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Surigao del Norte registered a total population of 481,416 persons as compared to 442,203 persons in 1995 Census of Population. This figure translated to an annual growth rate of 1.84 percent, which made Surigao del Norte the fastest growing province in the Caraga Region. The number of households also rose to 92,645, higher by 8,987 households compared to the 1995 figure. This gave an average household size of 5.19 persons, a slight decrease from 1995 (5.27 persons) and higher than the national average of five persons.


Table A.Total Population and Growth Rate by Province, Caraga: 1995 and 2000

Region and ProvinceTotal PopulationGrowth Rate
Agusan del Norte267,411285,5701.42
Butuan City247,074267,2791.70
Agusan del Sur514,736559,2941.79
Surigao del Norte442,203481,4161.84
Surigao del Sur471,263501,8081.35

Source: NSO, 2000 Census of Population and Housing


Surigao City, the provincial capital, had a population of 118,534 comprising 24.62 percent of the total population of the province, had the largest population among the 27 municipalities in Surigao del Norte. Basilisa which comprised 5.50 percent had the second largest population. San Jose and Mainit followed with 5.30 percent and 4.86 percent, respectively. The other municipalities had a share of less than five percent each. The least populous was Burgos with 0.63 percent share.

Surigao del Norte ranked third in terms of population size in the Caraga Region, contributing 22.98 percent to the 2.1 million population in the region. At the national level, Surigao del Norte shared 0.63 percent to the total population of 76.5 million as recorded in the 2000 Census of Population and Housing.

Male population outnumbered their female counterparts with a sex ratio of 101.99 males for every 100 females. There were more males than females in the age group 0 to 49 years. On the contrary, there were more females than males in the age group 50 years and over.

Surigao del Norte had a median age of 20 years in the two censuses. The percentage of the total population belonging to the age group 0 to 14 years was 39.0 percent. The oldest group (65 years and over) accounted for 4.6 percent of the total population of the province. More than half (56.4 percent) of the population belonged to the economically active population aged 15 to 64 years.

The overall dependency ratio in 2000 was 77.25, a slight decrease in 1995 (77.62). This meant that for every 100 persons aged 15 to 64 years, there were about 77 dependents (69 persons aged 0 to 14 - young dependents; and 8 persons aged 65 years and over - old dependents).

About one out of every two persons 5 years old and over had completed elementary education. Twenty six percent had finished high school while 8.29 percent had attended college. Only 3.62 percent were academic degree holders. Males dominated the elementary level with 52.50 percent, while females dominated the higher levels of education from high school to post baccalaureate.

Majority of the population of Surigao del Norte were Surigaonons (75.9 percent). About 8.5 percent classified themselves as Cebuano and 5.3 percent as Boholano. Other ethnic groups included Waray (0.7 percent) and Hiligaynon (0.4 percent). The remaining 8.7 percent belonged to other ethnic groups.

The proportion of married population 10 years old and over (44.73 percent) was almost the same as that of the single persons (44.54 percent). The remaining 11.0 percent were either widowed, divorced, with other arrangements, or with unknown marital status.

There were 91,091 housing units in Surigao del Norte, of which 91,058 were occupied, or almost 100 percent occupancy rate. This registered an increase of 6.63 percentage points from 1990 and a ratio of 1.02 households per occupied housing unit or a ratio of 5.28 persons per occupied housing unit.

Most (95.8 percent) of the occupied housing units were single houses. About 62.0 percent needed no repair/minor repair and 31.4 percent were built from 1996 to 2000.

Majority of the households in Surigao del Norte still preferred to use cogon/nipa/anahaw (50.3 percent) as roof for their houses and wood (49.4 percent) as the walls. About two out of every five occupied housing units had roof made of galvanized iron (42.4 percent) and 19.6 percent had walls made of concrete/bricks/stone.






Surigao del Norte occupies the northern tip of Mindanao Island and a hundred or so offshore islands, the largest of which is Dinagat to the north and Siargao to the northeast. The province is separated from the islands of Leyte by the deep Surigao Strait. The province of Agusan del Norte and Surigao del Sur border the province to the south.

The climate is wet throughout the year, with maximum rainfall during the northeast monsoon from November to January. Large waves crash on to the Surigao coast from the Pacific during the northeast monsoon.

