Samoa is located east of the international dateline and south of the equator, about halfway between Hawaii and New Zealand in the Polynesian region of the South Pacific. Samoa is an archipelago of nine islands at the centre of south-west Pacific island groups. The name Samoa, from 'Sa' (sacred) and 'Moa' (centre) means 'Sacred Centre of the Universe'.
Agriculture employs two-thirds of the labour force, and furnishes 90% of exports, featuring coconut cream, coconut oil, noni, and copra, while tourism is also a growing industry.
At the turn of the 20th century, the Samoan islands were split into two sections. The eastern group became territories of the United States, today are known as American Samoa, while the western islands became known as German Samoa, then Western Samoa after passing to New Zealand in 1914. On 1 January 1962 Western Samoa became independent. Samoa became a full member of the Commonwealth in 1970, and made their Commonwealth Games debut in 1974. They have attended eight events, winning 11 medals.
At the 2002 games in Manchester, Ofisa Ofisa won a silver medal in the Men’s Weightlifting 85kg Clean and Jerk. This medal accounts for one of Samoa’s three silver medals in Commonwealth Games competition.
View the final list of medallists from Samoa at Melbourne 2006
See highlights and photos from the Queen's Baton Relay in Samoa