Philippines

Main features:

Population: 101.6 million (WB, 2016)

Area: 300,400 km²

Capital city: Manila

Main cities: Quezon (3 million), Manila (2.1 million), Caloocan (1.7 million), Makati, Davao, Cebu

Apex: Mount Apo (2,954 m) on Mindanao Island

Languages: Filipino, English, cebuano, tagalog, ilocano.

Religions: Catholic (84%), Muslim (7%), Protestant (4%), Buddhism and other (5%)

Political situation:

Republic

Head of state: Rodrigo Duterte since June 2016

Head of government: Maria Leonor Robredo

Unesco World Heritage Sites: Terrasse rice paddy fields of Batad (Luzon), Historic city of Vigan (Luzon), Underground river of Puerto Princesa (Palawan), Tubbataha reef (Sulu sea), Hamiguitan Mountain range (Mindanao)

Environment:

Archipelago made up of 7,107 islands, of which only more than 2,000 are inhabited. There are numerous environmental threats that differ depending on the season of the year, even if rising sea levels are a constant. In the dry season, the lack of freshwater weighs on rural communities, with dried up dams and more difficult harvests, small farmers are more and more impacted. In the humid season, typhoons, floods and torrential rains repeatedly devastate the country, with on average two typhoons per month from June to December. Urban and peri-urban areas are the most vulnerable to these effects. Governmental responses have been voting treaties since 2000 to turn the country towards green energy, but there is still a long road to go.