The offshore islands of Siargao are the best kept secrets of the province. Siargao was just recently discovered as a surfing mecca while mainland Surigao del Norte is a cradle of civilization of the province. The Panhutongan and Amoslog archeological excavations in Placer give a glimpse of the origins of the province and its people

The province of Surigao was divided into Surigao del Sur and Surigao del Norte in June, 1960 through Republic Act No. 2786



Table 1. Total Population Distribution of Top 10 Municipalities by Sex: Surigao del Norte, 2000

MunicipalitiesTotal PopulationPercentMaleFemale
Surigao del Norte481,416100.00243,074238,342
Surigao City118,53424.6259,25359,281
San Jose25,5325.3012,49713,035

Source: NSO, 2000 Census of Population and Housing


Table 2. Total Population by Age Group, Sex and Sex Ratio: Surigao del Norte, 2000

Age GroupTotal PopulationMaleFemaleSex Ratio
Surigao del Norte481,416243,074238,342101.99
Under 113,0166,8936,123112.58
1 to 449,17725,19623,981105.07
5 to 963,57932,46731,112104.36
10 to 1461,92331,19130,732101.49
15 to 1951,38926,54524,844106.85
20 to 2438,86320,00818,855106.12
25 to 2933,00316,75716,246103.15
30 to 3430,56315,35415,209100.95
35 to 3925,51814,47914,039103.13
40 to 4424,37312,24012,133100.88
45 to 4919,8299,9809,849101.33
50 to 5416,8408,1998,64194.88
55 to 5915,4367,5977,83996.91
60 to 6412,7916,1426,64992.37
65 to 698,8604,1464,71487.95
70 to 746,0872,7403,34781.86
75 to 793,7941,7002,09481.18
80 & Over3,3751,4401,93574.42

Source: NSO, 2000 Census of Population and Housing


Table 3. Household Population 5 Years Old and Over by Highest Educational Attainment and Sex: Surigao del Norte, 2000

Highest Educational AttainmentHousehold Population
5 Years Old & Over
Surigao del Norte418,500210,478208,022
No Grade Completed21,07611,3079,769
High School109,38052,49356,887
Post Secondary9,4934,6514,842
College Undergraduate34,70116,54618,155
Academic Degree Holder15,1315,7769,355
Post Baccalaureate851350501
Not Stated9,7055,0034702

Source: NSO, 2000 Census of Population and Housing


Table 4. Total Population 10 Years Old and Over by Age Group and Marital Status: Surigao del Norte, 2000

AgeGroupTotal Population 10 Yrs Old & OverSingleMarriedWidowedDivorced/
Surigao del Norte355,644158,406159,09216,3853,27014,5363,955
Below 20113,312107,3082,12289541,2322,507
20 - 2438,86326,0869,452852182,445577
25 - 2933,00311,78718,1171343372,357271
30 - 3430,5635,31622,5592834311,833141
35 - 3928,5182,94122,8104684921,701106
40 - 4424,3731,67920,1816944731,28165
45 - 4919,8291,01116,3819313901,06254
50 - 5416,84073513,5651,40028281345
55 - 5915,43656112,0941,81724468337
60 - 6412,7913999,3722,35715747333
65 - 698,8602345,9752,2388730323
70 - 746,0871603,4582,1804920238
75 - 793,794911,8411,719348821
80 & Over3,375981,1651,990226337

Source: NSO, 2000 Census of Population and Housing


Table 5. Household Population by Ethnicity and Sex: Surigao del Norte, 2000

EthnicityBoth SexesMaleFemale
Surigao del Norte480,691242,567238,124
Other Foreign Ethnicity1518764
Not Reported2,3681,2191,149

Source: NSO, 2000 Census of Population and Housing


Table 6. Total Occupied Housing Units, Households, Household Population and Ratio of Households and Household Population to Occupied Housing Unit by Type of Building: Surigao del Norte, 2000

Type of BuildingOccupied
Ratio of Household & Household Population
Household to
Housing Unit
Population to
Housing Unit
Surigao del Norte91,05892,645480,6911.025.28
Single House87,26488,639460,3451.025.28
Multi-Unit Residential8729394,3621.085.00
Institutional Living Quarters1921811.114.26
Other Housing Unit33552161.676.55
Not Reported1,1511,1606,5901.015.73

Source: NSO, 2000 Census of Population and Housing




Average Household Size - average number of people who live in the household

Growth Rate - the rate at which the population is increasing (or decreasing) in a given year due to natural increase and net migration, expressed as a percentage of the base population

Median Age - the age at which exactly half of the population is young and half is old

Sex Ratio - the ratio of males to females in a given population expressed as the number of males per 100 females

Age-Dependency Ratio - the ratio of persons in the "dependent" ages (under 15 years and over 64 years) to those in the "economically productive" ages (15 to 64 years old) in the population

Household - a social unit consisting of a person or a group of persons who sleep in the same housing unit and have common arrangements in the preparation and consumption of food

The 2000 Census of Population and Housing (Census 2000), was undertaken by the National Statistics Office (NSO) in May 2000, as mandated by Commonwealth Act No. 591, Batas Pambansa Blg. 72 and Executive Order No. 121. It was the 11th census of population and 5th census of housing undertaken in this country since the first census in 1903. It was designed to take an inventory of the total population and housing units all over the Philippines and to collect information about their characteristics. Census day for the Census 2000 was May 1, 2000 (12:01 a.m.). Enumeration started on May 1, 2000 and lasted for about 30 days.

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