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Samoa

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Background:
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.



Location:
Oceania, group of islands in the South Pacific Ocean, about half way between Hawaii and New Zealand

Geographic coordinates:
13 35 S, 172 20 W

Map references:
Oceania

Area:
total: 2,831 sq km
country comparison to the world: 177
land: 2,821 sq km
water: 10 sq km

Area - comparative:
slightly smaller than Rhode Island

Land boundaries:
0 km

Coastline:
403 km

Maritime claims:
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

Climate:
Current Weather
tropical; rainy season (November to April), dry season (May to October)

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

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
highest point: Mauga Silisili (Savaii) 1,857 m

Natural resources:
hardwood forests, fish, hydropower

Land use:
arable land: 21.13%
permanent crops: 24.3%
other: 54.57% (2005)

Irrigated land:
NA

Natural hazards:
occasional typhoons; active volcanism

Environment - current issues:
soil erosion, deforestation, invasive species, overfishing

Environment - international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note:
occupies an almost central position within Polynesia



Population:
192,001
country comparison to the world: 185
note: prior estimates used official net migration data by sex, but a highly unusual pattern for 1993 lead to a significant imbalance in the sex ratios (more men and fewer women) and a seeming reduction in the female population; the revised total was calculated using a 1993 number that was an average of the 1992 and 1994 migration figures (July 2010 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 36% (male 35,686/female 33,491)
15-64 years: 58.8% (male 58,472/female 54,397)
65 years and over: 5.2% (male 4,425/female 5,530) (2010 est.)

Median age:
total: 21.8 years
male: 21.7 years
female: 21.9 years (2010 est.)

Population growth rate:
0.605% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 147

Birth rate:
22.92 births/1,000 population (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 76

Death rate:
5.36 deaths/1,000 population (July 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 177

Net migration rate:
-11.52 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 176

Urbanization:
urban population: 23% of total population (2008)
rate of urbanization: 1.7% annual rate of change (2005-10 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.07 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.08 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.8 male(s)/female
total population: 1.06 male(s)/female (2010 est.)

Infant mortality rate:
total: 23.21 deaths/1,000 live births
country comparison to the world: 90
male: 27.42 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 18.78 deaths/1,000 live births (2010 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 72.13 years
country comparison to the world: 127
male: 69.28 years
female: 75.13 years (2010 est.)

Total fertility rate:
3.32 children born/woman (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 54

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
NA

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths:
NA

Nationality:
noun: Samoan(s)
adjective: Samoan

Ethnic groups:
Samoan 92.6%, Euronesians (persons of European and Polynesian blood) 7%, Europeans 0.4% (2001 census)

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)

Languages:
Samoan (Polynesian), English

Literacy:
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 99.7%
male: 99.6%
female: 99.7% (2003 est.)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
total: 12 years
male: 12 years
female: 12 years (2001)

Education expenditures:
4.3% of GDP (2002)
country comparison to the world: 95



Country name:
conventional long form: Independent State of Samoa
conventional short form: Samoa
local long form: Malo Sa'oloto Tuto'atasi o Samoa
local short form: Samoa
former: Western Samoa

Government type:
parliamentary democracy

Capital:
name: Apia
geographic coordinates: 13 50 S, 171 44 W
time difference: UTC-11 (6 hours behind Washington, DC during Standard Time)
+1hr, begins last Sunday in September; ends first Sunday in April

Administrative divisions:
11 districts; A'ana, Aiga-i-le-Tai, Atua, Fa'asaleleaga, Gaga'emauga, Gagaifomauga, Palauli, Satupa'itea, Tuamasaga, Va'a-o-Fonoti, Vaisigano

Independence:
1 January 1962 (from New Zealand-administered UN trusteeship)

National holiday:
Independence Day Celebration, 1 June (1962); note - 1 January 1962 is the date of independence from the New Zealand-administered UN trusteeship; it is observed in June

