Introduction - Philippines

The Republic of the Philippines  is a unitary sovereign and archipelagic country in Southeast Asia. Situated in the western Pacific Ocean, it consists of about 7,641 islands that are categorized broadly under three main geographical divisions from north to south: Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. The capital city of the Philippines is Manila and the most populous city is Quezon City, both part of Metro Manila. Bounded by the South China Sea on the west, the Philippine Sea on the east and the Celebes Sea on the southwest, the Philippines shares maritime borders with Taiwan to the north, Vietnam to the west, Palau to the east and Malaysia and Indonesia to the south.

The Philippines' location on the Pacific Ring of Fire and close to the equator makes the Philippines prone to earthquakes and typhoons, but also endows it with abundant natural resources and some of the world's greatest biodiversity. The Philippines has an area of 343,448 square kilometers (132,606 sq mi) and, as of 2015, had a population of at least 100 million. It was the eighth-most populated country in Asia and the 12th most populated country in the world. Approximately 10 million additional Filipinos lived overseas.

Multiple ethnicities and cultures are found throughout the islands. In prehistoric times, Negritos were some of the archipelago's earliest inhabitants. They were followed by successive waves of Austronesian peoples. Exchanges with Chinese, Malay, Indian, and Islamic nations occurred. Then, various competing maritime states were established under the rule of Datus, Rajahs, Sultans or Lakans.

The arrival of Ferdinand Magellan, a Portuguese explorer leading a fleet for the Spanish, in Homonhon, Eastern Samar in 1521 marked the beginning of Hispanic colonization. The Philippines became part of the Spanish Empire for more than 300 years. This resulted in Catholicism becoming the dominant religion.

As the 19th century gave way to the 20th, the Philippine Revolution quickly followed, which then spawned the short-lived First Philippine Republic, followed by the bloody Philippine–American War. The United States retained sovereignty over the islands until after World War II, when the Philippines were recognized as an independent nation.

It 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. It also hosts the headquarters of the Asian Development Bank. The Philippines is considered to be an emerging market and a newly industrialized country, which has an economy transitioning from being based on agriculture to one based more on services and manufacturing. It is one of the only two predominantly Christian nations in Southeast Asia, the other being East Timor.

Etymology

The Philippines was named in honor of King Philip II of Spain. The official name of the Philippines has changed several times in the course of its history. During the Philippine Revolution, the Malolos Congress proclaimed the establishment of the República Filipina or the Philippine Republic. the official name of the country has been the Republic of the Philippines.

Spanish rule

A sketch of a Manila galleon used during the Manila-Acapulco Trade. In 1521, Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan's expedition arrived in the Philippines, claimed the islands for Spain and was then killed at the Battle of Mactan.

Trade introduced foodstuffs such as maize, tomatoes, potatoes, chili peppers, chocolate and pineapples from Mexico and Peru Catholic missionaries converted most of the lowland inhabitants to Christianity. The Spanish also decreed the introduction of free public schooling in 1863. As a result of these policies the Philippine population increased exponentially.

 

In the 19th century, Philippine ports opened to world trade and shifts started occurring within Filipino society. Many Spaniards born in the Philippines (criollos) and those of mixed ancestry (mestizos) became wealthy and an influx of Latin American immigrants opened up government positions traditionally held by Spaniards born in the Iberian Peninsula (peninsulares).

American rule

The islands were ceded by Spain to the United States as a result of the latter's victory in the Spanish–American War. The Americans then suppressed other rebellious sub-states: mainly, the waning Sultanate of Sulu, as well as the insurgent Tagalog Republic, the Cantonal Republic of Negros in the Visayas, and the Republic of Zamboanga in Mindanao. During this era, a renaissance in Philippine culture occurred, with the expansion of Philippine cinema and literature. Daniel Burnham built an architectural plan for Manila which would have transformed it into a modern city.

