are able to travel to Australia from 12 to 24 November 2017

•           You are keen to expand your international business capability

The program includes:

•           Comprehensive international business capability training

•           Practical, hands-on exercises

•           Site visits

•           Networking opportunities

This program will enable you to grow your business and expand internationally.

For successful applicants, all costs* associated with this program will be funded by the Australian Government. These include;

•           International airfares and visas

•           All meals and accommodation in Australia

•           Transportation within Australia

•           Workshops and workshop materials

•           Organised social functions

* Excludes items of a personal nature.

You will be notified of the success of your application by close of business on Friday 08 September 2017.

Please click here to view and down load the follow:-

Invitation to Participate

Application Form

For more information to submit your name and contact details of your business, the application form and a brochure about the initiative are available online https://globalalumni.gov.au/News/Details?ArticleId=494

You will need to complete the application form and return it to [email protected] by close of business on Friday 25 August 2017.

LARGE COMMERCE COUNCILLOR VACANT POSITION IN VCCI COUNCIL

The Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce (VCCI) is looking for a large commerce business to represent the Large Commerce sector in the VCCI Council, as the Large Commerce Councillor. The business would have a Class D1 or D2 business licence.

If you are interested to submit your candidacy for the Large Commerce Councillor position and wish to receive more information on this vacant position, you can complete a VCCI Councillor Candidacy Form and return it to the VCCI Reception by contacting VCCI Reception by email at [email protected] or by phone 27543 or by mobile phone 7123967 before Thursday 31 August 2017.

VCCI NOMINEE TO ATTEND PRIVATE SECTOR EVENTS PIFS IN APIA SAMOA FROM 5 TO 8 SEPTEMBER 2017

This year, the Private Sector Dialogue with Forum Leaders will take the format of a panel discussion, made up of 4 panellists, two from the private sector and 2 Forum Leaders. Each panel member will be given 12 minutes to respond to a series of questions posed by the Moderator. The panel with Leaders will be held on Wednesday 6th September 2017 at the Sheraton Aggie Grey’s Ball Room. The private sector panellists are Stephen Llyon, Cook Islands and  Maurice Brownjohn, PNA Tuna Commission. The Forum Leaders panelists will be advised under separate cover once confirmation is in hand.

On Tuesday, 5th September, the private sector will gather for a couple of hours to caucus on the panel, have a run through and decide on the interventions, the private sector positions in line with the theme and to articulate key messages or call to action from the private sector to Leaders. In the afternoon, a private sector dialogue working group meeting will be held to discuss and take forward the decisions that went to FEMM this year part of which is to decide on the formulation of the private sector working group with oversight on the Business Harmonisation and Business Mobility issue as well as to hear from the Green Climate Fund, World Bank and others on funding schemes targeting the private sector through the adaptation and resilience lens. The venue is Hotel Elisa.

Thursday 7 September is reserved for business to business meetings and networking engagements by the private sector through the Samoa Chamber of Commerce which is leading this event.

A regional panel event on trade, tourism and investment will take place on Friday 8th September at Sheraton Aggie Grey’s with the event, The 21st Century Maritime Silk Road:  China-PICs Economic Cooperation bringing together a group Chinese businesses, state officials and academia to interact with the pacific private sector through panel discussions on topics including Investing in Infrastructure and Connectivity, Sustainable Tourism Development and Fisheries. There are around 50 Chinese delegates confirmed for this event.

8th  September inclusive. This includes a return economy airfare and accommodation administered under the Secretariat’s travel policy.  All other costs including visas, transit, daily stipends and extra accommodation nights will be borne by the delegate. To qualify for PIFS assistance, interested private sector participants must meet the criteria. The business man or business woman must be an active commercial operator or investor in the blue economy in any of the following areas, Oceans management including coastal habitat protection, restoration, Logistics – sea freight, Fisheries including aqua farming, Sea vessel management or manufacturing, Seafaring, Port infrastructure and services, Renewal energy, or a Commercial operator in inter island or inter regional trade through maritime transportation modes. The successful applicant will be informed of their travel arrangements by PIFS.

