Vanuatu is a South Pacific Ocean nation made up of roughly 80 islands that stretch 1,300 kilometers. The islands offer scuba diving at coral reefs, underwater caverns and wrecks such as the WWII-era troopship SS President Coolidge. Harborside Port Vila, the nation’s capital and economic center, is on the island of Efate. The city is home to the Vanuatu National Museum, which explores the nation’s Melanesian culture. Vanuatu (formerly called the New Hebrides) is a nation and group of islands in the South Pacific Ocean. It is composed of over 80 islands with 2,528 kilometers (1,571 mi) of coastline and a total surface area of 12,189 square kilometers (4,706 sq. mi). It’s a small country with a total size of 12,189 km2 (4,706 sq. mi).

Key Cities

Key cities in Vanuatu include Port Vila, Luganville, Norsup, Port-Olry, Isangel, Sola, Lakatoro.

Historical, Cultural facts & Religion

The islands of Vanuatu have been inhabited since 500 BCE, and the region was part of the Tongan Empire into the 14th century. European sailors visited it briefly and at long intervals from early in the 17th century. The name ‘New Hebrides’ was given to the islands by Captain James Cook on his visit in 1774.People & Culture of Vanuatu. The people of Vanuatu, a name which means ‘Land Eternal’, are largely Melanesian and the people are called Ni-Vanuatu (meaning ‘of Vanuatu’). Ni-Vanuatu have lived in these islands for centuries and more than 110 distinctly different cultures and languages still thrive here. Approximately 83% of the population of Vanuatu is Christian. An estimated 32% is Presbyterian, 13% Roman Catholic, 13% Anglican, and 11% Seventh-day Adventist.

Brief Country History

Vanuatu’s history dates back to 4,000 years ago.  The islands were believed to be inhabited by Austronesian speaking settlers.  Some archaeological findings like pottery fragments from 1300 to 1100 B.C. were found.  Very few written accounts have been found relating to Vanuatu before the 1600s.  Vanuatu archipelago was reportedly sighted by the Portuguese explorer Pedro Fernandes de Queiros in 1606 while he was working for the Spanish crown.  His team came to the island of Espiritu Santo, which is the largest island in Vanuatu.  The Europeans have not visited the group of islands until 1768.  That time, it was the French man Louis Antoine de Bouganville who visited the island bringing with him the French influence in the country.  Sometime later in 1774, the famed British navigator Captain James Cook landed on the islands and coined the name New Hebrides for the islands, which was adopted until Vanuatu got its independence in 1980.

The 1800s brought a different atmosphere into Vanuatu.  A trader named Peter Dillon discovered Sandalwood on the island of Erromango in 1825.  An influx of immigrants rushed in until 1830.  Clashes between immigrants and Polynesian workers stopped the rush of immigrants into the country.  In the 1860s, about half of the adult male population of Vanuatu migrated to Australia, Fiji, New Spain, and the Samana Islands to work in plantations.

In the 19th century, Catholic and Protestant missionaries entered the country.  It was during that time the British rule over the country was toppled by the French.  Soon, France and the British Kingdom agreed to jointly lord over the islands and established the British-French Condominium, which is a very unique form of government that unites separate governmental systems of the French and British into a single court.

Americans arrived during World War II invoking nationalism in the hearts of the islanders.  The form of government had been challenged and in the 1970s, the first political party was established, the New Hebrides National Party and in 1980 which pushed for the country’s independence.  Independence became a reality in 1980 and the Republic of Vanuatu was created.

Political instability has plagued the nation up to now ever since the country gained independence.

Language (s) Written & Spoken

Vanuatu has three official languages, English, French, and Bislama, a creole language derived from English. Bislama is the first language of many urban ni-Vanuatu, that is, the residents of Port Vila and Luganville. It is the most common second language elsewhere in the Vanuatu islands.

Important Types of Commerce in Vanuatu

The Vanuatu economy is based on agriculture, fishing, tourism and offshore financial services. Much of agriculture is subsistence farming. As most exports are agricultural – for example, copra, coconut oil, kava, beef, timber, cocoa, and coffee, Vanuatu is vulnerable to fluctuations in world commodity prices.

Language Services US and others will provide working with Vanuatu

People can move from one place to another due to various reasons. Therefore, interpreting is necessary to ease understanding in communication. Some of the reasons may be an adventure, fleeing wars, employment, business and many others. Business, law, education, research, engineering, manufacturing, medical and some of the many fields that require professional translation and interpretation services when doing business in Vanuatu. Proper understanding and knowledge of the local terminologies used is highly essential for essential and quality language service. French and Bislama are two major languages spoken in Vanuatu. Industry doing business with Vanuatu will require accurate and consistent French and Bislama language services to grasp the wider market.

Looking for a French and Bislama translation company? Look no further. American Language Services (AML-Global) offers certified translations, native interpreting services, and turn-key localization solutions for any language. Call us today @ 1-800-951-5020 for further information, visit our website or for a quick quote click


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