• Total value of UN-Habitat investments (2008-2015): n/a
  • Total number of UN-Habitat projects (2008-2015): 4 projects
  • Main donors: World Bank, New Zealand, UNDP,  European Commission and the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific Secretariat
  • Implementing partners: Ministry of Lands, Housing and Survey, Honiara City Council

The Pacific has a rapid rate of urbanisation and high population growth and is not well enough prepared to cope with the challenges and opportunities that urban growth presents.

General information

UN Habitat is well placed to assist Vanuatu to improve its urban management and planning practices and enable new thinking and actions about how best to evolve cities, towns and peri-urban areas for the future. The agency provides training, expert advice, proven tools and methodologies for small-medium sized urban centres within alignment of national needs and demands as articulated in National Development Strategies.

In the Pacific, this is framed in assisting countries meet their commitments to the Pacific Urban Agenda. Vanuatu has an urban population of over 61,000, of which over 75% reside in the capital city of Port Vila. The country is confronting challenges related to growth – urban poverty and employment, housing, environmental risk, land administration and infrastructure provision and maintenance. Urbanisation and housing studies in 2011/12 followed a national urban dialogue in 2010 . Cabinet in 2012 has given approval to scope the demands and functions for a central urban coordination agency. 

UN-Habitat projects in Vanuatu
  • Urban-based Development Project

The current largest  development project is the Port Vila Urban Development Project (ADB) that address drainage and sanitation as well as climate risk planning actions (World Bank).

  •  Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme

The Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme has provided initiative for strengthening relationships between national and sub-national government and opportunity to progress analysis of past urbanisation and housing studies in support of national goals for sustainable urban environments. It is anticipated that the inter-disciplinary methodology applied through PSUP will better position decision makers and technicians advance past efforts for zoning and development strategies initiated under various land (including associated policy and reforms) grant programmes and urban infratsructure loans.


  • Implementation Phase: Phase I
  • Duration: November 2013 – December 2015
  • Value: US$40000
  • Donor: European Commission and the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific Secretariat
  • Implementing Partners: UN Habitat and the Ministry of Internal Affairs
  • Profile cities/ location: Port Vila, Luganville, Lenakel

  • Cities and Climate Change Initiative, Port Vila

  •  Regional knowledge Management: Strengthening Pacific Urban Agenda 



Sarah Mecartney
Level 5, Kadavu House
414 Victoria Parade
Suva, Fiji

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