The Philippine National Marine Policy

Authored by: Jay L. Batongbacal

Routledge Handbook of National and Regional Ocean Policies

Print publication date:  May  2015
Online publication date:  May  2015

Print ISBN: 9781138788299
eBook ISBN: 9781315765648
Adobe ISBN: 9781317658061


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The Philippines is a Southeast Asian archipelago comprising more than 7,500 islands bounded by the South China Sea, Sulawesi Sea, and the Pacific Ocean. The total land and inland waters area is estimated at 300,000 km2, with a coastline extending 36,289 km. The Philippine exclusive economic zone (EEZ) covers an area of 2.2 million km2, much of which overlaps with the EEZs of neighbouring Malaysia and Indonesia to the south, and China to the north. The coastal and marine areas host a wide range of uses, from providing basic subsistence to small fishers to accommodating the wide-ranging infrastructure of most of the country’s major cities. Fisheries, tourism, and marine transportation are among the major economic sectors, undertaken in many forms, from small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to large corporate operations. The Philippines also lies within a region considered to be the world’s centre of marine biodiversity. Fragile and rich coral, seagrass, and mangrove ecosystems nurture rich and abundant tropical species of aquatic flora and fauna. All of these ecosystems are now suffering the stresses of direct human exploitation and indirect impacts from other coastal and marine resource uses.

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