Good growth rates, but great disparity in incomes
"Lupang Hinirang", the chosen land, as the Filipinos call their country. Over 80 % of its inhabitants are Catholic; the 333 years of the Spanish colonial period has evidently left its mark, yet today the country has shifted its focus to the USA. With around 105 million inhabitants, the Philippines is one of the most important states in Southeast Asia, and its over 7,000 islands make it the world's largest island state after Indonesia. The infrastructure is in a dilapidated state and around 8.3 % of the population have less than 1.90 USD per day and capita to live on. There is a huge gap between rich and poor in the country, and corruption is also a problem. In spite of these shortcomings and a negative trade balance, the current account balance has always been in surplus in the last few years. The reason for this are the high remittances of Filipino citizens working overseas. These reach 8-12 % of GDP regularly, in 2016 they amounted to 26.9 billion USD. Since 2012, the Philippines have constantly been growing at 6 to 7 % each year.