75% of homes in Vanuatu still do not have electricity access. The two key reasons for this: the cost remains too expensive for most ni-Vanuatu, as well as the dispersed nature of the country; with 260,000 people living on 64 inhabited islands across hundreds of square kilometers of ocean.
The Improved Electricity Project aims to increase access to grid-based electricity for low-income families. The project provides a one-off subsidy of up to 80% for the cost of household connection, to make electricity available for 4,000 of Vanuatu’s lowest-income families. The project also contributes to improving safety standards by subsidizing the cost of household wiring up to 40,000 vatu, where the wiring is not to standard, and will provide energy saving light bulbs.
The project was approved in June 2014 and became effective in September 2014, and as of December 2015, more than 521 homes have now obtained electricity access. The availability of electricity access has reduced the need to use torches and kerosene lighting, which are very dangerous.