The Philippines (; fil|Pilipinas or ''Filipinas'' ), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil|Republika ng Pilipinas),
* bik|Republika kan Filipinas
* ceb|Republika sa Pilipinas
* cbk|República de Filipinas
* hil|Republika sang Filipinas
* ibg|Republika nat Filipinas
* ilo|Republika ti Filipinas
* ivv|Republika nu Filipinas
* pam|Republika ning Filipinas
* krj|Republika kang Pilipinas
* mdh|Republika nu Pilipinas
* mrw|Republika a Pilipinas
* pag|Republika na Filipinas
* xsb|Republika nin Pilipinas
* sgd|Republika nan Pilipinas
* tgl|Republika ng Pilipinas
* tsg|Republika sin Pilipinas
* war|Republika han Pilipinas
* yka|Republika si Pilipinas
In the recognized optional languages of the Philippines:
* es|República de Filipinas
* ar|جمهورية الفلبين|Jumhūriyyat al-Filibbīn
is an archipelagic country
in Southeast Asia
. It is situated in the western Pacific Ocean
, and consists of about 7,640 islands,
that are broadly categorized under three main geographical divisions from north to south: Luzon
, and Mindanao
. The Philippines is bounded by the South China Sea
to the west, the Philippine Sea
to the east, and the Celebes Sea
to the southwest, and shares maritime border
s with Taiwan
to the north, Japan
to the northeast, Palau
to the east and southeast, Indonesia
to the south, Malaysia
to the southwest, Vietnam
to the west, and China
to the northwest. Manila
is the nation's capital, while the largest city
is Quezon City
, both lying within the urban area of Metro Manila
The Philippines' position as an island country
on the Pacific Ring of Fire
and close to the equator makes the country prone to earthquakes
. The country has a variety of natural resource
s and a globally significant level of biodiversity
. This low-lying island geography makes the country vulnerable to climate change
, increasing risk from typhoons
and sea level rise
. The Philippines covers an area of , with a population of around 109 million people, making it the world's twelfth-most populous country
s, some of the archipelago's earliest inhabitants, were followed by successive waves
of Austronesian peoples
. The arrival of Ferdinand Magellan
, a Portuguese
explorer leading a fleet for Spain, marked the beginning of Spanish colonization. In 1543, Spanish explorer Ruy López de Villalobos
named the archipelago ' in honor of Philip II of Spain
. Spanish settlement, beginning in 1565, led to the Philippines becoming part of the Spanish Empire
for more than 300 years. During this time, Catholicism
became the dominant religion, and Manila became the western hub of trans-Pacific trade
. In 1896, the Philippine Revolution
began, which then became entwined with the 1898 Spanish–American War
. Spain ceded the territory to the United States, while Filipino rebels
declared the First Philippine Republic
. The ensuing Philippine–American War
ended with the United States establishing control over the territory, which they maintained until the Japanese invasion
of the islands during World War II
. Following liberation
, the Philippines became independent in 1946. Since then, the unitary sovereign state
has often had a tumultuous experience with democracy, which included the overthrow of a dictatorship
by the People Power Revolution
The Philippines is a multinational state
, with diverse ethnicities
and cultures throughout its islands. It is considered to be an emerging market
and a newly industrialized country
, which has an economy transitioning from being based on agriculture to being based more on services and manufacturing. The Philippines is a founding member of the United Nations
, World Trade Organization
, Association of Southeast Asian Nations
, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation
forum, and the East Asia Summit
Spanish explorer Ruy López de Villalobos
, during his expedition in 1542, named the islands of Leyte
"'" after Philip II of Spain
, then the Prince of Asturias
. Eventually the name "'" would be used to cover the archipelago's Spanish possessions. Before Spanish rule was established, other names such as ' (Islands of the West) and Magellan's name for the islands, ', were also used by the Spanish to refer to islands in the region.
During the Philippine Revolution
, the Malolos Congress
proclaimed the establishment of the ' or the ''Philippine Republic
''. From the period of the Spanish–American War
(1898) and the Philippine–American War
(1899–1902) until the Commonwealth
period (1935–1946), American colonial authorities referred to the country as ''The Philippine Islands'', a translation of the Spanish name.
The United States began the process of changing the reference to the country from ''The Philippine Islands'' to ''The Philippines'', specifically when it was mentioned in the Philippine Autonomy Act or the Jones Law
. The full official title, ''Republic of the Philippines'', was included in the 1935 constitution as the name of the future independent state,
it is also mentioned in all succeeding constitutional revisions.
There is evidence of early hominins
living in what is now the Philippines as early as 709,000 years ago. A small number of bones from Callao Cave
potentially represent an otherwise unknown species, ''Homo luzonensis
'', that lived around 50,000 to 67,000 years ago. The oldest modern human
remains found on the islands are from the Tabon Caves
to 47,000 ± 11–10,000 years ago.
The Tabon Man
is presumably a Negrito
, who were among the archipelago's earliest inhabitants, descendants of the first human migrations out of Africa
via the coastal route along southern Asia to the now sunken landmasses of Sundaland
The first Austronesians reached the Philippines at around 2200 BC, settling the Batanes Islands
and northern Luzon
. From there, they rapidly spread downwards to the rest of the islands of the Philippines and Southeast Asia
This population assimilated with the existing Negritos resulting in the modern Filipino ethnic groups
which display various ratios of genetic admixture
between Austronesian and Negrito groups.
have been found dated to 2000 BC, with the lingling-o
jade items crafted in Luzon made using raw materials originating from Taiwan. By 1000 BC, the inhabitants of the archipelago had developed into four kinds of social groups: hunter-gatherer tribes, warrior societies, highland plutocracies
, and port principalities.
Early states (900–1565)
The earliest known surviving written record found in the Philippines is the Laguna Copperplate Inscription
By the 1300s, a number of the large coastal settlements had emerged as trading centers, and became the focal point of societal changes.
Some polities had exchanges with other states across Asia.
Trade with China is believed to have begun during the Tang dynasty
, but grew more extensive during the Song dynasty
. By the 2nd millennium CE, some Philippine polities were known to have sent trade delegations which participated in the tributary system of China
Indian cultural traits, such as linguistic terms and religious practices, began to spread within the Philippines during the 10th century, likely via the Hindu Majapahit
By the 15th century, Islam was established in the Sulu Archipelago
and spread from there.
Polities founded in the Philippines from the 10th–16th centuries include Maynila
, and Ma-i
. The early polities were typically made up of three-tier social structure: a nobility class, a class of "freemen", and a class of dependent debtor-bondsmen.
Among the nobility were leaders called "Datu
s," responsible for ruling autonomous groups called "barangay
" or "dulohan".
When these barangays banded together, either to form a larger settlement
or a geographically looser alliance group,
the more esteemed among them would be recognized as a "paramount datu",
, or sultan
which headed the community state. There is little evidence of large-scale violence in the archipelago prior to the 2nd millennium AD. However, warfare developed and escalated during the 14th to 16th centuries and throughout these periods population density is thought to have been low. In 1521, Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan
arrived in the area, claimed the islands for Spain, and was then killed by natives at the Battle of Mactan
Colonial rule (1565–1946)
Colonization began when Spanish explorer Miguel López de Legazpi
arrived from Mexico in 1565.
In 1571, Spanish Manila
became the capital of the Spanish East Indies
, which encompassed Spanish territories in Asia and the Pacific.
The Spanish successfully invaded the different local states by employing the principle of divide and conquer
, bringing most of what is now the Philippines into a single unified administration.