Japanese rule

Plans for independence over the next decade were interrupted by World War II when the Japanese Empireinvaded and the Second Philippine Republic of José P. Laurel was established as a collaborator state.

While remaining loyal to the United States, many Filipinos hoped and believed that liberation from the Japanese would bring them freedom and their already-promised independence.

Postcolonial period

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.

Contemporary history

Aquino was succeeded by Fidel V. Ramos, who won the Philippine presidential election held in May 1992. During this period the country's economic performance remained modest, with a 3.6%  percent GDP growth rate.

Ramos' successor, Joseph Estrada assumed office in June 1998 and succeeded by his Vice President, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo on January 20, 2001.

In Arroyo's 9-year administration, the economy experienced a phenomenal growth of 4-7% averaging at 5.33% from 2002 to 2007 with the completion of infrastructure projects like LRT Line 2 in 2004.

Benigno Aquino III won the 2010 national elections and served as the 15th President of the Philippines.

On May 15, 2013, the Philippines implemented the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013, commonly known as K–12 program. It added two more years to the country's ten-year schooling system for primary and secondary education. The United States President Barack Obama visited the Philippines on April 28, 2014, the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement, was signed, paving the way for the return of United States Armed Forces bases into the country.

Former Davao City mayor Rodrigo Duterte of PDP–Laban won the 2016 presidential election becoming the first president from Mindanao. On July 12, 2016, the Permanent Court of Arbitration ruled in favor of the Philippines in its case against China's claims in the South China Sea. After winning the Presidency, Duterte launched an intensified anti-drug campaign to fulfill a campaign promise of wiping out criminality in six months.

Duterte initiated the "Build, Build, Build" program, which aims to usher the Philippines into a new "golden age" of infrastructure. It will create more jobs and business opportunities, which, in turn, would sustain the country’s economic growth and accelerate poverty reduction. The construction industry needs two million more workers to sustain the program.

The Build, Build, Build program is made up of 75 projects, which includes six air transport projects, 12 rail transport projects, and four water transport projects. It also includes four major flood management projects, 11 water supply and irrigation projects, four power projects, and three other public infrastructure projects. The Philippines is expected to spend $160 billion to $180 billion up to 2022 for the public investments in infrastructure.

Politics

The Philippines has a democratic government in the form of a constitutional republic with a presidential system. It is governed as a unitary state with the exception of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), which is largely free from the national government. There have been attempts to change the government to a federal, unicameral, or parliamentary government since the Ramos administration.

The President 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.

Senators are elected at large while the representatives are elected from both legislative districts and through sectoral representation.The judicial 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.

Foreign relations

The Philippines' international relations are based on trade with other nations and the well-being of the 10 million overseas Filipinos living outside the country. As a founding and active member of the United Nations, the Philippines has been elected several times into the Security Council. Carlos P. Romulo was a former President of the United Nations General Assembly. The country is an active participant in the Human Rights Council as well as in peacekeeping missions, particularly in East Timor.

The Philippines is also a founding and active member of ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations), an organization designed to strengthen relations and promote economic and cultural growth among states in the Southeast Asian region. It has hosted several summits and is an active contributor to the direction and policies of the bloc.

The Philippines values its relations with the United States. It supported the United States during the Cold War and the War on Terror and is a major non-NATO ally. Japan, the biggest contributor of official development assistance to the country, is thought of as a friend.

Relations with other nations are generally positive. Shared democratic values ease relations with Western and European countries while similar economic concerns help in relations with other developing countries. Historical ties and cultural similarities also serve as a bridge in relations with Spain. Despite issues such as domestic abuse and war affecting overseas Filipino workers, relations with Middle Eastern countries are friendly as seen in the continuous employment of more than two million overseas Filipinos living there.

Recent foreign policy has been mostly about economic relations with its Southeast Asian and Asia-Pacific neighbors.

