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Philippines Flag

Country Profile

Capital City: Manila (pop. city proper 1 654 761 (1995) 9.9 million in metropolitan area)

Other Cities: Quezon City (2 million), Davao City (1.2 million); Cebu City (0.7 million)

Local Time: UTC +8h

Location: Southeastern Asia, archipelago between the Philippine Sea and the South China Sea, east of Vietnam.
Area: 299 764 sq km (115 739 sq m)
Terrain: Mountains on the smaller islands, larger islands are mountains with fertile river valleys in the interior and narrow to extensive coastal plains.

Climate: Tropical, March to May is hot and dry. June to October rainy, November to February cool. Average temperatures: 78F / 25C to 90F / 32C

Type: Republic
Independence: 12 June 1898 (from Spain)
Constitution: 2 February 1987, effective 11 February 1987

Nationality: Noun--Filipino(s). Adjective--Philippine.
Population: 76.5 million (census in May, 2000) Luzon, the largest island group, accounts for more than half of the entire population.
Ethnic Groups: Malay, Chinese.
Religions: Catholic 80%, Moslem 15%, Christian denominations and Buddhist.
Languages: Filipino and English (official). Filipino which is based on Tagalog, is the national language. English is also widely used and is the medium of instruction in higher education.
Literacy: 92%


Currency: Philippine Peso (PHP)

Natural resources: Timber, limited offshore petroleum, extensive mineral deposits of copper, gold, silver, nickel, lead, and chromium.

Agriculture products: Rice, coconuts, corn, sugarcane, bananas, pineapples, mangoes, pork, eggs, beef, fish.

Industries: electronics assembly, textiles, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, wood products, food processing, petroleum refining, fishing.

Exports partners:
USA 20.1%, Japan 15.9%, Hong Kong 8.5%, Netherlands 8.1%, Taiwan 6.9%, Malaysia 6.8%, Singapore 6.7%, China 5.9% (2003)

Imports partners: Japan 20.4%, USA 19.8%, Singapore 6.8%, South Korea 6.4%, Taiwan 5%, China 4.8%, Hong Kong 4.3% (2003)

Internet Links

Official Sites of Philippines

The President of the Republic of the Philippines

Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo

Philippine Congress

Senate of the Philippines

Philippine Information Agency

Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs

Diplomatic Missions
Permanent Mission of the Philippines to the United Nations

Embassy of the Republic of the Philippines in the U.S.

Foreign Posts - Philippine Embassies

Foreign Diplomatic Missions to the Philippines

National Statistics Office, Philippines

Philippine National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB)

Bureau of Agricultural Statistics (BAS)

Philippines Maps
Map of the Philippines

More maps of the Philippines



Background:  The Philippines were ceded by Spain to the US in 1898
following the Spanish-American War. They attained their independence
in 1946 after Japanese occupation in World War II. The 21-year rule of
Ferdinand MARCOS ended in 1986 when a widespread popular rebellion forced
him into exile. In 1992, the US closed its last military bases on the
islands. The Philippines has had two electoral presidential transitions
since Marcos' removal by "people power." In January 2001, the Supreme
Court declared Joseph ESTRADA unable to rule in view of mass resignations
from his government and administered the oath of office to Vice President
Gloria MACAPAGAL-ARROYO as his constitutional successor. The government
continues to struggle with ongoing Muslim insurgencies in the south.

Geography Philippines

Location:  Southeastern Asia, archipelago between the Philippine Sea
and the South China Sea, east of Vietnam

Geographic coordinates:  13 00 N, 122 00 E

Map references:  Southeast Asia

Area:  total: 300,000 sq km water: 1,830 sq km land: 298,170 sq km

Area - comparative:  slightly larger than Arizona

Land boundaries:  0 km

Coastline:  36,289 km

Maritime claims:  continental shelf: to depth of exploitation territorial
sea: irregular polygon extending up to 100 NM from coastline as defined
by 1898 treaty; since late 1970s has also claimed polygonal-shaped area
in South China Sea up to 285 NM in breadth exclusive economic zone: 200 NM

Climate:  tropical marine; northeast monsoon (November to April);
southwest monsoon (May to October)

Terrain:  mostly mountains with narrow to extensive coastal lowlands

Elevation extremes:  lowest point: Philippine Sea 0 m highest point:
Mount Apo 2,954 m

Natural resources:  timber, petroleum, nickel, cobalt, silver, gold,
salt, copper

Land use:  arable land: 18% permanent crops: 15% other: 67% (1998 est.)

