Samoa



Official Country Name
Samoa

Samoa Overview
New Zealand occupied the German protectorate of Western Samoa at the outbreak of World War I in 1914. It continued to administer the islands as a mandate and then as a trust territory until 1962, when the islands became the first Polynesian nation to reestablish independence in the 20th century. The country dropped the "Western" from its name in 1997.

Samoa Economy
The economy of Samoa has traditionally been dependent on development aid, family remittances from overseas, agriculture, and fishing. The country is vulnerable to devastating storms. Agriculture employs two-thirds of the labor force, and furnishes 90% of exports, featuring coconut cream, coconut oil, and copra. The fish catch declined during the El Nino of 2002-03, but returned to normal by mid-2005. The manufacturing sector mainly processes agricultural products. One factory in the Foreign Trade Zone employs 3,000 people to make automobile electrical harnesses for an assembly plant in Australia. Tourism is an expanding sector, accounting for 25% of GDP; about 100,000 tourists visited the islands in 2005. The Samoan Government has called for deregulation of the financial sector, encouragement of investment, and continued fiscal discipline, while at the same time protecting the environment. Observers point to the flexibility of the labor market as a basic strength for future economic advances. Foreign reserves are in a relatively healthy state, the external debt is stable, and inflation is low.

Samoa Location
Samoa is located in Oceania, group of islands in the South Pacific Ocean, about one-half of the way from Hawaii to New Zealand

Region
Samoa is located in Oceania

Samoa Population
Samoa has population of 176,908 (July 2006 est.)

Samoa Climate
Samoa has tropical; rainy season (November to April), dry season (May to October)

Samoa Terrain
two main islands (Savaii, Upolu) and several smaller islands and uninhabited islets; narrow coastal plain with volcanic, rocky, rugged mountains in interior

Samoa Natural Resources
hardwood forests, fish, hydropower

Ethnic Groups in Samoa
Samoa has the following ethnic groups - Samoan 92.6%, Euronesians 7% (persons of European and Polynesian blood), Europeans 0.4%

Samoa Religions
Congregationalist 34.8%, Roman Catholic 19.6%, Methodist 15%, Latter-Day Saints 12.7%, Assembly of God 6.6%, Seventh-Day Adventist 3.5%, Worship Centre 1.3%, other Christian 4.5%, other 1.9%, unspecified 0.1% (2001 census)

Samoa Languages
Samoan (Polynesian), English

Samoa Capital
Samoa capital is Apia

Samoa Currency
Samoa currency is tala

Map of Samoa