Seasonal and interannual variations of the net surface heating F(sub NET) and sea surface temperature tendency (T(sub s)/dt) in the tropical eastern Indian and western Pacific Oceans are studied. The surface heat fluxes are derived from the Special Sensor Microwave/Imager and Japanese Geostationary Meteorological Satellite radiance measurements for the period October 1997-September 2000. It is found that the magnitude of solar heating is lager than that of evaporative cooling, but the spatial variation of the latter is significantly large than the former. As a result, the spatial variations of seasonal and interannual variability of F(sub NET), follow closely that of evaporative cooling. Seasonal variations of F(sub NET) and T(sub s)/dt are significantly correlated, except for the equatorial western Pacific. The high correlation is primarily attributable to high correlation between seasonal cycles of solar heating and T(sub s)/dt. The change of F(sub NET) between 1997-98 El Nino and 1998-99 La Nina is significantly larger in the tropical eastern Indian Ocean than tropical western Pacific. For the former region, the reduced evaporative cooling arising from weakened winds during the El Nino is generally associated with enhanced solar heating due to decreased cloudiness, and thus increases the interannual variability of F(sub NET). For the latter region, the reduced evaporative cooling due to weakened winds is generally associated with but exceeds the reduced solar heating arising from increased cloudiness, and vise versa. Thus the interannual variability of F(sub NET) is reduced due to this offsetting effect. Interannual variations of F(sub NET) and T(sub s)/dt have very low correlation. This is most likely related to interannual variability of ocean dynamics, which includes the variations of solar radiation penetrating through oceanic mixed layer, upwelling of cold thermocline water, Indonesian throughflow for transporting heat from the Pacific to Indian Ocean, and interhemispheric transport in the Indian Ocean.