New Zealand's high commissioner in Vanuatu, Bill Dobbie, says his government is providing 400,000 US dollars to help pay for the production of new high quality electronic navigational charts for Vanuatu.
Mr Dobbie says Vanuatu has a vast maritime area and the updating of its charts will result in safer navigation for all commercial shipping, bringing the country economic and social benefits.
He says the areas of Luganville and Champagne Beach on the island of Santo, Wala on Malekula and Bay Omo on Pentecost, will be charted in time for new international regulations coming into force in five months.
"The International Maritime Organisation's Safety of Life at Sea Convention regulation will require member countries, including Vanuatu, and over time, to start using electronic navigational charts in their waters to ensure the safety of shipping."
New Zealand's high commissioner in Vanuatu, Bill Dobbie