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Independent State of Papua New Guinea
Independen Stet bilong Papua Niugini
Flag Coat of arms
MottoUnity in diversity[1]
AnthemO Arise, All You Sons[2]
Capital
(and largest city)
Port Moresby
9°30′S 147°07′E / 9.5°S 147.117°E / -9.5; 147.117
Official language(s) English, Tok Pisin, Hiri Motu[3]
Demonym Papua New Guinean
Government Federal Constitutional Monarchy and Parliamentary Democracy
 -  Monarch Queen Elizabeth II
 -  Governor-General Sir Paulias Matane
 -  Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare
Independence From Australia 
 -  Self-governing 1 December 1973 
 -  Independence 16 September 1975 
Area
 -  Total 462,840 km2 (54th)
178,703 sq mi 
 -  Water (%) 2
Population
 -  2009 estimate 6,732,000 [4] (100th)
 -  2000 census 5,190,783 
 -  Density 14.5/km2 (201st)
37.7/sq mi
GDP (PPP) 2008 estimate
 -  Total $13.064 billion[5] 
 -  Per capita $2,108[5] 
GDP (nominal) 2008 estimate
 -  Total $8.092 billion[5] 
 -  Per capita $1,306[5] 
Gini (1996) 50.9 (high
HDI (2009) 0.541 (medium) (148th)
Currency Papua New Guinean kina (PGK)
Time zone AEST (UTC+10)
 -  Summer (DST) not observed (as of 2005) (UTC+10)
Drives on the left
Internet TLD .pg
Calling code +675

Papua New Guinea (en-us-Papua New Guinea.ogg /ˈpæpuːə njuː ˈɡɪni/ PA-poo-ə nyoo GIN-ee, also /ˈpɑːpuːə/ PAH-poo-ə or /ˈpæpjuːə/ PAP-yoo-ə; Tok Pisin: Papua Niugini) (PNG), officially the Independent State of Papua New Guinea, is a country in Oceania, occupying the eastern half of the island of New Guinea and numerous offshore islands (the western portion of the island is a part of the Indonesian provinces of Papua and West Papua). It is located in the southwestern Pacific Ocean, in a region defined since the early 19th century as Melanesia. The capital is Port Moresby.

Papua New Guinea is one of the most diverse countries on Earth, with over 850 indigenous languages and at least as many traditional societies, out of a population of just under 7 million. It is also one of the most rural, with only 18% of its people living in urban centres.[6] The country is one of the world's least explored, culturally and geographically, and many undiscovered species of plants and animals are thought to exist in the interior of Papua New Guinea.[7]

The majority of the population lives in traditional societies and practise subsistence-based agriculture. These societies and clans have some explicit acknowledgement within the nation's constitutional framework. The PNG Constitution (Preamble 5(4)) expresses the wish for traditional villages and communities to remain as viable units of Papua New Guinean society,[8] and for active steps to be taken in their preservation.

The PNG legislature has enacted various laws in which a type of tenure called "customary land title" is recognised, meaning that the traditional lands of the indigenous peoples have some legal basis to inalienable tenure. This customary land notionally covers most of the usable land in the country (some 97% of total land area);[9] alienated land is either held privately under State Lease or is government land. Freehold Title (also known as fee simple) can only be held by Papua New Guinea citizens.[10]

After being ruled by three external powers since 1884, Papua New Guinea gained its independence from Australia in 1975. It remains a realm of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Queen of Papua New Guinea. Many people live in extreme poverty, with about one third of the population living on less than US$1.25 per day.[11]

Contents

History

Human remains have been found which have been dated to about 50,000 years ago. These ancient inhabitants probably had their origins in Southeast Asia, themselves originating in Africa 50,000 to 70,000 years ago. New Guinea was one of the first landmasses after Africa and Eurasia to be populated by modern humans, with the first migration at approximately the same time as that of Australia.

Agriculture was independently developed in the New Guinea highlands around 7,000 BC, making it one of the few areas of original plant domestication in the world. A major migration of Austronesian speaking peoples came to coastal regions roughly 2,500 years ago, and this is correlated with the introduction of pottery, pigs, and certain fishing techniques.

More recently, some 300 years ago, the sweet potato entered New Guinea having been introduced to the Moluccas from South America by the locally dominant colonial power, Portugal.[12] The far higher crop yields from sweet potato gardens radically transformed traditional agriculture; sweet potato largely supplanted the previous staple, taro, and gave rise to a significant increase in population in the highlands.

Little was known in the West about the island until the nineteenth century, although traders from Southeast Asia had been visiting New Guinea as long as 5,000 years ago collecting bird of paradise plumes,[13] and Spanish and Portuguese explorers had encountered it as early as the sixteenth century (1526 and 1527 Dom Jorge de Meneses). The country's dual name results from its complex administrative history before Independence. The word papua is derived from pepuah, a Malay word describing the frizzy Melanesian hair, and "New Guinea" (Nueva Guinea) was the name coined by the Spanish explorer Yñigo Ortiz de Retez, who in 1545 noted the resemblance of the people to those he had earlier seen along the Guinea coast of Africa.

Australian forces attack Japanese positions near Buna. January 7, 1943.

The northern half of the country came into German hands in 1884 as German New Guinea.

20th century

During World War I, it was occupied by Australia, which had begun administering British New Guinea, the southern part, as the re-named Papua in 1904. After World War I, Australia was given a mandate to administer the former German New Guinea by the League of Nations. Papua, by contrast, was deemed to be an External Territory of the Australian Commonwealth, though as a matter of law it remained a British possession, an issue which had significance for the country's post-Independence legal system after 1975. This difference in legal status meant that Papua and New Guinea had entirely separate administrations, both controlled by Australia.

