Papua New Guinea comprises both the mainland and some 600 offshore islands and has a total land area of 470,000 square kilometers.
PNG’s population currently stands at 6.1 million people with around 15 percent of the population living in the 10 major urban areas.
PNG has a moderate tropical climate with high levels of seasonal rainfall.
The capital of Papua New Guinea is Port Moresby with a population of 255,000 people. The second largest city is the industrial city of Lae in the Morobe Province.
Over 800 different languages are spoken by the people of Papua New Guinea. English is the official language, while Tok Pisin and Motu languages are national languages.
Papua New Guinea gained independence from Australia in 1975.
The country has a well-entrenched democratic system of government. The National Government comprises three independent branches: the executive, the legislature and the judiciary. Executive power is vested in the National Executive Council or Cabinet which comprises the Prime Minister and Ministers.
There are 22 provinces, each governed by a Provincial Government which have similar constitutional arrangements to the National Government and have concurrent power with the latter in areas such as agriculture, business development, town planning, forestry and natural resources. National laws, however, take precedence over provincial laws.
Papua New Guinea is also an active member of the Commonwealth.