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Are the Philippines a Third World Country?

Are the Philippines a Third World Country

Historically, the term ‘third world was used to describe countries that were not aligned with either the Communist Bloc or NATO. However, it is now used to describe economically inferior countries. Third-world countries are considered economically inferior to the First and Second World countries. If you plan on visiting the Philippines, you may have questions about how it is classified.

Are the Philippines a Third World country? Yes, they are. The country fits the definition by both historical and modern definitions. It is a developing country with a high infant mortality rate, limited access to health care, and a low GDP per capita.

Even though the Philippines is a third-world country, it has a lot to offer. It is a top player in the outsourcing industry and an attraction for many tourists. The literacy rate is high and it is rich in both human and natural resources. Whether you plan on visiting the country or you are a curious citizen, you may have questions about why it is a Third World country. Keep reading to learn more.

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What Makes The Philippines a Third World Country?

Few countries in Asia are as underdeveloped as the Philippines. In 2009, over 26% of the population lived under the poverty line. Many citizens lack access to basic needs such as food, shelter, and clothing. At the beginning of 2019, the country’s economic growth was slowed down as a result of decelerating investment growth and a lack of public spending.

What Are the Main Attractions in the Philippines

The main causes of poverty in the region include; an unmanaged population growth increased inflation during crisis periods, low economic growth in the past decades, a poorly developed agricultural sector, and persistent inequality in income. Other problems in the country include:


Corruption is one of the biggest problems in the Philippines. There are many cases of corruption in both local and national governments. Extortion and bribery are common in many parts of the Philippines. The Marcos’ regime in the Philippines was named ‘the biggest corruption of all time.’ while he was president, the country suffered while he continued to steal from government funds. The president stole billions of dollars.

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The education system in the Philippines faces a few challenges. Even though public education is free, its quality is inferior to private education. Even though the government has increased education funding, the quality is still low. According to a 2004 survey by NSO, 12.6 million youth were out of school. The most common causes of failure to get an education include high levels of poverty and child labor. Many children engaged in child labor work under unsafe conditions.

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Unemployment Rates

Many Filipinos are unemployed. In 2019, about 4.5% of the population was unemployed. More than two million citizens are unemployed. However, the rate of unemployment continues to drop over the years.

Crime Rate

Even though the crime rate in the Philippines is fairly low, there are many cases of crime in certain areas. The country ranks 137 out of 163 countries based on the Global Peace Index rating. Generally, certain areas as safer than others. However, you should always be vigilant in the country. Some of the most common crimes include; robbery, kidnappings, theft, and assault.

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Access to Health Care

Even though the Philippines has made significant steps in availing quality healthcare to its citizens, there is still a lot to be done. Many Filipinos have poor access to health care. About eight out of 10 citizens have never had a physical examination or medical check-up. There is limited access to health insurance and health facilities.

Philippines And Human Development

Philippines And Human Development index

In 2019 Philipines HDI value was 0.718 – that position 107 out of 189 countries and territories. The Human Development Index is a comparative measure of life expectancy, literacy, education, and standards of living for countries worldwide. It is a standard means of measuring well-being, especially child well-being. The HDI can also be used to question national policy choices, recognizing that there are many different paths to achieving economic development.

What Are the Most Dangerous Cities in the Philippines?

The Philippines is a country of more than 7,000 islands, and it is home to a variety of different cultures and lifestyles. However, the Philippines also has a dark side. In recent years, the country has been plagued by drug-related violence, and many cities have become dangerous places to live.

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According to the National Capital Region Police Office, the most dangerous city in the Philippines is Manila. The city has a high murder rate, as well as a high rate of crimes such as robbery, rape, and kidnapping. In addition, Manila is also home to a number of gangs and organized crime syndicates. As a result, the city is often the site of violent clashes between rival gangs. In addition to being dangerous, Manila is also one of the most crowded cities in the world. The city’s population density contributes to the high level of crime, as there is simply more opportunity for crime to occur when people are packed into such a small area. For visitors to the Philippines, it is important to exercise caution when traveling to Manila or any other city on this list.

What Are the Most Dangerous Cities in the Philippines

Basilan Province

Basilan province is widely considered to be one of the most dangerous places in the Philippines. The province has a long history of violence, and it is currently home to a number of criminal gangs. In addition, the city is located in an area that is prone to earthquakes and typhoons. As a result, Basilan province is often considered to be one of the most dangerous places in the world.

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Marawi is a city in the Mindanao region of the Philippines that has been plagued by violence for many years. Islamic extremist groups have used the city as a base of operations, and there have been frequent clashes between these groups and government forces. In May 2017, these tensions boiled over into all-out war, as extremists launched an attack on the city and took control of several neighborhoods. The fighting was eventually quelled by the Philippine military, but not before causing extensive damage to the city. Marawi remains one of the most dangerous cities in the Philippines, and only time will tell if peace will ever truly be restored to this war-torn city.

