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France 28 Minutes show on Vanuatu passport infuriates local authorities

France 28 Minutes has produced a report on August 4 suggesting how to escape from COVID-19 by buying a Vanuatu passport has infuriated Vanuatu authorities.

Jean-Mathieu Pernin, Sonia Chironi, Victor, Benjamin Sportouch from Radio Télévision Luxembourg (RTL) were in the show when Ms Chironi presented the report about Vanuatu passport as the lucrative deal to escape the pandemic.

“Be a millionaire and buy anti-covid passports at a high price”, she reported and was brushed aside by Vanuatu authorities.

Radio New Zealand today also reported that Vanuatu’s Director of Passport and Immigration has denied European reports the government is selling passports to foreigners who want to escape Covid-19.

Jeffrey Markson’s comments following the report which appeared on French television that Vanuatu was selling passports for 130,000 euros.

The director claimed the report was false and said people couldn’t buy their way to Vanuatu to try and flee Covid-19.

In the program, Sonia Chironi mentioned only the super rich can afford the passport, people with yachts and private jets.

However the director of Immigration argues that all the border measures are in place and there are strict border measures that Vanuatu have in place and there is no such requirement that you can buy a passport to come to Vanuatu.

He reassured the public that the government continued to do all it could to keep Vanuatu free of the coronavirus included monitoring the borders and limited flight arrivals.

In her report there is a mention of Henley & Partners again who have once criticised the Vanuatu Citizenship Program.

Henley & Partners, one of the economic citizenship industry’s major players, has said it refuses to associate with Vanuatu’s Programmes due to the country’s ‘reputation for corruption.’ First reported in an October 2019 article by the BBC, this condemnation was picked up in a number of other media outlets.

Daily Post Vanuatu did mention them few years back and have written in-depth report about the citizenship program from the start.

The price for a Vanuatu passport ranges from $130,000 to $180,000.

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