The population of Papua New Guinea in 2003 was estimated by the United Nations at 5,711,000, which placed it as number 101 in population among the 193 nations of the world. In that year approximately 4% of the population was over 65 years of age, with another 39% of the population under 15 years of age. There were 106 males for every 100 females in the country in 2003. According to the UN, the annual population growth rate for 2000–05 is 2.22%, with the projected population for the year 2015 at 7,169,000. The population density in 2002 was 11 per sq km (28 per sq mi). The major areas of population are in the highlands and eastern coastal areas of the island of New Guinea.
It was estimated by the Population Reference Bureau that 17% of the population lived in urban areas in 2001. The capital city, Port Moresby, had a population of 293,000 in that year. Other large cities include Lae, 80,665; Goroka, 17,855; Madang, 27,057; Wewak, 23,224; and Rabaul, on New Britain, 17,855. According to the United Nations, the urban population growth rate for 2000–2005 was 4.0%.