OFFICIAL NAME: American Samoa
CAPITAL: Pago Pago
SYSTEM OF GOVERNMENT: Unorganized and Unincorporated US Territory
AREA: 199 Sq Km (77 Sq Mi)
ESTIMATED 2000 POPULATION 53,000
LOCATION AND GEOGRAPHY: American Samoa is a small group of
five volcanic islands and two coral atolls located in the
South Pacific Ocean about 3,700 km (2,298 mi) southwest
of Honolulu and 2,575 km (2,220 mi) northeast of New Zealand.
The principal island is Tutuila while the other islands
are the Aunu'u, Tau, Ofu, Olosega, Swains island and the
small isolated atoll of Rose Island.
CLIMATE: American Samoa has a tropical maritime climate moderated
by the SE trade winds. The rainy season is from November to April and the
dry season is from May to October with little seasonal temperature variation.
PEOPLE: The principal ethnic majority are the Samoans who are
Polynesians and ethnically the same as those located in Western Samoa,
speaking the same language.
RELIGIONS: Mostly Christians with more than half the islanders
members of the Congregational Church while 19% of the population are Roman
LANGUAGES: The official languages are Samoan and English with
the majority of the population bilingual. The Samoan language is closely
related to Hawaiian and other Polynesian languages.
MODERN HISTORY - WWII TO 1990: American Samoa remains an unincorporated
territory of the US and its people are US nationals, but not citizens.
The 1960 constitution, which combines traditional practices with the needs
of a modern state, gives the American Samoans self government with certain
powers reserved to the US Secretary of the Interior. A revised constitution
was drawn up in 1986 which still excludes commoners and women from voting,
but this has yet to be ratified by the US congress.
CURRENCY: The official currency is the US Dollar divided into
MAIN TRADING PARTNERS: Its main trading partners are the US,
other Pacific Islands as well as Australia, New Zealand and Japan.
MAIN PRIMARY PRODUCTS: Bananas, Fish, Taro, Vegetables.
MAJOR INDUSTRIES: Aluminum Recycling, Drink Bottling, Electrical
and Automotive Workshops, Fish Processing and Canning, Handicrafts, Shipping
MAIN EXPORTS: Bananas, Handicrafts, Pet Food.