The New Guinea campaign (1942-1945) was one of the major military campaigns of World War II. Approximately 216,000 Japanese, Australian and American soldiers, sailors and airmen died during the New Guinea Campaign.[14] The two territories were combined into the Territory of Papua and New Guinea after World War II, which later was simply referred to as "Papua New Guinea". The Administration of Papua became open to United Nations oversight.

However, certain statutes[15] continued (and continue) to have application only in one of the two territories, a matter considerably complicated today by the adjustment of the former boundary among contiguous provinces with respect to road access and language groups, so that such statutes apply on one side only of a boundary which no longer exists.

Peaceful independence from Australia, the de facto regional power, occurred on September 16, 1975, and close ties remain (Australia remains the largest bilateral aid donor to Papua New Guinea).

A secessionist revolt in 1975-76 on Bougainville Island resulted in an eleventh-hour modification of the draft Constitution of Papua New Guinea to allow for Bougainville and the other eighteen districts of pre-Independence Papua New Guinea to have quasi-federal status as provinces. The revolt recurred and claimed 20,000 lives from 1988 until it was resolved in 1997. Following the revolt, Autonomous Bougainville elected Joseph Kabui as president, but he was succeeded by deputy John Tabinaman. Tabinaman remained leader until a new popular election occurred in December 2008, with James Tanis emerging as the winner. Anti-Chinese rioting, involving tens of thousands of people,[16] broke out in May 2009.[17]

Politics

Papua New Guinea is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, and Queen Elizabeth II is the head of state. It had been expected by the constitutional convention, which prepared the draft constitution, and by Australia, the outgoing metropolitan power, that Papua New Guinea would choose not to retain its link with the British monarchy. The founders, however, considered that imperial honours had a cachet that the newly independent state would not be able to confer with a purely indigenous honours system — the Monarchy was thus maintained.[18] The Queen is represented by the Governor-General of Papua New Guinea, currently Sir Paulias Matane. Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands are unusual among Commonwealth realms in that their Governors-General are effectively selected by the legislature rather than by the executive branch, as in some parliamentary democracies.

Actual executive power lies with the Prime Minister, who heads the cabinet. The current Prime Minister is Sir Michael Somare. The unicameral National Parliament has 109 seats, of which 20 are occupied by the governors of the 19 provinces and the National Capital District (NCD). Candidates for members of parliament are voted upon when the prime minister calls a national election, a maximum of five years after the previous national election.

In the early years of independence, the instability of the party system led to frequent votes of no confidence in Parliament with resulting falls of the government of the day and the need for national elections, in accordance with the conventions of parliamentary democracy. In recent years, successive governments have passed legislation preventing such votes sooner than 18 months after a national election. This has arguably resulted in greater stability, though perhaps at a cost of reducing the accountability of the executive branch of government.

Elections in PNG attract large numbers of candidates. After independence in 1975, members were elected by the first past the post system, with winners frequently gaining less than 15% of the vote. Electoral reforms in 2001 introduced the Limited Preferential Vote system (LPV), a version of the Alternative Vote. The 2007 general election was the first to be conducted using LPV.

Law

The unicameral Parliament enacts legislation in the same manner as in other jurisdictions having "cabinet," "responsible government," or "parliamentary democracy": it is introduced by the executive government to the legislature, debated and, if passed, becomes law when it receives royal assent by the Governor-General. Most legislation is actually regulation implemented by the bureaucracy under enabling legislation previously passed by Parliament.

All ordinary statutes enacted by Parliament must be consistent with the Constitution. The courts have jurisdiction to rule on the constitutionality of statutes, both in disputes before them and on a reference where there is no dispute but only an abstract question of law. Unusual among developing countries, the judicial branch of government in Papua New Guinea has remained remarkably independent, and successive executive governments have continued to respect its authority.

The "underlying law" — that is, the common law of Papua New Guinea — consists of Australian common law as it stood on September 16, 1975 (the date of Independence), and thereafter the decisions of PNG’s own courts. The courts are directed by the Constitution and, latterly, the Underlying Law Act, to take note of the "custom" of traditional communities, with a view to determining which customs are common to the whole country and may be declared also to be part of the underlying law. In practice, this has proved extremely difficult and has been largely neglected. Statutes are largely adapted from overseas jurisdictions, primarily Australia and England. Advocacy in the courts follows the adversarial pattern of other common law countries.

Regions, provinces and districts

Papua New Guinea is divided into four regions, that are not the primary administrative divisions but are quite significant in many aspects of government, commercial, sporting and other activities.

The nation has 20 province-level divisions: eighteen provinces, the Autonomous Region of Bougainville and the National Capital District. Each province is divided into one or more districts, which in turn are divided into one or more Local Level Government areas.

Provinces[19] are the primary administrative divisions of the country. Provincial governments are branches of the national government — Papua New Guinea is not a federation of provinces. The province-level divisions are as follows:

  1. Central
  2. Chimbu (Simbu)
  3. Eastern Highlands
  4. East New Britain
  5. East Sepik
  6. Enga
  7. Gulf
  8. Madang
  9. Manus
  10. Milne Bay
  1. Morobe
  2. New Ireland
  3. Northern (Oro Province)
  4. Bougainville (autonomous region)
  5. Southern Highlands
  6. Western Province (Fly)
  7. Western Highlands
  8. West New Britain
  9. West Sepik (Sandaun)
  10. National Capital District
Provinces of Papua New Guinea

Parliament has approved the creation of two additional provinces by 2012: Hela Province, which will consist of part of the current Southern Highlands Province, and Jiwaka Province, which will be formed by dividing Western Highlands Province.[20]

Geography

Map of Papua New Guinea

At 462,840 km2 (178,704 sq mi), Papua New Guinea is the world's fifty-fourth largest country.

