IOM Facilitates Post-Cyclone Pam Reconstruction of Border Agencies in Vanuatu


Vanuatu - Following devastation caused by Tropical Cyclone Pam on 13 March 2015, IOM undertook an assessment of the Vanuatu Customs and Inland Revenue (CIR) and the Vanuatu Immigration Service (VIS) to determine the extent of damage to operational capabilities and to propose reconstruction activities to reinstate them to pre-cyclone level.

Due to substantial damage to equipment and physical structures, some of the offices were forced to relocate. With support from Australia’s Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP), a new office will also be constructed through a cost-sharing arrangement with the Vanuatu Government. The full cost of reconstruction will be some AUD 500,000.

This will include the replacement of destroyed or damaged vehicles and equipment; immigration office relocation costs; repair of the customs x-ray machine and other equipment at Port Vila airport; replacement of other equipment at ports; and joint agency training to combat people trafficking, smuggling and money laundering.

This assistance was officially presented to the Government of Vanuatu by Australian High Commissioner in Vanuatu Jeremy Bruer and accepted on behalf of the Government of Vanuatu by Acting Director General for Finance and Economic Management and Director of CIR Benjamin Malas.

Australia and Vanuatu have been cooperating to improve Vanuatu’s migration and border management since 2011 through a Migration and Border Capability Improvement Program funded by DIBP and managed by IOM.

For further information please contact Dr Lesi Korovavala at IOM Port Vila, Vanuatu, Tel: + 678 7737699, Email:

From left: Henry Tamashiro (Director, Vanuatu Immigration Service); Benjamin Malas (Director of Customs and Inland Revenue & Acting Director General of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Management); HE Jeremy Bruer (Australian High Commissioner, Vanuatu); Dr Lesi Korovavala (IOM Vanuatu). The two vehicles are part of the assistance package. © IOM 2015