Disparate barangays were deliberately consolidated into towns
, where Catholic missionaries
were more easily able to convert the inhabitants to Christianity
From 1565 to 1821, the Philippines was governed as part of the Mexico-based Viceroyalty of New Spain
, later administered from Madrid
following the Mexican War of Independence
. Manila was the western hub of the trans-Pacific trade
were constructed in Bicol
During its rule, Spain quelled various indigenous revolts
as well as defending against external military challenges.
Spanish forces included soldiers from elsewhere in New Spain, many of whom deserted and intermingled with the wider population. Immigration blurred the racial caste system
Spain maintained in towns and cities. War against the Dutch
from the West, in the 17th century, together with conflict with the Muslims in the South nearly bankrupted the colonial treasury.
Administration of the Philippine islands were considered a drain on the economy of Spain,
and there were debates about abandoning it or trading it for some other territory. However, this was opposed for a number of reasons, including economic potential, security, and the desire to continue religious conversion in the islands and the surrounding region. The Philippines survived on an annual subsidy provided by the Spanish Crown,
which averaged 250,000 pesos and was usually paid through the provision of 75 tons of silver bullion being sent from the Americas.
British forces occupied Manila
from 1762 to 1764 during the Seven Years' War
, with Spanish rule restored through the 1763 Treaty of Paris
The Spanish considered their war with the Muslims in Southeast Asia an extension of the Reconquista
. The Spanish–Moro conflict
lasted for several hundred years. In the last quarter of the 19th century, Spain conquered portions of Mindanao
, and the Moro
Muslims in the Sultanate of Sulu
formally recognized Spanish sovereignty.
In the 19th century, Philippine ports opened to world trade and shifts started occurring within Filipino society. The Latin American wars of independence
and renewed immigration led to shifts in social identity, with the term ''Filipino'' shifting from referring to Spaniards born in the Iberian Peninsula
and in the Philippines
to a term encompassing all people in the archipelago. This identity shift was driven by wealthy families of mixed ancestry
, for which it developed into a national identity.
Revolutionary sentiments were stoked in 1872 after three activist Catholic priests
were executed on weak pretences.
[Nuguid, Nati. (1972)]
"The Cavite Mutiny"
in Mary R. Tagle. ''12 Events that Have Influenced Philippine History''. anila National Media Production Center. Retrieved December 20, 2009 fro
This would inspire a propaganda movement
in Spain, organized by Marcelo H. del Pilar
, José Rizal
, and Mariano Ponce
, lobbying for political reforms in the Philippines. Rizal was eventually executed on December 30, 1896, on charges of rebellion. This radicalized many who had previously been loyal to Spain.
As attempts at reform met with resistance, Andrés Bonifacio
in 1892 established the militant secret society called the Katipunan
, who sought independence from Spain through armed revolt.
The Katipunan started
the Philippine Revolution
in 1896. Internal disputes led to an election
in which Bonifacio lost his position and Emilio Aguinaldo
was elected as the new leader of the revolution.
In 1897, the Pact of Biak-na-Bato
brought about the exile of the revolutionary leadership to Hong Kong
. In 1898, the Spanish–American War
began and reached Philippines. Aguinaldo returned, resumed the revolution, and declared independence
from Spain on June 12, 1898.
The First Philippine Republic
was established on January 21, 1899.
The islands had been ceded
by Spain to the United States alongside Puerto Rico
as a result of the latter's victory in the Spanish–American War. As it became increasingly clear the United States would not recognize the First Philippine Republic, the Philippine–American War
broke out. War resulted in the deaths of 250,000 to 1 million civilians, mostly due to famine and disease. After the defeat of the First Philippine Republic, an American civilian government
American forces continued to secure and extend their control over the islands, suppressing an attempted extension of the Philippine Republic
securing the Sultanate of Sulu
and establishing control over interior mountainous areas that had resisted Spanish conquest.
Cultural developments strengthened the continuing development of a national identity,
"Third World Film Making and the West"
p.152. University of California Press, 1987. Retrieved on October 30, 2020.
and Tagalog began to take precedence over other local languages.
In 1935, the Philippines was granted Commonwealth
status with Manuel Quezon
as president and Sergio Osmeña
as vice president. Quezon's priorities were defence, social justice, inequality and economic diversification, and national character. Tagalog was designated the national language
, women's suffrage was introduced
, and land reform mooted.
[Manapat, Carlos, et al.'' Economics, Taxation, and Agrarian Reform''. Quezon City: C&E Pub., 2010.Print.]
During World War II
the Japanese Empire invaded
and the Second Philippine Republic
, under Jose P. Laurel
, was established as a puppet state. From 1942 the Japanese occupation of the Philippines was opposed
by large-scale underground guerrilla activity
Atrocities and war crimes
were committed during the war, including the Bataan Death March
and the Manila massacre
. Allied troops defeated the Japanese
in 1945. By the end of the war it is estimated that over a million Filipinos had died.
On October 11, 1945, the Philippines became one of the founding members
of the United Nations
On July 4, 1946, the Philippines was officially recognized by the United States as an independent nation through the Treaty of Manila
, during the presidency of Manuel Roxas
Postcolonial period (1946–present)
Efforts to end the Hukbalahap Rebellion
began during Elpidio Quirino
's term, however, it was only during Ramon Magsaysay
's presidency was the movement suppressed. Magsaysay's successor, Carlos P. Garcia
, initiated the Filipino First Policy
, which was continued by Diosdado Macapagal
, with celebration of Independence Day moved from July 4 to June 12, the date of Emilio Aguinaldo's declaration,
and pursuit of a claim
on the eastern part of North Borneo
In 1965, Macapagal lost the presidential election to Ferdinand Marcos
. Early in his presidency, Marcos initiated numerous infrastructure projects but, together with his wife Imelda
, was accused of corruption and embezzling billions of dollars in public funds. Nearing the end of his term, Marcos declared martial law
on September 21, 1972. This period of his rule was characterized by political repression, censorship, and human rights violations.
On August 21, 1983, Marcos' chief rival, opposition leader Benigno Aquino Jr.
, was assassinated
on the tarmac at Manila International Airport
. Marcos called a snap presidential election in 1986
Marcos was proclaimed the winner, but the results were widely regarded as fraudulent.
The resulting protests led to the People Power Revolution
which forced Marcos and his allies to flee to Hawaii
, and Aquino's widow, Corazon Aquino
, was installed as president.
The return of democracy and government reforms beginning in 1986 were hampered by national debt, government corruption, coup attempts
, a persistent communist insurgency
, and a military conflict with Moro separatists
. The administration also faced a series of disasters, including the sinking of the ''MV Doña Paz
'' in December 1987
and the eruption of Mount Pinatubo
in June 1991. Aquino was succeeded by Fidel V. Ramos
, whose economic performance, at 3.6% growth rate,
was overshadowed by the onset of the 1997 Asian financial crisis
Ramos' successor, Joseph Estrada
, was overthrown by the 2001 EDSA Revolution
and succeeded by his Vice President
, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo
, on January 20, 2001. Arroyo's 9-year administration was marked by economic growth, but was tainted by graft and political scandals. On November 23, 2009, 34 journalists and several civilians were killed in Maguindanao
Economic growth continued during Benigno Aquino III
's administration, which pushed for good governance and transparency. In 2015, a clash
which took place in Mamasapano, Maguindanao killed 44 members of the Philippine National Police
-Special Action Force
, resulting in efforts to pass the Bangsamoro Basic Law
reaching an impasse. Former Davao City
mayor Rodrigo Duterte
won the 2016 presidential election
, becoming the first president from Mindanao.
