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American Samoa

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Oceania : Polynesia : American Samoa
Flag
Image:aq-flag.png
Quick Facts
CapitalPago Pago
GovernmentNA
CurrencyUS dollar (USD)
Areatotal: 199 sq km
note: includes Rose Island and Swains Island
water: 0 sq km
land: 199 sq km
Population68,688 (July 2002 est.)
LanguageSamoan (closely related to Hawaiian and other Polynesian languages), English
note: most people are bilingual
ReligionChristian Congregationalist 50%, Roman Catholic 20%, Protestant and other 30%

American Samoa is a group of islands in the South Pacific Ocean that lie about half way between Hawaii and New Zealand and about 100km east of the island country of Samoa, which is part of the same archipelago.

American Samoa is an unincorporated territory of the United States of America. In practical terms, this means very little. The citizens of American Samoa are US "nationals" and not US "citizens," but they are allowed to travel freely between the American Samoa and the US Mainland. They are not required to obtain greencards or visas to stay or work in the United States, and they are allowed to serve (and often do serve) in the US armed forces. There are some ways that American Samoa's special status as an unincorporated territory have interesting legal consequences. The US Constitution is not necessarily the supreme law of the land in American Samoa, and Samoan cultural norms -- in particular, those related to the ownership of property and public displays of religion -- actually trump certain well-settled constitutional rights in American Samoa.

american samoa Travel Guide :

American Samoa

Regions

Map of American SamoaMap of American Samoa
Map of American Samoa
  • TutuilaTutuila - The main island.
  • OfuOfu
  • OlosegaOlosega
  • Ta'uTa'u
  • Rose IslandRose Island
  • Swains IslandSwains Island
Administrative divisions 
none (territory of the US); there are no first-order administrative divisions as defined by the US Government, but there are three districts and two islands* at the second order; Eastern, Manu'a, Western
American Samoa

Cities

Pago PagoPago Pago (pronounced "Pango Pango") - capital city

Ports and harbors 
Aunu'u (new construction), Auasi, Faleosao, Ofu, Ta'u
American Samoa

Other destinations

American Samoa

Understand

Population 
68,688 (July 2002 est.)

The islands are frequently referred to as Samoa, which is the name of a separate island, and independent country, that used to be known as Western Samoa, that lies about 100km west of American Samoa. Also the whole island group, including Samoa, are often identified as the Samoan islands.

Settled as early as 1000 B. C. by Polynesian navigators, Samoa was discovered by European explorers in the 18th century. International rivalries in the latter half of the 19th century were settled by an 1899 treaty in which Germany and the US divided the Samoan archipelago. The US formally occupied its portion - a smaller group of eastern islands with the excellent harbor of Pago Pago - the following year.

US occupation of the islands came in 1900, following an agreement with Germany, which kept control of what is now Samoa. (Samoa subsequently fell under New Zealand control after WWI before becoming independent.)

National holiday 
Flag Day, 17 April (1900)
Nationality 
noun: American Samoan(s)
adjective: American Samoan
Ethnic groups 
Samoan (Polynesian) 89%, Caucasian 2%, Tongan 4%, other 5%
Religions 
Christian Congregationalist 50%, Roman Catholic 20%, Protestant and other 30%
Country name 
conventional long form: Territory of American Samoa
conventional short form: American Samoa
abbreviation: AS
Dependency status 
unincorporated and unorganized territory of the US; administered by the Office of Insular Affairs, US Department of the Interior
American Samoa

Electricity

Officially 120V 60Hz, which is identical to the U.S. and Canadian standard. Outlets are North American NEMA 5-15 grounded outlets, identical to standard U.S. and Canadian wall outlets. Occasionally non-grounded NEMA 1-15 outlets may be found. Non-grounded outlets do not accept the third, round pin present on grounded plugs. Adapters are available to allow equipment with grounded (three-pin) plugs to plug into non-grounded outlets while avoiding the otherwise necessary step of cutting the grounding pin off of the plug.

Additionally, U.S. and Canadian outlets are polarized. Polarized means that one of the two vertical blades is taller/wider than the other. This is a safety feature which restricts a non-grounded plug from being inserted into an outlet "upside down". Older North American outlets found in much of Central and South America, the Caribbean and other areas may not be polarized. As such, polarized plugs may not fit into non-polarized outlets. To remedy this, the wider vertical blade on a polarized plug may be filed down to match the width of the other. Otherwise, adapters are available which accept a polarized plug and adapt it for use with a non-polarized outlet.

