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Highlights of the Population Density of the Philippines 2020 Census of Population and Housing (2020 CPH)

Reference Number: 2021-289
Release Date: 23 July 2021

• As of 01 May 2020, the population of the Philippines, excluding Filipinos in Philippine embassies, consulates, and missions abroad was 109,033,245 based on the 2020 Census of Population and Housing (2020 CPH). In 2020, the number of Filipinos in Philippine embassies, consulates, and missions abroad totaled to 2,098 persons. (Tables 1 and A) 

Table 1 CPH

• With a total land area of approximately 300,000 square kilometers, the population density of the Philippines in 2020 was posted at 363 persons per square kilometer. This represents an increase of 271 persons per square kilometer (8.0%) from the population density of 337 persons per square kilometer in 2015. In 2010, there were 308 persons residing in every square kilometer of land. (Tables 2 and A)

Table 2 CPH

 

• The population figures used in this report were from the results of the 2020 CPH. To derive the population density or the number of persons per square kilometer of land, only the population residing in Philippine territories were considered at the national level. Hence, Filipinos in Philippine embassies, consulates, and missions abroad were excluded from the total population count. Meanwhile, the land areas were based on the 2013 Masterlist of Land Areas of Cities and Municipalities provided by the Land Management Bureau (LMB) to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

• In 2020, the Philippines had 17 administrative regions, 33 highly urbanized cities (HUCs), 108 component cities, five independent component cities, and 1,488 municipalities.

• In terms of population by region, Region IV-A (CALABARZON) was the biggest among the 17 administrative regions, with 16.20 million persons. It was followed by the National Capital Region (NCR) with 13.48 million persons and Region III (Central Luzon) with 12.42 million persons. The Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) registered the smallest population size of 1.80 million persons. (Tables 3 and A)

• The three biggest regions in terms of land area were: Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) with 36,650.95 square kilometers, Region II (Cagayan Valley) with 29,836.88 square kilometers, and MIMAROPA Region with 29,606.25 square kilometers. The NCR was the smallest with a land area of 619.54 square kilometers.

• Population density refers to persons per square kilometer of land. Among regions, the NCR was the most densely populated with a population density of 21,765 persons per square kilometer. This figure is almost 60 times of the population density of 363 persons per square kilometer posted at the national level. This translates to an additional 980 persons per square kilometer (4.7%) from the 20,785 persons per square kilometer reported in 2015. The population density of the NCR in 2010 was 19,137 per square kilometer.

• Aside from the NCR, five other regions surpassed the national population density of 363 persons per square kilometer in 2020. These were: Region IV-A (977 persons), Region III (567 persons), Region VII (Central Visayas, 509 persons), Region 1 (llocos, 409 persons), and Region V (Western Visayas, 383 persons).

• Moreover, the three regions with the lowest population density were: CAR (91 persons), MIMAROPA Region (109 persons), and BARMM (120 persons)

Table 3 CPH

• Among the 81 provinces in 2020, five had a population density of more than 1,000 persons per square kilometer. Of these five most densely populated provinces, the top three were in Region IV-A, followed by two provinces in Region III. Moreover, the 10 most densely populated provinces were all located in Luzon, except for Cebu (ranked seventh), which is in the Visayas. (Tables 4 and A)

• Cavite was the most densely populated province with 2,847 persons per square kilometer. It was followed by Rizal with 2,816, Laguna with 1,754 persons, Bulacan with 1,332 persons, and Pampanga (excluding the City of Angeles) with 1,218 persons.

Table 4 CPH

• In 2020, 12 provinces had a population density of at most 100 persons per square kilometer. Except for Benguet, all provinces in CAR were included in the 12 most sparsely populated provinces in the country, while five provinces were in Luzon and two provinces were in Mindanao. (Tables 5 and A)

• Apayao was the most sparsely populated province with population density of 28 persons per square kilometer. It was followed by Abra with 60 persons and Palawan (excluding the City of Puerto Princesa) with 64 persons. 