The country's geography is diverse and, in places, extremely rugged. A spine of mountains, the New Guinea Highlands runs the length of the island of New Guinea, forming a populous highlands region mostly covered with tropical rainforest. Dense rainforests can be found in the lowland and coastal areas as well as very large wetland areas surrounding the Sepik and Fly rivers. This terrain has made it difficult for the country to develop transportation infrastructure. In some areas, airplanes are the only mode of transport. The highest peak is Mount Wilhelm at 4,509 metres (14,793 ft). Papua New Guinea is surrounded by coral reefs which are under close watch to preserve them.

The country is situated on the Pacific Ring of Fire, at the point of collision of several tectonic plates. There are a number of active volcanoes, and eruptions are frequent. Earthquakes are relatively common, sometimes accompanied by tsunamis.

The mainland of the country is the eastern half of New Guinea island, where the largest towns are also located, including the capital Port Moresby and Lae; other major islands within Papua New Guinea include New Ireland, New Britain, Manus and Bougainville.

Papua New Guinea is one of the few regions close to the equator that experience snowfall, which occurs in the most elevated parts of the mainland.

Ecology

Papua New Guinea is part of the Australasia ecozone, which also includes Australia, New Zealand, eastern Indonesia, and several Pacific island groups, including the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu.

Geologically, the island of New Guinea is a northern extension of the Indo-Australian tectonic plate, forming part of a single landmass Australia-New Guinea (also called Sahul or Meganesia). It is connected to the Australian segment by a shallow continental shelf across the Torres Strait, which in former ages had lain exposed as a land bridge — particularly during ice ages when sea levels were lower than at present.

The green jungle of Papua New Guinea bears a stark contrast to the nearby desert of Australia

Consequently, many species of birds and mammals found on New Guinea have close genetic links with corresponding species found in Australia. One notable feature in common for the two landmasses is the existence of several species of marsupial mammals, including some kangaroos and possums, which are not found elsewhere. Many of the other islands within PNG territory, including New Britain, New Ireland, Bougainville, the Admiralty Islands, the Trobriand Islands, and the Louisiade Archipelago, were never linked to New Guinea by land bridges, and they have their own flora and fauna, in particular they lack many of the land mammals and flightless birds that are common to New Guinea and Australia.

Australia and New Guinea are portions of the ancient supercontinent of Gondwana, which started to break into smaller continents in the Cretaceous era, 65-130 million years ago. Australia finally broke free from Antarctica about 45 million years ago. All the Australasian lands are home to the Antarctic flora, descended from the flora of southern Gondwana, including the coniferous podocarps and Araucaria pines, and the broadleafed southern beech (Nothofagus). These plant families are still present in Papua New Guinea.

As the Indo-Australian Plate (which includes landmasses of India, Australia, and the Indian Ocean floor in between) drifts north, it collides with the Eurasian Plate, and the collision of the two plates pushed up the Himalayas, the Indonesian islands, and New Guinea's Central Range. The Central Range is much younger and higher than the mountains of Australia, so high that it is home to rare equatorial glaciers. New Guinea is part of the humid tropics, and many Indomalayan rainforest plants spread across the narrow straits from Asia, mixing together with the old Australian and Antarctic floras.

Mount Tavurvur in Papua New Guinea.

PNG includes a number of terrestrial ecoregions:

Economy

Port Moresby

Papua New Guinea is richly endowed with natural resources, but exploitation has been hampered by rugged terrain, the high cost of developing infrastructure, serious law and order problems, and the system of land title which makes identifying the owners of land for the purpose of negotiating appropriate agreements problematic. Agriculture provides a subsistence livelihood for 85% of the population. Mineral deposits, including oil, copper, and gold, account for 72% of export earnings. The country also has a notable coffee industry.

Former Prime Minister Sir Mekere Morauta tried to restore integrity to state institutions, stabilize the kina, restore stability to the national budget, privatize public enterprises where appropriate, and ensure ongoing peace on Bougainville following the 1997 agreement which ended Bougainville's secessionist unrest. The Morauta government had considerable success in attracting international support, specifically gaining the backing of the IMF and the World Bank in securing development assistance loans. Significant challenges face the current Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare, including gaining further investor confidence, continuing efforts to privatize government assets, and maintaining the support of members of Parliament.

In March 2006 the United Nations Committee for Development Policy called for Papua New Guinea's designation of developing country to be downgraded to least-developed country because of protracted economic and social stagnation.[21] However, an evaluation by the International Monetary Fund in late 2008 found that "a combination of prudent fiscal and monetary policies, and high global prices for mineral commodity exports, have underpinned Papua New Guinea's recent buoyant economic growth and macroeconomic stability. Real GDP growth, at over 6% in 2007, was broad-based and is expected to continue to be strong in 2008." [22]

Land tenure

Only some 3% of the land of Papua New Guinea is in private hands; it is privately held under 99 year state lease, or it is held by the state. There is virtually no freehold title; the few existing freeholds are automatically converted to state lease when they are transferred between vendor and purchaser. Unalienated land is owned under customary title by traditional landowners. The precise nature of the seisin varies from one culture to another. Many writers portray land as in the communal ownership of traditional clans; however, closer studies usually show that the smallest portions of land whose ownership cannot be further divided are held by the individual heads of extended families and their descendants, or their descendants alone if they have recently died.

This is a matter of vital importance because a problem of economic development is identifying the membership of customary landowning groups and the owners. Disputes between mining and forestry companies and landowner groups often devolve on the issue of whether the companies entered into contractual relations for the use of land with the true owners. Customary property — usually land — cannot be devised by will; it can only be inherited according to the custom of the deceased's people.

Demographics

Huli Wigman from the Southern Highlands

Papua New Guinea is one of the most heterogeneous nations in the world. There are hundreds of ethnic groups indigenous to Papua New Guinea, the majority being from the group known as Papuans, whose ancestors arrived in the New Guinea region tens of thousands of years ago. Many remote Papuan tribes still have only marginal contact with the outside world.