If you are interested to attend the meetings and represent VCCI as the VCCI nominee, you can contact VCCI Reception by email [email protected] or by phone on 27543 or by mobile phone 7123967 to complete and submit your application form.

VCCI NOMINEE TO TECHNICAL SUB REGIONAL TRAINING FOR DISASTER AFFECTED PACIFIC ISLAND COUNTRIES 18 TO 22 SEPTEMBER 2017

From 2015 until now, the International Labour Organisation (ILO) has supported post-disaster action in three Pacific island countries through conducting Post-Disaster Needs Assessments (PDNAs) of the Employment and Livelihoods Sector, implementing employment-rich recovery projects and through helping micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to establish disaster-resilient business practices. The demand for preparedness and recovery tools for the MSME’s is high, considering the effect of the disaster to income and employment.

The recent Ministerial Meeting on the Future of Work in the Pacific recognised the need to strengthening the capacities of ILO tripartite partners to respond to, recover from and prepare for the adverse impact of natural hazards on the economy and labour market. The development of next generation Decent Work Country Programmes (DWCP) for the pacific countries are recognising the impact of disaster on decent work.

Given the strategic importance of disaster preparedness in the pacific, the ILO Country Office (CO Suva) together with the ILO Bureau of Employers Activities (ACTEMP) and the International Trade Center (ITC) of ILO propose to hold a week-long sub regional technical meeting for ILO constituents and other stakeholders from disaster affected pacific island countries and who were involved in the response.

The sub regional technical training aims to: (1) promote ILO tools to mainstream decent work practices in disaster response, recovery and preparedness activities;

(2) to identify best practices and areas of improvement during recent post-disaster action in the pacific for sharing and strategizing;

3) strengthen the ILO’s internal capacity to respond to the demand.

The specific objectives of the sub regional training are to:

1. promote the ILO as a key player during disaster planning and response in the Pacific, including strengthening employer organisations to support SME’s;

2. Review the Disaster Resilience and Preparedness tool for SME’s developed by ILO:  These include cyclones, earthquakes, tsunamis, floods, tidal surges, landslides, droughts, forest fires and volcanic eruptions, as well as epidemics

3. enhance the capacities of government and ILO social partners in the  Pacific to mainstream decent work practices during disaster response, recovery and preparedness;

affected pacific islands countries good practices as well as opportunities for further improvements for pre and post disaster actions in the Pacific.  A selected representative from employers’ organisations for Vanuatu is invited to attend the training.

Relevant ILO tripartite participants from Vanuatu, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Samoa and Tonga will be fully sponsored by the ILO.

Under the ILO initiative, the Working out of disaster from response to recovery and preparedness workshop from 18 to 22 September 2017 at Tanoa International Hotel, Nadi, Fiji, will develop a Pacific strategy for the ILO and its constituents to be better prepared and reduce the impact of disasters on employment and small and micro enterprises.

VCCI is looking for a nominee, a business man or business woman, who is an employer, and would be interested to attend this technical training on behalf of VCCI to represent the employers and micro and small businesses of Vanuatu.

The VCCI nominee will be actively involved in the Vanuatu Business Resilience Committee (VBRC) activities, ready to share the knowledge of tools and best practices of this training with the members of VBRC, MSMEs and business community.

If you are interested to attend and represent VCCI and Employers, you can contact VCCI Reception by email at [email protected] or by phone on 27543, or by mobile phone 7123967, to submit your name and contact details of your business by Wednesday 23 August 2017.

EXPORT CAPACITY WORKSHOP NZ PTI IN JULY 2017

Pacific Trade and Invest NZ in conjunction with VCCI conducted the one day workshop to assist business owners who are thinking of entering the export market particularly to NZ on 21 July 2017 in Vanuatu. Aimed at businesses that see the export market as a growth opportunity, the objective is to increase business owner’s knowledge and build capability to be successful in the export market.

The workshop was the first step in a 6 step Pacific Path to Market program of the Pacific Islands Trade Invest (PITI). This Path to Market program was organised by Pacific Trade Invest New Zealand in association with the Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce (VCCI). The VCCI identified and recommend potential exporters for the PTI NZ Path to Market Workshop. The workshop was jointly delivered by PTI NZ Trade & Investment Commissioner Michael Greenslade and Trade Development Manager Ian Furlong.

