A 2017 news report noted recent increases in cannabis arrests as police attempted to clarify and enforce cannabis law on remote islands where "locals did not adapt." A 2018 report recounted an incident on the Epi Island to Port Vila ferry where some 60 young people from Malekula were being transported under police escort for cannabis cultivation, distribution, and consumption.
A September 2018 news report noted that Vanuatu's national health care system was considering clinical trials of a cannabis-based drug to treat diabetes. On September 20, 2018 the government's Council of Ministers issued Decision 157/2018 allowing for the establishment of industries for the production of medical cannabis and industrial hemp.
- Nanua, Richard M. (20 March 2017). "Cannabis sale and cultivation becoming serious issue - Vanuatu Independent".
- Vanua, Flo (23 January 2017). "Cannabis plant should be legalized, says concerned parent - Vanuatu Independent".
- upload, Newsroom (22 September 2018). "Research seeks cannabis treatment for diabetes - Vanuatu Independent".
- Independent Staff (24 October 2018). "Vanuatu legalizes medical cannabis - Vanuatu Independent".