Table 5 CPH

• Of the 33 highly urbanized cities (HUCs), 16 were in the NCR.

• Among the 16 HUCs in the NCR, seven surpassed the regional population  density of 21,765 persons per square kilometer. The City of Manila was the most densely populated with 73,920 persons per square kilometer in 2020, followed by the City of Mandaluyong with 45,830 persons per square kilometer, and Pasay City with 31,543 persons per square kilometer. The four other HUCs in the NCR that surpassed the regional population density were the City of Navotas (27,689 persons per square kilometer), the City of Caloocan (29,777 persons per square kilometer), the City of Makati (29,189 persons per square kilometer), and the City of Malabon (24,222 persons per square kilometer). (Tables 6, A, and B)

• Moreover, the City of Muntinlupa had the least population density among the HUCs in the NCR with 13,672 persons per square kilometer.

Table 6

• In 2020, 17 HUCs are located outside the NCR – five in Luzon, six in the Visayas, and six in Mindanao.

• Of the 17 HUCs outside the NCR, the City of Mandaue was the most densely populated with 14,461 persons per square kilometer. It was followed by the City of Lapu-Lapu with 8,565 persons per square kilometer, and the City of Angeles with 7,305 persons per square kilometer. (Tables 7, A, and B)

• Other HUCs outside NCR with a population density of more than 5,000 persons per square kilometer were the City of Baguio with 6,370 and the City of Iloilo with 5,842 persons

Table 7 CPH

• In 2020, the country had 108 component cities and five independent component cities.

• Seven of the ten most densely populated component cities were in Region IV-A. Two cities in Region III and another city in Region VII also made it to the top ten. (Tables 8 and B)

• The most densely populated component city in the country was the City of Bacoor in Cavite with 14,395 persons per square kilometer. It was followed by the City of San Pedro, Laguna with 13,555 persons, and the City of Biñan, Laguna with 10,118 persons. 

Table 8 CPH

• Of the ten most sparsely populated component cities in the country, two were in Luzon, and four each in the Visayas and Mindanao.

• The City of llagan in Isabela was the most sparsely populated component city in the country, with a population density of 136 persons per square kilometer. It was followed by the City of Borongan in Eastern Samar with 151 persons per square kilometer, and the City of Bayugan in Agusan del Sur with 159 persons per square kilometer. (Tables 9 and B) 

Table 9 CPH

• Of the five independent component cities, the City of Dagupan in Pangasinan was the most densely populated with 4,682 persons per square kilometer. It was followed by the City of Naga, Camarines Sur with 2,702 persons, City of Cotabato, Maguindanao with 1,847 persons, City of Santiago, Isabela with 582 persons, and Ormoc City, Leyte with 376 persons. (Tables 10 and B) 

Table 10 CPH

• Of the country's 1,488 municipalities in 2020, Gen. Mariano Alvarez in Cavite was the most densely populated with 18,344 persons per square kilometer, followed by Rosario in Cavite with 14,561 persons, and Taytay in Rizal with 9,960 persons. Completing the top five most densely populated municipalities were Cainta in Rizal with 8,768 persons per square kilometer and Marilao in Bulacan with 7,542 persons per square kilometer. (Tables 11 and A)

• Pateros, the only municipality in the NCR, was the sixth most densely populated municipality in the country with 6,272 persons per square kilometer. 

Table 11 CPH

• Kalayaan in Palawan was the most sparsely populated municipality in the country in 2020, with only one person residing in every square kilometer. Other municipalities with a population density of less than ten persons per square kilometer were Dinapigue, Divilacan, and Maconacon in Isabela; and Tineg in Abra. (Tables 12 and A)

• Completing the ten most sparsely populated municipalities in the country were two other municipalities in Abra and one municipality each in Nueva Vizcaya, Apayao, and Ilocos Norte.

Table 12 CPH

 

 

DENNIS S. MAPA, Ph.D.
Undersecretary
National Statistician and Civil Registrar General

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