Duterte launched an anti-drug campaign
and an infrastructure plan
. The implementation of the Bangsamoro Organic Law
led to the creation of the autonomous Bangsamoro
region in Mindanao.
In early 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic
reached the country
causing the economy to contract by 9.5% in terms of gross domestic product since records began in 1947.
Geography and environment
The Philippines is an archipelago
composed of about 7,640 islands
covering a total area, including inland bodies of water, of around ,
with cadastral survey data suggesting it may be larger. Its coastline gives it the world's fifth-longest coastline
[Central Intelligence Agency. (2009)]
"Field Listing : Coastline"
The EEZ of the Philippines
covers . It is located between 116° 40', and 126° 34' E longitude and 4° 40' and 21° 10' N latitude and is bordered by the Philippine Sea
to the east, the South China Sea
to the west, and the Celebes Sea
to the south. The island of Borneo
is located a few hundred kilometers southwest, and Taiwan is located directly to the north. Sulawesi
is located to the southwest and Palau
is located to the east of the islands.
The highest mountain
is Mount Apo
. It measures up to above sea level and is located on the island of Mindanao
. The Galathea Depth
of the Philippine Trench
in the Philippine Sea
is the deepest point in the country and the third deepest in the world
. The longest river
is the Cagayan River
in northern Luzon
, measuring about . Manila Bay
[Jacinto, G.S., Azanza, R.V.,Velasquez,I.B. and Siringan, F.P.(2006)."Manila Bay:Environmental Challenges and Opportunities" in Wolanski, E.(ed.) The Environment in Asia Pacific Harbours. Springer: Dordrecht, Netherlands. p309-328.]
upon the shore of which the capital city of Manila lies, is connected to Laguna de Bay
, the largest lake
in the Philippines, by the Pasig River
The Puerto Princesa Subterranean River
, which runs underground through a karst
landscape before reaching the ocean, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site
Situated on the western fringes of the Pacific Ring of Fire
, the Philippines experiences frequent seismic and volcanic activity. The Benham Plateau
to the east in the Philippine Sea is an undersea region active in tectonic subduction
Around 20 earthquake
s are registered daily, though most are too weak to be felt. The last major earthquake was the 1990 Luzon earthquake
. There are many active volcanoes
such as the Mayon Volcano
, Mount Pinatubo
, and Taal Volcano
The eruption of Mount Pinatubo in June 1991
produced the second largest terrestrial eruption
of the 20th century.
The Philippines is the world's second-biggest geothermal energy
producer behind the United States, with 18% of the country's electricity
needs being met by geothermal power.
The country has valuable,
mineral deposits as a result of the its complex geologic structure and high level of seismic activity. The Philippine are thought to have the second-largest gold deposits after South Africa, along with a large amount of copper deposits,
and the world's largest deposits of palladium
Other minerals include chromite, nickel, and zinc. Despite this, a lack of law enforcement, poor management, opposition due to the presence of indigenous communities, and past instances of environmental damage and disaster, have resulted in these mineral resources remaining largely untapped.
The Philippines is a megadiverse country
[ Retrieved February 15, 2010 from gbgm-umc.org.]
Eight major types of forests are distributed throughout the Philippines; dipterocarp
, beach forest, pine
forest, lower montane forest
, upper montane or mossy forest
s, and ultrabasic forest. Around 1,100 land vertebrate species can be found in the Philippines including over 100 mammal species and 170 bird species not thought to exist elsewhere.
The Philippines has among the highest rates of discovery in the world with sixteen new species of mammals
discovered in the last ten years. Because of this, the rate of endemism
for the Philippines has risen and likely will continue to rise. Parts of its marine waters contain the highest diversity of shorefish species in the world.
include the Philippine crocodile
and saltwater crocodile
. The largest crocodile in captivity, known locally as Lolong
, was captured in the southern island of Mindanao, and died on February 10, 2013 from pneumonia
and cardiac arrest
. The national bird
, known as the Philippine eagle
, has the longest body of any eagle
; it generally measures 86 to 102 cm (2.82 to 3.35 ft) in length and weighs 4.7 to 8.0 kg (10.4 to 17.6 lb).
The Philippine eagle is part of the family Accipitridae
and is endemic to the rainforests of Luzon, Samar, Leyte and Mindanao.
Philippine maritime waters
encompass as much as producing unique and diverse marine life,
an important part of the Coral Triangle
, a territory shared with other countries.
The total number of corals and marine fish species was estimated at 500 and 2,400 respectively.
New records and species discoveries continue. The Tubbataha Reef
in the Sulu Sea was declared a World Heritage Site in 1993. Philippine waters also sustain the cultivation of fish, crustaceans, oysters, and seaweeds. One species of oyster, Pinctada maxima
, produces pearls that are naturally golden in color. Pearls have been declared a "National Gem".
With an estimated 13,500 plant species in the country, 3,200 of which are unique to the islands,
boast an array of flora,
including many rare types of orchids
, often the result of illegal logging
, is an acute problem in the Philippines
. Forest cover declined from 70% of the Philippines's total land area in 1900 to about 18.3% in 1999. Many species are endangered and scientists say that Southeast Asia, which the Philippines is part of, faces a catastrophic extinction rate of 20% by the end of the 21st century.
The Philippines has a tropical maritime climate that is usually hot and humid. There are three seasons: a hot dry season or summer from March to May; a rainy season from June to November; and a cool dry season from December to February. The southwest monsoon
lasts from May to October, and the northeast monsoon from November to April. Temperatures usually range from to . The coolest month is January; the warmest is May.
The average yearly temperature is around . In considering temperature, location in terms of latitude and longitude is not a significant factor, and temperatures at sea level tend to be in the same range. Altitude usually has more of an impact. The average annual temperature of Baguio
at an elevation of above sea level is , making it a popular destination during hot summers.
Annual rainfall measures as much as in the mountainous east coast section but less than in some of the sheltered valleys.
Sitting astride the typhoon belt
, the islands experience 15–20 typhoons annually from July to October,
[Library of Congress – Federal Research Division. (March 2006)]
''Country Profile: Philippines''
Retrieved July 30, 2020.
with around nineteen typhoons entering the Philippine area of responsibility
in a typical year and eight or nine making landfall.
[''Monthly Typhoon Tracking Charts'']
(2010). Retrieved April 24, 2010 from the National Institute of Informatics, Kitamoto Laboratory, Digital Typhoon Website.
Historically typhoons were sometimes referred to as ''baguios''. The wettest recorded typhoon to hit the Philippines dropped in Baguio from July 14 to 18, 1911. The Philippines is highly exposed to climate change
and is among the world's ten countries that are most vulnerable to climate change
The Commission on Population estimated the country's population to be 107,190,081 as of December 31, 2018, based on the latest population census of 2015 conducted by the Philippine Statistics Authority.
The population increased from 1990 to 2008 by approximately 28 million, a 45% growth in that time frame.
[CO2 Emissions from Fuel Combustion]
page 86); page 86 of the pdf, IEA (OECD/ World Bank) (original population ref OECD/ World Bank e.g. in IEA Key World Energy Statistics 2010 page 57) (archived fro
on October 12, 2009)
The first official census
in the Philippines was carried out in 1877 and recorded a population of 5,567,685.
