|Province of Cotabato|
Location in the Philippines
|Region||SOCCSKSARGEN (Region XII)|
|• Governor||Emmylou J. Taliño-Mendoza (Liberal)|
|• Vice Governor||Gregorio T. Ipong (Independent)|
|• Total||9,008.90 km2 (3,478.36 sq mi)|
|Area rank||6th out of 81|
|Population (2015 census)|
|• Rank||17th out of 81|
|• Density||150/km2 (400/sq mi)|
|• Density rank||57th out of 81|
|• Independent cities||0|
|• Component cities|
|• Districts||3 legislative districts|
|Time zone||PST (UTC+8)|
|IDD : area code||+63 (0)64|
|ISO 3166 code||PH-NCO|
Cotabato, formerly known as North Cotabato (Hiligaynon: Amihanon nga Kotabato; Maguindanaoan: Dalapa sa Kuta Wato; Cebuano: Amihanang Kotabato; Filipino: Hilagang Kotabato), is a landlocked province in the Philippines located in the Soccsksargen region in Mindanao. Its capital is Kidapawan City.
Cotabato derives its name from the Maguindanao word kuta wato (from Malay - "Kota Batu"), meaning "stone fort", referring to the stone fort which served as the seat of Sultan Muhammad Kudarat in what is now Cotabato City.
Islam was introduced in this part of the country in the later part of 15th century by Sharif Mohammed Kabungsuwan, an Arabo-Malay Muslim warrior-missionary. Sharif Kabungsuwan invaded Malabang in 1475, facing armed resistance from the non-Muslim natives, nevertheless successfully vanquishing and subjugating them to his (Islamic) rule through the might of his Samal warriors.
Christianity was introduced in 1596, but the Spaniards were unable to penetrate into the region until the second half of the 19th century. The district of Cotabato was formed in 1860, covering the areas of what is now Cotabato, Maguindanao and Sultan Kudarat provinces with its capital at Tamontaka. Fort Pikit was established by the Spaniards in 1893 as they continued their conquest of the remnants of Maguindanao Sultanate, which would soon be the site of one of the province's oldest towns, Pikit.
The coming of the Americans ushered in the creation of the Moro Province on July 15, 1903, through Act No. 787 of the Philippine Commission. Cotabato, covering what are now the provinces of Cotabato, Maguindanao, Sultan Kudarat, South Cotabato and Sarangani, became a district of the huge Moro province. During the American period, large companies were established in Cotabato to exploit the vast timber resources of the region. By the 1930s, settlers from Luzon and Visayas established homesteads in Cotabato.
World War II
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In December 1941, Japanese planes bombed and invaded in Cotabato. In 1942, Cotabato was occupied by the Japanese Imperial forces. The establishment of the military general headquarters of the Philippine Commonwealth Army was active on January 3, 1942 to June 30, 1946 and the Philippine Constabulary 10th Infantry Regiment was active again on October 28, 1944 to June 30, 1946 and military stationed on Cotabato. Moro guerrilla fighters invaded around the province of Cotabato and help them of all local force of the Philippine Commonwealth Army and pre-war Philippine Constabulary 10th Infantry Regiments by fought against the Imperial Japanese Army until 1944, the Moro guerrillas was retreating Japanese troops before liberated. In 1945, Cotabato was recaptured from the Japanese Imperial forces by the combined Filipino and American troops together with the recognized Moro guerrilla units. The guerrillas used the traditional Moro Kampilan, Barong and Kris swords.
The pace of settlement in the region accelerated in the 1950s and 1960s. The former province of Cotabato was once the largest in the Philippines. In 1966, South Cotabato was created as a separate province. In 1992, the province of Sarangani was formed out of South Cotabato. On November 22, 1973, through Presidential Decree No. 341, what remained of the old Cotabato was further divided into the provinces of North Cotabato, Maguindanao, and Sultan Kudarat. North Cotabato was later renamed Cotabato through Batas Pambansa Blg. 660 approved on March 7, 1984.
Cotabato covers a total area of 9,008.90 square kilometres (3,478.36 sq mi)  occupying the northeastern tip of Region XII and is centrally located in Mindanao. It is bounded on the north by the provinces of Lanao del Sur and Bukidnon, on the east by Davao City and Davao del Norte, on the west by Maguindanao and on the southeast by Sultan Kudarat and Davao del Sur.
Cotabato is strategically linked to the major "Arterial Road System" that traverses and connects the province to Davao City - SOCCSKSARGEN - Cotabato Corridor. The Cotabato via Kabacan - Maramag - Kibawe, Bukidnon Sayre Highway meanwhile serves as its link to the Cagayan de Oro-Iligan City Corridor.
Cotabato stretches from the east at Mount Apo, which separates it from Davao, to the Piapayungan Range on its boundary with Lanao in the west. Between these highlands is the basin of the Pulangi River or Rio Grande de Mindanao, the second longest in the Philippines at 373 kilometres (232 mi), which rises in Bukidnon and flows south to Maguindanao and Illana Bay. The province’s fertile plains are traversed by tributaries of this great river.
Typhoons do not pass through Cotabato and rainfall is evenly distributed throughout the year.
|Climate data for Cotabato|
|Average high °C (°F)||30.5
|Average low °C (°F)||23.7
|Average rainy days||15||11||13||11||15||17||15||14||13||15||15||13||167|
|Source: Storm247 |
- Provincial capital and component city
|Population census of
|Source: National Statistics Office|
Based on the 2015 census, Cotabato has an overall population of 1,379,747. The average population growth rate was 2.27% in the period 2010-2015, which is higher than the national average of 1.72%. The province had a density of 150 inhabitants per square kilometre or 390 inhabitants per square mile.
