A New Zealander has been shot dead during a robbery at a market in the Philippines.

Simon Rawlinson, 63, was killed by a man on the back of a motorcycle in the town of Naval on Biliran island, police say.

The assailants took his bag, a laptop and documents.

Rawlinson, a long-time resident of nearby Maripipi island, was in Naval for a trip to the market when attacked Wednesday morning.

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The suspected gunman, a local farmer, has been arrested, senior police officer Jimmy De Lima said.

Image released by local authorities on Biliran Island in the Philippines shows the scene of the murder of New Zealander Simon Rawlinson. Photo / Supplied
Image released by local authorities on Biliran Island in the Philippines shows the scene of the murder of New Zealander Simon Rawlinson. Photo / Supplied

A witness led police to the man's house, De Lima said, where they found a pistol, bullets and clothes the suspect was seen wearing on CCTV footage.

The motorcycle driver is still at large.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade has confirmed the New Zealand Embassy in Manila is in contact with Philippines authorities over the shooting.

"Due to privacy considerations we are unable to provide any further information," a spokesperson said.

A friend of Rawlinson's said she and her partner had been left devastated by the killing.

Celia wrote on the Philippines Lifestyle News Rawlinson was seeking to lead a peaceful life on his block and loved his adopted country.

Authorities say they have arrested two of three people believed involved in the shooting of Simon Rawlinson. Photo / Supplied
Authorities say they have arrested two of three people believed involved in the shooting of Simon Rawlinson. Photo / Supplied

"My partner and I were friends of Simon and are devastated by this murder.

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"He loved the Philippines and felt that he was at home there despite being a New Zealand citizen."

It's the third killing of a foreigner on the island by gunmen riding on motorcycles in the space of 12 months.

Last June a 74-year-old Dutch businessman was shot by a pillion passenger. His 11-year-old son was wounded but survived.

In March a former US marine was killed by motorcycle riding gunmen.

Those killed in previous deaths were driving their own vehicles when they were targeted.