The City of Ormoc is a 1st class city in the province of Leyte, Philippines. The city's name is derived from ogmok, an old Visayan term for lowland or depressed plain. It is the first non-provincial city of the Philippines. According to the 2007 census, it has a population of 177,524 people. Ormoc is the economic, cultural, commercial and transportation hub of western Leyte.
Ormoc City is an independent component city, not subject to regulation from the Provincial Government of Leyte. However, the city is part of the congressional district IV of Leyte together with Albuera, Kananga, Merida, and Isabel towns.
In November 1991, the Ormoc region was inundated by Tropical Storm Thelma (local name: Uring). Flash floods and landslides killed an estimated 6,000 people, mostly in Ormoc itself.
Ormoc City is a port city and is the largest city by land area in Leyte and second largest in Eastern Visayas after Calbayog City in Samar. Fronting Ormoc Bay, the city's terrain is mostly of gently rolling plains. It is bounded on the northwest by the towns of Matag-ob and Merida, in the north by Kananga, in the northeast by the towns of Jaro, Pastrana and Dagami, and in the south by the town of Albuera. High mountain ranges separate Ormoc from the eastern portion of Leyte. Numerous rivers and streams traverse Ormoc. Among them are the Bao River in the north, Pagsangahan River in the east, the Bagong-bong River in the south, the Panilahan River also in the south and the Anilao and Malbasag Rivers which border the eastern and western flanks of Ormoc City Proper.
The people of Ormoc are called Ormocanons. Ormocanons are predominantly Cebuano-speaking (or Kana, as Cebuano-speakers in Leyte and Southern Leyte are often called) together with the whole western part of Leyte island. The people relate more to neighboring towns and Cebu than to eastern Leyte itself.
Like most Filipinos, Ormocanons, being predominantly Roman Catholic, celebrate the annual city fiesta for the patron saints Peter and Paul on June 28 and 29. Catholic religious festivals are observed throughout the year.
Ormoc City's economic base is a good mix of agriculture, aquaculture, industry, tourism, and commercial services. Sugar cane, rice and pineapple are the bulk produce of the agricultural sector. The city enjoys economic growth because it supplies the whole country of its power needs due to the abundant geothermal power resources in Tongonan and neighbouring Kananga town. Ormoc is also the gateway to the Leyte Industrial Development Estate in the nearby town of Isabel, home of the Philippine Phosphate Fertilizer Plant, the largest fertilizer factory in Asia, and the Philippine Associated Smelter and Refining Company, the country's biggest copper processing plant, among other industries.
The commercial service sector in the city is on the upswing. Banks,virtual assistance center, restaurants, cafes, night spots and sports centers dot the city. There are four sizable shopping centers in Ormoc City - these are the Gaisano Ormoc, Ormoc Centrum, The Point mall and A Mall. There are also many giftshops, videoshops, cellshops, pawnshops, bookstores and whole-sale stores around the city.
Land and sea transport are available year-round. TV and radio networks broadcasting from Cebu reach the city. Internet connection is available through local and national ISPs like Globe broadband and Smart Bro. The city is served by telecommunication companies such as Ormoc Telephone Company (OrTelCo), PLDT, BayanTel, Globelines, Globe, Smart, and Sun Cellular.
Ormoc is the educational center in western Leyte. Its primary and secondary schools, both private and public are noted for excellence in the region. Tertiary education is offered by the following: St. Peter's College of Ormoc, a Benedictine-run Catholic college and the oldest; Western Leyte College, a private non-sectarian college, second oldest. In the 1990s, the city saw the establishment of Sto. Niño College and the STI computer college. In the 2000s, tertiary institutions founded are the AMA CLC, Ormoc City School of Arts and Trades, San Lorenzo Ruiz College, SYNTACS Computer College and the Ormoc campus of the Eastern Visayas State University.
Ormoc City is a consistent winner of the Cleanest and Greenest City program of the DILG from 1995 to the present. The Asian Institute of Management's study titled The Philippine Cities Competitiveness Ranking Project 2005 ranked the city first in 'infrastructure' and tenth in 'dynamism of local economy' among small cities of the Philippines. The city also garnered the 2005 Most Business-Friendly City award in the Visayas by the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Ormoc City is politically subdivided into 110 barangays.