Irrigated land:  15,500 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards:  astride typhoon belt, usually affected by 15 and struck
by five to six cyclonic storms per year; landslides; active volcanoes;
destructive earthquakes; tsunamis

Environment - current issues:  uncontrolled deforestation in watershed
areas; soil erosion; air and water pollution in Manila; increasing
pollution of coastal mangrove swamps which are important fish breeding

Environment - international agreements:  party to: Biodiversity,
Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes,
Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection,
Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands signed,
but not ratified: Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol

Geography - note:  favorably located in relation to many of Southeast
Asia's main water bodies: the South China Sea, Philippine Sea, Sulu Sea,
Celebes Sea, and Luzon Strait

People Philippines

Population:  84,525,639 (July 2002 est.)

Age structure:   36.6% (male 15,731,451; female 15,169,264) 15-64 years:
(male 1,399,862; female 1,756,317) (2002 est.)

Population growth rate:  1.99% (2002 est.)

Birth rate:  26.88 births/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Death rate:  5.95 deaths/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Net migration rate:  -1 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Sex ratio:  at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.04
male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female 65 years and over:
0.8 male(s)/female total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2002 est.)

Infant mortality rate:  27.87 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:   71.12 years (2002 est.)  male: Total fertility
rate:  3.35 children born/woman (2002 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:  0.07% (1999 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:  28,000 (1999 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths:  1,200 (1999 est.)

Nationality:  noun: Filipino(s) adjective: Philippine

Ethnic groups:  Christian Malay 91.5%, Muslim Malay 4%, Chinese 1.5%,
other 3%

Religions:  Roman Catholic 83%, Protestant 9%, Muslim 5%, Buddhist and
other 3%

Languages:  two official languages - Filipino (based on Tagalog) and
English; eight major dialects - Tagalog, Cebuano, Ilocan, Hiligaynon or
Ilonggo, Bicol, Waray, Pampango, and Pangasinense

Literacy:  definition: age 15 and over can read and write total
population: 94.6% male: 95% female: 94.3% (1995 est.)

Government Philippines

Country name:  conventional long form: Republic of the Philippines
conventional short form: Philippines local short form: Pilipinas local
long form: Republika ng Pilipinas

Government type:  republic

Capital:  Manila

Administrative divisions:  73 provinces and 61 chartered cities*; Abra,
Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Aklan, Albay, Angeles*, Antique, Aurora,
Bacolod*, Bago*, Baguio*, Bais*, Basilan, Basilan City*, Bataan, Batanes,
Batangas, Batangas City*, Benguet, Bohol, Bukidnon, Bulacan, Butuan*,
Cabanatuan*, Cadiz*, Cagayan, Cagayan de Oro*, Calbayog*, Caloocan*,
Camarines Norte, Camarines Sur, Camiguin, Canlaon*, Capiz, Catanduanes,
Cavite, Cavite City*, Cebu, Cebu City*, Cotabato*, Dagupan*, Danao*,
Dapitan*, Davao City*, Davao del Norte, Davao del Sur, Davao Oriental,
Dipolog*, Dumaguete*, Eastern Samar, General Santos*, Gingoog*, Ifugao,
Iligan*, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Iloilo, Iloilo City*, Iriga*,
Isabela, Kalinga-Apayao, La Carlota*, Laguna, Lanao del Norte, Lanao
del Sur, Laoag*, Lapu-Lapu*, La Union, Legaspi*, Leyte, Lipa*, Lucena*,
Maguindanao, Mandaue*, Manila*, Marawi*, Marinduque, Masbate, Mindoro
Occidental, Mindoro Oriental, Misamis Occidental, Misamis Oriental,
Mountain, Naga*, Negros Occidental, Negros Oriental, North Cotabato,
Northern Samar, Nueva Ecija, Nueva Vizcaya, Olongapo*, Ormoc*, Oroquieta*,
Ozamis*, Pagadian*, Palawan, Palayan*, Pampanga, Pangasinan, Pasay*,
Puerto Princesa*, Quezon, Quezon City*, Quirino, Rizal, Romblon, Roxas*,
Samar, San Carlos* (in Negros Occidental), San Carlos* (in Pangasinan),
San Jose*, San Pablo*, Silay*, Siquijor, Sorsogon, South Cotabato,
Southern Leyte, Sultan Kudarat, Sulu, Surigao*, Surigao del Norte,
Surigao del Sur, Tacloban*, Tagaytay*, Tagbilaran*, Tangub*, Tarlac,
Tawi-Tawi, Toledo*, Trece Martires*, Zambales, Zamboanga*, Zamboanga
del Norte, Zamboanga del Sur

