Cordillera spreads populace too thin


BAGUIO CITY: The Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) with a population of around 1.6 million is the most sparsely populated region in the Philippines, as shown by the 2010 Census on Population and Housing (CPH) of the National Statistics Office (NSO).

NSO-CAR statistician Betina Joy Villanueva said CAR is the country’s least populated region with a population density of 82 person per square kilometer (/sq. km). It is followed by Region 4-B and the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao with 93 and 97 persons/sq. km, respectively.

CAR with a total land area of 1,829,368 hectares accounts for 6.1 percent of the total landmass of the Philippines.

The 2010 CPH also reveals that five of the six provinces in CAR are also in the top 10 of least populated provinces in the country, with Apayao landing as number one with population density of only 24 persons/sq. km.

Abra, Kalinga, Mountain Province and Ifugao also ranked as number three, four, seven, and nine, with population densities of 56, 62, 66 and 73 persons/sq. km., respectively.

In terms of town population, the 2010 CPH also shows that Tineg in Abra and Calanasan in Apayao have less than 10 persons/sq. km population density, with only six and nine persons, respectively.

The same census shows that out of the 1,176 barangays in Cordillera, only 83 are categorized as urban barangays.

For the 2010 CPH, an urbanized barangay is one with a population of 5,000 or more for category one while those with at least one establishment with a minimum of 100 employees is considered a category 2 urban barangay. Barangays that have five or more establishments with 10 to 99 employees and five or more facilities within the 2-km radius from the barangay hall are considered category three urban barangays.

Gaby B. Keith


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