Mostly mountains with arrow to extensive coastal lowlands
Tropical marine; northeast monsoon (November to April); southwest monsoon (May to October)
Population: 105,720,644 (July 2013 est.),
Languages: Filipino (official; based on Tagalog) and English (official); eight major dialects
Catholic 82.9% (Roman Catholic 80.9%, Aglipayan 2%), Muslim 5%, Evangelical 2.8%, Iglesia ni Kristo 2.3%, other Christian 4.5%, other 1.8%, unspecified 0.6%, none 0.1%
Philippine GDP growth, which cooled from 7.6% in 2010 to 3.9% in 2011, expanded to 6.6% in 2012 - meeting the government's targeted 6%-7% growth range. The 2012 expansion partly reflected a rebound from depressed 2011 export and public sector spending levels. The economy has weathered global economic and financial downturns better than its regional peers due to minimal exposure to troubled international securities, lower dependence on exports, relatively resilient domestic consumption.
Almost half the population lives below the poverty line set by the government. The sharing of resources by more affluent family members and relatives working overseas helps many of the poor. Standards of living also vary dramatically from region to region and between urban and rural areas. The bahay kubo or nipa hut, a two-or three-room structure with bamboo walls and floors and a cogon-grass or palm-leaf roof raised on wooden piles, was the traditional style of housing for the majority.
US Military Presence/Support