Papua New Guinea Population 2019

8,838,285

Papua New Guinea, officially the Independent State of Papua New Guinea, is an Oceanian country that makes up the eastern half of the island of New Guinea and the offshore islands of Melanesia north of Australia. The estimated population of Papua New Guinea in 2019 is 8.78 million, which ranks 98th in the world.

Papua New Guinea Area and Population Density

Papua New Guinea is found on the eastern half of New Guinea in the southwest Pacific Ocean. It is an extremely geographically diverse part of the world with beautiful coral reefs and beaches, as well as rainforest and mountains. The country covers 178,704 square miles (462,840 square kilometers) of area. Papua New Guinea is one of the least densely populated countries in the world. Using the 2017 population of 8.25 million, the population density of Papua New Guinea is 46 people per square mile (17.8 people per square kilometer), which ranks 167th in the world.

Largest Cities in Papua New Guinea

Urban areas are not at all plentiful in Papua New Guinea, and only 13% of people live in or around a city center. The largest city and capital is Port Moresby, with a population of about 310,000. Modern infrastructure is still relatively new in the area, which has kept the growth fairly slow. The only other city with a population over 100,000 in Papua New Guinea is the city of Lae, which lies along the transport corridor between the Markham River and the highlands highway. Papua New Guinea remains one of the least explored areas of the world and has a large population of uncontacted people, as well as undiscovered flora and fauna.

Papua New Guinea Demographics

Papua New Guinea is one of the most diverse countries in the world with 848 different languages spoken (12% of the world's languages), of which 12 have no living speakers remaining. Most languages have fewer than 1,000 speakers. There are hundreds of ethnic groups indigenous to Papua New Guinea, although the largest is the Papuans, whose ancestors arrived in the area tens of thousands of years ago. Some remote Papuan tribes still have very little contact with the outside world.

Another large ethnic group is the Austronesians, whose ancestors arrived in the region less than 4,000 years ago. Today, people from around the world call Papua New Guinea home, including Polynesians, Micronesians, Filipinos, Australians, Europeans and Chinese.

Papua New Guinea Area and Population Density

Papua New Guinea is a very Christian nation, but the population is very spread out in terms of the denominations that they follow. 26% of people in Papua New Guinea are Catholic, 18.4% are Evangelical Lutheran, 12.9% are Seventh-day Adventists, 10.4% are Pentecostal, 10.3% belong to the United Church in Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands, 5.9% belong to the Evangelical Alliance, 3.2% are Anglican, 2.8% are Baptist, 0.4% belong to the Salvation Army, 0.2% follow the Kwato Church, and 5.1% perform another form of Christianity. This is much more diverse a spread of beliefs within one religion than most countries have. 4.5% of the population either have no religion or are affiliated with one other than Christianity.

While Papua New Guinea is one of the world's fastest growing economies, 30% of the population still lives below the international poverty line of $1.25 USD per day. Most people in Papua New Guinea still live on subsistence-based agriculture. The country has the highest incidence of HIV/AIDS in the Pacific and meets the criteria for a generalized HIV/AIDS epidemic. The leading cause of death is malaria, which affected about 1.7 million people in 2003 alone.

Papua New Guinea Population History

People have been known to populate the land now known as Papua New Guinea since roughly 50,000 BC, but any trends that far back are not at all documented. Just before the turn of the 19th century, the land quickly changed hands between Europeans and Australia. The Japanese temporarily occupied the territory during World War II.

In 1954, an aerial survey discovered land occupied by 100,000 people that had never before been documented. Papua New Guinea finally gained full independence in 1975. There was a drought in 1999 that killed over 1,000 people and put more than a million at risk of starvation. Three consecutive tsunamis in 1998 killed 3,000 people.

Papua New Guinea Population Growth

The growth rate in Papua New Guinea has been slowing in recent years, but the country still has what is known as a "youth bulge," meaning there is a disproportionately high number of young people not yet old enough to work and help support the rest of the people. The current growth rate sits around 2% annual growth, which would be a more manageable number if there were more immigrants as opposed to new children being born.

Papua New Guinea Population Projections

The population of Papua New Guinea has been gradually slowing or many years and that is expected to continue in the years to come. Current projections believe that the annual population rate will hit a temporary peak in 2020 at 2.03% before declining nearly a full percentage point over the next 30 years. These same predictions say that the population of Papua New Guinea will be 8,755,675 in 2020, 10,486,891 in 2030, 12,224,302 in 2040, and 13,871,403 by 2050.

