What is a VUV (Vanuatu Vatu)

VUV is the abbreviation for the currency of Vanuatu, which is known as the Vanuatu vatu.


The VUV is the abbreviation of the Vanuatu vatu, which is the currency that replaced the former currency of the New Hebrides franc in 1981. The VUV is minted in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 vatu. The coins are all stamped with the Vanuatu coat of arms. The coins are similar in both color and size to the New Hebrides that preceded them. The Reserve Bank of Vanuatu stopped minting 1 and 2 denomination coins in 2011 when they became less widely used in circulation due to inflation. In 2015, the Royal Australian Mint issued new coins in the denominations of 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 vatu.

The banknote, or paper currency, is printed in denominations of 100, 200, 500, 1,000, 2,000, 5,000 and 10,000 vatu. The VUV symbol is VT and the currency is issued and redeemed by the Reserve Bank of Vanuatu, Vanuatu’s central bank.

A Brief History of Vanuatu

Vanuatu, also known as the Republic of Vanuatu, is an island chain located in the Pacific Ocean. The country consists of 13 main islands with many smaller outcropping islands. The country is ruled by a president and a prime minister. The official languages spoken in Vanuatu are Bislama, French and English, however there are more than 100 Melanesian languages spoken in the region. The country gained independence in 1980 from the Anglo-French New Hebrides. The islands are prone to earthquakes and home to more than one active volcano.

The economy relies largely on exports. Beef and timber are among the most frequently exported items from the country. Neighboring New Zealand and Australia are among the largest export destinations. Vanuatu is emerging as a tourist destination. The infrastructure between islands and headed from the coast inland is limited, making some areas harder to reach than others.

The island chain played a significant role in World War II. Like many of the islands in the Pacific Ocean, they saw troop movement from both sides. The islands were home to an Allied troop base at one point, and during this time a significant portion of land was purchased by visiting troops. After the war ended it was estimated that more than one-third of the land in the country was owned by foreigners.

In 1980 the country finally obtained independence. Although the islands were loosely tied to communist countries such as the Soviet Union, Cuba, and China the country maintained its capitalist ideals. The country was able to establish a political party by the end of the 20th century. Vanuatu has been said to have been one of the more peaceful islands in the region.

In 2015 the islands were hit with a category 5 tropical cyclone which devastated the region and set back much of the progress that had been made over the years.