A total of 2,821 candidates have so far signed the official form to contest the 111 seats in Papua New Guinea's 2017 national election.
The newspaper, The National, reports the PNG's Electoral Commission confirming that 2821 had filled and signed the relevant form to contest the polls.
However the exact number of candidates contesting each of the 111 seats would be finalised when nominations closed on April 27.
In 2012, 3435 candidates contested.
It is expected that the number this year may be smaller if the nomination fee is increased from US$300 to US$3,000.
Parliament is expected to decide on the fees when it sits next week.
However some electorates are set to field large numbers of candidates, such as North Fly, which has 68 candidates signed up to contest, and Kerema with 67.