Independent State of Papua New Guinea

Gau Hedinarai ai Papua-Matamata Guinea

Political Status: Former Australian-administered territory; achieved internal self-government December 1, 1973, and full independence within the Commonwealth on September 16, 1975, under constitution of August 15.

Area: 178,259 sq. mi. (461,691 sq. km.).

Population: 5,130,365 (2000C); 5,847,000 (2004E).

Major Urban Centers (1990C): PORT MORESBY (metropolitan area, 254,000), Lae (78,000), Arawa (36,000).

Official Languages: English, Tok Pisin, Hari-Motu.

Monetary Unit: Kina (market rate July 1, 2005: 3.06 kina = $1US).

Sovereign: Queen ELIZABETH II.

Governor General: Sir Paulias MATANE; elected by the National Parliament on May 28, 2004, and installed for a six-year term after formal appointment by the Queen, on June 29, succeeding Sir Silas ATOPARE and the interim incumbency of William (Bill) SKATE.

Prime Minister: Sir Michael SOMARE (National Alliance Party); served as ...

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