Samoa Economics and Business

The economy of Samoa is a small, upper-middle-income economy with a nominal GDP of US$1.2 billion as of 2020. It is an emerging economy that has seen steady growth over the past few decades, fueled by reforms to create a more open and business-friendly environment. Samoa’s main economic sectors are tourism, manufacturing, financial services and agriculture.

Tourism accounts for around 20% to GDP and employs around 10% of the workforce; it is mainly concentrated on cruise ship visits as well as ecotourism activities in national parks such as Papase’ea Sliding Rocks National Park. Manufacturing accounts for around 8% to GDP and employs around 4% of the workforce; it includes food processing, furniture manufacturing and construction materials manufacturing. Financial services account for around 7% to GDP and employ around 4% of the workforce; it includes banking services (5%) & insurance (2%). Agriculture accounts for around 5% to GDP and employs over 8% of the workforce; it is mainly concentrated on taro production as well as fishing & livestock farming.

According to cheeroutdoor, Samoa has undertaken several reforms to attract foreign investment into key industries such as technology, tourism, agribusiness and financial services; these include tax incentives provided by the government to foreign investors as well as improved infrastructure to facilitate transportation between major cities in Samoa. In addition, Samoa has also opened up its markets by joining several global trade agreements such as PACER Plus since 2018.


Agriculture, mainly cultivation and processing of coconuts, has largely determined the development of business. Often tropical storms have destroyed harvests and infrastructure and led to a sharp decline in exports. Fluctuating prices in the world market for copra and cocoa have also created problems. The government of Samoa seeks foreign investment, mainly for export-oriented industry and tourism. Agriculture accounts for 2/3 of employment, and self-sufficiency is still common. For domestic consumption, breads, jams, corn and tropical fruits are mainly grown. The important barley crops are coconuts, cocoa, taro, bananas and coffee. During the late 1990s, the fishing industry expanded significantly and accounts for an important part of export revenues.

Samoa GDP (Nominal, $USD) 2003-2017

  • COUNTRYAAH: Find major trading partners of Samoa, including major exports and major imports with latest trade value and market share as well as growth rate.

In 1995, a Japanese-owned factory was opened for the production of car parts in Samoa. This is the most dominant industrial workplace in the country. Most other industries are small and produce products from coconuts, wood, leather and tobacco as well as simple metal products, building materials and food. Complementing traditional exports of agricultural products and timber are textile products and steel wire, which are manufactured exclusively for export.

Note: the capital city of Samoa is Apia with a population of 37,391 (2016 census).

The most important trading partners are New Zealand, Australia and the United Kingdom. The constant current account deficit is partially offset by Samoan guest workers’ home-sent money and income from growing tourism. Abbreviated as ASM by, Samoa has also received assistance from a number of countries, primarily Japan and the United States. The capital Apia has the largest port and the international airport. During the 00s, tourism has increased and now it brings in more income than commodity exports.

Samoa Economics and Business

Upolu is economically the most important of the group: in size it follows Savaii, having 1113 sq km. of surface. The volcanism in Upolu appears less recent, with less clear-cut forms, and no more influence on the vegetation: however, the Tafua, at the western end, still dominates with its 650 m crater. approximately, while Le Pue, 1000 m high, in the center of the island, has no apparent trace of volcanism.

Its northern slopes are the most beautiful and fertile part of the island, and dominate the only real city, Apia. Note the lake in the Lanutoò crater, and the coastal lagoons, which abound. Upolu is truly one of the most beautiful of the many beautiful islands in the Pacific, and one of the most populated.

A SE. of Upolu is Tutuila, smaller (140 sq. km.), but of great importance for the port of Pago Pago, excellent in every respect. The island is a large lava plateau, and the port cuts deeply into its southern coast, penetrating first in the N. direction and then bending at right angles to the W. elevated hills make it one of the few ports in Oceania safe from cyclones and storms. Remains of ruined craters are at the Samoa end of the island, in addition to the islet of Anuu, taken; or the eastern tip, an almost intact crater of about 600 m. in diameter.

Far towards E. are the Manua islets, of which the main one is Taû, circular, with a diameter of about 5 km., With a 1 km crater in the center. in diameter, 800 m high: on the beach it is inhabited. Also noteworthy are Ofu and Olosega, two craters, of which Ofu to the West almost intact, cultivated on the internal side, and Olosega to E. ruined, used on the eastern external side for plantations: between the two volcanoes, remains of a third, reduced to two rocks that emerge from the sea and almost unite to form a single island, aided by the very active corals in the narrow arm of the sea. Between Olosega and Taû is an underwater volcano which last awakened in 1866.

Last towards E., the Rose Islands, unimportant, perhaps the remains of a ruined and semi-submerged crater, with coral superstructures.

The population of the islands under mandate was as of December 31, 1930: Europeans and mestizos 1815, indigenous 41,668, Chinese 915, others 137 (total 44,535, on an area of ​​2933 sq km).

The American part, on 155 sq. Km., Counted 8763 residents in 1926.

In Savaii and Upolu there are government and missionary schools, with over 11,000 pupils. A very powerful radio station was built in Apia, while the Americans in Pago Pago already had another very powerful one in operation. Good roads exist in Savaii and Upolu (about one hundred sq. Km.) And in Tutuila (about 500 km.). The steamers of the San Francisco-Sidney line of Oceanis s / s Co. make a stop at Pago Pago, while from Apia there is a regular line for New Zealand and Fiji.

The imports were in 1930, in the mandate area, of Lg. 275,355, exports 284,515; the former mainly from New Zealand (Lg. 81,388) and Australia (58,653), the latter to the United States (108,850), mainly copra, and secondly cocoa fruit and bananas.


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