A third of the population resides in Metro Manila
and its immediately neighboring regions.
The 2.34% average annual population growth rate between 1990 and 2000 decreased to an estimated 1.90% for the 2000–2010 period. Government attempts to reduce population growth have been a contentious issue
The population's median age is 22.7 years with 60.9% aged from 15 to 64 years old.
Life expectancy at birth is 69.4 years, 73.1 years for females and 65.9 years for males.
Poverty incidence dropped to 21.6% in 2015 from 25.2% in 2012.
[Republic of the Philippines. National Statistics Office]
Retrieved July 30, 2020.
Metro Manila is the most populous of the 3 defined metropolitan areas
in the Philippines and the 5th most populous
in the world.
[Demographia. (June 2020)]
''Demographia World Urban Areas (World Agglomerations) Population & Projections''
(Edition 16). Retrieved July 15, 2020. Page 23.
Census data from 2015 showed it had a population of 12,877,253 constituting almost 13% of the national population.
Including suburbs in the adjacent provinces (Bulacan
, and Rizal
) of Greater Manila
, the population is around 23,088,000.
Across the country, the Philippines has a total urbanization rate of 51.2 percent.
Metro Manila's gross regional product
was estimated to be ₱
468.4 billion (at constant 1985 prices) and accounts for 33% of the nation's GDP.
[Republic of the Philippines. National Statistical Coordination Board. (July 2009)]
''2008 Gross Regional Domestic Product – Levels of GRDP''
. Retrieved April 4, 2010.
In 2011 Manila ranked as the 28th wealthiest urban agglomeration
in the world and the 2nd in Southeast Asia.
There is substantial ethnic diversity with the Philippines, a product of the seas and mountain ranges dividing the archipelago along with significant foreign influences.
According to the 2010 census, 24.4% of Filipinos are Tagalog, 11.4% Visayans/Bisaya , 9.9% Cebuano, 8.8% Ilocano, 8.4% Hiligaynon, 6.8% Bikol, 4% Waray, and 26.2% are "others",
which can be broken down further to yield more distinct non-tribal groups like the Moro
, the Kapampangan
, the Pangasinense
, the Ibanag
, and the Ivatan
. There are also indigenous peoples
like the Igorot
, the Lumad
, the Mangyan
, the Bajau
, and the tribes of Palawan
s are considered among the earliest inhabitants of the islands.
[Dolan, Ronald E. (Ed.). (1991)]
"Ethnicity, Regionalism, and Language"
''Philippines: A Country Study''
Washington: GPO for the Library of Congress. Retrieved April 8, 2010 fro
Country Studies US Website
These minority aboriginal settlers are an Australoid
group and are a left-over from the first human migration out of Africa to Australia, and were likely displaced by later waves of migration. At least some Negritos in the Philippines have Denisovan
admixture in their genomes. Ethnic Filipinos generally belong to several Southeast Asian
ethnic groups classified linguistically as part of the Austronesian
There is some uncertainty over the origin of this Austronesian speaking population, with it being likely that ancestors related to Taiwanese aborigines
brought their language and mixed with existing populations in the area.
European DNA is present in many Filipinos today. A craniometric
study reveals that samples taken from graveyards across the Philippines show a mean ratio of European descent of circa 6%. Under Spanish rule there was also immigration from elsewhere in the empire, especially from Latin America
s are mostly the descendants of immigrants from Fujian
in China after 1898, numbering around 2 million, although there are an estimated 20 percent of Filipinos who have partial Chinese ancestry, stemming from precolonial and colonial Chinese migrants. While a distinct minority, Chinese Filipinos are well-integrated into Filipino society.
As of 2015, there were 220,000 to 600,000 American citizens living in the country. There are also up to 250,000 Amerasian
s scattered across the cities of Angeles
, Manila, Clark
. Other important non-indigenous minorities include Indians
. There are also Japanese people
, which include escaped Christians (Kirishitan
) who fled the persecutions of Shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu
which the Spanish empire in the Philippines had offered asylum from. The descendants of mixed-race couples are known as ''Tisoy
'' lists 186 individual languages in the Philippines, 182 of which are living languages, while 4 no longer have any known speakers. Most native languages are part of the Philippine
branch of the Malayo-Polynesian languages
, which is itself a branch of the Austronesian language family
[Lewis, M. Paul, Gary F. Simons, and Charles D. Fennig (eds.). (2015)]
Ethnologue: Languages of the World
' (18th ed.). Dallas, Tex.: SIL International. Retrieved April 13, 2015.
In addition, various Spanish-based creole varieties collectively called Chavacano
exist. There are also many Philippine Negrito languages
that have unique vocabularies that survived Austronesian acculturation.
are the official languages of the country.
Filipino is a standardized version of Tagalog
, spoken mainly in Metro Manila. Both Filipino and English are used in government, education, print, broadcast media, and business, with third local languages often being used at the same time.
The Philippine constitution provides for the promotion of Spanish
on a voluntary and optional basis.
Spanish, which was widely used as a lingua franca in the late nineteenth century, has since declined greatly in use,
although Spanish loanwords are still present today in Philippine languages, while Arabic is mainly taught in Islamic schools in Mindanao.
Nineteen regional languages act as auxiliary official languages used as media of instruction: Aklanon
, Tagalog, Tausug
, and Yakan
[DepEd adds 7 languages to mother tongue-based education for Kinder to Grade 3](_blank)
GMA News. July 13, 2013.
Other indigenous languages such as, Cuyonon
, and several Visayan languages
are prevalent in their respective provinces.
Article 3 of Republic Act No. 11106 declared the Filipino Sign Language
as the national sign language of the Philippines, specifying that it shall be recognized, supported and promoted as the medium of official communication in all transactions involving the deaf, and as the language of instruction of deaf education.
The Philippines is a secular state
which protects freedom of religion
is the dominant faith,
shared by over 92% of the population.
[Pew Research Center's Religion & Public Life Project: Philippines]
Pew Research Center. 2010.
, the country had the world's third largest Roman Catholic population
, and was the largest Christian nation in Asia
. Census data from 2015 found that about % of the population professed Catholicism
Around 37% of the population regularly attend Mass
. 29% of self-identified Catholics consider themselves very religious.
An independent Catholic
church, the Philippine Independent Church
, has around 66,959 adherents.
were 10.8% of the population in 2010. % of the population are members of Iglesia ni Cristo
The combined following of the Philippine Council of Evangelical Churches
comes to % of the total population.
is the second largest religion. The Muslim
population of the Philippines was reported as % of the total population according to census returns in 2015.
Conversely, a 2012 report by the National Commission of Muslim Filipinos (NCMF) stated that about 10,700,000 or 11% of Filipinos are Muslims.
The majority of Muslims live in Mindanao and nearby islands.
Most practice Sunni Islam
under the Shafi'i school
The percentage of combined positive atheist
people in the Philippines was measured to be about 3% of the population as of 2008. The 2015 Philippine Census reported the religion of about % of the population as "none".
A 2014 survey by Gallup International Association
reported that 21% of its respondents identify as "not a religious person". Around % of the population practice indigenous Philippine folk religions
whose practices and folk beliefs are often syncretized with Christianity and Islam. Buddhism
is practiced by around % of the population,
concentrated among Filipinos of Chinese descent.