Constitution:
1 January 1962

Legal system:
based on English common law and local customs; judicial review of legislative acts with respect to fundamental rights of the citizen; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage:
21 years of age; universal

Executive branch:
chief of state: TUIATUA Tupua Tamasese Efi (since 20 June 2007)
head of government: Prime Minister Sailele Malielegaoi TUILA'EPA (since 1998); Deputy Prime Minister MISA Telefoni (since 2001)
cabinet: Cabinet consists of 12 members appointed by the chief of state on the prime minister's advice
(For more information visit the World Leaders website )
elections: chief of state elected by the Legislative Assembly to serve a five-year term (no term limits); election last held on 15 June 2007 (next to be held in 2012); following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party usually appointed prime minister by the chief of state with the approval of the Legislative Assembly
election results: TUIATUA Tupua Tamasese Efi unanimously elected by the Legislative Assembly

Legislative branch:
unicameral Legislative Assembly or Fono (49 seats, 47 members elected by voters affiliated with traditional village-based electoral districts, 2 elected by independent, mostly non-Samoan or part-Samoan, voters who cannot, (or choose not to) establish a village affiliation; only chiefs (matai) may stand for election to the Fono from the 47 village-based electorates; members serve five-year terms)
elections: election last held on 31 March 2006 (next election to be held not later than March 2011)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - HRPP 35, SDUP 10, independents 4

Judicial branch:
Court of Appeal; Supreme Court; District Court; Land and Titles Court

Political parties and leaders:
Human Rights Protection Party or HRPP [Sailele Malielegaoi TUILA'EPA]; Samoa Christian Party or TCP [Tuala Tiresa MALIETOA]; Samoa Democratic United Party or SDUP [LE MAMEA Ropati]; Samoa Party or SP [Su'a Rimoni Ah CHONG]; Samoa Progressive Political Party or SPPP [Toeolesulusulu SIUEVA]

Political pressure groups and leaders:
NA

International organization participation:
ACP, ADB, AOSIS, C, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IPU, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, OPCW, PIF, Sparteca, SPC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO (observer)

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Aliioaiga Feturi ELISAIA
chancery: 800 Second Avenue, Suite 400J, New York, NY 10017
telephone: [1] (212) 599-6196 through 6197
FAX: [1] (212) 599-0797
consulate(s) general: Pago Pago (American Samoa)

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: US Ambassador to New Zealand is accredited to Samoa
embassy: Accident Corporation Building, 5th Floor, Matafele, Apia
mailing address: P. O. Box 3430, Matafele, Apia
telephone: [685] 21436/21631/21452/22696
FAX: [685] 22030

Flag description:
red with a blue rectangle in the upper hoist-side quadrant bearing five white five-pointed stars representing the Southern Cross constellation; red stands for courage, blue represents freedom, and white signifies purity



Economy - overview:
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 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; 122,000 tourists visited the islands in 2007. In late September 2009, an earthquake and the resulting tsunami severely damaged Samoa, and nearby American Samoa, disrupting transportation and power generation, and resulting in about 200 deaths. 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.

GDP (purchasing power parity):
$1.025 billion (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 198
$1.033 billion (2008 est.)
$1.07 billion (2007 est.)
note: data are in 2009 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate):
$573.7 million (2009 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:
-0.8% (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 122
-3.4% (2008 est.)
6.1% (2007 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP):
$5,400 (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 138
$5,500 (2008 est.)
$5,700 (2007 est.)
note: data are in 2009 US dollars

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 11.6%
industry: 13.1%
services: 75.3% (2004 est.)

