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Nationality: Noun and adjective--Samoan.
Population (July 2003 est.): 178,173. Age structure--29.4% under 15; 6.1% over 65.
Growth rate: -0.27% (mainly due to emigration).
Ethnic groups: Samoan 92.6%, Euronesian (mixed European and Polynesian) 7%, European 0.4%.
Religion: Christian 99.7%.
Languages: Samoan, English.
Health: Life expectancy--male 67.35 yrs.; female 73 yrs. Infant mortality rate--29.73/1,000.
Work force: Agriculture--64%; services--30%.
People of Samoa
Samoa consists of the two large islands of Upolu and Savai'i and seven small islets located about halfway between Hawaii and New Zealand in the Polynesian region of the South Pacific. The main island of Upolu is home to nearly three-quarters of Samoa's population and its capital city of Apia. The climate is tropical, with a rainy season from November to April.
The Fa'a Samoa, or traditional Samoan way, remains a strong force in Samoan life and politics. Despite centuries of European influence, Samoa maintains its historical customs, social systems, and language, which is believed to be the oldest form of Polynesian speech still in existence. Only the Maoris of New Zealand outnumber the Samoans among Polynesian groups.