The poorest provinces in the Philippines

Despite the government's efforts to improve the lives of Filipinos in the countryside, in the first 6 months of 2012 there were 16 provinces that have over 40% of their population living below the poverty threshold. 

The government considers a Filipino family poor if monthly earnings are less than the poverty threshold. During the 1st semester of 2012, a family of five will need around PhP 5,460 monthly income to buy their minimum basic food needs; and around PhP 7,820 monthly for their minimum basic food and nonfood needs. 

This represents an increase of about 11 percent for both the food and poverty thresholds from the 1st semester of 2009 and 1st half of 2012. Such increases represent inflation adjustments. 

In the same period in 2012, the proportion of Filipino families in extreme poverty whose incomes are not sufficient to meet subsistence or basic food needs stands at 10 percent. This figure is unchanged from the corresponding 1st semesters of 2006 and 2009. 

In terms of the poverty incidence, 22 out of 100 families were estimated to be poor in the 1st semester of 2012. This figure is also practically unchanged from the 1st half of 2006 and 1st semester 2009. 

As regards subsistence incidence among population, about 13 in 100 Filipinos lived in extreme poverty in the first half of 2012. This estimate has remained unchanged from similar periods of 2006 and 2009. 

In terms of poverty incidence among the population, 28 out of 100 Pinoys were living in poverty in the first semester of 2012. This estimated figure of 27.9 percent is practically unchanged from the 1st semester figures in 2006 and 2009. 

The 16 poorest provinces in the country in the first 6 months of 2012 were:

  • Lanao del Sur - 68.9%
  • Apayao - 59.8%
  • Eastern Samar - 59.4%
  • Maguindanao - 57.8%
  • Zamboanga del Norte - 50.3%
  • Davao Oriental - 48%
  • Ifugao - 47.5%
  • Sarangani - 46.5%
  • Negros Oriental - 45.3%
  • Masbate - 44.2%
  • North Cotabato - 43.9%
  • Northern Samar - 43.7%
  • Bukidnon - 43.3%
  • Lanao del Norte - 42.5%
  • Sultan Kudarat - 41.6%
  • Cotabato City - 41.5%

In contrast, the least poor provinces in the first semester were:

  • 2nd district of NCR (Mandaluyong, Marikina, Pasig, Quezon City, San Juan) - 3.1%
  • 4th (Las Pinas, Makati, Muntinlupa, Paranaque, Pasay City, Pateros, Taguig) and 1st (City of Manila) districts of NCR - 3.8%
  • Cavite - 4.1%
  • Benguet - 4.3%
  • 3rd district of NCR (Caloocan, Malabon, Navotas, Valenzuela) - 4.9%
  • Laguna - 6.3%
  • Pampanga - 6.4%
  • Bulacan - 6.7%
  • Bataan - 7.3%
  • Rizal - 7.6%
  • Ilocos Norte - 11%

The NSCB said the implementation of the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) program, the flagship anti-poverty effort of the Aquino government, was not able to significantly improve the income inequality in the country in the first semester 2012.

Resources: Rappler and Philippine National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB)

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