The others are Austronesians, their ancestors having arrived in the region less than four thousand years ago. There are also numerous people from other parts of the world now resident, including Chinese,[23] Europeans, Australians, Filipinos, Polynesians and Micronesians. At the brink of Papuan independence in 1975, there were 40,000 expatriates (mostly Australian and Chinese) in Papua New Guinea.[24]

Papua New Guinea has more languages than any other country, with over 820 indigenous languages, representing twelve percent of the world's total. Indigenous languages are classified into two large groups: Austronesian languages and non-Austronesian (or Papuan languages). There are three official languages for Papua New Guinea. English is an official language and is the language of government and the education system, but it is not widely spoken.

The primary lingua franca of the country is Tok Pisin (commonly known in English as New Guinea Pidgin or Melanesian Pidgin), in which much of the debate in Parliament is conducted, many information campaigns and advertisements are presented, and until recently a national newspaper, Wantok, was published. The only area where Tok Pisin is not prevalent is the southern region of Papua, where people often use the third official language, Hiri Motu.

Although it lies in the Papua region, Port Moresby has a highly diverse population which primarily uses Tok Pisin, and to a lesser extent English, with Motu spoken as the indigenous language in outlying villages. With an average of only 7,000 speakers per language, Papua New Guinea has a greater density of languages than any other nation on earth except Vanuatu.

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Health

Public expenditure was at 7.3% of all government expenditure in 2006,[25] whereas private expenditure was at 0.6 % of the GDP.[citation needed] There were five physicians per 100,000 people in the early 2000s.[26] Malaria is the leading cause of illness and death in New Guinea. In 2003, the most recently reported year, 70,226 cases of laboratory confirmed malaria were reported, along with 537 deaths. A total of 1,729,697 cases were probable.[27]

PNG has the highest incidence of HIV and AIDS in the Pacific region and is the fourth country in the Asia Pacific region to fit the criteria for a generalised HIV/AIDS epidemic.[28] Lack of HIV/AIDS awareness is a major problem, especially in rural areas.

Religion

The courts and government practice uphold the constitutional right to freedom of speech, thought, and belief, and no legislation to curb those rights has been adopted, though Sir Arnold Amet, previous Chief Justice of Papua New Guinea and an outspoken proponent of Pentecostal Christianity, frequently urged legislative and other curbs on the activities of Muslims in the country.

The 2000 census showed 96% of citizens were members of a Christian church; however, many citizens combine their Christian faith with some pre-Christian traditional indigenous practices. The census percentages were as follows:

Minority religions include the Bahá'í Faith (15,000 or 0.3%), while Islam in Papua New Guinea accounts for approximately 1,000 to 2,000 or about 0.04%, (largely foreign residents of African and Southeast Asian origin but with some Papua New Guinean converts in the towns). Non-traditional Christian churches and non-Christian religious groups are active throughout the country. The Papua New Guinea Council of Churches has stated that both Muslim and Confucian missionaries are active, and foreign missionary activity in general is high.

Traditional religions, such as that of the Korowai, were often animist. Some also tended to have elements of ancestor worship, though generalisation is suspect given the extreme heterogeneity of Melanesian societies. Prevalent among traditional tribes is the belief in masalai, or evil spirits, which are blamed for "poisoning" people, causing calamity and death, and the practice of Puri Puri in the highlands.[29][30]

Culture

Resident of Bago-bago, an island in the southeast of Papua New Guinea
20th century wooden Abelam ancestor figure (nggwalndu).

It is estimated that more than a thousand different cultural groups exist in Papua New Guinea. Because of this diversity, many different styles of cultural expression have emerged; each group has created its own expressive forms in art, dance, weaponry, costumes, singing, music, architecture and much more. Most of these different cultural groups have their own language. People typically live in villages that rely on subsistence farming. In some areas people hunt and collect wild plants (such as yam roots) to supplement their diets. Those who become skilled at hunting, farming and fishing earn a great deal of respect.

On the Sepik river, there is a tradition of wood carving, often in the form of plants or animals, representing ancestor spirits.

Sea shells are no longer the currency of Papua New Guinea, as they were in some regions — sea shells were abolished as currency in 1933. However, this heritage is still present in local customs; in some cultures, to get a bride, a groom must bring a certain number of golden-edged clam shells[31] as a bride price. In other regions, bride price is paid in lengths of shell money, pigs, cassowaries or cash; elsewhere, bride price is unknown, and it is brides who must pay dowry.

People of the highlands engage in colourful local rituals that are called "sing sings". They paint themselves and dress up with feathers, pearls and animal skins to represent birds, trees or mountain spirits. Sometimes an important event, such as a legendary battle, is enacted at such a musical festival.

Education

A large proportion of the population are illiterate. [32] Particularly women are affected. [33] Much of the education in the country is provided by church institutions. [34] This includes 500 schools of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Papua New Guinea. [35] Papua New Guinea has six universities apart from other major tertiary institutions. The two founding universities are the University of Papua New Guinea based in the National Capital District[36], and the Papua New Guinea University of Technology based outside of Lae, in Morobe Province.

The four other universities which were once colleges, were established recently after gaining government recognition. These are the University of Goroka in the Eastern Highlands province, Divine Word University (run by the Catholic Church) in Madang province, Vudal Agriculture University in East New Britain province and Pacific Adventist University (run by the Seventh Day Adventist Church) in the National Capital District.

Sport

Sport is an important part of Papua New Guinean culture and rugby league is by far the most popular sport.[37] In a nation where communities are far apart and many people live at a minimal subsistence level, rugby league has been described as a replacement for tribal warfare as a way of explaining the local enthusiasm for the game (a matter of life and death). Many Papua New Guineans have become instant celebrities by representing their country or playing in an overseas professional league. Even Australian rugby league players who have played in the annual (Australian) State of Origin clash, which is celebrated feverishly every year in PNG, are among the most well known people throughout the nation.

