A large part of the population still relies on barter. In Port-Vila, European businesses dominate commercial life; there are hotels, supermarkets, fashion shops, and patisseries, as well as recently established Australian steak houses and small Chinese restaurants. Some Vanuatuans have entered the cash economy in urban areas. There is a very small light industry section that supplies the local markets. The nation's numerous cooperative societies handle most of the distribution of goods on the islands. A value-added tax applies to most goods and services.
Normal business hours in the capital are 7:30 to 11:30 AM and 1:30 to 4:30 PM , Monday–Friday. Banks in Vanuatu are open on weekdays from 8 to 11:30 AM and 1:30 to 3 PM .