The most populous country in the Pacific region, Papua New Guinea (PNG) has a population of approximately 7.3 million people (2011 estimate), and a total of 600 islands with 462,840 km2 of landmass. PNG has more than 820 different languages and is home to one of the most diverse cultures in the world.

The Oceanic nation occupies the eastern half of the island of New Guinea and is located in the ‘Pacific Ring of Fire’. The country has high exposure to hazards such as volcanoes, earthquakes, landslides, tsunamis, tropical cyclones, flooding and coastal erosion. PNG ranks in the top six countries for the percentage of population exposed to earthquake hazard and has the highest percentage of population exposed to severe volcanic risk. Landslide hazard is also particularly high in PNG[1].

PNG suffered some of its worst natural disasters from 1990 to 2000, including the Rabaul volcanic eruptions in 1994, drought impacts of the El Niño in 1997–1998, and the Aitape tsunami in 1998.

In line with this risk, PNG has scaled up its DRM efforts in recent years. A Disaster Management Act was created in 1984 but was not implemented effectively; however renewed focus on this area has resulted in work being directed toward DRM, DRR and CCA. The country’s 2050 National Plan aims at attaining sustainable development through DRM and CCA[2].

[1] Global Facility for Disaster Risk Reduction and Recovery. PNG. (2016).

[2] GFDRR. PNG. (2016).