Independence:  4 July 1946 (from US)

National holiday:  Independence Day (from Spain), 12 June (1898); note -
12 June 1898 is the date of independence from Spain, 4 July 1946 is the
date of independence from the US

Constitution:  2 February 1987, effective 11 February 1987

Legal system:  based on Spanish and Anglo-American law; accepts compulsory
ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations

Suffrage:  18 years of age; universal

Executive branch:  chief of state: President Gloria MACAPAGAL-ARROYO
(since 20 January 2001) and Vice President Teofisto GUINGONA (since 20
January 2001); note - the president is both the chief of state and head
of government head of government: President Gloria MACAPAGAL-ARROYO
(since 20 January 2001) and Vice President Teofisto GUINGONA (since
20 January 2001); note - the president is both the chief of state and
head of government cabinet:  Appointments elections: president and vice
president elected on separate tickets by popular vote for six-year terms;
election last held 11 May 1998 (next to be held 16 May 2004) election
results: results of the last presidential election - Joseph Ejercito
ESTRADA elected president; percent of vote - approximately 40%; Gloria
MACAPAGAL-ARROYO elected vice president; percent of vote - 55%; note -
on 20 January 2001, Vice President Gloria MACAPAGAL-ARROYO was sworn in
as the constitutional successor to President Joseph ESTRADA after the
Supreme Court declared that ESTRADA was unable to rule in view of the mass
resignations from his government; according to the Constitution, only in
cases of death, permanent disability, removal from office, or resignation
of the president, can the vice president serve for the unexpired term

Legislative branch:  bicameral Congress or Kongreso consists of the Senate
or Senado (24 seats - one-half elected every three years; members elected
by popular vote to serve six-year terms) and the House of Representatives
or Kapulungan Ng Mga Kinatawan (214 seats; members elected by popular vote
to serve three-year terms; note - additional members may be appointed by
the president but the Constitution prohibits the House of Representatives
from having more than 250 members) elections: Senate - last held 14 May
2001 (next to be held 16 May 2004); House of Representatives - elections
last held 14 May 2001 (next to be held 16 May 2004) election results:
Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - Lakas 13,
PDP-Laban/LDP 11; House of Representatives - percent of vote by party -
NA%; seats by party - Lakas 86, NPC 51, LDP 21, LP 20, independents 10,
other 26

Judicial branch:  Supreme Court (justices are appointed by the president
on the recommendation of the Judicial and Bar Council and serve until
70 years of age)

Political parties and leaders:  Kilusang Bagong Lipunan (New Society
Movement) [Imelda MARCOS]; Laban Ng Demokratikong Pilipino (Struggle of
Filipino Democrats) or LDP [Eduardo ANGARA]; Lakas [Jose DE VENECIA,
party president]; Liberal Party or LP [Florencio ABAD]; Nacionalista
Party [Jose OLIVEROS]; National People's Coalition or NPC [Eduardo
COJUANGCO]; PDP-Laban [Aquilino PIMENTEL]; People's Reform Party or PRP

