The Filipino People
The Filipino is basically of Malay stock with a sprinkling of Chinese, American, Spanish and Arab blood. From a long history of Western colonial rule, interspersed with visits of merchants and traders, evolved a people of unique blend of east and west, both in appearance and culture.
The Filipinos are divided geographically and culturally into regions and each regional group is recognizable by distinct traits and dialects. Tribal communities can be found scattered across the archipelago.
The most important numerically are the Visayans, who live primarily in the central portion of the archipelago and the Tagalogs, who live primarily in central Luzon. The Moslem groups live mainly in the southern portion of the archipelago -- particularly in western Mindanao, the Sulu Archipelago, and southern Palawan island. The non-Malay groups are composed of people of Spanish and Chinese descent.
Most of the people belong to the Roman Catholic religion (about 84%). At least 10% are Protestants or members of other Christian denominations, including the Philippine Independent Church, or Aglipayans and the rest are Muslims.
It is estimated that there are 111 linguistic groups or dialects spoken in the country. The national language is Filipino, which is based on Tagalog. Both Filipino and English are being used for official communication and instruction.
Population: 86,241,697 (July 2004 est.)
Median age :
Population growth rate: 1.88% (2004 est.)
Birth rate: 25.8 births/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Death rate: 5.53 deaths/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Net migration rate: -1.5 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
Life expectancy at birth:
Total fertility rate: 3.22 children born/woman (2004 est.)
Ethnic groups: Christian Malay 91.5%, Muslim Malay 4%, Chinese 1.5%, other 3%
Religions: Roman Catholic 83%, Protestant 9%, Muslim 5%, Buddhist and other 3%
Languages: Filipino (based on Tagalog) and English; eight major dialects - Tagalog, Cebuano, Ilocan, Hiligaynon or Ilonggo, Bicol, Waray, Pampango, and Pangasinense