About 23 business persons attended the workshop. They are involved in kava production, fruits and nuts processing, oils and beauty products, food processing, manufacturing and value-adding of locally made Vanuatu products with export potential. Few of the participants are from the export support sectors such as money transfers, business advisory services, customs and logistics operators. The one day workshop covered areas and concepts identified as challenges for local businesses getting ready for the export market. These include packaging and labelling, marketing and finding agents in the export destination, successfully selling products, costing, pricing and profitability.

Few of the business who participated are seen by the facilitators as already at the level for export. They are encouraged to participate in future PTI NZ and other trade fairs. Similar workshops would be conducted in the future to build capacity and prepare local businesses to meet export readiness requirements.

VCCI Nominee to Technical Sub Regional Training for Disaster Affected Pacific Island Countries and Other News

Invitation to Women Entrepreneurs Attending Business and Entrepreneurship Workshops with Margareta Schettler

The U.S Embassy in Port Moresby is delighted to introduce Margareta (Greta) Schettler. Greta is an expert in Business and Entrepreneurship and will be running a two day workshop on this topic in Port Vila on:

Date: Monday and Tuesday, September 11 and 12, 2017

Time: 9:00am to 11:00am and then from 1:30pm to 3:30pm

Venue: Vanuatu National Provident Fund (VNPF) Conference Room

 

This event is FREE of charge but space is limited. FSVP to Esther Sibona at [email protected] or +675 7091 5854 by Friday September 1 2017, to reserve your spot.

 

About Greta

Greta Schettler is the Chief Operating Officer of WEConnect International. Based in Washington, D.C., she heads up global efforts to manage the rapid growth of the organization, leads its executive management team and strategic direction, and develops a performance driven culture among its group of diverse talented individuals. She is a proven executive and entrepreneur with more than 15 years of experience, has a wealth of experience in designing and scaling efforts to advance women’s economic participation and entrepreneurship through development, trade, economic, and international business initiatives. Prior to joining WEConnect International, Greta was Senior Economic Policy Advisor in the Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues for the U.S. Department of State for six years. In that role Greta was responsible for elevation women’s economic participation as a U.S. foreign policy priority globally. Greta’s leadership at the U.S. Department of State was key to the strategic development and expansion of over 30 major initiatives such as the APEC Women and the Economy forum, the Equal Futures Partnership, the Women’s Entrepreneurship Fund, the African Women’s Entrepreneurship program, and the Alliance for Artisan Enterprise. During her work in the APEC region, Greta lead several efforts focused on women’s entrepreneurship in conjunction with Papua New Guinea and the other 21 APEC economies. She has specific experience in developing programs that connect women owned businesses to larger market opportunities that are based in small islands developing states, where she specifically worked with women owned businesses from the Pacific and Caribbean Islands.

 

VCCI NOMINEE TO TECHNICAL SUB REGIONAL TRAINING FOR DISASTER AFFECTED PACIFIC ISLAND COUNTRIES 18 TO 22 SEPTEMBER 2017

The Pacific is one of the most hazard prone regions on earth. Vulnerability factors such as remoteness from major trade and commercial centres, high population growth, strong gender inequalities and a lingering transition from subsistence production to the cash-economy characterise many of the Pacific island countries and quickly turn a hazard into a disaster. The average annual direct losses caused by natural hazards in the South Pacific region are estimated at US$284 million – combined with a breakdown of traditional community-based social protection systems and slow economic growth rates since the onset of the global financial crisis, many households in the pacific struggle to make a decent living.

From 2015 until now, the International Labour Organisation (ILO) has supported post-disaster action in three Pacific island countries through conducting Post-Disaster Needs Assessments (PDNAs) of the Employment and Livelihoods Sector, implementing employment-rich recovery projects and through helping micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to establish disaster-resilient business practices. The demand for preparedness and recovery tools for the MSME’s is high, considering the effect of the disaster to income and employment.