Political pressure groups and leaders:  NA

International organization participation:  APEC, ARF, AsDB, ASEAN, CCC,

Diplomatic representation in the US:  chief of mission: Ambassador
Albert DEL ROSARIO consulate(s): San Diego consulate(s) general: Chicago,
Honolulu, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, San Jose (Northern Mariana
Islands), Tamuning (Guam) FAX: [1] (202) 328-7614 telephone: [1] (202)
333-6000 chancery: 1600 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20036

Diplomatic representation from the US:  chief of mission: Ambassador
Francis RICCIARDONE embassy: 1201 Roxas Boulevard, Ermita 1000 Manila
mailing address: FPO 96515 telephone: [63] (2) 523-1001 FAX: [63]
(2) 522-4361

Flag description:  two equal horizontal bands of blue (top) and red with
a white equilateral triangle based on the hoist side; in the center of
the triangle is a yellow sun with eight primary rays (each containing
three individual rays) and in each corner of the triangle is a small
yellow five-pointed star

Economy Philippines

Economy - overview:  In 1998 the Philippine economy - a mixture of
agriculture, light industry, and supporting services - deteriorated as
a result of spillover from the Asian financial crisis and poor weather
conditions. Growth fell to 0.6% in 1998 from 5% in 1997, but recovered
to about 3% in 1999 and 4% in 2000. The government has promised to
continue its economic reforms to help the Philippines match the pace
of development in the newly industrialized countries of East Asia. The
strategy includes improving infrastructure, overhauling the tax system to
bolster government revenues, furthering deregulation and privatization of
the economy, and increasing trade integration with the region. Prospects
for 2002 depend heavily on the economic performance of two major trading
partners, the US and Japan.

GDP:  purchasing power parity - $335 billion (2001 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:  2.8% (2001 est.)

GDP - per capita:  purchasing power parity - $4,000 (2001 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:  agriculture: 17% industry: 30% services:
53% (2000 est.)

Population below poverty line:  40% (2001 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:  lowest 10%: 1.5%
highest 10%: 39.3% (1998)

Distribution of family income - Gini index:  46.2 (1997)

Inflation rate (consumer prices):  6% (2001 est.)

Labor force:  32 million (2000)

Labor force - by occupation:  agriculture 39.8%, government and social
services 19.4%, services 17.7%, manufacturing 9.8%, construction 5.8%,
other 7.5% (1998 est.)

Unemployment rate:  10% (2001)

Budget:  revenues: $10.9 billion expenditures: $13.8 billion, including
capital expenditures of $NA (2001 est.)

Industries:  textiles, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, wood products, food
processing, electronics assembly, petroleum refining, fishing

Industrial production growth rate:  4% (2000 est.)

Electricity - production:  40.667 billion kWh (2000)

Electricity - production by source:  fossil fuel: 57.57% hydro: 19.85%
other: 22.58% (2000) nuclear: 0%

Electricity - consumption:  37.82 billion kWh (2000)

Electricity - exports:  0 kWh (2000)

Electricity - imports:  0 kWh (2000)

Agriculture - products:  rice, coconuts, corn, sugarcane, bananas,
pineapples, mangoes; pork, eggs, beef; fish

Exports:  $37 billion (f.o.b., 2000)

Exports - commodities:  electronic equipment, machinery and transport
equipment, garments, coconut products

Exports - partners:  US 30%, Japan 15%, Netherlands 8%, Singapore 8%,
Taiwan 8%, Hong Kong 5% (2000)

Imports:  $30 billion (f.o.b., 2000)

Imports - commodities:  raw materials and intermediate goods, capital
goods, consumer goods, fuels

Imports - partners:  Japan 19%, US 16%, EU 9%, South Korea 8%, Singapore
6%, Taiwan 6% (2000)