Labor force:
66,270 (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 185

Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture: NA%
industry: NA%
services: NA%

Unemployment rate:
NA%

Population below poverty line:
NA%

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%

Budget:
revenues: $171.3 million
expenditures: $78.1 million

Inflation rate (consumer prices):
6% (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 155

Commercial bank prime lending rate:
12.66% (31 December 2008)
country comparison to the world: 71
12.65% (31 December 2007)

Stock of money:
$60.13 million (31 December 2008)
country comparison to the world: 158
$69.97 million (31 December 2007)

Stock of quasi money:
$162.8 million (31 December 2008)
country comparison to the world: 152
$168.7 million (31 December 2007)

Stock of domestic credit:
$208.5 million (31 December 2008)
country comparison to the world: 130
$215.1 million (31 December 2007)

Market value of publicly traded shares:
$NA

Agriculture - products:
coconuts, bananas, taro, yams, coffee, cocoa

Industries:
food processing, building materials, auto parts

Industrial production growth rate:
2.8% (2000)
country comparison to the world: 49

Electricity - production:
109 million kWh (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 189

Electricity - consumption:
101.4 million kWh (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 191

Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2008 est.)

Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2008 est.)

Oil - production:
0 bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 134

Oil - consumption:
1,000 bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 195

Oil - exports:
0 bbl/day (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 176

Oil - imports:
1,105 bbl/day (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 188

Oil - proved reserves:
0 bbl (1 January 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 127

Natural gas - production:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 134

Natural gas - consumption:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 154

Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 132

Natural gas - imports:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 137

Natural gas - proved reserves:
0 cu m (1 January 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 137

Current account balance:
-$24 million (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 65

Exports:
$131 million (2006)
country comparison to the world: 186

Exports - commodities:
fish, coconut oil and cream, copra, taro, automotive parts, garments, beer

Exports - partners:
American Samoa 41.12%, Australia 24.74%, Taiwan 6.24%, China 5.61%, US 4.07% (2009)

Imports:
$324 million (2006)
country comparison to the world: 192

Imports - commodities:
machinery and equipment, industrial supplies, foodstuffs

Imports - partners:
NZ 24.13%, Fiji 17.34%, Singapore 12.54%, China 10.02%, Australia 9.85%, US 5.95% (2009)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$70.15 million (FY03/04)
country comparison to the world: 151

Debt - external:
$177 million (2004)
country comparison to the world: 174

Exchange rates:
tala (SAT) per US dollar - NA (2007), 2.7594 (2006), 2.7103 (2005), 2.7807 (2004), 2.9732 (2003)



Telephones - main lines in use:
28,800 (2008)
country comparison to the world: 179

Telephones - mobile cellular:
124,000 (2008)
country comparison to the world: 180

Telephone system:
general assessment: adequate
domestic: combined fixed-line and mobile-cellular teledensity roughly 70 telephones per 100 persons; coverage extended to roughly 95 percent of the country
international: country code - 685; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Pacific Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations:
AM 2, FM 5, shortwave 0 (2004)

Television broadcast stations:
2 (2002)

Internet country code:
.ws

Internet hosts:
13,985 (2009)
country comparison to the world: 112

Internet users:
9,000 (2008)
country comparison to the world: 200



Airports:
4 (2009)
country comparison to the world: 185

Airports - with paved runways:
total: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
under 914 m: 1 (2009)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 2
under 914 m: 2 (2009)

Roadways:
total: 2,337 km
country comparison to the world: 170
paved: 332 km
unpaved: 2,005 km (2001)

Merchant marine:
total: 1
country comparison to the world: 151
by type: cargo 1
foreign-owned: 1 (Cyprus 1) (2008)

Ports and terminals:
Apia



Military branches:
no regular military forces; Samoa Police Force (2008)

Manpower available for military service:
males age 16-49: 47,423 (2010 est.)

Manpower fit for military service:
males age 16-49: 37,674
females age 16-49: 37,492 (2010 est.)

Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:
male: 2,219
female: 2,058 (2010 est.)

Military expenditures:
NA

Military - note:
Samoa has no formal defense structure or regular armed forces; informal defense ties exist with NZ, which is required to consider any Samoan request for assistance under the 1962 Treaty of Friendship



Disputes - international:
none

 

Information from the CIA's "The World Fact Book" 2010

 

 

 

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