State of Origin is a highlight of the year for most Papua New Guineans, although the support is so passionate that many people have died over the years in violent clashes supporting their team.[38] The Papua New Guinea national rugby league team usually plays against the Australian national rugby league team each year in Port Moresby.

Other major sports which have a part in the Papua New Guinea sporting landscape are football, rugby union, Aussie rules and, in eastern Papua, cricket.

Transport

Transport in Papua New Guinea is heavily limited by the country's mountainous terrain. Port Moresby is not linked by road to any of the other major towns, and many remote villages can only be reached by light aircraft or on foot. As a result, air travel is the single most important form of transport for human and high value freight. In addition to two international airfields, Papua New Guinea has 578 airstrips, most of which are unpaved.[39]. Assets are not maintained to good operating standards and poor transport remains a major impediment to the development of ties of national unity.

International rankings

Organization Survey Ranking
Institute for Economics and Peace[2] Global Peace Index[40] 93 out of 144
United Nations Development Programme Human Development Index 148 out of 182
Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index 154 out of 180

See also

Lists:

Notes

  1. ^ Sir Michael Somare (2004-12-06). "Stable Government, Investment Initiatives, and Economic Growth". Keynote address to the 8th Papua New Guinea Mining and Petroleum Conference (Google cache). http://www.google.com/search?q=cache:our6ovOe0JUJ:www.pm.gov.pg/pmsoffice/PMsoffice.nsf/pages/B6475E51C894229B4A256F6900141A4B%3FOpenDocument. Retrieved 2007-08-09. 
  2. ^ "Never more to rise". The National (February 6, 2006). http://www.thenational.com.pg/020606/w5.htm. Retrieved 2005-01-19. 
  3. ^ Official languages of Papua New Guinea
  4. ^ United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs Population Division (2009). World Population Prospects, Table A.1. 2008 revision. [1] Retrieved 2009-08-28.
  5. ^ a b c d "Papua New Guinea". International Monetary Fund. http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/weo/2009/02/weodata/weorept.aspx?sy=2006&ey=2009&scsm=1&ssd=1&sort=country&ds=.&br=1&c=853&s=NGDPD%2CNGDPDPC%2CPPPGDP%2CPPPPC%2CLP&grp=0&a=&pr.x=40&pr.y=2. Retrieved 2009-10-01. 
  6. ^ "World Bank data on urbanisation". World Development Indicators. World Bank. 2005. http://devdata.worldbank.org/wdi2005/Table3_10.htm. Retrieved 2005-07-15. 
  7. ^ Gelineau, Kristen (2009-03-26). "Spiders and frogs identified among 50 new species". The Independent. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/spiders-and-frogs-identified-among-50-new-species-1654296.html. Retrieved 2009-03-26. 
  8. ^ "Constitution of Independent State of Papua New Guinea (consol. to amendment #22)". Pacific Islands Legal Information Institute. http://www.paclii.org/pg/legis/consol_act/cotisopng534/. Retrieved 2005-07-16. 
  9. ^ Lynne Armitage. "Customary Land Tenure in Papua New Guinea: Status and Prospects" (PDF). Queensland University of Technology. http://dlc.dlib.indiana.edu/archive/00001043/00/armitage.pdf. Retrieved 2005-07-15. 
  10. ^ HBW International Inc. (September 10, 2003). "Facilitating Foreign Investment through Property Lease Options" (PDF). pp. 9. http://www.mj.gov.tl/dntp/rel/DATA/LLP%20I/ARD%20Reports%20and%20studies/Compartive%20Study/Comparative%20study%20by%20HBW%20Inc.pdf. Retrieved 2007-08-28.  See footnote 30 which explains that the precise reference in legislation was not found.
  11. ^ Human Development Indices, Table 3: Human and income poverty, p. 35. Retrieved on 1 June 2009
  12. ^ Swaddling (1996) p. 282
  13. ^ Swaddling (1996) "Such trade links and the nominal claim of the Sultan of Ceram over New Guinea constituted the legal basis for the Netherlands' claim over West New Guinea and ultimately that of Indonesia over what is new West Papua"
  14. ^ "Remembering the war in New Guinea". Australian War Memorial.
  15. ^ For example, the Creditors Remedies Act (Papua), Ch 47 of the Revised Laws of Papua New Guinea.
  16. ^ "Looters shot dead amid chaos of Papua New Guinea's anti-Chinese riots". The Australian. May 23, 2009.
  17. ^ "Overseas and under siege". The Economist. August 11, 2009.
  18. ^ Bradford, Sarah (1997). Elizabeth: A Biography of Britain's Queen. Riverhead Books. ISBN 1-57322-600-9. 
  19. ^ The Constitution of Papua New Guinea sets out the names of the 19 provinces at the time of Independence. Several provinces have changed their names; such changes are not strictly speaking official without a formal constitutional amendment, though "Oro," for example, is universally used in reference to that province.
  20. ^ Post-Courier, "Jiwaka, Hela set to go!" July 15, 2009
  21. ^ "Overcoming economic vulnerability and creating employment" (PDF). Committee for Development Policy. 20-24 March 2006. p. 29. http://www.un.org/esa/policy/devplan/cdppublications/2006cdpreport_3.pdf. Retrieved 2008-12-24. 
  22. ^ http://www.imf.org/external/np/sec/pr/2008/pr08107.htm "Statement of an IMF Mission at the Conclusion of the Staff Visit to Papua New Guinea"
  23. ^ "Chinese targeted in PNG riots - report". News.com.au. May 15, 2009.
  24. ^ "Papua New Guinea". Encyclopædia Britannica Online.
  25. ^ http://hdrstats.undp.org/en/countries/data_sheets/cty_ds_PNG.html
  26. ^ "Human Development Report 2009". http://hdrstats.undp.org/en/countries/data_sheets/cty_ds_PNG.html. Retrieved 2-19-2010. 
  27. ^ "Papua New Guinea Overview of malaria control activities and programme results". http://www.rollbackmalaria.org/wmr2005/profiles/papuang.pdf. Retrieved 2-19-2010. 
  28. ^ "HIV/AIDS in Papua New Guinea". Australia's Aid Program (AusAID). http://www.ausaid.gov.au/country/png/hivaids.cfm. Retrieved 2005-12-16. 
  29. ^ "Amazon.com listing for the "Four Corners: A Journey into the Heart of Papua New Guinea"". http://www.amazon.com/Four-Corners-Journey-Heart-Guinea/dp/0792274172/ref=pd_bxgy_b_img_b. 
  30. ^ Salak, Kira. "Nonfiction book "Four Corners: A Journey into the Heart of Papua New Guinea"". http://www.kirasalak.com/FourCorners.html. 
  31. ^ "Papua New Guinea — culture". Datec Pty Ltd. http://web.archive.org/web/19990210114159/www.datec.com.au/png/culture.htm. Retrieved 2005-12-16. 
  32. ^ http://hdrstats.undp.org/en/countries/data_sheets/cty_ds_PNG.html
  33. ^ http://hdrstats.undp.org/en/countries/data_sheets/cty_ds_PNG.html
  34. ^ http://www.kirche-in-not.de/aktuelle-meldungen/2009/03-06-papua-neuguinea-weltgebetstag-frauen-2009
  35. ^ http://www.nmz-mission.de/de.partner/de.papua-neuguinea/de.papua-neuguinea.2/index.html
  36. ^ University of Papua New Guinea
  37. ^ Hadfield, Dave (1995-10-08). "Island gods high in a dream world". The Independent. independent.co.uk. http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/island-gods-high-in-a-dream-world-1576603.html. Retrieved 2009-10-06. 
  38. ^ http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/world/three-dead-in-png-after-state-of-origin-violence-20090626-cywd.html
  39. ^ "Papua New Guinea". The World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency. https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/pp.html. Retrieved 2007-12-13. 
  40. ^ "Vision of Humanity". Vision of Humanity. http://www.visionofhumanity.org/gpi/home.php. Retrieved 2010-02-04. 