The Philippines is an active member of the East Asia Summit (EAS), the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), the Latin Union, the Group of 24, and the Non-Aligned Movement. It is also seeking to strengthen relations with Islamic countries by campaigning for observer status in the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.

Military

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) are responsible for national security and consist of three branches: the Philippine Air Force, the Philippine Army, and the Philippine Navy(includes the Marine Corps). 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 (DILG).

At 1.1 percent of GDP, the Philippines spent less on its military forces than the regional average. As of 2014 Malaysia and Thailand were estimated to spend 1.5%, China 2.1%, Vietnam 2.2% and South Korea 2.6%.

The Philippines has been an ally of the United States since World War II. A mutual defense treaty between the two countries was signed in 1951. The Philippines supported American policies during the Cold War and participated in the Korean and Vietnam wars. It was a member of the now dissolved SEATO, a group that was intended to serve a role similar to NATO and that included Australia, France, New Zealand, Pakistan, Thailand, the United Kingdom, and the United States. After the start of the War on Terror, the Philippines was part of the coalition that gave support to the United States in Iraq.

Administrative Divisions

The Philippines is divided into three island groups: Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. These are further divided into 17 regions, 81 provinces, 145 cities, 1,489 municipalities, and 42,036 barangays. In addition, Section 2 of Republic Act No. 5446 asserts that the definition of the territorial sea around the Philippine archipelago does not affect the claim over the eastern part of Sabah.

Geography

The Philippines is an archipelago composed of about 7,641 islands with a total land area, including inland bodies of water, of 343,448 square kilometers (132,606 sq mi). The 36,289 kilometers (22,549 mi) of coastline makes it the country with the fifth longest coastline in the world.

Most of the mountainous islands are covered in tropical rainforest and volcanic in origin. The highest mountain is Mount Apo. It measures up to 2,954 meters (9,692 ft) above sea level and is located on the island of Mindanao. The Galathea Depth in the Philippine Trench is the deepest point in the country and the third deepest in the world. The trench is located in the Philippine Sea.

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.

Due to the volcanic nature of the islands, mineral deposits are abundant. The country is estimated to have the second-largest gold deposits after South Africa and one of the largest copper deposits in the world. It is also rich in nickel, chromite, and zinc.

Biodiversity

The Philippines' rainforests and its extensive coastlines make it home to a diverse range of birds, plants, animals, and sea creatures. It is one of the ten most biologically megadiverse countries. 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. Native mammals include the palm civet cat, the dugong, the cloud rat and the Philippine tarsier associated with Bohol.

The Philippines have some very large reptiles such as pythons and cobras, together with gigantic saltwater crocodiles. The largest crocodile in captivity, known locally as Lolong, was captured in the southern island of Mindanao. 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 Accipitridae family and is endemic to the rainforests of Luzon, Samar, Leyte and Mindanao.

Philippine maritime waters encompass diverse marine life, an important part of the Coral Triangle. The total number of corals and marine fish species was estimated at 500 and 2,400 respectively.

With an estimated 13,500 plant species in the country, 3,200 of which are unique to the islands, Philippine rainforests boast an array of flora, including many rare types of orchids and rafflesia. According to Conservation International, "the country is one of the few nations that is, in its entirety, both a hotspot and a megadiversity country, placing it among the top priority hotspots for global conservation."

Climate

The Philippines has a tropical maritime climate that is usually hot and humid. There are three seasons: tag-init or tag-araw, the hot dry season or summer from March to May; tag-ulan, the rainy season from June to November; and tag-lamig, the cool dry season from December to February. The southwest monsoon (from May to October) is known as the Habagat, and the dry winds of the northeast monsoon (from November to April), the Amihan.Temperatures usually range from 21 °C (70 °F) to 32 °C (90 °F) although it can get cooler or hotter depending on the season. The coolest month is January; the warmest is May.

The average yearly temperature is around 26.6 °C (79.9 °F). The average annual temperature of Baguio at an elevation of 1,500 meters (4,900 ft) above sea level is 18.3 °C (64.9 °F), making it a popular destination during hot summers.

