Current forestry laws do not allow Papua New Guineans to develop their own forest resources
In Papua New Guinea (PNG) 97% of land (including forests) is under customary ownership. However Papua New Guineans (PNGs) are often excluded from meaningful forestry development due to the forestry laws and regulations that have been in place since gaining independence in 1975. The laws have been developed from the view point of large scale forest industry and business, therefore have effectively removed the customary rights of the PNGs. This has resulted in increased state control and private ownership by large businesses over an increasing majority of PNGs forested land.