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The Republic of the Philippines is located in South East Asia (in the region sometimes referred to as Asia-Pacific). The country is an archipelago of 7,107 volcanic islands between the Philippine Sea and the South China Sea.

The Philippines is south of China and Hong Kong, east of Vietnam and Thailand, and north of Indonesia and Australia. To the east there is nothing but a vast expanse of clear blue ocean (and a few small Pacific islands) until you reach Mexico.

The Philippines

The country is favorably located in relation to many of Southeast Asia's main water bodies: the South China Sea, the Philippine Sea, the Sulu Sea, the Celebes Sea, and the Luzon Strait.

Due to the fact that the Philippines is an archipelago, it has no land borders with other countries. The terrain is mostly mountainous with narrow to extensive coastal lowlands. The highest point in the Philippines is Mount Apo on the island of Mindanao, which reaches a height of 2,954 m.

The Philippines is rich in natural resources, including: timber, petroleum, nickel, cobalt, silver, gold, salt, and copper. It has extensive coral reefs and coastal mangrove swamps that are important fish breeding grounds. There are also a very large number of endemic species - some of which are very rare. An example is the Philippine Tarsier; a small fuzzy creature with big eyes that lives in trees on the island of Bohol.

Quick Facts

Geographic coordinates:
13 00 N, 122 00 E

total: 300,000 sq km
land: 298,170 sq km
water: 1,830 sq km

Area - comparative:
same size as Italy

36,289 km

Maritime claims:
An irregular polygon extending up to 100 nautical miles from the coastline, as defined by an 1898 treaty. Since late 1970s the Philippines has also claimed a polygonal-shaped area in the South China Sea up to 285 nautical miles in breadth.

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