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A ni-Vanuatu worker picking bananas at Dotti Farms in Queensland



Vanuatu is part of the chain of Melanesian islands lying to the north-east of Australia.

It is an independent republic with three official languages: Bislama, English and French and its capital, Port Vila, is a 3.5-hour flight from Sydney.

Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade: Vanuatu

Factsheet: Vanuatu at a glance [PDF 3.1 MB]

Why recruit workers from Vanuatu?

Workers from Vanuatu are skilled in agriculture, horticulture, hospitality and tourism, and meat processing work.

Workers from Vanuatu have a strong track record of participating in labour mobility programs in both Australia and New Zealand.  

Graduates from the Australia Pacific Technical Coalition in Vanuatu are qualified to pursue careers across many aspects of the tourism sector. Vanuatu’s economy is primarily agriculture based and workers have skills relevant to Australia’s agriculture and horticulture industries.

How to recruit workers from Vanuatu

To recruit workers from Vanuatu under the Pacific Australia Labour Mobility (PALM) scheme, an Australian employer must be registered as a Seasonal Worker Programme employer, Pacific Labour Scheme employer, or both. Otherwise, they must recruit workers through a labour hire firm or contractor that is a PALM scheme employer.

Find out more about becoming a PALM scheme employer.

PALM scheme employers can recruit workers through the Vanuatu Employment Service Unit (ESU), Department of Labour. To contact the ESU, phone (+678 33135) or email ( or (

How to join the PALM scheme as a worker 

Elaine Luankon from Vanuatu working in hospitality at Cable Beach Resort, Western Australia

Citizens of participating countries must apply to join the PALM scheme through the labour sending unit in their country.

Citizens of Vanuatu who wish to apply for the SWP please contact ( For PLS contact (

No payments or gifts are required to join the PALM scheme. Costs may be incurred for flights and other expenses once successful applicants have been placed in jobs in Australia. These costs are paid up front by the employer and reimbursed later by the worker once they start earning a wage.