POLYNESIA: Comprising the islands of central and southern Pacific Ocean including French Polynesia, Cook Islands, Niue, Tonga, American Samoa, Tokelau, Wallis and Futuna, Tuvalu, Samoa, Hawaii.
PACIFIC ISLAND JOBS (PIJ) is a portal for jobs in the Pacific, Australia and New Zealand. The following section provides useful information and links for people who want to work, study, visit or live in Polynesia. Links to jobs in French Polynesia, jobs in the Cook Islands, jobs in Niue, jobs in Tonga, jobs in American Samoa, jobs in Tokelau, jobs in Wallis and Futuna, jobs in Tuvalu, jobs in Samoa and jobs in Hawaii are also provided.
- French Polynesia -
French Polynesia is made up of several groups of rugged high islands and low islands – the Austral Islands, Bass Islands, Gambier Islands, Marquesas Islands, Society Islands (including Tahiti) and the Tuamotu Archipelago. The largest and most populated of these islands is Tahiti. In 1957, the islands of Tahiti were reconstituted as the overseas French territory called French Polynesia. Since 1984, a statue of autonomy was implemented and, in 1998, French Polynesia became an overseas country with greater self-governing powers through their own Assembly and President.
Quick Facts: ▪ Capital: Papeete ▪ Government: Overseas Territory of France ▪ Population: 245,516 ▪ Official Languages: French, Polynesian ▪ Industries: Tourism, pearls, agriculture ▪ Currency: Pacific Franc ▪ Climate: Tropical, rainy season October to March ▪ Environmental Issues: Pollution, reef degradation, development.
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- The Cook Islands -
The Cook Islands consist of 15 islands, with the bulk of the population inhabiting the Southern Cook islands - eight elevated, fertile, volcanic isles. The northern Cook Islands are made up of seven low-lying, sparsely populated, coral atolls. Vegetation varies from montane rainforest on Rarotonga through lowland limestone forest on Mauke to beach forest on atoll islands and reef islets in the Northern group islands. In the 1970’s the Cook Islands were granted self-governance in free association with New Zealand, which entitles the country to annual aid essential to the maintenance of the economy and NZ citizenship, in return for democratic government.
Quick Facts: ▪ Capital: Avarua ▪ Government: Self-governing with free association with NZ. Head of State; Queen Elizabeth II ▪ Population: 19,000+ ▪ Official Language: Cook Island Maori (dialects vary from island to island) and English ▪ Key Industries: Tourism, agriculture (citrus fruit, copra), fishing ▪ Currency: New Zealand Dollar (NZ $) and own currency only in circulation within the country ▪ Climate: Tropical, dry season April to November, more humid season December to March ▪ Environmental Issues: Waste disposal, land clearance, over fishing, introduced species.
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- Niue -
Niue is a 269 km² raised coral atoll.The oval shaped island has steep limestone cliffs along the coast with a central plateau rising to about 60 metres above sea level. Niue has 14 villages, linked by a 76km ring road. With its small population base and proximity to schools, Niue has almost a 100% literacy rate. Niue became a British protectorate in 1900 and was annexed by New Zealand in 1901. In 1974, Niue became self-governing in free association with New Zealand. New Zealand is the largest bilateral donor to Niue. Niueans are New Zealand citizens. Social pressures, employment and educational opportunities are drawing Niueans to New Zealand and as such the country is facing a significant shortage of skilled professionals and entrepreneurial expertise.
Quick Facts: ▪ Capital: Alofi ▪ Government: Parliamentary democracy ▪ Population: 1,625 ▪ Official Languages: Niuean and English ▪ Industries: Tourism, handicrafts, food processing ▪ Currency: New Zealand Dollar (NZ$) ▪ Climate: Tropical ▪ Environmental Issues: Limited land, poor soil quality.
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- Tonga -
Tonga is an archipelago of 176 islands, of which 36 are inhabited. Tonga has four main groups of islands – Vava’u, Ha’api, Tongatapu and Niuas. The islands are generally low coral atolls in the east and volcanic in the west. The capital is located on the main island of Tongatapu. Everyday life in Tonga is influenced by Polynesian traditions and Christian religion. Tonga was a British protectorate from 1900 to 1970. Throughout its colonisation, the country has retained its monarchy in which the king and a small group of hereditary nobles have a permanent majority in the Legislative Assembly. There are however growing demands for a more democratic form of government.
Quick Facts: ▪ Capital City: Nuku'alofa ▪ Government: Constitutional Monarchy ▪ Population: 100,200 ▪ GDP pc growth: 2.0% p.a. 1990–2003 ▪ Official Languages: Tongan, English ▪ Industries: Agriculture, fisheries ▪ Currency: Pa'anga ▪ Climate: Tropical, warm season (December to May), cool season (May to December) ▪ Environmental Issues: Deforestation, coral reef degradation and overexploitation.
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- American Samoa -
American Samoa is made up of five volcanic islands (Tutuila, Ta'u, Ofu, Olosega, Aunu'u, Nu'uteleand) and two atolls. The first Europeans to the islands were the Dutch in 1722. American Samoa has been a territory of the United States since 1900 . While there is a strong American influence in the islands, American Samoan retains its cultural heritage.