In 2016, % of healthcare came from private expenditures while % was from the government (12.4% from the national government, 7.1% from the local government, and 17.4% from social health insurance). Total health expenditure share in GDP for the year 2016 was 4.5%. Per capita health expenditure rate in 2015 was , which was one of the lowest in Southeast Asia. The budget allocation for Healthcare in 2019 was ₱98.6 billion and had an increase in budget in 2014 with a record high in the collection of taxes from the House Bill 5727 (commonly known as Sin tax
There were 101,688 hospital beds in the country in 2016, with government hospital beds accounting for 47% and private hospital beds for 53%.
In 2009, there were an estimated 90,370 physicians or 1 per every 833 people, 480,910 nurses and 43,220 dentists.
Retention of skilled practitioners is a problem. Seventy percent of nursing graduates go overseas to work. , the Philippines was the largest supplier of nurses for export. The Philippines suffers a triple burden of high levels of communicable diseases, high levels of non-communicable diseases, and high exposure to natural disasters.
In 2018, there were 1,258 hospital
s licensed by the Department of Health
, of which were government-run and private. A total of 20,065 barangay health stations (BHS) and 2,590 rural health units (RHUs) provide primary care services throughout the country as of 2016. Cardiovascular diseases
account for more than 35% of all deaths. 9,264 cases of human immunodeficiency virus
(HIV) were reported for the year 2016, with 8,151 being asymptomatic cases. At the time the country was considered a low-HIV-prevalence country, with less than 0.1% of the adult population estimated to be HIV-positive. HIV/AIDS cases increased from 12,000 in 2005
[United States Agency for International Development. (May 2008)]
''USAID Country Health Statistical Report – Philippines''
Retrieved July 13, 2020.
to 39,622 as of 2016, with 35,957 being asymptomatic cases.
There is improvement in patients access to medicines due to Filipinos' growing acceptance of generic drug
s, with 6 out of 10 Filipinos already using generics. While the country's universal healthcare
implementation is underway as spearheaded by the state-owned Philippine Health Insurance Corporation
, most healthcare-related expenses are either borne out of pocket or through health maintenance organization (HMO)-provided health plans. As of April 2020, there are only about 7 million individuals covered by these plans.
The Philippines had a simple literacy
rate of 98.3% as of 2015, and a functional literacy
rate of 90.3% as of 2013.
Education takes up a significant proportion of the national budget. In the 2020 budget, education was allocated PHP17.1 billion from the PHP4.1 trillion budget.
The Commission on Higher Education
(CHED) lists 2,180 higher education institutions, among which 607 are public and 1,573 are private.
[Republic of the Philippines. Commission on Higher Education. (August 2010). . ''Official Website of the Commission on Higher Education''. Retrieved April 17, 2011.]
Classes start in June and end in March. The majority of colleges and universities follow a semester calendar from June to October and November to March, while some have adopted an increasingly common semester calendar from August to December and January to May. Primary and secondary schooling is divided between a 6-year elementary period, a 4-year junior high school period, and a 2-year senior high school period.
The Department of Education
(DepEd) covers elementary, secondary, and non-formal education. The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority
(TESDA) administers middle-level education training and development. The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) was created in 1994 to, among other functions, formulate and recommend development plans, policies,
priorities, and programs on higher education
In 2004, madaris
were mainstreamed in 16 regions nationwide, mainly in Muslim areas in Mindanao under the auspices and program of the Department of Education.
Public universities are all non-sectarian entities, and are further classified as State Universities and Colleges (SUC) or Local Colleges and Universities (LCU).
The University of the Philippines
, a system of eight constituent universities, is the national university
system of the Philippines.
[Republic of the Philippines. (Approved: April 29, 2008)]
''Republic Act 9500 – An Act to Strengthen the University of the Philippines as the National University''
Chan Robles Law Library.
The country's top ranked universities are as follows: University of the Philippines, Ateneo de Manila University
, De La Salle University
, and University of Santo Tomas
. The University of Santo Tomas, established in 1611, has the oldest extant
university charter in the Philippines and Asia.
Government and politics
The Philippines has a democratic
government in the form of a constitutional republic
with a presidential system
functions as both head of state
and head of government
and is the commander-in-chief
of the armed forces
The president is elected by popular vote for a single six-year term,
during which he or she appoints and presides over the cabinet
was elected to a six-year term as president in 2016.
The bicameral Congress
is composed of the Senate
, serving as the upper house
, with members elected to a six-year term, and the House of Representatives
, serving as the lower house
, with members elected to a three-year term.
Philippine politics tends to be dominated by those with well-known names, such as members of political dynasties
["The Philippines' celebrity-obsessed elections"]
(April 26, 2007). ''The Economist''. Retrieved July 25, 2020.
Senators are elected at large
while the representatives are elected from both legislative districts
and through sectoral representation.
power is vested in the Supreme Court
, composed of a Chief Justice
as its presiding officer and fourteen associate justices
all of whom are appointed by the President from nominations submitted by the Judicial and Bar Council
The capital city of the Philippines is Manila
and the most populous city is Quezon City
, both within the single urban area of Metro Manila
There have been attempts to change
the government to a federal
, or parliamentary government
since the Ramos administration. There is a significant amount of corruption in the Philippines
, which some historians attribute to the system of governance put in place during the Spanish colonial period.
As a founding and active member
of the United Nations, the country has been elected
to the Security Council
. Carlos P. Romulo
was a former President of the United Nations General Assembly
. The country is an active participant in peacekeeping
missions, particularly in East Timor
. Over 10 million Filipinos live and work overseas.
The Philippines is a founding and active member of ASEAN
(Association of Southeast Asian Nations).
[. (1999). ''3 ASEAN Informal Summit''. Archived fro]
on December 17, 2007. Retrieved December 13, 2009.
It has hosted several summits
and is an active contributor to the direction and policies of the bloc. It is also a member of the East Asia Summit
(EAS), the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation
(APEC), the Group of 24
, and the Non-Aligned Movement
[. (older version – as it existed in 2009 – during the presidency of Gloria Macapagal Arroyo), ]
The Official Government Portal of the Republic of the Philippines
The country is also seeking to obtain observer status in the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation
The Philippines has a long relationship with the United States
, covering economics, security, and people-to-people relations.
A mutual defense treaty between the two countries
was signed in 1951, and supplemented later with the 1999 Visiting Forces Agreement
and the 2016 Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement
. The Philippines supported American policies during the Cold War
and participated in the Korean
wars. In 2003 the Philippines was designated a Major non-NATO ally
Under President Duterte ties with the United States have weakened with military purchases instead coming from China and Russia, while Duterte states that the Philippines will no longer participate in any US-led wars. In 2021, it was revealed the United States would defend the Philippines including the South China sea
The Philippines attaches great importance in its relations with China
, and has established significant cooperation with the country. Japan is the biggest bilateral contributor of official development assistance
to the country. Although historical tensions exist due to the events of World War II
, much of the animosity has faded.
[Dolan, Ronald E. (Ed.). (1991)]
"Relations with Asian Neighbors"
''Philippines: A Country Study''
Washington: GPO for the Library of Congress. Retrieved January 5, 2010 fro
Country Studies US Website
Historical and cultural ties continue to affect relations with Spain
. Relations with Middle East
ern countries are shaped by the high number of Filipinos working in these countries, and by issues relating the Muslim minority in the Philippines. Concerns have been raised regarding issues such as domestic abuse
and war affecting
the around 2.5 million overseas Filipino workers in the region.
The Philippines has claims
in the Spratly Islands
which overlap with claims by China, Malaysia, Taiwan, and Vietnam. The largest of its controlled islands in Thitu Island
, which contains the Philippine's smallest village.
