THE current total population of Western Visayas stood at 7,954,723 based on the 2020 Census of Population and Housing (CPH).
Philippine Statistics Authority 6 reported that the region’s total population increased by 1.14 percent annually from 2015 to 2020.
This population growth rate (PGR) is slightly higher compared to the rate (1.13 percent) from 2010 to 2015.
Among the provinces in the region, Negros Occidental (excluding City of Bacolod) led in terms of population with 2,623,172 persons, followed by Iloilo (excluding City of Iloilo) with 2,051,899 persons, Capiz with 804,952 persons, Aklan with 615,475 persons, and Antique with 612,974 persons.
Guimaras is he least populated province in the region with 187,842 persons.
Despite being the least populous province, Guimaras was the fastest growing province in the region with a PGR of 1.55 percent from 2015 to 2020; Aklan followed with 1.45 percent, Iloilo with 1.23 percent, Capiz with 1.18 percent, Antique with 1.10 percent, and Negros Occidental with 1.04 percent.
The two highly urbanized cities (HUCs) in the province, Bacolod City and Iloilo City, posted a PGR of 1.42 percent and 0.45 percent, respectively. The two HUCs accounted for 13 percent of the region’s total population.
Out of the 108 component cities in the Philippines, 14 are in Region VI. Among these, Kabankalan City and Bago City, both in Negros Occidental, had the highest population with 200,198, and 179,292, respectively. Roxas City in Capiz followed with 179,292, while La Carlota City in Negros Occidental had the lowest population of 66,664.
Also, of the 117 municipalities in the region, Cauayan in Negros Occidental is the most populous with 108,480, and the only municipality with a population greater than 100,000. The municipality of Oton in Iloilo followed with 98,509, and Kalibo in Aklan with 89,127. Conversely, Belison, Antique is the least populous municipality with 14,129, followed by Lezo, Aklan with 15,639, and Bingawan, Iloilo with 16,164.
National Economic and Development Authority VI OIC-Regional Director Meylene C. Rosales, during the CPH Regional Data Dissemination Forum, July 26, 2021 via Zoom, said that data is a crucial part for planning and evidence-based decision making.
PSA RSSO VI Regional Director Fred S. Sollesta presented the regional highlights of the 2020 CPH while Commission of Population and Development (POPCOM) 6 Regional Director Harold Alfred P. Marshall discussed the uses and importance of updated population counts.
The latest population counts of the Philippines, its regions, provinces, cities, municipalities, and barangays were officially declared by President Rodrigo Roa Duterte pursuant to Proclamation No. 1179, series of 2021 signed on July 6, 2021, and can be accessed or downloaded from the PSA website https://psa.gov.ph/population-and-housing.