Cotabato is a melting pot of people. The first Visayan settlers reached the town of Pikit in 1913, and since then, Christian migrants have moved and lived in Cotabato, cohabitating the province with the local indigenous groups. 71% of Cotabato’s population are migrants from Luzon and the Visayas, while the remaining 18% belong to the indigenous communities Manobo, T'boli, and Maguindanao. The major languages spoken are Hiligaynon (43%), Cebuano (31%), Maguindanao (16%), and Ilocano (10%).
Contrary to the belief of some Filipinos, Cotabato is actually a predominantly Roman Catholic province with 49.56% adherence (due to many decades of immigration from Luzon and Visayas) while Islam is 46.23%. The minority remainders are divided among some Protestant Christians.
Cotabato is considered as Mindanao’s food basket. It is a major producer of cereals, tropical fruits, vegetables, sugarcane, coconut, coffee, freshwater fish and livestock.
It is also one of the country’s leading producers of raw and semi-processed rubber and industrial trees, with markets in Asia and Europe.
Among its major natural assets are Mt. Apo, the country’s highest peak at 9,692 feet (2,954 m) above sea level, the Pulangi River which is a major contributor to Mindanao’s irrigation system and hydro-electric energy, and the vast Liguasan Marsh which not only supplies a bounty of freshwater fish and organic fertilizer but considered as a possible source as well of natural gas.
Power utility in the province comes from two energy sources - the NAPOCOR Agus Grid in Iligan transmitted through its Tacurong Substations and the Mindanao 1 Geothermal Power Plant at the foot of Mt. Apo in Ilomavis, Kidapawan City which produces 97 megawatts of electricity. Power distribution is handled by Cotabato Electric Cooperative, Inc. (COTELCO).
The province has a 4,131.32-kilometre (2,567.08 mi) road network connecting the major centers to each other and the outlying barangays, and communication linkage through NDD-IDD, fax, cellular phone and the internet is available.
- House of Representatives
- 1st District — Rep. Susing Sacdalan
- 2nd District — Rep. Nancy Catamco
- 3rd District — Rep. Jose Pingping I. Tejada
- Governor: Emmylou Taliño-Mendoza
- Vice Governor: Dodong Ipong
- "List of Provinces". PSGC Interactive. Makati City, Philippines: National Statistical Coordination Board. Retrieved 3 June 2014.
- PSA; Census of Population (2015), "Region XII (SOCCSKSARGEN)", Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay, retrieved 20 June 2016
- Halili, Christine N. (2004). "The Natural Setting and its People". Philippine History (First ed.). Manila, Philippines: Rex Book Store. pp. 52–53. ISBN 9712339343. Retrieved 29 April 2016.
- "Our Province". Province of Cotabato (government website). Retrieved 29 April 2016.
- "Republic Act No. 4849 - An Act Creating the Province of South Cotabato". Chan Robles Virtual Law Library. 18 July 1966. Retrieved 27 April 2016.
- "Republic Act No. 7228 - An Act Creating the Province of Sarangani". Chan Robles Virtual Law Library. 16 March 1992. Retrieved 27 April 2016.
- "Presidential Decree No. 341: Creating the Provinces of North Cotabato, Maguindanao and Sultan Kudarat". Philippine Laws, Statutes & Codes. Chan Robles Virtual Law Library. 22 November 1973. Retrieved 27 May 2014.
- "Batas Pambansa Blg. 660 - An Act Changing the Name of the Province of North Cotabato to Cotabato". Philippine Laws, Statutes & Codes. Chan Robles Virtual Law Library. 22 November 1973. Retrieved 27 May 2014.
- "Province: Cotabato". PSA. Philippines: National Statistical Coordination Board. Retrieved 8 January 2016.
- Lancion, Jr., Conrado M.; cartography by de Guzman, Rey (1995). "The Provinces; Cotabato". Fast Facts about Philippine Provinces (The 2000 Millenium ed.). Makati, Metro Manila, Philippines: Tahanan Books. p. 64. ISBN 971-630-037-9. Retrieved 29 April 2016.
- "Weather forecast for North Cotabato, Philippines". Storm247.com. StormGeo AS, Nordre Nøstekaien 1, N-5011 Bergen, Norway: StormGeo AS. Retrieved 29 April 2016.
- PSA; Census of Population (2010), "Region XII (SOCCSKSARGEN)", Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay, retrieved 29 June 2016
- Cabrera, Ferdinandh B. (22 August 2013). "NorthCot pushes rubber industry dev’t". MindaNews (Mindanao News and Information Cooperative Center (MNICC)). Retrieved 29 April 2016.
North Cotabato is the country’s second largest rubber producer, next to Zamboanga Sibugay, with a rubber plantation area of at least 55,000 hectares.
- Burgonio, TJ (15 September 2012). "Aquino signs law reapportioning Cotabato into 3 districts". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved 16 December 2015.
- Media related to Cotabato at Wikimedia Commons
- Geographic data related to Cotabato at OpenStreetMap
- Province of Cotabato
- Philippine Standard Geographic Code
||Lanao del Sur||Bukidnon||Davao del Norte|
|Maguindanao||Davao del Sur|
|Maguindanao / Sultan Kudarat|