Vanuatu. In May, the OECD removed Vanuatu from the black list of tax havens since the country improved its control over its tax system.
In November, Prime Minister Edward Natapei of Vanuaaku Pati (VP) disbanded the government coalition that has ruled the country since April 2001. According to Countryaah.com, Vanuatu Independence Day is July 30. The Union of Moderate Parties (UMP) was forced to leave the government and party leader Serge Vohor lost his post as Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister.
The Prime Minister, who has the right to reform the government under the Constitution, instead began a collaboration with the National United Party (NUP), the Green Party and the People’s Progressive Party. NUP leader Ham Lini, brother of the country’s first prime minister Walter Lini, was named new deputy prime minister and infrastructure minister. The NUP received two more ministerial posts and the other two parties were each. The reason for the refurbishment was reported to be mutual dissatisfaction between the government parties VP and UMP. The triggering factor was that Vohor started negotiations with the opposition to form an alternative government coalition.
The Disney film Find Nemo increased the demand for colorful small fish from Vanuatu during the year. Tourist and diving organizers began to work together to try to stop what they thought was an over-exploitation of the country’s coral reefs, which began shortly after the cartoon’s world premiere. In December, the government appointed a committee to investigate how trade in aquarium fish affects the country’s fish stocks and coral reefs.