American Samoa

Geography

Geographic coordinates 
14 20 S, 170 00 W
Area 
total land: 199 sq km
note: includes Rose Island and Swains Island
Coastline 
116 km
Maritime claims 
exclusive economic zone: 200 NM
territorial sea: 12 NM
Climate 
tropical marine, moderated by southeast trade winds; annual rainfall averages about 3 m; rainy season from November to April, dry season from May to October; little seasonal temperature variation
Terrain 
five volcanic islands with rugged peaks and limited coastal plains, two coral atolls (Rose Island, Swains Island)
Highest point 
Lata 966 m
Natural resources 
pumice, pumicite
Land use 
arable land: 5%
permanent crops: 10%
other: 85% (1998 est.)
Natural hazards 
Tropical cyclones (typhoons/hurricanes) common from December to March
Environment - current issues 
limited natural fresh water resources; the water division of the government has spent substantial funds in the past few years to improve water catchments and pipelines
Geography - note 
Pago Pago has one of the best natural deepwater harbors in the South Pacific Ocean, sheltered by shape from rough seas and protected by peripheral mountains from high winds; strategic location in the South Pacific Ocean
American Samoa

Get in

American Samoa

By plane

American Samoa

Transportation

Airports 
4 (2001)
Airports - with paved runways 
total: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
under 914 m: 1 (2002)
Airports - with unpaved runways 
total: 1
under 914 m: 1 (2002)
American Samoa

By boat

American Samoa

Get around

American Samoa

By car

Highways 
total: 350 km
paved: 150 km
unpaved: 200 km
American Samoa

By bus

American Samoa

Talk

  • The native language is Samoan, a Polynesian language related to Hawaiian and other Pacific island languages.
  • English is widely spoken, and most people can at least understand it. Most people are bilingual to some degree.
American Samoa

Buy

American Samoa

Economy

Economy - overview 
This is a traditional Polynesian economy in which more than 90% of the land is communally owned. Economic activity is strongly linked to the US, with which American Samoa conducts most of its foreign trade. Tuna fishing and tuna processing plants are the backbone of the private sector, with canned tuna the primary export. Transfers from the US Government add substantially to American Samoa's economic well-being. Attempts by the government to develop a larger and broader economy are restrained by Samoa's remote location, its limited transportation, and its devastating hurricanes. Tourism, a developing sector, has been held back by the recurring financial difficulties in East Asia.
GDP 
purchasing power parity - $500 million (2000 est.)
GDP - per capita 
purchasing power parity - $8,000 (2000 est.)
Labor force 
14,000 (1996)
Labor force - by occupation 
government 33%, tuna canneries 34%, other 33% (1990) (1990)
Unemployment rate 
6% (2000)
Budget 
revenues: $121 million (37% in local revenue and 63% in US grants)
expenditures: $127 million, including capital expenditures of $NA (FY96/97)
Industries 
tuna canneries (largely supplied by foreign fishing vessels), handicrafts
Electricity - production 
130 million kWh (2000)
Electricity - production by source 
fossil fuel: 100% (2000)
Electricity - consumption 
120.9 million kWh (2000)
Agriculture - products 
bananas, coconuts, vegetables, taro, breadfruit, yams, copra, pineapples, papayas; dairy products, livestock
Exports 
$345 million (1999)
Exports - commodities 
canned tuna 93%
Exports - partners 
US 99.6%
Imports 
$452 million (1999)
Imports - commodities 
materials for canneries 56%, food 8%, petroleum products 7%, machinery and parts 6%
Imports - partners 
US 62%, Australia 11%, Japan 9%, NZ 7%, Fiji 4%, other 7%
Economic aid - recipient 
important financial support from the US, more than $40 million in 1994
Currency 
US dollar (USD)
Currency code 
USD
Exchange rates 
the US dollar is used
Fiscal year 
1 October - 30 September
American Samoa

Eat

American Samoa

Drink

American Samoa

Sleep

American Samoa

Learn

American Samoa

Work

American Samoa

Stay safe

American Samoa

Stay healthy

American Samoa

Respect

American Samoa

Contact

American Samoa

Telecommunications

Telephones - main lines in use 
13,000 (1997)
Telephones - mobile cellular 
2,550 (1997)
Telephone system 
general assessment: NA
domestic: good telex, telegraph, facsimile and cellular telephone services; domestic satellite system with 1 Comsat earth station
international: satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Pacific Ocean)
Radio broadcast stations 
AM 1, FM 1, shortwave 0 (1998)
Radios 
57,000 (1997)
Television broadcast stations 
1 (1997)
Televisions 
14,000 (1997)
Internet country code 
.as
Internet Service Providers (ISPs) 
1 (2000)
American Samoa

Get out

American Samoa

External links



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