References

  • Swadling, Pamela (1996). Plumes from Paradise. Papua New Guinea National Museum. ISBN 9980-85-103-1. 

External links

Government
General information

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Oceania : Papua New Guinea
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Location
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Flag
Image:pp-flag.png
Quick Facts
Capital Port Moresby
Government Constitutional monarchy with parliamentary democracy
Currency kina (PGK)
Area total: 462,840 km2
land: 452,860 km2
water: 9,980 km2
Population 5,545,268 (July 2006 est.)
Language English spoken by 1%-2%, Tok Pisin widespread, Motu spoken in Papua region
note: 820 indigenous languages
Religion Roman Catholic 22%, Lutheran 16%, Presbyterian / Methodist / London Missionary Society 8%, Anglican 5%, Evangelical Alliance 4%, Seventh-Day Adventist 1%, other Protestant 10%, indigenous beliefs 34%
Calling Code +675
Internet TLD .pg
Time Zone UTC+10

Papua New Guinea is an island nation in Oceania.

Regions

PNG has 11 regions (7 on the main island and 4 island regions):

  • Bougainville
  • Highlands - includes Enga Province, Chimbu Province and the Southern, Western and Eastern Highlands
  • Huon Gulf - Morobe province
  • Madang (region)
  • Manus Island
  • Milne Bay
  • New Britain
  • New Ireland
  • Central and North - includes the city of Port Moresby and the Central and Northern provinces
  • Sepik - includes the West and East Sepik provinces
  • South-western provinces - includes the Western and Gulf provinces
  • The capital city of Port Moresby, with its interesting Zoological gardens, the Parliament building, the museum, and general Melanesian atmosphere.
  • The island of New Britain, home of heart-rendingly beautiful diving and Rabaul, the city at the foot of a volcano.
  • Mt. Hagen, the 'wild-west' frontier town in the Highlands which will introduce you to the cool, crisp highlands weather and Highlands culture
  • 'Beautiful Madang' - a city with breath-taking flights of bats in the evening (it is illegal to hurt them), and yet more breathtaking diving.
  • Wewak, 'the gateway to the Sepik', where you can experience Sepik culture, the river itself, and the elaborate carvings typical of the region.
Papua New Guinea

Understand

Papua New Guinea (known popularly as 'PNG') - the eastern half of the island of New Guinea (which is the second largest island in the world) - was divided between Germany ('German New Guinea') and Great Britain ('British Papua') in 1884. The Dutch had West Papua, now the Indonesia territory of Western New Guinea. Papua was owned by the UK but administered by Australia - and thus a colony of a colony - until Australian independence, when in 1906 it became an Australian colony. In 1914 the Australians did their part in the Allied war effort and took control of German New Guinea, and continued to administer it as a Trust Territory under the League of Nations and (later) the United Nations.

During World War II New Guinea was the site of fierce fighting on land (at Buin and on the Kokoda Track) and sea (at the Battle of the Coral Sea) - it was the first place in the war where the Japanese advance was checked and then reversed. After the war, both New Guinea and Papua were administered from the government center of Port Moresby on the south coast, in Papua. In 1975, the country - now united as 'Papua New Guinea' - achieved independence from Australia. Today Papua New Guinea continues to be the foremost country in Melanesia. The country struggles to fulfill the dreams of independence as economic stagnation, corruption, law and order problems, and a nine-year secessionist revolt on the island of Bougainville.

Papua New Guinea offers the traveler a true paradox. With little to no tourist infrastructure outside the main tourist areas, getting around can be tough. But Papua New Guineans themselves are wonderfully welcoming people who will go to great lengths to accommodate strangers. Tourism is well developed and growing in a handful of locations. Beyond these PNG is 120% adventure travel and not for the inexperienced or faint of heart.

