The Philippines is a country that encompasses a wide range of both people and geographical regions. The total population of the Philippines is 98,390,000 according to the World Bank. This population has seen a rapid growth, equating to a whopping 20.7% over the past 10 years. A major aspect of this growth in population is due to the increased age expectancy, alongside the birth rate being greater than the death rate. Due to this rapid population growth, the population density is growing at an equally vociferous rate, with the city of Manila being the main recipient.
The Philippines have a wide variety of transportation systems including many important highways such as the Maharlika Highway, stretching 2,185 miles. There are two major roads used in the Philippines, such as the Epifanio de los Santos Avenue, which carries 2.35 million vehicles per day, and the Commonwealth Avenue which has a total of 18 lanes. The next type of transportation is the form of trains. There are three major railway systems including Manila Light Rail Transit System, Manila Metro Rail Transit System, and the Philippine National Railways. The Manila Light Rail Transit System is the largest railway in the Philippines carrying 928,000 passengers each day. Ferry systems are very important in the Philippines to connect islands, with a total of 17 stations used. The last form of transportation found in the Philippines are airports. The most used is the Ninoy Aquino International (NAIA). In 2012, the NAIA became the 34th busiest airport in the world, with 32.1 million passengers in 2012.
Communication in the Philippines has been booming in the last five years, especially in the use of the Internet. In 2009 there were only 8.279 million users and that figure jumped to 37 million in 2014, resulting in a 531% growth in only five years. Telephones are also greatly used with 3.939 million main line users and 103 million mobile cellular users. When Philippino’s use cell phones the mobile phone is most prevalent, with 89 percent of households owning them. Only 53 percent of households own a Smartphone due to the high cost. It is speculated that as price goes down on phones, then more households will be willing to buy them. Television use has also boomed. There are a total of 350 TV stations found within the country with 1100 cable providers. 63.1% of households are found to own a television set. With that the Philippines are ranked number 5 globally in home TV usage and watch a total of 3 hours and 30 minutes of TV a day. In current news, the Nation Telecommunication (NTC) has announced that the Philippines would use the Japanese ISDB-T standard for digital television. The deadline for the switch is December 31, 2015. This will provide the Philippines with better TV quality, electronic TV guide, and parental control. The division of media consumption amongst the population is distributed as such: Television being 48%, Internet 32%, Radio 8%, Newspapers 7%, and Magazines with a measly 5% share.
Natural features of the islands include 22,549 miles of scenic coastline, making it the 5th longest coastline in the entire world. As a chain of islands, its only barriers are of the aquatic nature, being the Philippine Sea to the east, the South China Sea to the west, and the Celebes Sea to the South. The Philippines reside in the illustrious Ring of Fire, meaning it is in close proximity to many active volcanoes. The country contains over 50 rivers, with many of them being hard to navigate. The five longest rivers are the Cagayan River, Mindanao River, Magat River, Agusan River, and Pampange River. Of these five, the Cagayan and Magat are the most integral to the country. The country experiences a tropical marine climate, with daily temperature seeing little variance throughout the course of the year. The daily average low is 78 degrees Fahrenheit, with the average high annually being 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Despite its steady and seemingly constant temperatures, the country experiences drastic seasonality when it comes to precipitation. The dry season, known locally as Amihan, which begins in October and lasts through the end of February, with the wet season, known locally as Habagat, commences at the start of March and lasts through the end of October. The wet season features typhoons, culminating in up to 80 inches of rain, causing flooding throughout the entire country.
As far as the industrialization of the nation goes, the agricultural sector accounts for 32% of the labor force and 14% of the GDP, but utilizes a majority of the agriculturally available land. With the Philippines an archipelago of 7,107 islands, it derives much of its economic activity from shipping and its related industries. It has over 100 ports, with the main harbors and ports being Batangas, Cagayen de Oro, Cebu, Davao, Liman and Manila. The exportation sector of shipping derives $47.45billion annually, with its major exports consisting of semiconductors and electronic products, transport equipment, garments, copper products, petroleum products, coconut oil and fruits. It imports $639.91billion in goods annually, predominately comprised of mineral fuels, machinery, iron and steel, textile fabrics, grains, chemicals, and plastic. The mining and extraction industry provides 30,065 people with jobs, comprising of a mere .07% of the employed population, but contributes 1.3% of the country’s GDP. The top three mined resources are natural gas, petroleum, and coal. Natural gas is a $1.49trillion aspect, with petroleum contributing $55billion, and coal with $26.7billion.