The Scarborough Shoal standoff in 2012
, where China took control of the shoal from the Philippines, led to an international arbitration case
and has made the shoal a prominent symbol in the wider dispute.
The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) consist of three branches: the Philippine Air Force
, the Philippine Army
, and the Philippine Navy
The Armed Forces of the Philippines are a volunteer force
. Civilian security is handled by the Philippine National Police
under the Department of the Interior and Local Government
In Bangsamoro, the largest separatist organizations, the Moro National Liberation Front
and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front
were engaging the government politically . Other more militant groups like the Abu Sayyaf
have kidnapped foreigners for ransom, particularly in the Sulu Archipelago. Their presence decreased due to successful security provided by the Philippine government. The Communist Party of the Philippines
and its military wing, the New People's Army
, have been waging guerrilla warfare
against the government since the 1970s, reaching its apex in 1986 when Communist guerrillas gained control of a fifth of the country's territory, before significantly dwindling militarily and politically after the return of democracy in 1986. , $2.843 billion, or 1.1 percent of GDP is spent on military forces.
The Philippines is governed as a unitary state
, with the exception of the Bangsamoro
Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), although there has been several steps towards decentralization within the unitary framework. A 1991 law devolved some powers to local governments
The country is divided into 17 regions
, 81 provinces
, 146 cities
, 1,488 municipalities
, and 42,036 barangays
. Regions other than Bangsamoro serve primarily to organize the provinces of the country for administrative convenience.
was the most populated region while the National Capital Region
(NCR) the most densely populated.
The Philippine economy has produced an estimated gross domestic product
(nominal) of $356.8 billion.
Primary exports include semiconductors
and electronic products, transport equipment, garments, copper
products, coconut oil
, and fruits. Major trading partners include the United States, Japan, China, Singapore, South Korea, the Netherlands, Hong Kong, Germany, Taiwan, and Thailand.
Its unit of currency
is the Philippine peso
(₱ or PHP).
A newly industrialized country
the Philippine economy has been transitioning from one based upon agriculture to an economy with more emphasis upon services and manufacturing. Of the country's 2018 labor force of around 43.46 million, the agricultural sector
employed 24.3%, and accounted for 8.1% of 2018 GDP.
The industrial sector employed around 19% of the workforce and accounted for 34.1% of GDP, while 57% of the workers involved in the services sector were responsible for 57.8% of GDP.
The unemployment rate
, stands at 4.5%. Meanwhile, due to lower charges in basic necessities, the inflation rate eased to 1.7% in August 2019. Gross international reserves as of October 2013 are $83.201 billion. The Debt-to-GDP ratio
continues to decline to 37.6% as of the second quarter of 2019 from a record high of 78% in 2004. The country is a net importer
but it is also a creditor nation. Manila hosts the headquarters of the Asian Development Bank
The 1997 Asian Financial Crisis
affected the economy, resulting in a lingering decline of the value of the peso and falls in the stock market. The extent it was affected initially was not as severe as that of some of its Asian neighbors. This was largely due to the fiscal conservatism
of the government, partly as a result of decades of monitoring and fiscal supervision from the International Monetary Fund
(IMF), in comparison to the massive spending of its neighbors on the rapid acceleration of economic growth.
There have been signs of progress since. In 2004, the economy experienced 6.4% GDP growth and 7.1% in 2007, its fastest pace of growth in three decades.
[Felix, Rocel. (January 25, 2008)]
2007 GDP seen growing at fastest rate in 30 years
''The Philippine Daily Inquirer''. Retrieved May 29, 2010. (archived fro
on February 22, 2015)
Average annual GDP growth per capita for the period 1966–2007 still stands at 1.45% in comparison to an average of 5.96% for the East Asia and the Pacific region as a whole. The daily income for 45% of the population of the Philippines remains less than $2.
[Reddel, Paul (May 27, 2009)]
''Infrastructure & Public-Private Partnerships in East Asia and the Philippines''
owerPoint slides Presentation in Manila to the American Foreign Chambers of Commerce of the Philippines. Retrieved February 13, 2010 from the Public-Private Infrastructure Advisory Facility (PPIAF) Website.
s from overseas Filipino
s contribute significantly to the Philippine economy.
Remittances peaked in 2006 at 10.4% of the national GDP, and were 8.6% and 8.5% in 2012 and in 2014 respectively.
In 2014 the total worth of foreign exchange remittances was US$28 billion. Regional development is uneven, with Luzon – Metro Manila in particular – gaining most of the new economic growth at the expense of the other regions.
Service industries such as tourism
and business process outsourcing
have been identified as areas with some of the best opportunities for growth for the country.
The Business Process Outsourcing
(BPO) industry is composed of eight sub-sectors, namely, knowledge process outsourcing and back offices, animation, call centers
, software development, game development, engineering design, and medical transcription
. , the Philippines was reported as having eclipsed India as the main center of BPO services in the world.
Science and technology
The Department of Science and Technology
is the governing agency responsible for the development of coordination of science and technology-related projects in the Philippines
. Research organizations in the country include the International Rice Research Institute
, which focuses on the development of new rice varieties and rice crop management techniques.
The Philippines bought its first satellite in 1996. In 2016, the Philippines first micro-satellite
was launched aboard the US Cygnus
The Philippines has a high concentration of cellular phone users.
["Asia's Fab 50 Companies: PLDT-Philippine Long Distance Telephone"](_blank) Text messaging
''Forbes''. September 3, 2008. Retrieved 2009-13-14.
is a popular form of communication and, in 2007, the nation sent an average of one billion SMS
messages per day. The country has a high level of mobile financial services utilization.
[Teves, Oliver. (October 29, 2007)]
Cell phones double as electronic wallets in Philippines
''USA Today''. Associated Press. Retrieved July 6, 2020.
The Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company
, commonly known as PLDT, is a formerly nationalized telecommunications provider.
It is also the largest company in the country. The National Telecommunications Commission
is the agency responsible for the supervision, adjudication and control over all telecommunications services throughout the country
. There are approximately 417 AM and 1079 FM radio stations and 438 television and 1,551 cable television stations. On March 29, 1994, the country was connected to the Internet
via a 64 kbit/s connection from a router serviced by PLDT to a Sprint router in California. Estimates for Internet penetration in the Philippines vary widely ranging from a low of 2.5 million to a high of 24 million people.
and watching videos are among the most frequent Internet activities.
The Philippine population is the world's top internet user.
The travel and tourism sector contributed 10.6% of the country's GDP in 2015 and providing 1,226,500 jobs in 2013. 8,260,913 international visitors arrived from January to December 2019, up by 15.24% for the same period in 2018. of these came from East Asia, came from North America, and came from other ASEAN countries.
The island of Boracay
, popular for its beaches, was named as the best island in the world by Travel + Leisure
The Philippines is also a popular retirement
destination for foreigners due to its climate and low cost of living.
Transportation in the Philippines
is facilitated by road, air, rail and waterways. As of December 2018, there are of roads in the Philippines, with only of roads paved. The Strong Republic Nautical Highway
(SRNH), an integrated set of highway segments and ferry routes covering 17 cities was established in 2003. The Pan-Philippine Highway
connects the islands of Luzon, Samar, Leyte, and Mindanao, forming the backbone of land-based transportation in the country. Roads are the dominant form of transport, carrying 98% of people and 58% of cargo. A network of expressways
extends from the capital to other areas of Luzon. The Cebu–Cordova Link Expressway
will be finished by 2021. Traffic is a significant issue facing the country, especially within Manila
and on arterial roads connecting to the capital.
