The Prime Minister Charlot Salwai had made a visit to Tanna island on Saturday 7 July 2017 along with the member of parliament of Tanna, Nako Natuman and the Ambassador of China to Vanuatu, Liu Quan. The visit was carried out to see the progress of the tar-sealed road on the island.
The delegation received a custom welcome ceremony by the chiefs and the people of the Tanna. The delegation then went to Imaelone village, the area where the sealed roads ends from the airport.
The Prime Minister and his delegation then proceeded to visit Imlau area, the site where stones were extracted from to be used on the road construction. From there the delegation moved to Green Point which is the area where PHASE 1 of the road construction ends. The Prime Minister was happy with the progress so far. He also mentioned that the rumours about the second phase are not true and stated that the government will sign the contract for the second phase which will begin at Green Point and ends at South Tanna.
The Prime Minister thanked the chiefs and the people of Tanna for their contribution of soil and stones to support this development on their island. Mr Salwai then stated that the majority of developments occurs mainly on land rather than the sea or air.
The residents of Port Vila who have seen the tar-sealed road on Tanna have confirmed that it is much better than the roads of Port Vila and Luganville. The CCECC workers have made several coating layers of white gravel before the final tar-sealing. Road-cutting was done to the hills. The people of Tanna stated that in the past it was difficult to drive up the hills during bad weather and thus making it hard to reach the southern part of the island. Guardrails were also constructed in area that are dangerous like the edges of cliffs and valleys. The people stated that rain did slow down the work progress since the CCECC workers cease work on rainy days. Although PHASE 1 is yet to be completed, there are now signs of commercial activities by the roadsides such as kava bars and road markets. New settlements can also be found along the roadsides.