The recent Ministerial Meeting on the Future of Work in the Pacific recognised the need to strengthening the capacities of ILO tripartite partners to respond to, recover from and prepare for the adverse impact of natural hazards on the economy and labour market. The development of next generation Decent Work Country Programmes (DWCP) for the pacific countries are recognising the impact of disaster on decent work.

Given the strategic importance of disaster preparedness in the pacific, the ILO Country Office (CO Suva) together with the ILO Bureau of Employers Activities (ACTEMP) and the International Trade Center (ITC) of ILO propose to hold a week-long sub regional technical meeting for ILO constituents and other stakeholders from disaster affected pacific island countries and who were involved in the response.

The sub regional technical training aims to:

(1) promote ILO tools to mainstream decent work practices in disaster response, recovery and preparedness activities;

(2) to identify best practices and areas of improvement during recent post-disaster action in the pacific for sharing and strategizing;

3) strengthen the ILO’s internal capacity to respond to the demand.

The specific objectives of the sub regional training are to:

  1. promote the ILO as a key player during disaster planning and response in the Pacific, including strengthening employer organisations to support SME’s;
  2. Review the Disaster Resilience and Preparedness tool for SME’s developed by ILO:

These include cyclones, earthquakes, tsunamis, floods, tidal surges, landslides, droughts, forest fires and volcanic eruptions, as well as epidemics

  1. enhance the capacities of government and ILO social partners in the Pacific to mainstream decent work practices during disaster response, recovery and preparedness;
  2. identify together with constituents and stakeholders from disaster-affected pacific islands countries good practices as well as opportunities for further improvements for pre and post disaster actions in the Pacific.

A selected representative from employers’ organisations for Vanuatu is invited to attend the training.

Relevant ILO tripartite participants from Vanuatu, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Samoa and Tonga will be fully sponsored by the ILO. Other participants will be invited to attend the training at their own costs.

The five day-long training programme will combine expert input with applied learning methodologies. Participants will receive knowledge from ILO experts and will have ample opportunity to share their insights and experiences during plenary sessions and group work.

Each training day will expose participants to a different dimension of post-disaster action:

DAY 01 “Employers Focus Group” will start with an interactive introduction exercise and provide the participants with a quick overview of the training programme. Subsequently, the participants will explore the specific role of employers in Disaster Risk Reduction. ACTEMP will present its Disaster Risk Reduction toolkit for Employer Organisations to support SME’s to employer representatives, CO-Suva and ITC Turin for feedback. The employer representatives from participating countries will be joined by employer representatives from the Fiji Disaster Council.

DAY 02 “Post Disaster Needs Assessments (PDNA) and Response” will start with a brief introduction to PDNAs and participants will familiarise themselves with the PDNA coordination mechanism as well as the objective and purpose of a PDNA. In subsequent sessions, participants will receive an introductory technical training to assess a disaster’s impact on the Employment, Livelihoods and Social Protection Sector” and e.g. apply basic calculations to estimate lost days and lost income. At the end of the day, participants will share their experience in the PDNA’s highlighting best practices and lessons for better preparedness.

On “DAY 03 – Emergency Employment & Recovery” The first half of the day will critically analyse past emergency employment and recovery programmes in specific countries. Thesecond half of the day will focus on potential solutions to challenges and identifying best practice for future response, including toolkit for SME recovery.

On “Day 04 – Field Study and Validation” participants will embark on a half-day field study. This will give them the opportunity to relate key learning outcomes from the preceding training days by visiting selected SME’s and communities in Fiji that were impacted by Cyclone Winston to understand practical challenges and solutions on the ground. Participants will also be able to interview SME owners to test and verify their learnings from day 03. In the afternoon, participants will engage in a participatory debrief with the training facilitators.

Day 05 “Wrap-up and Evaluation” marks the end of the training programme. Participants will review and summarise key learning outcomes from the preceding days and develop a strategy to enhance future disaster preparedness and response strategies in the pacific. At the end of the day, participants will undertake a short knowledge acquisition test, evaluate their training experience and receive their certificates.