Components of Population Change

One birth every 2 minutes
One death every 8 minutes
One net migrant every 720 minutes
Net gain of one person every 3 minutes

Papua New Guinea Population in 2018Source: By Mark Matson [CC BY 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Papua New Guinea Population Pyramid 2019

Papua New Guinea Population by Age

There are 5,106,831 adults in Papua New Guinea.

Census Years

Year Date
20202020
201110 July 2011
20009 July 2000
199011 July 1990
Official NameIndependent State of Papua New Guinea
Languages SpokenEnglish, Hiri Motu, Tok Pisin
Is LandlockedNo
Latitude/Longitude-6.00, 147.00
Currencies UsedPapua New Guinea Kina
DemonymPapua New Guinean
BordersIndonesia
Name Population Location
Port Moresby283,733Map
Lae76,255Map
Arawa40,266Map
Mount Hagen33,623Map
Popondetta28,198Map
Madang27,419Map
Kokopo26,273Map
Mendi26,252Map
Kimbe18,847Map
Goroka18,503Map
Wewak18,230Map
Bulolo16,042Map
Daru15,214Map
Wau14,629Map
Kavieng14,490Map
Kiunga11,536Map
Vanimo11,204Map
Alotau10,025Map
Kundiawa9,383Map
Kainantu8,509Map

Papua New Guinea Population Clock

The population of Papua New Guinea (as of 11/11/2019)?8,838,285
Last UN Estimate (July 1, 2019)8,776,109
Births Per Day642
Deaths Per Day176
Net Migrations Per Day-2
Net Change Per Day464
Population Change Since January 1st146,160

Papua New Guinea Population Estimator

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Estimate as of November 11th 2019 is: 8,838,388

Year Population % Male % Female Density (km²) Population Rank Growth Rate
20198,776,10951.05%48.95%18.96981.97%
20188,606,32351.04%48.96%18.59991.99%
20178,438,03651.03%48.97%18.231002.01%
20168,271,76251.01%48.99%17.871002.02%
20158,107,77550.99%49.01%17.521002.09%
20107,310,50750.88%49.12%15.791012.39%
20056,494,90350.86%49.14%14.031012.12%
20005,847,58650.83%49.17%12.631022.43%
19955,187,06050.83%49.17%11.211032.36%
19904,615,83950.88%49.12%9.971062.49%
19854,081,03050.94%49.06%8.821092.70%
19803,571,20551.06%48.94%7.721112.61%
19753,139,94551.11%48.89%6.781122.44%
19702,783,12151.24%48.76%6.011142.29%
19652,485,43751.45%48.55%5.371161.96%
19602,255,85951.72%48.28%4.871131.58%
19552,086,24752.05%47.95%4.511130.83%
19502,002,14852.69%47.31%4.331110.00%
Year Population % Male % Female Density (km²) Population Rank Growth Rate
20208,947,02451.06%48.94%19.33980.00%
20259,817,92651.08%48.92%21.21951.88%
203010,709,34851.09%48.91%23.14901.75%
203511,606,99951.08%48.92%25.08881.62%
204012,492,60051.05%48.95%26.99861.48%
204513,360,90751.02%48.98%28.87851.35%
205014,204,06650.97%49.03%30.69841.23%
205515,012,96650.92%49.08%32.44841.11%
206015,785,26250.87%49.13%34.11821.01%
206516,510,01650.80%49.20%35.67820.90%
207017,179,60550.73%49.27%37.12810.80%
207517,782,88450.66%49.34%38.42800.69%
208018,320,83850.58%49.42%39.58790.60%
208518,786,45650.51%49.49%40.59770.50%
209019,182,91850.44%49.56%41.45770.42%
209519,514,73450.38%49.62%42.16780.34%
  1. National Statistical Office of Papua New Guinea
  2. National Statistical Office of Papua New Guinea
  3. World Population Prospects (2019 Revision) - United Nations population estimates and projections.

    Total population: Estimated to be consistent with censuses from 1966 through 2011, and with estimates of the subsequent trends in fertility, mortality and international migration.

  4. GeoNames Gazetteer