For people who can make it out to PNG, the experience is unforgettable. PNG's incredible natural beauty is simply indescribable. Its unique flora and fauna includes enormous radiations of marsupials and birds, including the Raggiana bird-of-paradise (PNG's national symbol) and several species of tree kangaroos. Untouched coral reefs compete with spectacular WWII wrecks for the attention of divers, and the hiking is out of control.

The central highlands of Papua New Guinea were not mapped until the 1930s and not effectively brought under government control until the late 1960s. As a result, the people of PNG are even more interesting than the countryside. Papua New Guinea is a place that often markets itself as 'the Last Unknown' or a place where you can still find 'Stone Age People'. Of course, telling a Papua New Guinean that you consider them a stone age savage is incredibly rude. And while you can - if you try hard enough - find old men who remember the first time they or anyone in their society saw metal, you'll also have trouble finding anyone who hasn't seen Titanic. Indeed, what makes Papua New Guinea so interesting today is not the fact that it is some sort of living museum, but its incredible dynamism. In the hundred-year shift from stone to steel to silicon, Papua New Guineans have turned the shortest learning curve in human history into one of the most colorful - and often idiosyncratic - experiments in modernity ever produced by human being. Featuring ritual garb made of human hair and rolled up Instant Noodle wrappers, rap in Pidgin English, or tribal warriors named 'Rambo' for their valor in combat, Papua New Guinea's collision with global culture has been intense and fascinating. So don't worry about the fate of 'traditional culture' -- in the bar-room brawl between PNG and the global culture industry our biggest worry is keeping PNG from pummeling global culture to a pulp.

Get in

By plane

Air Niugini [1] flies to and from Cairns, Sydney, and Brisbane, Australia; Honiara, Solomon Islands; Manila, Philippines; Tokyo (Narita), Japan; Singapore and Hong Kong. Airlines of Papua New Guinea [2] flies to and from Cairns, and Brisbane.

View over Port Moresby
View over Port Moresby

By boat

PNG's ports include Madang, Lae, and Port Moresby on the mainland, Kieta on Bougainville, Rabaul on New Britain.

By land

The only land border is with Western New Guinea(Irian Jaya), Indonesia, and crossing it involves some preparations but is not that difficult as it might have been. In Jayapura, Indonesia you'll find a PNG consulate to apply for a tourist visa.

Depending on your Indonesian visa there are different options to cross the border.

If you have a Visa-on-Arrival, issued to you for example at the Jakarta Airport, you can only cross the border using a boat. Boats can be rented from Hamedi.

Any other type of visa you can rent a car, or an ojek and cross the landborder.

Get around

By car

Papua New Guinea is a strange place when it comes to travel. The tropical conditions, fierce geography, and lack of government capacity means there are very few paved roads in the country. With the exception of a brief span of road connecting it to the immediate hinterland, there are no major roads linking Port Moresby to any other city. On the north coast, a tenuous highway theoretically runs from Madang to Wewak.

The big exception to this is the Highlands Highway, which begins in Lae (the country's main port) and runs up into the highlands through Goroka to Mt. Hagen with a fork going back to the coast and Madang. Shortly outside Mt. Hagen the road branches, with southern line going through the Southern Highlands to Tari while the northern line runs through Enga province and ends in Porgera.

By Public Motor Vehicles (PMV)

It is also possible to travel via bus/PMV, which is the preferred way of travelling by the locals. From Lae Madang, Goroka and Mount Hagen can easily be reached. As a newcomer it is probably advisable to get help from locals (e.g., hotel-staff). Most towns have several starting points. A trip from Lae to Madang costs between 20 Kina, to Hagen 30 Kina.

By plane

Papua New Guinea has historically been one of the world centers for aviation and still features some of the most spectacular flying in the world. In the 1920s, Lae was the busiest airport in the world - it was there that aviators in the gold mining industry first proved that it was commercially feasible to ship cargo (and not just people) by air. In fact, Lae was where Amelia Earhart set off on her last journey.

Air transport is still the most common way to get around between major urban centers - indeed, pretty much every major settlement is built around an airstrip. In fact, the main drag of Mt. Hagen is the old airstrip! Travel from the coast into the highlands is particularly spectacular (don't take your eyes off the window for a second!) and pilots from America, Australia, and other countries work in PNG at reduced salaries just for the great flying. If you don't like small planes (or even smaller helicopters!) however, flying to more remote locations in PNG may not be the best option for you. Major centres are serviced by a fleet of Fokker F100 jets.

By boat

People living in PNG's archipelagos get around locally with the ubiquitous banana boat - a thirty or forty foot fiberglass hull with an outboard motor. In addition, two or three shipping lines also sell tickets for passengers who want to leapfrog from one city to another. One small ship leaves the city of Lae once a week, stopping at Finschhafen and Umboi Island. Sleeping on the open deck of a ship as it crawls slowly through the South Pacific night is about as romantic as it sounds, but beware - it gets cold on the open ocean no matter where you are, so come with some warm clothes or buy a room indoor.

Talk

With over 700 languages including Asaro, Gahuku, Tairora, and Podopa (or Folopa), it can be pretty difficult to get everyone talking to each other. Two pidgins grew up in this area, Tok Pisin and Hiri Motu, and when the Anglophones married the Hulis and the babies learned the only language they have in common, Tok Pisin became a creole. Tok Pisin sometimes looks like itis English written phonetically ("Yu dring; yu draiv; yu dai" means "You drink; you drive; you die"), but it is not; it has more personal pronouns than English and its own quite different syntax.

Tok Pisin is spoken in most of the country. Hiri Motu is spoken in Port Moresby and other parts of Papua, though since Port Moresby is the capital, you're likely to find Tok Pisin speakers in the airport, banks, or government. When approaching locals, try to speak English first; using Tok Pisin or another language can make it look like you are assuming they don't know English.

