American Samoa: Economy#

American Samoa has a traditional Polynesian economy in which more than 90% of the land is communally owned. Economic activity is strongly linked to the US with which American Samoa conducts most of its commerce. Tuna fishing and tuna processing plants are the backbone of the private sector with canned tuna the primary export. The two tuna canneries accounted for 13.1% of employment in 2013.

In late September 2009, an earthquake and the resulting tsunami devastated American Samoa and nearby Samoa, disrupting transportation and power generation, and resulting in about 200 deaths. The US Federal Emergency Management Agency oversaw a relief program of nearly $25 million. Transfers from the US Government add substantially to American Samoa's economic well-being.

Attempts by the government to develop a larger and broader economy are restrained by Samoa's remote location, its limited transportation, and its devastating hurricanes. Tourism is a promising developing sector. In 2015, a new fish processing company completed refurbishing the processing facilities left behind by one of the two canneries that closed in 2009 and opened a new cannery. With two operating canneries once again, fish processing and exports will rise in the coming years.

Economic Facts#

GDP (purchasing power parity)$711 million (2013 est.)
$718 million (2012 est.)
$647 million (2012 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)$748.6 million (2005)
GDP - real growth rate-2.4% (2013 est.)
-2.7% (2012 est.)
0.6% (2012 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$13,000 (2013 est.)
$13,100 (2012 est.)
$11,700 (2011 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 54.6%
government consumption: 52.8%
investment in fixed capital: 2.7%
investment in inventories: 2.3%
exports of goods and services: 54.4%
imports of goods and services: -66.8% (2013)
GDP - composition, by sector of originagriculture: 27.4%
industry: 12.4%
services: 60.2% (2012)
Agriculture - productsbananas, coconuts, vegetables, taro, breadfruit, yams, copra, pineapples, papayas; dairy products, livestock
Industriestuna canneries (largely supplied by foreign fishing vessels), handicrafts
Industrial production growth rateNA%
Labor force16,090 (2013)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: NA
industry: 13.1%
services: 86.9% (2013)
Unemployment rate29.8% (2005)
Population below poverty lineNA%
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Budgetrevenues: $241.2 million
expenditures: $243.7 million (2013 est.)
Taxes and other revenues32.2% of GDP (2013 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-0.3% of GDP (2013 est.)
Fiscal year1 October - 30 September
Inflation rate (consumer prices)2.1% (2013)
3.5% (2012)
Exports$459 million (2013 est.)
$489 million (2012)
Exports - commoditiescanned tuna 93%
Exports - partnersUS 100%
Imports$564 million (2013 est.)
$508 million (2012)
Imports - commoditiesraw materials for canneries, food, petroleum products, machinery and parts
Debt - external$NA
Exchange ratesthe US dollar is used