Can Foreigners Buy Property In Papua New Guinea?

Exploring Property Ownership in Papua New Guinea: A Guide for Foreigners

Ever wondered if you could own a piece of paradise in Papua New Guinea? 🤔 As a real estate expert, I’ve had the privilege of exploring this question in depth. So, let’s dive right in and unravel the mystery of property ownership in this beautiful Pacific nation.

Understanding Papua New Guinea’s Real Estate Landscape

First things first, Papua New Guinea (PNG) is a country of stunning landscapes, rich culture, and untapped potential. However, its real estate market is not as straightforward as you might think. 🏞️

Unlike many countries, PNG operates under a customary land tenure system. This means that a whopping 97% of the land is owned by indigenous communities and passed down through generations. Only a small fraction, about 3%, is state-owned and available for leasehold.

Can Foreigners Buy Property in Papua New Guinea?

The short answer is yes, but with a caveat. Foreigners can’t directly own Freehold land. However, they can secure long-term leases on state land. These leases can last up to 99 years, giving you plenty of time to enjoy your tropical retreat. 🌴

It’s also worth noting that the process of acquiring a lease can be complex and time-consuming. It involves negotiating with the Department of Lands and Physical Planning and potentially with local landowners. Therefore, it’s crucial to have a good understanding of the local laws and customs, or better yet, a local expert to guide you through the process.

What to Consider When Buying Property in PNG

Before you start dreaming of your beachfront bungalow, there are a few things you should consider:

  • Legal Assistance: Given the complexity of the land tenure system, it’s advisable to seek legal advice before proceeding with any property transaction.
  • Location: PNG is a diverse country with varying levels of infrastructure and amenities. Make sure to research the area thoroughly before making a decision.
  • Property Management: If you’re planning to rent out your property, consider hiring a local property management company to handle the day-to-day operations.


1. Can foreigners buy freehold land in Papua New Guinea?

No, foreigners cannot buy freehold land in PNG. However, they can lease state land for up to 99 years.

2. Is it safe to buy property in Papua New Guinea?

While PNG has its challenges, many foreigners have successfully leased property there. It’s crucial to do your research, understand the local customs, and seek legal advice.

3. Can I rent out my property in Papua New Guinea?

Yes, you can rent out your leased property in PNG. However, managing a rental property from abroad can be challenging, so consider hiring a local property management company.


So, can foreigners buy property in Papua New Guinea? Yes, but it’s not as straightforward as in other countries. While you can’t directly own land, you can secure long-term leases on state land. However, navigating the complex land tenure system and local customs can be challenging. Therefore, it’s crucial to do your research and seek legal advice before embarking on your property journey in PNG. 🏡

Remember, buying property abroad is not just a financial investment, but also an investment in understanding and respecting a different culture and way of life. So, if you’re up for the adventure, Papua New Guinea could be your next real estate frontier. 🌏

Kurby Team

The Kurby Content Team is a diverse group of seasoned real estate experts dedicated to providing insightful, reliable information for homebuyers, real estate investors, and real estate agents. With backgrounds ranging from real estate brokerage, property investment, and residential home buying, our team combines decades of experience with a passion for demystifying the real estate world. We at Kurby are committed to helping you make informed, successful real estate decisions. Whether you're a first-time homebuyer, a seasoned investor, or a real estate professional, count on the Kurby Content Team to deliver the most relevant, actionable real estate content you need.