The area occupied by Port Vila has been inhabited by Melanesian people for thousands of years. Port Vila is Vanuatu's most important harbour and the centre of the country's trade. The international airport, Bauerfield International is also located in the city.

Major industries in the city remain agriculture and fishing. Tourism is also becoming important, especially from Australia and New Zealand. There were over 50,000 visitors in 1997.

Vanuatu is a tax haven, and offshore financing in Port Vila is an important part of the economy.

 

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