Quick Facts: ▪ Capital: Pago Pago ▪ Government: Unincorporated and unorganized territory of the US ▪ Population: 57,663 ▪ Official Language: Samoan and English ▪ Industries: Tourism, fishing ▪ Currency: US Dollar (US$) ▪ Climate: Tropical, rainy season November to April, dry season May to October ▪ Environmental Issues: Limited natural fresh water resources.
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- Tokelau -
New Zealand's last remaining dependent territory, the three coral atolls (Atafu, Nukunonu and Fakaofo) have a total land area of 12 square kilometres and are each separated by some 60 kilometres of open ocean. Each atoll encircles a lagoon. The islands are no higher than 5 metres above sea level. Poor soil quality and rapid drainage means low fertility and as a result coconut and pandanus are the most common plant species. Tokelauns have a complex social and economic order based on the values of community and sharing. Tokelau is an isolated territory only accessible by boat from Samoa. This isolation and the lack of resources greatly limits economic growth and as such emigration to New Zealand and Samoa is increasing. Aid from New Zealand is the main source of revenue to the islands.
Quick Facts: ▪ Capital: None, each atoll has its own administrative center ▪ Government: Self-administering territory of New Zealand ▪ Population: 1,449 ▪ Official Languages: Tokelauan (a Polynesian language), English ▪ Industries: Fisheries and tourism▪ Currency: New Zealand dollar (NZD) ▪ Climate: Tropical, typically July is the coolest month and May the warmest ▪ Environmental Issues: Over-fishing, poor soil quality.
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- Wallis and Futuna -
Wallis and Futuna consist of the three main volcanic islands of Wallis, Futuna and the uninhabited island of Alofi, and a number of tiny islets. The islands are of volcanic origin and are surrounded by fringing reefs. The islands became a French protectorate in 1886. In a referendum of independence in 1959 Wallis and Futuna chose to become an overseas French Territory. French aid is essential to the islands.
Quick Facts: ▪ Capital: Mata-Utu ▪ Government: Overseas Territory of France ▪ Population: 16,309 ▪ Official Language: Wallisian, Futunian, French ▪ Industries: Copra, handicrafts, fishing, logging ▪ Currency: Franc (CFP) ▪ Climate: Tropical, with wet season November to April ▪ Environmental Issues: Deforestation, soil erosion.
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- Tuvalu -
Tuvalu is the second-least populated independent country in the world, after the Vatican. The country is made up of five coral atolls and four reef islands – running north to south, Naumea, Niutao, Nanumanga, Nui, Vaitupu, Nukufetau, Funafuti (the capital), Nukulaelae and Niulakita. A conservation area has been established on the Western side of the main atoll of Funafuti. The Funafuti Conservation Area (FCA) covers 33 square kilometres of water and land. The area contains 40% of the remaining native broadleaf forest on the atoll. No more than 5 metres above sea level, the islands are threatened by sea level rise as a result of climate change. Tuvalu, formerly the Ellice Islands, gained its independence from Britain in 1978.
Quick Facts: ▪ Capital City: Funafuti ▪ Government: Constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary democracy ▪ Population: 10,200 ▪ Official Languages: Tuvaluan, English ▪ Industries: Fishing, tourism, copra ▪ Currency: Australian dollar (AU$) ▪ Climate: Tropical, wet season November to March ▪ Environmental Issues: No streams or rivers and groundwater is not potable, deforestation, erosion.
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- Samoa -
Samoa, formerly known as Western Samoa, is comprised of two large islands Upolu and Savaii and eight smaller islands. The capital of Samoa, Apia, is located on the island of Upolu. Rugged mountains, lagoons and coral reefs dominate the volcanic landscape. The tropical climate offers rainforests to scrublands, marshes and swamps. Linguistic and cultural evidence suggests that the first Samoan inhabitants migrated from the West, (the East Indies, the Malay Peninsula or the Philippines). Samoa is a traditional society with matai or chiefs retaining authority over extended family units or aiga and their customary land. The church also has an important role to play in Samoan life, the result of the country’s missionary past. Samoa gained independence from New Zealand in 1962.
Quick Facts: ▪ Capital City: Apia ▪ Government: Constitutional Monarchy ▪ Population: Approximately 185,000 ▪ GDP p c growth: 2.2% p.a. 1990–2004 ▪ Official Languages: Samoa, English ▪ Industries: Tourism, agriculture, fisheries ▪ Currency: Samoa Tala (T) ▪ Climate: Tropical; rainy season November to April, dry season May to October ▪ Environmental Issues: Soil erosion, deforestation, invasive species, overfishing.
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- Hawaii -
In 1959, Hawaii became the 50th State of the United States. The archipelago comprises eight islands and atolls. The islands are volcanic in formation. The indigenous inhabitants arrived in the 11th century.
Quick Facts: ▪ Capital: Honolulu ▪ Government: Federal Constitutional Republic ▪ Population: 1,275,194 ▪ Official Languages: English and Hawaiian ▪ Currency: US Dollar ▪ Climate: Subtropical, Summer: May to October, Winter: November to April ▪ Environmental Issues: Contaminated soil and ground water, invasive alien species.
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PACIFIC ISLAND JOBS (PIJ) is a portal for jobs in the Pacific, Australia and New Zealand.