What Is the Effect of Overpopulation in the Philippines?

Overpopulation in the Republic of the Philippines is believed to cause sustained poverty and poor economic growth among families by depriving them of the financial resources that are required to secure education and adequate health care for their children. The government of the Philippines agreed in 1967, along with 12 other countries, that overpopulation is an inhibitor of economic development, and it began looking into a variety of government-sponsored measures to lower the rate of population growth. Government intervention in family planning has, however, remained a controversial issue in the overcrowded archipelago nation.

Economic studies, particularly those involving Asian countries, point to high fertility rates and rapid population growth among the poor as significant contributors to poverty. They are also considered factors that lead to environmental, societal and health crises that the governments of developing economies can find difficult to manage. The hospital maternity wards in Manila, the capital city of the Philippines and one of the world’s 26 megacities based on population, are overcrowded to the point where several new mothers and their babies are crowded into one bed as reported by the British daily newspaper The Guardian. The educational system was also reported to be overburdened with students receiving only about 4 hours of class time each day.

Environmental issues in Manila have been seriously exacerbated by overpopulation. The lack of an adequate sewerage infrastructure has resulted in contaminated beaches and the terminally polluted Pasig River, which runs through the city, has been declared to be biologically dead.