Economy

The Philippine economy is the 34th largest in the world, with an estimated 2017 gross domestic product (nominal) of $348.593 billion. Primary exports include semiconductors and electronic products, transport equipment, garments, copper products, petroleum 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 total labor force of around 40.813 Million, the agricultural sector employs 30% of the labor force, and accounts for 14% of GDP. The industrial sector employs around 14% of the workforce and accounts for 30% of GDP. Meanwhile, the 47% of workers involved in the services sector are responsible for 56% of GDP.

The unemployment rate as of 14 December 2014, stands at 6.0%. Meanwhile, due to lower charges in basic necessities, the inflation rate eases to 3.7% in November. Gross international reserves as of October 2013 are $83.201 billion. The Debt-to-GDP ratio continues to decline to 38.1% as of March 2014 from a record high of 78% in 2004. The country is a net importer but it is also a creditor nation.

In 2004, the economy experienced 6.4% GDP growth and 7.1% in 2007, its fastest pace of growth in three decades. 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.

The economy is heavily reliant upon remittances from overseas Filipinos, which surpass foreign direct investment as a source of foreign currency. Remittances peaked in 2010 at 10.4% of the national GDP, and were 8.6% in 2012 and in 2014, Philippines 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, although the government has taken steps to distribute economic growth by promoting investment in other areas of the country. Despite constraints, 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.

Goldman Sachs includes the country in its list of the "Next Eleven" economies but China and India have emerged as major economic competitors. Goldman Sachs estimates that by the year 2050, it will be the 20th largest economy in the world. HSBC also projects the Philippine economy to become the 16th largest economy in the world, 5th largest economy in Asia and the largest economy in the South East Asian region by 2050. The Philippines is a member of the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the World Trade Organization(WTO), the Asian Development Bank which is headquartered in Mandaluyong, the Colombo Plan, the G-77 and the G-24 among other groups and institutions.

Transportation

The transportation infrastructure in the Philippines is relatively underdeveloped. This is partly due to the mountainous terrain and the scattered geography of the islands, but also the result of consistently low investment in infrastructure by successive governments. In 2013, about 3% of national GDP went towards infrastructure development – much lower than many of its neighbors. There are 216,387 kilometers (134,457 mi) of roads in the Philippines, with only 61,093 kilometers (37,961 mi) of roads paved.

Buses, jeepneys, taxis, and motorized tricycles are commonly available in major cities and towns. In 2007, there were about 5.53 million registered motor vehicles with registrations increasing at an average annual rate of 4.55%.

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines manages airports and implementation of policies regarding safe air travel with 85 public airports operational as of 2014. Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) serves the Greater Manila Areatogether with Clark International Airport. Philippine Airlines, Asia's oldest commercial airline still operating under its original name, and Cebu Pacific, the leading low-cost airline, are the major airlines serving most domestic and international destinations.

Expressways and highways are mostly located on the island of Luzon including the Pan-Philippine Highway, connecting the islands of Luzon, Samar, Leyte, and Mindanao, the North Luzon Expressway, South Luzon Expressway, and the Subic–Clark–Tarlac Expressway.

Rail transport in the Philippines only plays a role in transporting passengers within Metro Manila and the province of Laguna. The region is served by three rapid transit lines. In the past, railways served major parts of Luzon, and railroad services were available on the islands of Cebu and Negros. Railways were also used for agricultural purposes, especially in tobacco and sugar cane production. Rail freight transportation was almost non-existent as of 2014. A few transportation systems are under development. A so-called Hybrid Electric Road Train which is a long bi-articulated bus, was also being tested as of 2015.

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. Notable Filipino scientists include Maria Orosa, a food technologist famous for her formulated food products like calamansi nip, soyalac and the banana ketchup.

