Describes what a company needs to know to take advantage of e-commerce in the local market and covers prominent B2B websites.
PNG government agencies, including the Law Reform Committee, Department of Justice and Attorney General, the National Trade Office, lead a stakeholder dialogue group on developing the legal framework required to govern and accelerate the rolling out of e-commerce products and services in PNG.
The PNG Digital ICT Cluster is the peak association of ICT specialist and service providers in the country and has been part of the stakeholder dialogue group. Key elements of this dialogue are internet costs, accessibility, and internet reliability, which remains a top priority for most stakeholders. Although there is a Digital ICT cluster to address e-commerce, it is important to note that the PNG government is yet to develop a comprehensive e-commerce policy.
Key local in-country support partners include:
- Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).
- Central Bank of Papua New Guinea’s Centre for Excellence Financial Inclusion (CEFI).
- Commercial banks such as Bank of South Pacific, Kina Bank Limited, Westpac Bank, and ANZ Bank.
- Financial Institutions such as MiBank.
- Superannuation Funds: Nasfund is the largest private sector superannuation fund in PNG, and Nambawan Super is the largest overall super fund with majority of membership from the public sector.
The top eCommerce sites in Papua New Guinea are Amazon.com, ebay.com.au and aliexpress.com. Other top retail sites include ebay.com. It is important for businesses to check these e-commerce sites to see which site best suits products in terms of traffic volume, competition, and the type of eCommerce buyers that they attract.
For B2C online purchases particularly, mobile eCommerce now makes up a significant proportion of Papua New Guinea eCommerce market and within the next 12 to 24 months is likely to surpass desktop usage. E-commerce merchants should bear this in mind when setting up their online stores and product listings. Mobile optimization and a great mobile buying experience is no longer a ‘nice to have’, it must be core to your broader ecommerce strategy.
Legal & Regulatory
The Central Bank of Papua New Guinea is the primary regulator of online transactions involving finance and lending through licensed financial institutions and commercial banks.
Other modes of e-payments in PNG include Cell Moni (e-wallet), largely provided via the mobile communications network. Minimum requirements include a smartphone or SMS-enabled device with the registered SIM number and mobile services to transact.
Papua New Guinea’s largest commercial bank, Bank South Pacific, utilizes an Internet Payment Gateway, a website where customers place their orders online and pay using PayPal, MasterCard, or a Visa debit card.
According to the PNG Digital ICT Cluster, the country requires specific legislation that will govern e-transactions online coming to and from the country’s PG domain to track and deter potential cyber security risks, including fraud. The Department of Communications and Information Technology has proposed an Electronic Data Act that will provide secured e-commerce environment for online business. The draft legislation will be considered by Parliament in late 2020.
As a result of both a lack of regulatory legislation and cyber-security infrastructure, there is a general lack of cyber protection for e-transactions in the country.
There are no reports of recent government policies that will have a negative impact on U.S. businesses or on general online business. However, as noted above, the appropriate legislation and policy needed to advance the use of digital business in the country is not in place.
In PNG, the revenue in the eCommerce market amounted to USD 100.8m in 2020. Revenue is expected to show an annual growth (CAGR 2020-2025) of 12.9 per cent, resulting in a market volume of USD 184.6m by 2025. The market’s largest segment is Fashion with a market volume of USD 36.0m in 2020.
Consumers in Papua New Guinea spend the most in food and no-alcoholic beverages, accounting for 63.8 per cent of total spend. Utilities such as housing, water and electricity was the second item that most households spent on accounting for 8.2 per cent of total spend. Other consumer spending includes transportation, healthcare, alcohol and tobacco and restaurants/hotels.