Jolo Province

This island is known to have many members of the Abu Sayyaf group. The rebel group is known for robberies, kidnapping tourists, and petty theft. Jolo has been the site of numerous terrorist attacks, including bombings and kidnappings. As a result, it is considered one of the most dangerous cities in the Philippines. Travel to Jolo should be avoided unless absolutely necessary.

Travelers face a high risk of kidnapping in many parts of the Philippines. The country has terror groups that like to kidnap tourists for ransom. Most of the kidnappings happen in;

  • Lanao del Norte Province
  • Sarangani Province
  • General Santos City
  • North Cotabato Province
  • South Cotabato Province
  • Pangutaran Island
  • Zamboanga City

Even though there are many unsafe places in the Philippines, there are lots of safe places as well. If you stick to popular tourist destinations, you will be safe. Stay away from secluded areas and get travel insurance.

What Are the Main Attractions in the Philippines 1

What Are the Main Attractions in the Philippines?

The Philippines is a beautiful country at the eastern end of Asia. The beautiful country has over 7,000 islands and numerous indigenous tribes. It has friendly people, beautiful beaches, interesting cuisine, and plenty of historic sites. Some of the main attractions include;

Tubbataha Reef

The Tubbataha Reef is one of the main attractions in the country. It is a marine sanctuary under the protection of the Tubbataha Reef National Marine Park. It has beautiful coral walls and it offers great views. The reef has two main atolls; the North Atoll and the South Atoll. They are separated by a deep, wide, channel.

Tubbataha Reef

Mayon Volcano

The Mayon Volcano is one of the country’s main attractions. It is the most active volcano in the country. It is a great choice for tourists that enjoy bird watching, climbing, and hiking. Its beautiful symmetrical cone shape makes it great for photographers.

Mayon Volcano

San Agustin Church, Manila

The church in Manila was built in 1589. It has survived two fires and seven earthquakes and is the oldest church in the country. Its interior is designed to look like a Latin cross and the main entrance has some beautiful carvings. The church attracts visitors from all over the world.

San Agustin Church Manila


Boracay is at the center of the country’s beach tourism. It is a paradise for travelers that enjoy long and beautiful white-sand beaches. The view remains picturesque from dusk to dawn. Visitors can enjoy views of tall coconut palms, white beaches, and the gentle sea. There are lots of restaurants and resorts nearby.

Boracay Philippines


Bohol is known for its magnificent Chocolate Hills. The unique formations are shaped like chocolate mounds and they are very beautiful during the dry season. There are 1,200 beautiful hills and Bohol has thick jungles with beautiful rivers.


What Is Unique About the Philippines?

One of the most incredible things about the Philippines is that it is made up of islands. The country has about 7500 islands and is the world’s second-largest archipelago. Almost 5,000 of the islands are unnamed. Other interesting things about the Philippines include;

  1. In the country, there are about 175 languages. Four of them have no living speakers. The official languages in the Philippines are English and Filipino. In some parts of the country, people speak Ilocano and Cebuano.
  2. The first LGBTQ political party was from the Philippines. Ang Ladlad was created by Danton Remoto. However, the company’s campaigning efforts are limited because they have limited finances
  3. Filipinos love boxing. It is one of the country’s favourite sports. Manny Pacquiao fights are treated like national events. According to the country’s police, crime rates drop significantly in Metro Manila when he has a match.
  4. According to Time Magazine, Filipinos are the highest selfie-takers in the world. They are enthusiastic about social media and many of them have a large social media following. Most of the population is tech-savvy and people of all ages use social media.
  5. About 11% of the Philippine population works overseas. The country is the world’s leading supplier of nurses. About 25% of overseas nurses are from the Philippines
  6. The Philippines is the world’s biggest exporter of coconuts. The country ships off approximately 19.5 million tons of coconuts every year.
  7. Jeepneys are the most common form of transportation in the Philippines. They are colourful and mostly crowded. The word jeepney is derived from the words jeep and knee. It describes the way that passengers sit close together.
  8. Manila has the highest population density of all cities in the world. Even though it is a fairly small city, the population is about 1,660,714.

There are many reasons why the Philippines is considered a Third world country. The country faces issues such as congestion, high poverty rates, high levels of crime, and corruption.