Public transport in the country include buses, jeepney
s, UV Express
, TNVS, Filcab, taxi
s, and tricycle
s. Jeepneys are a popular and iconic public utility vehicle
Jeepneys and other Public Utility Vehicles which are older than 15 years are being phased out gradually
in favor of a more efficient and environmentally friendly Euro 4
Despite wider historical use, rail transport in the Philippines
is extremely limited, being confined to transporting passengers within Metro Manila and neighboring Laguna
, with a separate short track in the Bicol Region
. There are plans to revive Freight transport
to reduce road congestion. , the country had a railway footprint of only 79 kilometers, which it had plans to expand up to 244 kilometers. Metro Manila is served by three rapid transit lines: LRT Line 1
, LRT Line 2
and MRT Line 3
[United Nations Centre for Human Settlements. (1993)]
''Provision of Travelway Space for Urban Public Transport in Developing Countries''
UN–HABITAT. pp. 15, 26–70, 160–179. .
The PNR South Commuter Line
transports passengers between Metro Manila and Laguna. Railway lines that are under-construction include the Line 2 East Extension Project (2020), the MRT Line 7
(2020), the Metro Manila Subway
(2025), and the PNR North-South Commuter Railway which is divided into several phases, with partial operations to begin in 2022. The civil airline industry is regulated by the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines
. Philippine Airlines
is Asia's oldest commercial airline still operating under its original name.
is the countries leading low-cost carrier
As an archipelago, inter-island travel using watercraft is often necessary. Boats have always been important to societies in the Philippines.
Most boats are double-outrigger
vessels, which can reach up to in length, known as ''banca''
''parao'', prahu, or ''balanghay''. A variety of boat types are used throughout the islands, such as dugouts
(''baloto'') and house-boats like the ''lepa-lepa''.
Terms such as ''bangka'' and ''baroto'' are also used as general names for a variety of boat types.
Modern ships use plywood in place of logs and motor engines in place of sails.
These ships are used both for fishing and for inter-island travel.
The principal seaport
s of Manila
, Subic Bay
, Cagayan de Oro, General Santos, and Zamboanga
form part of the ASEAN Transport Network. The Pasig River Ferry
serves the cities of Manila, Makati, Mandaluyong, Pasig and Marikina in Metro Manila.
Water supply and sanitation
In 2015, it was reported by the Joint Monitoring Programme for Water Supply and Sanitation
that 74% of the population had access to improved sanitation
, and that "good progress" had been made between 1990 and 2015.
As of 2016, 96% of Filipino households have an improved source of drinking water, and 92% of households had sanitary toilet facilities, although connections of these toilet facilities to appropriate sewerage systems remain largely insufficient especially in rural and urban poor communities.
There is significant cultural diversity across the islands, reinforced by the fragmented geography of the country.
The cultures within Mindanao
and the Sulu Archipelago
developed in a particularly distinct manner, due to very limited degree of Spanish influence and greater influence from nearby Islamic regions. Despite this, a national identity emerged
in the 19th century, the development of which is represented by shared national symbols
and other cultural and historical touchstones.
One of the most visible Hispanic legacies
is the prevalence of Spanish names and surnames
among Filipinos; a Spanish name and surname, however, does not necessarily denote Spanish ancestry. This peculiarity, unique among the people of Asia, came as a result of a colonial edict by Governor-General Narciso Clavería y Zaldua
, which ordered the systematic distribution of family names and implementation of Hispanic nomenclature
on the population.
The names of many locations are also Spanish, or stem from Spanish roots and origins.
There is a substantial American influence on modern Filipino culture.
The common use of the English language is an example of the American impact on Philippine society. It has contributed to the influence of American pop cultural trends. This affinity is seen in Filipinos' consumption of fast food
and American film and music. American global fast-food chain stalwarts have entered the market, but local fast-food chains like Goldilocks
and most notably Jollibee
, the leading fast-food chain in the country, have emerged and compete successfully against foreign chains.
and Sinulog festivals
are among the most well-known.
has been handed down primarily through the traditional oral folk literature
of the Filipino people. Some popular figures from Philippine mythologies are Maria Makiling
, and the Sarimanok
Philippine literature comprises works usually written in Filipino, Spanish, or English. Some of the most known were created from the 17th to 19th century. Adarna
, for example, is a famous epic about an eponymous magical bird allegedly written by José de la Cruz
or "Huseng Sisiw". Francisco Balagtas
, the poet and playwright who wrote ''Florante at Laura
'', is recognized as a preeminent writer in the Tagalog (Filipino) language. José Rizal
wrote the novels ''Noli Me Tángere
'' (''Touch Me Not'') and ''El Filibusterismo
'' (''The Filibustering'', also known as ''The Reign of Greed'').
has left an imprint in the Philippines in the way many towns were designed around a central square
or ''plaza mayor'', but many of the buildings bearing its influence were demolished during World War II.
Four Philippine baroque
churches are included in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites
: the San Agustín Church
in Manila, Paoay Church
in Ilocos Norte
, Nuestra Señora de la Asunción
(Santa María) Church in Ilocos Sur
, and Santo Tomás de Villanueva Church
in Ilocos Sur is also known for the many Hispanic-style houses and buildings preserved there.
American rule introduced new architectural styles. This led to the construction of government buildings and Art Deco
theaters. During the American period, some semblance of city planning using the architectural designs and master plans by Daniel Burnham
was done on the portions of the city of Manila. Part of the Burnham plan was the construction of government buildings that resembled Greek
or Neoclassical architecture
. In Iloilo
, structures from both the Spanish and American periods can still be seen, especially in Calle Real
. Certain areas of the country like Batanes
have slight differences as both Spanish and Filipino ways of architecture assimilated differently due to the climate. Limestones were used as a building material, with houses being built to withstand typhoons.
In general, there are two types of Philippine traditional folk dance. The first one reflects the influence under the Spanish occupation and the other, the country's profuseness of tribes that offer their own tribal dances. The music that incorporates the former are mostly bandurria
-based bands that utilizes 14th string guitars. One example of such type is the Cariñosa
. A Hispanic Filipino dance, unofficially considered as the "National Dance of the Philippines". Another example is the Tinikling
. While native dances had become less popular over time,
a revival of folk dances began in the 1920s.
In the Modern and Post-Modern time periods, dances may vary from the delicate ballet
up to the more street-oriented styles of breakdancing
Locally produced spoken dramas became established in the late 1870s. Around the same time, Spanish influence led to the introduction of ''zarzuela
'' plays which integrated musical pieces,
and of ''comedia
'' plays which included more significant dance elements. Such performances became popular throughout the country,
and were written in a number of local languages.
American influence led to the introduction of vaudeville
During the 20th century the realism
genre became more dominant, with performances written to focus on contemporary political and societal issues.
During the Spanish era Rondalya
music, where traditional string orchestra mandolin
type instruments were used, was widespread.
