Districts of Samoa

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Samoa has decided to move across the International Date Line. What that means in practice is simply that it will skip a day. The date to be skipped is 2011-12-30. This changes its standard time from UTC-11 to UTC+13. Samoa is expected to continue to observe daylight saving time.

Samoa originally announced that it would adopt daylight saving time on a trial basis from 2009-10-04 to 2010-03-28. The country was struck by an earthquake and tsunami shortly before the implementation date, and apparently remained on standard time. It proceeded to adopt DST from 2010-09-26 to 2011-04-03.

ISO 3166-1 Newsletter V-1 was issued on 1998-02-05. The official name of Samoa had been "Independent State of Western Samoa"; this newsletter dropped the word "Western" from that phrase. The short name was left unchanged, "Samoa".

Country overview: 

Short nameSAMOA
ISO codeWS
LanguageSamoan (sm), English (en)
Time zone+13~


By 1900, the islands of Samoa had recently been divided between Germany and the United States. The line between them fell at about 171° W., with Germany getting the islands to the west. German Samoa was occupied by New Zealand and Britain on 1914-08-29, and mandated to New Zealand by the League of Nations in 1920. The mandate was converted to a United Nations trusteeship in 1946. It voted for independence, which was granted on 1962-01-01. Although the ISO standard gives Samoa as the short name, the country is still generally called Western Samoa to distinguish it from American Samoa.

Other names of country: 

  1. Danish: Samoa, Den uafhængige stat Samoa (formal), Vest-Samoa (obsolete)
  2. Dutch: Samoa, Onafhankelijke Staat Samoa (formal), West Samoa (obsolete)
  3. English: Independent State of Samoa (formal), Western Samoa (obsolete)
  4. Finnish: Samoa, Länsi-Samoa
  5. French: Samoa, Samoa fp occidentales (obsolete)
  6. German: Samoa, Westsamoa n (obsolete)
  7. Icelandic: Samóa, Vestur-Samóa (obsolete)
  8. Italian: Samoa, Samoa fp Occidentali (formal)
  9. Norwegian: Samoa, Vest-Samoa (obsolete)
  10. Portuguese: Samoa, Estado m Independente da Samoa f (formal), Samoa f Ocidental (obsolete)
  11. Samoan: Malotuto'atasi o Samoa i Sisifo (formal)
  12. Russian: Западное Самоа (obsolete), Независимое Государство Самоа (formal)
  13. Spanish: Samoa, Estado m Independiente de Samoa (formal), Samoa Occidental (obsolete)
  14. Swedish: Samoa, Västsamoa (obsolete)
  15. Turkish: Batı Samoa (obsolete), Samoa Bağımsız Devleti (formal)

Origin of name: 

may be from a chief's name, or may mean "place of the moa"

Primary subdivisions: 

Samoa is divided into eleven districts.

Gaga`emaugaWS.GEWS057,4876,00022386Sale'aulaSavai`i, Upolu
PalauliWS.PAWS089,0828,000523202Vailoa i PalauliSavai`i
11 districts180,741132,0002,8321,094
  • HASC: Hierarchical administrative subdivision codes. If periods are replaced by hyphens,
    these are the same as the district codes from ISO standard 3166-2.
  • FIPS: Codes from FIPS PUB 10-4.
  • Pop-2006: 2006-11-06 census.
  • Pop-1966: 1966-11-21 census (rounded).
  • Capitals: Main village.
  • Island: Which of the main islands contains each district.

Further subdivisions:

The districts are subdivided into 43 faipule districts.

Territorial extent: 

  1. A`ana district has an exclave on the coast of Upolu, surrounded on three sides by Aiga-i-le-Tai.
  2. Aiga-i-le-Tai district contains the small islands of Apolima and Manono.
  3. Atua district contains the uninhabited islands of Namu`a, Nu`utele, and Nu`ulua.
  4. Gaga`emauga district, which lies primarily on Savai`i island, has two exclaves on Upolu. One is on the north shore and is surrounded by Tuamasaga; the other on the south shore, between Tuamasaga and A`ana.
  5. Palauli and Satupa`itea each consist of two separate sections with part of the other in between.
  6. The country's capital, Apia, is in Tuamasaga district.


  1. [1] Samoa Bureau of Statistics  (retrieved 2009-04-22).

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