Samoa is a Polynesian island nation located in the South Pacific Ocean with a population of around 196,000 people. The economy of Samoa is largely dependent on agriculture and manufacturing, with its GDP per capita estimated at US$3,500 in 2017. In terms of foreign relations, Samoa has strong ties to other countries in the region as well as other countries around the world. It is also a member of the United Nations, Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) and African Union (AU). In terms of politics, Samoa has a parliamentary democracy which includes two major parties: Human Rights Protection Party (HRPP) and Tautua Samoa Party (TSP). The Parliament consists of 49 members who are elected by popular vote every five years. In 2017, HRPP won majority in parliamentary elections under Prime Minister Tuilaepa Aiono Sailele Malielegaoi. See militarynous for Samoa military and defense.
Samoa. According to Countryaah.com, Samoa and eleven other Pacific Island nations signed a historic trade agreement with Australia and New Zealand in April. It was concluded after eight years of negotiations aimed at reducing barriers to trade, increasing tourism and raising the standard of living in the region. The agreement applies to goods, services and investments, but also includes development assistance to create jobs and promote island exports. See ABBREVIATIONFINDER for frequently used acronyms and abbreviations related to as well as country profile of Samoa.
In July, Samoa’s parliament unanimously elected Tuimaleali’ifano Va’aletoa Sualauvi as new head of state, or king, for the next five years. Tuimaleali’ifano is a lawyer, holds a chief title and is one of the country’s most experienced politicians.
The UN Working Group on Discrimination against Women visited Samoa in August to follow up reports of increasing violence against women in the country. In a survey, 46% of women responded that they had been abused in some way by their partner, and 60% said that they had been physically abused by someone other than the partner. The investigation into violence against women has been initiated by Samoa’s Ombudsman.