After having attended the sub regional training, participants will be able to:

  • appreciate the role of the ILO and its partners in pre and post-disaster action in the pacific,
  • understand the PDNA process as well as key PDNA concepts such as damages and losses, recovery needs, sectorial divisions, etc.,
  • apprehend the ILO’s tools and strategies to provide emergency employment and recovery programmes as well as to enhance the resilience of SME and their business practices,
  • apprehend ILO’s tools on “the role of business and its organizations in building a resilient and protecting job, enterprise and livelihood.”
  • identify future disaster risk scenarios in the pacific and appropriate disaster risk reduction initiatives.

This training combines expert input with applied learning methodologies. Participants will be exposed to variety of learning methods, including expert presentations, group-work, case studies and study visits, to ensure a high-quality learning experience.

Under the ILO initiative, the Working out of disaster from response to recovery and preparedness workshop from 18 to 22 September 2017 at Tanoa International Hotel, Nadi, Fiji, will develop a Pacific strategy for the ILO and its constituents to be better prepared and reduce the impact of disasters on employment and small and micro enterprises.

VCCI is looking for a nominee, a business man or business woman, who is an employer, who would be interested to attend this technical training on behalf of VCCI to represent the employers and micro and small businesses of Vanuatu.

The VCCI nominee will be actively involved in the Vanuatu Business Resilience Committee (VBRC) activities, ready to share the knowledge of tools and best practices of this training with the members of VBRC, MSMEs and business community.

If you are interested, you can contact VCCI Reception by email at [email protected] or by phone on 27543, or by mobile phone 7123967, to submit your name and contact details of your business by Friday 18 August 2017.

Invitation to participate to a short course Australia Awards Women Trading Globally 12 to 24 November 2017

Are you a woman who owns and operates a successful small business? Do you wish to learn about international trade and how you might be able to embark on the pathway of growing your business into new international markets?

The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, under its Aid for Trade and Australia Awards programs, and in partnership with the Export Council of Australia, has pleasure in inviting you to participate in a short course ‘Australia Awards: Women Trading Globally’ .

The course is offered to Pacific women with their own business who are ‘export ready’.

During the course participants will;

  • learn about doing business in and with Australia
  • connect with other women entrepreneurs from across the Pacific and Australia
  • enable you to grow your business and expand internationally.

The program consists of one week of training in Brisbane, Australia, and one week of training in Sydney, Australia.

This two week residential Australia Awards short course is funded by the Australian Government.

Requirements:

  • You own and operate a successful business or you play a leading role within your business
  • You reside in one of these countries: Fiji Vanuatu Solomon Islands Samoa Tonga Papua New Guinea Kiribati Nauru Federated States of Micronesia Marshall Islands Cook Islands Niue Tuvalu Tokelau Palau
  • You have a strong command of English—spoken and written
  • Your business has export capabilities
  • You are able to travel to Australia from 12 to 24 November 2017
  • You are keen to expand your international business capability

The program includes:

  • Comprehensive international business capability training
  • Practical, hands-on exercises
  • Site visits
  • Networking opportunities

This program will enable you to grow your business and expand internationally.

You will need to complete the application form and return it to [email protected] by close of business on Friday 25 August 2017.

For successful applicants, all costs* associated with this program will be funded by the Australian Government. These include;

  • International airfares and visas
  • All meals and accommodation in Australia
  • Transportation within Australia
  • Workshops and workshop materials
  • Organised social functions

* Excludes items of a personal nature.

You will be notified of the success of your application by close of business on Friday 08 September 2017.

For more information to submit your name and contact details of your business, the application form and a brochure about the initiative are available on line https://globalalumni.gov.au/News/Details?ArticleId=494

Applications close on 25 August 2017.

 

Business and Self-employment Promotion at the 2017 Career Fair

The Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) participated in the 2017 national career fair on 3rd and 4th July 2017 to promote ‘engaging in business and self-employment’ as a career option to young school students.

VCCI’s purpose at the career fair was to develop students’ understanding of the benefits of doing business and generate interests to start making up their minds on a business career path. Starting a business or engaging in self-employment is increasingly seen as part of a strategy to address the youth employment challenge.

On average young people find it more difficult than adults to engage in business because they have less capital in the form of skills, knowledge and experience, collaterals and less access to business network. Information provided by VCCI during the two days event included business training courses and opportunities available at the VCCI to support youths as business entrepreneurs.