Background: The Philippine Islands became a Spanish colony during the 16th century; they were ceded to the US in 1898 following the Spanish-American War. In 1935 the Philippines became a self-governing commonwealth. Manuel QUEZON was elected president and was tasked with preparing the country for independence after a 10-year transition. In 1942 the islands fell under Japanese occupation during World War II, and US forces and Filipinos fought together during 1944-45 to regain control. On 4 July 1946 the Republic of the Philippines attained its independence. A 20-year rule by Ferdinand MARCOS ended in 1986, when a "people power" movement in Manila ("EDSA 1") forced him into exile and installed Corazon AQUINO as president. Her presidency was hampered by several coup attempts that prevented a return to full political stability and economic development. Fidel RAMOS was elected president in 1992. His administration was marked by increased stability and by progress on economic reforms. In 1992, the US closed its last military bases on the islands. Joseph ESTRADA was elected president in 1998. He was succeeded by his vice-president, Gloria MACAPAGAL-ARROYO, in January 2001 after ESTRADA's stormy impeachment trial on corruption charges broke down and another "people power" movement ("EDSA 2") demanded his resignation. MACAPAGAL-ARROYO was elected to a six-year term as president in May 2004. Her presidency was marred by several corruption allegations but the Philippine economy was one of the few to avoid contraction following the 2008 global financial crisis, expanding each year of her administration. Benigno AQUINO III was elected to a six-year term as president in May 2010. The Philippine Government faces threats from several groups on the US Government's Foreign Terrorist Organization list. Manila has waged a decades-long struggle against ethnic Moro insurgencies in the southern Philippines, which has led to a peace accord with the Moro National Liberation Front and on-again/off-again peace talks with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. The decades-long Maoist-inspired New People's Army insurgency also operates through much of the country.
Location: Southeastern Asia, archipelago between the Philippine Sea and the South China Sea, east of Vietnam
Area land: 298,170 sq km
Area water: 1,830 sq km
Coastline: 36,289 km
Country name conventional long form: Republic of the Philippines
Country name conventional short form: Philippines
Country name former: Republic of the Philippines
Population: 101,833,938 (July 2011 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 34.6% (male 17,999,279/female 17,285,040); 15-64 years: 61.1% (male 31,103,967/female 31,097,203); 65 years and over: 4.3% (male 1,876,805/female 2,471,644) (2011 est.);
Population growth rate: 1.903% (2011 est.)
Birth rate: 25.34 births/1,000 population (2011 est.)
Death rate: 5.02 deaths/1,000 population (July 2011 est.)
Net migration rate: -1.29 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2011 est.)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female; under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female; 15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female; 65 years and over: 0.76 male(s)/female; total population: 1 male(s)/female (2011 est.);
Infant mortality rate: total: 19.34 deaths/1,000 live births; male: 21.84 deaths/1,000 live births; female: 16.71 deaths/1,000 live births (2011 est.);
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 71.66 years; male: 68.72 years; female: 74.74 years (2011 est.);
Total fertility rate: 3.19 children born/woman (2011 est.);
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: less than 0.1% (2009 est.);
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 8,700 (2009 est.);
HIV/AIDS - deaths: fewer than 200 (2009 est.);
Nationality: noun: Filipino(s); adjective: Philippine;
Ethnic groups: Tagalog 28.1%, Cebuano 13.1%, Ilocano 9%, Bisaya/Binisaya 7.6%, Hiligaynon Ilonggo 7.5%, Bikol 6%, Waray 3.4%, other 25.3% (2000 census);
Religions: Roman Catholic 80.9%, Muslim 5%, Evangelical 2.8%, Iglesia ni Kristo 2.3%, Aglipayan 2%, other Christian 4.5%, other 1.8%, unspecified 0.6%, none 0.1% (2000 census);
Languages: Filipino (official; based on Tagalog) and English (official); eight major dialects - Tagalog, Cebuano, Ilocano, Hiligaynon or Ilonggo, Bicol, Waray, Pampango, and Pangasinan;
Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write; total population: 92.6%; male: 92.5%; female: 92.7% (2000 census);
GDP (purchasing power parity): $353.2 billion (2010 est.); $329.2 billion (2009 est.); $325.6 billion (2008 est.);
GDP (official exchange rate): $188.7 billion (2010 est.);
GDP - real growth rate: 7.3% (2010 est.); 1.1% (2009 est.); 3.7% (2008 est.);
GDP - per capita (PPP): $3,500 (2010 est.); $3,400 (2009 est.); $3,400 (2008 est.);
GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 13.9%; industry: 31.3%; services: 54.8% (2010 est.);
Population below poverty line: 32.9% (2006 est.);
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 2.4%; highest 10%: 31.2% (2006);
Labor force: 38.9 million (2010 est.);
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture: 33%; industry: 15%; services: 52% (2010 est.);
Unemployment rate: 7.3% (2010 est.); 7.5% (2009 est.);
Budget: revenues: $26.84 billion; expenditures: $33.82 billion (2010 est.);
Industries: electronics assembly, garments, footwear, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, wood products, food processing, petroleum refining, fishing;
Industrial production growth rate: 12.1% (2010 est.);
Electricity - production: 61.93 billion kWh (2009 est.);
Electricity - consumption: 54.4 billion kWh (2009 est.);
Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2009 est.);
Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2009 est.);
Statistics: CIA World Factbook.
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(Alternative weekly magazine), Quezon City
(Financial daily), Manila
(Opposition, pro-Estrada), Manila
(Independent), Davao City
(Online news portal), Manila
Displaying 1 to 4 of 35 items.
Memories of past political dynasties were on many Filipino voters' minds when they elected Noynoy Aquino president.
A presidential race depicted as a run-off between a saint, a CEO and a faded movie star is being overshadowed by worries over a computerized vote-counting system.
Despite the expenditure of $2.74 trillion in official development assistance over the past 40 years, the plight of the poor appears worse than ever.
Based on examples of media mania about Islam, one may have the impression that the future of American relations with the Muslim world depends on the outcome of the 2008 elections.