[Filipino Arts & Music Ensemble] Kundiman
, Filipino Heritage, The Making of a Nation, Volume 9, 1978, famenyc.org
developed in the 1920s and 30's,
and had a renaissance in the postwar period. The American colonial period exposed many Filipinos to US culture and popular forms of music.
was introduced to Filipinos in the 1960s, and developed into Filipino rock
, or "Pinoy rock", a term encompassing diverse styles such as pop rock
, alternative rock
, heavy metal
, new wave
, and reggae
. Martial law in the 1970s produced several Filipino folk rock
bands and artists who were at the forefront of political demonstrations. The 1970s also saw the birth of Manila Sound
and Original Pilipino Music
(OPM). Filipino hip-hop
traces its origins back to 1979, entering the mainstream in 1990. Recently K-pop
has become popular. Karaoke
is a popular activity in the country.
As a general description, the distinct value system
of Filipinos is rooted primarily in personal alliance systems, especially those based in kinship, obligation, friendship, religion (particularly Christianity), and commercial relationships.
[''Social Values and Organization'']
Philippines, Country Studies US. Online version of print book Ronald E. Dolan, ed. ''Philippines: A Country Study''. Washington: GPO for the Library of Congress, 1991.
Filipino values are, for the most part, centered around maintaining social harmony, motivated primarily by the desire to be accepted within a group. The main sanction against diverging from these values are the concepts of "''Hiya''", roughly translated as 'a sense of shame', and "''Amor propio''" or 'self-esteem'.
Social approval, acceptance by a group, and belonging to a group are major concerns. Caring about what others will think, say or do, are strong influences on social behavior among Filipinos.
[Hallig, Jason V]
''Communicating Holiness to the Filipinos: Challenges and Needs''
, The Path to a Filipino Theology of Holiness, pp. 2, 10.
Other elements of the Filipino value system are optimism about the future, pessimism about present situations and events, concern and care for other people, the existence of friendship and friendliness, the habit of being hospitable, religious nature, respectfulness to self and others, respect for the female members of society, the fear of God, and abhorrence of acts of cheating and thievery.
[ File dated April 8, 2000. In ]
Regional variations exist throughout the islands, for example rice
is a standard starch in Luzon while cassava
is more common in Mindanao.
Filipino taste buds tend to favor robust flavors, but the cuisine is not as spicy as those of its neighbors.
Unlike many Asians, most Filipinos do not eat with chopsticks
; they use Western cutlery. However, possibly due to rice being the primary staple food and the popularity of a large number of stews and main dishes with broth in Filipino cuisine, the main pairing of utensils seen at the Filipino dining table is that of spoon
, not knife and fork.
The traditional way of eating with the hands known as ''kamayan'' (using the hand for bringing food to the mouth) was previously more often seen in the less urbanized areas.
However, due to the various Filipino restaurants that introduced Filipino food to people of other nationalities, as well as to Filipino urbanites, ''kamayan'' fast became popular. This recent trend also sometimes incorporates the "Boodle fight
" concept (as popularized and coined by the Philippine Army), wherein banana leaves are used as giant plates on top of which rice portions and Filipino viands are placed all together for a filial, friendly or communal ''kamayan'' feasting.
uses mainly Filipino and English, though broadcasting
has shifted to Filipino.
There are large numbers of both radio stations
The top three newspapers by nationwide readership as well as credibility are the Philippine Daily Inquirer
, Manila Bulletin
, and The Philippine Star
. While freedom of the press is protected by the constitution, the country is very dangerous for journalists.
[Country profile: The Philippines](_blank)
(January 9, 2018). ''BBC News''. Retrieved July 25, 2020.
The dominant television
networks were ABS-CBN
, both being free to air.
, at the time the largest network
was shut down following a cease and desist order issued by the National Telecommunications Commission
on May 5, 2020, a day after the expiration of the network's franchise
. Prior to this move, Duterte accused ABS-CBN of being biased against his administration and vowed to block the renewal of their franchise. However, critics of the Duterte administration, human rights groups, and media unions said the shutdown of ABS-CBN was an attack on press freedom.
On July 10, 2020, the House of Representatives declined a renewal of ABS-CBN's TV and radio franchise, voted 70–11.
TV, the Internet
, and social media, particularly Facebook
, remain the top source of news and information for majority of Filipinos as newspaper readership continues to decline. English broadsheets are popular among executives, professionals and students.
Cheaper Tagalog tabloids, which feature crime, sex, gossips and gore, saw a rise in the 1990s, and tend to be popular among the masses, particularly in Manila.
Philippine cinema began at the end of the 19th century, and made up around 20% of the domestic market during the second half of the 20th century. During the 21st century however, the industry has struggled to compete with larger budget foreign films. Critically acclaimed Philippines films include ''Himala
'' (''Miracle''). Moving pictures were first shown in the Philippines on January 1, 1897. All films were all in Spanish since Philippine cinema was first introduced during the final years of the Spanish era of the country. Antonio Ramos was the first known movie producer. Meanwhile, Jose Nepomuceno
was dubbed as the "Father of Philippine Movies". His work marked the start of the local production of movies. Production companies remained small during the era of silent film
, but 1933 saw the emergence of sound films and the arrival of the first significant production company. The postwar 1940s and the 1950s are regarded as a high point for Philippine cinema.
The growing dominance of Hollywood
films and the cost of production has severely reduced local filmmaking.
[A bleak storyline for the Filipino film industry](_blank)
Conde, Carlos H. ''International Herald Tribune''. February 11, 2007. (archived fro
on April 1, 2007)
. Vanzi, Sol Jose. ''Newsflash''. January 15, 2006.
Nonetheless, some local films continue to find success.
is played at both amateur and professional levels and is considered to be the most popular sport in the Philippines. In 2010, Manny Pacquiao
was named "Fighter of the Decade"
for the 2000s by the Boxing Writers Association of America
The national martial art
and sport of the country is Arnis
is another popular entertainment especially among Filipino men, and was documented by Magellan's voyage as a pastime in the kingdom of Taytay. Filipinos also play football, and their football team
has participated in only one Asian Cup
Beginning in 1924
, the Philippines has competed in every Summer Olympic Games
, except when they participated in the American-led boycott of the 1980 Summer Olympics
. The Philippines is also the first tropical nation
to compete at the Winter Olympic Games debuting in the 1972
* Outline of the Philippines
Official website of the National Government of the Republic of the PhilippinesOfficial Gazette of the Republic of the PhilippinesOfficial website of the Senate of the PhilippinesOfficial website of the House of Representatives of the PhilippinesOfficial website of the Supreme Court of the PhilippinesOfficial website of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (Central Bank of the Philippines)Official website of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA)Official website of the Philippine National Police (PNP)Official website of the Department of TourismThe Philippines Online Tourism Guide
World Bank summary of trade statistics: Philippines
from the BBC News
* at UCB Libraries GovPubs
''The World Factbook
''. Central Intelligence Agency
at ''Encyclopædia Britannica
Philippine News and Current EventsKey Development Forecasts for the Philippines
from International Futures
Books and articles
History of the Philippine Islands
in many volumes, from Project Gutenberg
(indexed under Emma Helen Blair
, the general editor)
* About the influence of the Spanish people and language
* Wikimedia Philippines
Asian Development Bank (ADB)Filipinana.net – Free digital library and a research portalWikiSatellite view of Philippines
Category:English-speaking countries and territories
Category:Former colonies in Asia
Category:Former Spanish colonies
Category:Maritime Southeast Asia
Category:Member states of ASEAN
Category:Member states of the United Nations
Category:Newly industrializing countries
Category:Southeast Asian countries
Category:Spanish East Indies
Category:States and territories established in 1565
Category:States and territories established in 1898
Category:States and territories established in 1946
Category:Volcanic arc islands
Category:Countries in Asia
Category:Former Japanese colonies