Supporting economic reform in Vanuatu: the Governance for Growth program

Presented by ANU College of Asia & the Pacific

The Governance for Growth (GfG) program in Vanuatu has been running for ten years, and is about to move into its third phase. Considered to be quite innovative when it was first implemented, the program has supported some significant economic policy and public finance reforms. It has also survived changes to the institutional arrangements for the delivery of Australian aid, and significant upheavals in the political landscape in Vanuatu.

The program was recently the subject of two in-depth reviews, one led by the Overseas Development Institute, and the other by a team of Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) economists. These reviews provide an opportunity to consider the successes and failures of GfG, what elements of the model were most useful in supporting success, and whether the lessons of the last ten years have implications for other small island developing states.

These issues will be discussed in a panel session involving:

Pablo Kang, Assistant Secretary, Melanesia Branch, DFAT, and former Head of Mission in Vanuatu
Matthew Harding, Director, Pacific Economic Growth Section, DFAT, and Manager of GfG during the evaluations
Jonathan Gouy, Director, Development Economics Unit, DFAT and leader of the economic review
Clinton Pobke, Manager and Jennifer Kalpokas Doan, Senior Program Manager, GfG
Bob Warner, Visiting Fellow, Development Policy Centre, and member of the GfG review team