If you've searched the net for private health insurance that covers expats in Samoa then you are most likely for looking for established UK based health insurance companies that will cover your medical costs in Samoa.
Living as an expatriate in Samoa you want to avoid any nasty unexpected health care costs. In some countries these can amount to hundreds of thousands of pounds for serious medical conditions.
Our advice when looking for health insurance that covers expatriates living in Samoa is to speak to a health insurance broker. Health insurance is incredibly complicated and if you want complete certainty that Samoa is covered you should consult with a broker who can explain which policy providers will cover medical costs for expatriates in Samoa and which will exclude it.
There are many advantages to using a broker but the largest by far is that you're using their insurance training at no cost. They are paid by the insurer (Aviva or Bupa etc) rather than by you so it costs you no extra to use their services.
- Do you live in many different postcodes? Some will give you a cheaper premium than offers. A broker will be able to advise whats best.
- Do you have a hobby that may invalidate your insurance policy? A broker will know this critical information.
- If you are a couple and one of you has claimed on your policy this year would it be cheaper to separate you both onto two different policies?
- You've lean't you're at risk of developing a certain medical condition and want to know which policy provider offers the biggest amount of cover for it. A broker will know this instantly saving you so much time and effort.
You can call around every medical insurance provider on the market and ask if they provider cover for expats in Samoa, however this will be a very time consuming process. Each insurer will ask for your medical history because its not normally a simple yes or not if a medical condition is covered or not.
Its far far quicker to speak to one medical insurance broker which will know which providers on the market offer cover for expats in Samoa and under what conditions they do or don't cover it.
The economy of Samoa is dependent on agricultural exports, development aid and private financing from overseas. The country is vulnerable to devastating storms. Agriculture employs two-thirds of the labor force, and furnishes 9% of exports, featuring coconut cream, coconut oil and copra. Outside a large automotive wire harness factory, the manufacturing sector mainly processes agricultural products. Tourism is an expanding sector; more than 70,000 tourists visited the islands in 1996 and 120,000 in 2014. The Samoan Government has called for[when?] deregulation of the financial sector, encouragement of investment, and continued fiscal discipline. Observers point to the flexibility of the labor market as a basic strength factor for future economic advances.
New Zealand is Samoa's principal trading partner, typically providing between 35% and 40% of imports and purchasing 45%–50% of exports. Australia, American Samoa, the United States, and Fiji are also important trading partners. Its main imports are food and beverages, industrial supplies, and fuels. The primary sector (agriculture, forestry, and fishing) employs nearly two-thirds of the labor force and produces 17% of GDP. Samoa's principal exports are coconut products and fish.
Fishing has had some success in Samoan waters, but the biggest fisheries industry (headed by Van Camp and StarKist) has been based in American Samoa. StarKist Management announced that it was going ahead with setting up at Asau a blast-freezer project to be operational by 2002. This announcement dispelled a growing suspicion about the genuine motives of StarKist to move to Samoa. The proposed blast-freezer operations in Asau were expected to bring this village back to life.
Samoa annually receives important financial assistance from abroad. More than 100,000 Samoans who live overseas provide two sources of revenue. Their direct remittances have amounted to $12.1 million per year recently, and they account for more than half of all tourist visits. In addition to the expatriate community, Samoa also receives roughly $28 million annually in official development assistance from sources led by China, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand. These three sources of revenue—tourism, private transfers, and official transfers—allow Samoa to cover its persistently large trade deficit.
In the late 1960s, Potlatch Forests, Inc. (a US company), upgraded the harbour and airport at Asau on the northern coast of Savai'i and established a timber operation, Samoa Forest Products, for harvesting tropical hardwoods. Potlatch invested about US$2,500,000 in a state-of-the-art sawmill and another US$6,000,000 over several years to develop power, water, and haul roads for their facility. Asau, with the Potlatch sawmillers and Samoa Forest Products, was one of the busiest parts of Savai'i in the 1960s and 1970s; however, the departure of Potlatch and the scaling down of the sawmill has left Asau a ghost town in recent years.
Until 2017 industry accounted for over one-quarter of GDP while employing less than 6% of the work force. The largest industrial venture was Yazaki Samoa, a Japanese-owned company processing automotive wire harnesses for export to Australia under a concessional market-access arrangement. The Yazaki plant employed more than 2,000 workers and made up over 20% of the manufacturing sector's total output. Net receipts amounted to between $1.5 million and $3.03 million annually, although shipments from Yazaki was counted as services (export processing) and therefore did not officially appear as merchandise exports. Yazaki Samoa closed down in 2017, but in the same year Fero, a New Zealand manufacturer producing wiring units, set up in Samoa in the same plant used by Yazaki.
The effects of three natural disasters in the early 1990s were overcome by the middle of the decade, but economic growth cooled again with the regional economic downturn. Long-run development depends upon upgrading the tourist infrastructure, attracting foreign investment, and further diversification of the economy.
Two major cyclones hit Samoa at the beginning of the 1990s. Cyclone Ofa left an estimated 10,000 islanders homeless in February 1990; Cyclone Val caused 13 deaths and hundreds of millions of dollars in damage in December 1991. As a result, gross domestic product declined by nearly 50% from 1989 to 1991. These experiences and Samoa's position as a low-lying island state punctuate its concern about global climate change.
Further economic problems occurred in 1994 with an outbreak of taro leaf blight and the near collapse of the national airline Polynesian Airlines. Taro, a root crop, traditionally was Samoa's largest export, generating more than half of all export revenue in 1993. But a fungal blight decimated the plants, and in each year since 1994 taro exports have accounted for less than 1% of export revenue. Polynesian Airlines reached a financial crisis in 1994, which disrupted the tourist industry and eventually required a government bailout.