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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.


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Geography

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 World Ranking: 178
Total 2,831 sq km
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
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 Mount Silisili 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
Volcanism
Savai'I Island (elev. 1,858 m), which last erupted in 1911, is historically active

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


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  Samoa (Apia):


  GPS points from Samoa (Apia)

Sapapalii Samoa (general)

Ojolava Samoa (general)

Aiga-i-le-tai Aiga-i-le-tai

Cape Faleula Samoa (general)

Lona Samoa (general)

Nallutatu Samoa (general)

Falevao Samoa (general)

Itu I Toga Samoa (general)




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