Samoa and Tokelau to skip a day for dateline change
Samoa and Tokelau are set to skip a day and jump across the international dateline to align with trade partners.
When the clock strikes midnight (10:00 GMT Friday) as 29 December ends, Samoa and Tokelau will fast-forward to 31 December, missing out on 30 December.
Samoa announced the decision in May in a bid to improve ties with major trade partners Australia and New Zealand.
Neighbouring Tokelau decided to follow suit in October.
The change comes 119 years after Samoa moved in the opposite direction. Then, it transferred to the same side of the international date line as the United States, in an effort to aid trade.
But New Zealand and Australia have become increasingly valuable trade partners for the country.
"In doing business with New Zealand and Australia, we're losing out on two working days a week," Samoan Prime Minister Tuila'epa Sailele Malielegaoi previously said.
"While it's Friday here, it's Saturday in New Zealand, and when we're at church on Sunday, they're already conducting business in Sydney and Brisbane."
He added that Samoa also does a lot of business with China and Singapore and the dateline change will make commerce with the region "far, far easier".
Samoa is located approximately halfway between New Zealand and Hawaii and has a population of 180,000 people. Local time up to now has been 21 hours behind Sydney. From 31 December it will be three hours ahead.
Tokelau is a tiny New Zealand-administered territory of three islands. It lies to the north of Fiji, approximately half-way between Hawaii and the Australian coast. Local time is currently 23 hours behind Wellington time.