Human Development Index Ranking

HDI RankCountryHuman Development Index (HDI)Gross national income (GNI) per capita
4Hong Kong, China (SAR)0.94962,985.00
13United Kingdom0.93246,071.00
15New Zealand0.93140,799.00
17United States0.92663,826.00
23Korea (Republic of)0.91643,044.00
31United Arab Emirates0.8967,462.00
41Saudi Arabia0.85447,495.00
47Brunei Darussalam0.83863,965.00
52Russian Federation0.82426,157.00
62Costa Rica0.8118,486.00
68Trinidad and Tobago0.796 26,231.00
69Albania0.795 13,998.00
70Cuba0.783 8,621.00
71Iran 0.783 12,447.00
72Sri Lanka0.782 12,707.00
73Bosnia and Herzegovina0.78 14,872.00
74Grenada0.779 15,641.00
75Mexico0.779 19,160.00
76Saint Kitts and Nevis0.779 25,038.00
77Ukraine0.779 13,216.00
78Antigua and Barbuda0.778 20,895.00
79Peru0.777 12,252.00
80Thailand0.777 17,781.00
81Armenia0.776 13,894.00
82North Macedonia0.774 15,865.00
83Colombia0.767 14,257.00
84Brazil0.765 14,263.00
85China0.761 16,057.00
86Ecuador0.759 11,044.00
87Saint Lucia0.759 14,616.00
88Azerbaijan0.756 13,784.00
89Dominican Republic0.756 17,591.00
90Moldova0.75 13,664.00
91Algeria0.748 11,174.00
92Lebanon0.744 14,655.00
93Fiji0.743 13,009.00
94Dominica0.742 11,884.00
95Maldives0.74 17,417.00
96Tunisia0.74 10,414.00
97Saint Vincent and the Grenadines0.738 12,378.00
98Suriname0.738 14,324.00
99Mongolia0.737 10,839.00
100Botswana0.735 16,437.00
101Jamaica0.734 9,319.00
102Jordan0.729 9,858.00
103Tonga0.728 12,224.00
104Libya0.725 6,365.00
105Uzbekistan0.724 15,688.00
106Bolivia0.72 7,142.00
107Indonesia0.718 8,554.00
108Philippines0.718 11,459.00
109Belize0.718 9,778.00
110Samoa0.716 6,382.00
111Turkmenistan0.715 6,309.00
112Venezuela0.711 7,045.00
113South Africa0.709 12,129.00
114Palestine0.708 6,417.00
115Egypt0.707 11,466.00
116Marshall Islands0.704 5,039.00
117Viet Nam0.704 7,433.00
119Kyrgyzstan0.697 4,864.00
120Morocco0.686 7,368.00
121Guyana0.682 9,455.00
122Iraq0.674 10,801.00
123El Salvador0.673 8,359.00
124Tajikistan0.668 3,954.00
125Cabo Verde0.665 7,019.00
126Guatemala0.663 8,494.00
127Nicaragua0.66 5,284.00
128Bhutan0.654 10,746.00
129Namibia0.646 9,357.00
130India0.645 6,681.00
131Honduras0.645 6,681.00
132Bangladesh0.632 4,976.00
133Kiribati0.63 4,260.00
134Sao Tome and Principe0.625 3,952.00
135Micronesia0.62 3,983.00
136Lao People’s Democratic Republic0.613 7,413.00
137Eswatini0.611 7,919.00
138Ghana0.611 5,269.00
139Vanuatu0.609 3,105.00
140Timor-Leste0.606 4,440.00
141Nepal0.602 3,457.00
142Kenya0.601 4,244.00
143Cambodia0.594 4,246.00
144Cambodia0.592 13,944.00
145Zambia0.584 3,326.00
146Myanmar0.583 4,961.00
147Angola0.581 6,104.00
148Congo0.574 2,879.00
149Zimbabwe0.571 2,666.00
150Solomon Islands0.567 2,253.00
151Syrian Arab Republic0.567 3,613.00
152Cameroon0.563 3,581.00
153Pakistan0.557 5,005.00
154Papua New Guinea0.555 4,301.00
155Comoros0.554 3,099.00
156Mauritania0.546 5,135.00
157Benin0.545 3,254.00
158Uganda0.544 2,123.00
159Rwanda0.543 2,155.00
160Nigeria0.539 4,910.00
161Côte d’Ivoire0.538 5,069.00
162Tanzania0.529 2,600.00
163Madagascar0.528 1,596.00
165Djibouti0.524 5,689.00
166Togo0.515 1,602.00
167Senegal0.512 3,309.00
168Afghanistan0.511 2,229.00
169Haiti0.51 1,709.00
170Sudan0.51 3,829.00
171Gambia0.496 2,168.00
172Ethiopia0.485 2,207.00
173Malawi0.483 1,035.00
174Congo (Democratic Republic of the)0.48 1,063.00
175Guinea-Bissau0.48 1,996.00
176Liberia0.48 1,258.00
177Guinea0.477 2,405.00
178Yemen0.47 1,594.00
179Eritrea0.459 2,793.00
180Mozambique0.456 1,250.00
181Burkina Faso0.452 2,133.00
182Sierra Leone0.452 1,668.00
183Mali0.434 2,269.00
184Burundi0.433 754.00
185South Sudan0.433 2,003.00
186Chad0.398 1,555.00
187Central African Republic0.397 993.00
189Niger0.394 1,201.00