Debt - external:  $50 billion (2001)

Economic aid - recipient:  ODA, $1.1 billion (1998)

Currency:  Philippine peso (PHP)

Currency code:  PHP

Exchange rates:  Philippine pesos per US dollar - 51.201 (January 2002),
50.993 (2001), 44.192 (2000), 39.089 (1999), 40.893 (1998), 29.471 (1997)

Fiscal year:  calendar year

Communications Philippines

Telephones - main lines in use:  3.1 million (2000)

Telephones - mobile cellular:  6.5 million (2000)

Telephone system:  general assessment: good international radiotelephone
and submarine cable services; domestic and interisland service adequate
domestic: domestic satellite system with 11 earth stations international:
9 international gateways; satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat (1
Indian Ocean and 2 Pacific Ocean); submarine cables to Hong Kong, Guam,
Singapore, Taiwan, and Japan

Radio broadcast stations:  AM 366, FM 290, shortwave 5 note: each
shortwave station operates on multiple frequencies in the language of
the target audience (2002)

Radios:  11.5 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations:  75 (2000)

Televisions:  3.7 million (1997)

Internet country code:  .ph

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):  33 (2000)

Internet users:  2 million (2001)

Transportation Philippines

Railways:  total: 897 km narrow gauge: 897 km 1.067-m gauge (405 km are
not in operation) (2001)

Highways:  total: 199,950 km paved: 39,590 km unpaved: 160,360 km
(1998 est.)

Waterways:  3,219 km note: limited to vessels with a draft of less than
1.5 m

Pipelines:  petroleum products 357 km

Ports and harbors:  Batangas, Cagayan de Oro, Cebu, Davao, Guimaras
Island, Iligan, Iloilo, Jolo, Legaspi, Manila, Masao, Puerto Princesa,
San Fernando, Subic Bay, Zamboanga

Merchant marine:  total: 416 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 5,179,029
GRT/7,670,688 DWT ships by type: bulk 134, cargo 112, chemical tanker 2,
combination bulk 7, container 5, liquefied gas 9, livestock carrier 9,
passenger 4, passenger/cargo 10, petroleum tanker 41, refrigerated cargo
20, roll on/roll off 14, short-sea passenger 29, specialized tanker 2,
vehicle carrier 18 note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered
here as a flag of convenience: Australia 2, Canada 1, Germany 3, Greece 8,
Hong Kong 13, Japan 47, Malaysia 19, Netherlands 14, Norway 8, Panama 3,
Singapore 12, South Korea 1, Taiwan 2, United Kingdom 7 (2002 est.)

Airports:  275 (2001)

Airports - with paved runways:  total: 77 over 3,047 m: 4 2,438 to 3,047
m: 5 914 to 1,523 m: 30 under 914 m: 12 (2001) 1,524 to 2,437 m: 26

Airports - with unpaved runways:  total: 198 2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 1,524
to 2,437 m: 4 under 914 m: 119 (2001) 914 to 1,523 m: 74

Heliports:  2 (2001)

Military Philippines

Military branches:  Army, Navy (including Coast Guard and Marine Corps),
Air Force, paramilitary units

Military manpower - military age:  20 years of age (2002 est.)

Military manpower - availability:  males age 15-49: 21,718,304 (2002 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:  males age 15-49: 15,285,248
(2002 est.)

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:  males: 848,181
(2002 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure:  $995 million (FY98)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:  1.5% (FY98)

Transnational Issues Philippines

Disputes - international:  Sultanate of Sulu granted Philippines
Government power of attorney to pursue his sovereignty claim over
Malaysia's Sabah State, to which the Philippines have not fully revoked
their claim; involved in a complex dispute over the Spratly Islands with
China, Malaysia, Taiwan, Vietnam, and possibly Brunei

Illicit drugs:  exports locally produced marijuana and hashish to East
Asia, the US, and other Western markets; serves as a transit point for
heroin and crystal methamphetamine

This page was last updated on 1 January 2002

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