Fe del Mundo, a pediatrician whose pioneering work in pediatrics as an active medical practice spanned 8 decades, Paulo Campos, a physician who was dubbed as "The Father of Nuclear Medicine in the Philippines" Ramon Barba, an inventor and horticulturist known for his method to induce more flowers in mango trees.

Research organizations include the International Rice Research Institute, an international independent research and training organization established in 1960 with headquarters in Los Baños, Laguna. The Philippines bought its first satellite in 1996. In 2016, the Philippines first micro-satellite, Diwata-1was launched aboard the US Cygnus spacecraft.

Communications

The Philippines has a sophisticated cellular phone industry and a high concentration of users. Text messaging is a popular form of communication and, in 2007, the nation sent an average of one billion SMS messages per day. Over five million mobile phone users also use their phones as virtual wallets, making it a leader among developing nations in providing financial transactions over cellular networks. The Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company commonly known as PLDT is the leading 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 383 AM and 659 FM radio stations and 297 television and 873 cable television stations. The country went live on 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. Social networking and watching videos are among the most frequent Internet activities.

Tourism

The travel and tourism sector is a major contributor to the economy, contributing 7.1% to the Philippine GDP in 2013 international visitors arrived from January to June 2014 up by 2.22% in the same period in 2013. South Korea, China, and Japan accounted for 58.78% while the Americas accounted for 19.28% and Europe 10.64%. The Department of Tourism has responsibility for the management and promotion of the tourism sector.

The country's rich biodiversity is one of the main tourist attractions with its beaches, mountains, rainforests, islands and diving spots among the most popular tourist destinations. As an archipelago consisting of about 7,500 islands, the Philippines have numerous beaches, caves and other rock formations. Boracay has glaring white sand beaches and was named as the best island in the world by Travel + Leisure in 2012. The Banaue Rice Terraces in Ifugao, the historic town of Vigan in Ilocos Sur, the Chocolate Hills in Bohol, Magellan's Cross in Cebu and the Tubbataha Reef in Visayas are other highlights.

The Philippines is also one of the favorite retirement destinations for foreigners due to its warm climate all year round, beaches and low cost of living.

Demographics

The population of the Philippines increased from 1990 to 2008 by approximately 28 million, a 45% growth in that time frame.  Since the liberalization of United States immigration laws in 1965, the number of people in the United States having Filipino ancestry has grown substantially. In 2007 there were an estimated 12 million Filipinos living overseas.

The Philippine population will continue to increase throughout 2018 and is projected to reach around 107,190,081 by Dec. 31, 2018, based on projections made by the Commission on Population using the latest population census of 2015 (Philippine Statistics Authority). 

Metro Manila's gross regional product was estimated as of 2009 to be 468.4 billion (at constant 1985 prices) and accounts for 33% of the nation's GDP. In 2011 Manila ranked as the 28th wealthiest urban agglomeration in the world and the 2nd in Southeast Asia.

 

Religion

The Philippines is an officially secular state, although Christianity is the dominant faith. Census data from 2010 found that about 80.58% of the population professed Catholicism. Around 37% regularly attend Mass and 29% identify as very religious. Protestants are 10.8% of the total population, mostly endorsing evangelical Protestant denominations that were introduced by American missionaries at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, they are heavily concentrated in Northern Luzon and Southern Mindanao. The Philippine Independent Church is a notable independent Catholic denomination. Iglesias ni Cristo is a notable Unitarian and Restorations denomination in the country and are mostly concentrated at Central Luzon.

Islam is the second largest religion. The Muslim population of the Philippines was reported as 5.57% of the total population according to census returns in 2010, although a 2012 report by the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos estimates it at 11%. The majority of Muslims live in the Bangsamoro region. Most practice Sunni Islam under the Shafi'i school.

An estimated 2% of the total population practice Philippine traditional religions, whose practices and folk beliefs are often syncretized with Christianity and Islam. Buddhism is practiced by around 2% of the population, and is concentrated among Filipinos of Chinese descent. The remaining population is divided between a number of religious groups, including Hindus, Jews, and Baha'is.

