QUEZON CITY – Three provinces in the Cordillera appeared in the list of newly added provinces to the fifth cluster, or the least poor provinces in the country; these are Apayao, Kalinga, and Ifugao. The list was released on December 22 by the Philippine Statistics Authority.
In the case of poverty incidence among families, Apayao in 2018 belongs to the third cluster while in 2023 it made a significant jump. Moreover, Ifugao and Kalinga were in cluster IV in 2018.
Other new added provinces were Aklan, Batangas, Cagayan, Camiguin, Cavite, Guimaras, Ilocos Sur, and Tarlac.
Among the seventeen regions in the country the Cordillera ranked second with 9.4 % of poverty incidence among families for the first quarter of the year following the National Capital Region with 3.3% in 2023. Moreover, it also ranked second on the poverty incidence among the population (13.9%), subsistence incidence among families (3.1%), subsistence incidence among population or food poor (4.9 %); which has a significant decrease.
In 2018, the government clustered five groups that became the basis of the scope clustering. This is based on the percentage of poor families recorded in the province. Cluster I refers to the poorest cluster or includes provinces with the highest percentage of poor families while cluster V refers to the least poor cluster or involves the provinces with the lowest percentage of poor families.
With 20 provinces in 2018 and 16 provinces in 2021 belonging to the least poor cluster, it increases to 24 provinces in 2023. These are the provinces whose poverty incidence is higher than 11% in the first six months of 2023 or those that belong to the least poor cluster.
PSA also shared a thematic map where provinces with light green colors indicate that they are in the poorest cluster (I and IV) while the dark green are in the least poor cluster (IV and V). By Adrian Mas