West New Britain Province

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West New Britain Province
Flag of West New Britain Province
West New Britain Province in Papua New Guinea
West New Britain Province in Papua New Guinea
Coordinates: 5°50′S 150°0′E / 5.833°S 150.000°E / -5.833; 150.000
Country Papua New Guinea
Formation 1976
Capital Kimbe
 • Governor Sasindran Muthuvel 2012-
 • Total 20,387 km2 (7,871 sq mi)
Population (2011 census)
 • Total 264,264
 • Density 13/km2 (34/sq mi)
Time zone AEST (UTC+10)

West New Britain is a province of Papua New Guinea on the islands of New Britain. The provincial capital is Kimbe. The area of the province in 20,387 km², and there are 264,264 of the 2011 census count.[1] West New Britain produces palm oil for export. There are seven major tribes, the Nakanai (ja), Bakovi, Kove, Unea, Maleu, Kaulong and Arowe, speaking a total of about 25 languages.

People from West New Britain are widely referred to as "Kombes" throughout Papua New Guinea, in metonymic reference to the significant Kove (or Kombe) people. The Kove people were extensively reported on by the anthropologist Ann Chowning in National Geographic magazine during the 1960s and in consequence a photographic record of their traditional lifestyle has been widely disseminated. Within Papua New Guinea they are most widely noted for their practice of superincision of the penis — circumcision is generally though inaccurately referred to among Papua New Guineans as "the Kombe cut" — a practice formerly also in other regions of northern coastal regions of New Guinea island and the New Guinea Islands but which has elsewhere lapsed.

The predominant religious affiliation is Roman Catholic, though there is a sizeable Anglican presence at the extreme western tip of the province and Bishop James Ayong, the recently retired Anglican Primate of Papua New Guinea, is originally from West New Britain.

There are substantial oil palm plantations on the north coast of the province especially in the Kimbe region, and logging activities in the interior and on the south coast. The Walindi dive resort near Kimbe is a significant tourist destination for overseas visitors to Papua New Guinea.

Districts and LLGs[edit]

There are two districts in the province. Each district has one or more Local Level Government (LLG) areas. For census purposes, the LLG areas are subdivided into wards and those into census units.[2]

District District Capital LLG Name
Kandrian-Gloucester District Kandrian Gasmata Rural
Gloucester Rural
Kandrian Coastal Rural
Kandrian Inland Rural
Kove-Kaliai Rural
Talasea District Kimbe Bali-Witu Rural
Bialla Rural
Hoskins Rural
Kimbe Urban
Mosa Rural
Talasea Rural

Members of the National Parliament[edit]

The province and each district is represented by a Member of the National Parliament. There is one provincial electorate and each district is an open electorate. The following table lists Members before and after the 2007 general election.

Electorate Previous member (party) 2007 winner (party)
West New Britain Provincial Sasindran Muthuvel (People's National Congress Party (Papua New Guinea [3]
Kandrian-Gloucester Open Joeseph Lelang(PNC) |
Talasea Open Francis Marus (PNC)


  1. ^ "PAPUA NEW GUINEA". City Population.de. Thomas Brinkhoff. Retrieved 26 June 2012. 
  2. ^ "National Statistical Office of Papua New Guinea". National Statistical Office of Papua New Guinea. National Statistical Office of Papua New Guinea. Retrieved 26 June 2012. 
  3. ^ "NA ahead on 8". Post Courier Online. Retrieved 2007-07-24.