You might sometimes have trouble hearing what the locals are saying because they speak very quietly. It is considered rude by some of the local groups to look people in the eyes and to speak loudly.

Buy

There is not so much shopping in the regular sense to be had in PNG. In the major cities there are a few malls and supermarkets. Otherwise most of the shopping is done in small markets that are held at irregular intervals. A great place to visit is the craft market which is held once per month in Port Moresby opposite Ela beach in the car park of the IEA TAFE College, there it is possible to buy handicrafts from basically every part of the country. Although it is slightly more expensive than out in the villages, the prices are very reasonable. Haggling is not really an accepted custom, one can haggle a bit but to do it excessively could annoy the locals.

Eat

PNG food is largely devoid of spices. A typical way of cooking is a mumu, an underground oven in which meat and vegetables, such as kaukau (sweet potatoes), are cooked.

Drink

There are brands of local beer in PNG. The local brew, SP (short for South Pacific) Lager, is owned by Heineken.

While the water quality varies from place to place (and in some cases from day to day), it is generally best to stick to bottled water, even in the upper-market hotels.

Sleep

Papua New Guinea offers a wide choice of accommodation for tourists. Port Moresby has international hotels including the Crown Plaza and Airways International, mid range hotels such as Lamana and guest houses. The regional areas offer International and budget hotels depending on the size of the town and some provinces have guest houses. There is a new eco-tourist lodge in Alotau called Ulumani Treetops Lodge, the place is beautiful overlooking the Milne Bay and offers a new bungalow or backpacker options.

Learn

Newspapers

Papua New Guinea has two daily newspapers that include up-to-date exchange rates and other important information:

  • The Post Courier [3] ('the Post')
  • The National [4] The National

There is also a fortnightly PNG Gossip Electronic Newsletter that provides information about the country for any prospective visitor. Not all the news is factual as it is supposed to be a gossip newsletter, but is well worth a look.

  • PNG Gossip [5] The PNG Gossip Electronic Newsletter

Books

There are many great books about Papua New Guinea, including great fiction as well as non-fiction. An excellent book for the general reader about Papua New Guinea is Sean Dorney's Papua New Guinea: People, Politics, and History Since 1975. The third edition is the best, but it is pretty hard to find outside of Australia (and is not that easy to find there).

John Laurel Ryan, a former employee of the ABC, also wrote an excellent book, "The Hot Land" which was published about 1970. Among other fascinating historical information it contains accounts of various manifestations of cargo cult, John Teosin's "baby garden" on Buka Island, and eye-witness reports that have been rigidly suppressed in other media about the Indonesian takeover of what was formerly Dutch West Papua. This excellent and at times disturbing book will also be hard to find, and sadly its author even harder!

Stay safe

PNG has a reputation as a risky destination in some circles. This is due predominantly to the activities of criminal gangs (known in Tok Pisin as raskols) in major cities, especially in Port Moresby and Lae. Raskolism is generally a result of unemployment stemming from increased domestic migration from subsistence farming in the hills to the nearest urban area. Some towns in the highlands, such as Tari, are in fact effectively lawless as the police presence has been discontinued.

If you are planning a trip to PNG, the most important thing is to stay up to date on the law and order situation in the locations you are planning to visit. Most hotels in Port Moresby are secure and situated inside compounds, generally with guards patrolling the perimeter. Don't be alarmed, as actual gunfire in the capital is mercifully rare. If planning on taking a tour of any city, make inquiries with your hotel or accommodation provider, as many will be able to drive you to wherever you are planning to go, or just around the local area if that is what you want to do. Stay very alert after dark if you are outside a compound, which is somewhere you should only be in the rarest circumstances.

Flying in small planes can be very risky. Hardly a year goes by without at least one fatal accident (the most recent in August 2009 when 12 people were killed). While the planes are usually well-maintained and the pilots technically proficient the problem is the mountainous terrain. Many smaller airfields are situated in steep valleys. When there is cloud cover planes have difficulty in finding them and sometimes crash into a mountain. The national airline, Air Niugini, which flies internationally and to the major cities of the country has, however, an unblemished safety record in 32 years of operation.

Saltwater Crocodiles (Crocodylus porosus) are very common in Papua New Guinea and are capable of growing to immense lengths of 7 meters or more (although individuals over 6 meters are rare). They can and do occasionally devour humans and should be shown respect at all times. They are equally at home in coastal waters as they are in freshwater lakes and rivers. Swimming is generally not advised except at higher elevations and in hotel swimming pools. Papua New Guinea, along with Australia, has the highest and healthiest population of large Saltwater Crocodiles in the world.

Stay healthy

Tap water in some regions can be unsafe to drink.

Malaria can be a hazard as well, although many villages - particularly those connected to industry - are regularly treated for mosquitoes. Take the appropriate precautions against mosquitoes and mosquito-borne diseases.

Respect

As in many Melanesian cultures, greeting people with a friendly handshake is very important. Be aware, however, that it is a sign of respect not to make eye contact when this is being done. The sight of hotel staff calling you by name, shaking your hand and looking at the floor may seem unusual at first.

This article is an outline and needs more content. It has a template, but there is not enough information present. Please plunge forward and help it grow!

Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

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Wikipedia has an article on:

Wikipedia

Contents

English

Pronunciation

  • (UK) IPA: /ˈpæ.puː.ə ˌnjuː ˈgɪ.ni/, /ˈpæ.pjuː.ə ˌnjuː ˈgɪ.ni/
  • (US) IPA: /ˈpæ.pu.ə ˌnu ˈgɪ.ni/
  •  Audio (US)help, file

Proper noun

Singular
Papua New Guinea

Plural
-

Papua New Guinea

  1. A country in Oceania. Official name: Independent State of Papua New Guinea.

Translations

See also


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