Country / Region profile of: Vanuatu

While women have equal rights under the law, they continue to battle deeply entrenched patriarchy and a reluctance to educate women. The majority of women enter into marriage through "bride-price payment". This practice reinforces the notion of women as property. Many female leaders regard village chiefs as one of the key obstacles to social, political, and economic rights for women. Traditional attitudes continue to hamper women's participation in social, economic and political life.

Vanuatu has not been listed on the Global Gender Gap Index (GGI) for 2016. It has acceded to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) in 1995. Vanuatu was absent from the vote on the adoption of the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT); it has signed, but not yet ratified. During the 2017 WPS Security Council Open Debate, Vanuatu did not make a statement. They have not developed a National Action Plan on the Implementation of Resolution 1325 (2000).  

"Since Vanuatu achieved independence, women have made some significant gains, but our battles aren’t over. In fact they’re ongoing. We have a very long way to go and we cannot afford to be complacent." - Merilyn Tahi


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Military expenditure
The country spends an unknown amount of money on the military.
Investing in peace and gender equality
Vanuatu could invest in creation and ongoing funding of a National Action Plan for the Implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325.
NAP 1325
Vanuatu does not have a National Action Plan for the Implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325.
WPS commitments
In 2015, Vanuatu announced new commitments totalling $31 million. That includes more than $14 million for initiatives to protect women from violence and promote their participation in peace processes and decision-making, as well as more than $8 million to implement United States Secretary of State Kerry’s accountability initiative to fight impunity for sexual violence in the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Liberia. Another $1 million will be allocated to a justice initiative based in South Kivu province in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. It seeks to educate 50,000 women on their human rights and how to use basic judicial procedures.