Health

There are an increasing number of private health providers and, as of 2009, 67.1% of healthcare came from private expenditures while 32.9% was from government. Health expenditure represented about 6.1% of total government spending. Per capita total expenditure at average exchange rate was USD52. The budget allocation for Healthcare in 2010 was 28 billion (about USD597 million) or 310 ($7) per person.

There are an estimated 90,370 physicians or 1 per every 833 people, 480,910 nurses, 43,220 dentists, and 1 hospital bed per every 769 people. 70% of nursing graduates go overseas to work. The Philippines is the biggest supplier of nurses for export.

In 2001 there were about 1,700 hospitals, of which about 40% were government-run and 60% private. Cardiovascular diseases account for more than 25% of all deaths. According to official estimates, 1,965 cases of human immunodeficiency virus(HIV) were reported in 2003, of which 636 had developed acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). Despite the increase of HIV/AIDS cases from 12,000 in 2005 to 17,450 as of April 2014 with 5,965 people who were under anti-retroviral therapy, the country is still a low-HIV-prevalence country with less than 0.1% of the adult population estimated to be HIV-positive.

Education

The Philippines has a simple literacy rate of 95.6%, with 95.1% for males and 96.1% for females. The Philippines had a functional literacy rate of 86.45%, with 84.2% for males and 88.7% for females in 2008. Spending on education accounted for 16.11% in the national budget proposed for 2015.

The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) lists 2,180 higher education institutions, 607 of which are public and 1,573 private. 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. There are a number of foreign schools with study programs. A 6-year elementary and 4-year high school education is mandatory with an additional two years being added in 2013.

The Department of Education covers elementary, secondary, and non-formal education. The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) administers post-secondary, middle-level education training and development. The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) supervises college and graduate academic programs and degrees as well as regulates standards in 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 (8) constituent universities, is the national university system of the Philippines.

Architecture

Spanish architecture 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 Iloilo.

 The American occupation 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.

Music

Philippine music has evolved rapidly due to the different influences stemming from colonialism under other countries. Before the Spanish conquest of the islands, most music was reminiscent of, or heavily influenced by, nature. Some examples of this tribal music is Koyu No Tebulul of the T'boli and Ambo Hato of the Ifugao.

Visual art

Pottery and weaving are among the very first art forms showcasing Filipino artistic design and are evident from cave dwellings all over the country. Among these are mostly anthropomorphic earthenware jars dating from c. 5 BC to 225 AD. Weaving was mostly done by women, using fibers from abaca, pineapple, cotton, and bark to make clothes, rugs and hats. Baskets were mostly utilized to carry grain and other foods.

Paintings of early modernist painters such as Damián Domingo often still had a religious association but the art of Juan Luna and Félix Hidalgoshowed a trend towards political statement. The first Philippine national artist Fernando Amorsolo used post-modernism to produce paintings that illustrated aspects of Philippine culture, while other artists such as Fernando Zóbel used both realistic and abstract techniques.

Cuisine

Filipino cuisine has evolved over several centuries from its Malayo-Polynesian origins to become a mixed cuisine with many Hispanic, Chinese, American, and other Asian influences that have been adapted to local ingredients and the Filipino palate to create distinctively Filipino dishes. Dishes range from the very simple, like a meal of fried salted fish and rice, to the elaborate, such as the paellas and cocidos created for fiestas.

Popular dishes include lechónadobosinigangkare-karetapa, crispy patapancitlumpia, and halo-halo. Some common local ingredients used in cooking are calamansi, coconuts, saba (a kind of short wide plantain), mangoes, ube, milkfish, and fish sauce. Filipino taste buds tend to favor robust flavors, but the cuisine is not as spicy as those of its neighbors.

Source: Wikipedia

 

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