Davao Oriental
Province of Davao Oriental
Flag of Davao Oriental
Official seal of Davao Oriental
Etymology: Davao Oriental (i.e., "Eastern Davao")
Sunrise and Coconut Capital of the Philippines[1][2]
Anthem: Banwa na Madayaw
Location in the Philippines
Location in the Philippines
Coordinates: 7°10′N 126°20′E / 7.17°N 126.33°E / 7.17; 126.33
RegionDavao Region
FoundedMay 8, 1967
and largest city
 • GovernorNiño Sotero L. Uy Jr. (Nacionalista Party)
 • Vice GovernorNelson L. Dayanghirang Jr. (Nacionalista Party)
 • LegislatureDavao Oriental Provincial Board
 • Total5,679.64 km2 (2,192.92 sq mi)
 • Rank14th out of 81
Highest elevation
(Mount Mayo)
1,728 m (5,669 ft)
 (2020 census)[4]
 • Total576,343
 • Rank54th out of 81
 • Density100/km2 (260/sq mi)
  • Rank70th out of 81
DemonymEastern Davaoeño
 • Independent cities0
 • Component cities
 • Municipalities
 • Barangays183
 • DistrictsLegislative districts of Davao Oriental
Time zoneUTC+8 (PHT)
ZIP code
IDD:area code+63 (0)87
ISO 3166 codePH-DAO
Spoken languages
Income classification1st class
Websitewww.davaooriental.gov.ph Edit this at Wikidata

Davao Oriental (Cebuano: Sidlakang Dabaw; Filipino: Silangang Davao), officially the Province of Davao Oriental (Cebuano: Lalawigan sa Sidlakang Dabaw, Lalawigan sa Davao Oriental; Filipino: Lalawigan ng Silangang Davao, Lalawigan ng Davao Oriental), is a province in the Philippines located in the Davao Region in Mindanao. Its capital is the city of Mati, and it borders the province of Davao de Oro to the west, and Agusan del Sur and Surigao del Sur to the north. The province is the traditional homeland of the Mandaya and Kalagan/Kaagan.

Davao Oriental is the easternmost province in the country with Pusan Point in the municipality of Caraga as the easternmost location. The Philippine Sea, part of the Pacific Ocean, faces Davao Oriental to the east. Part of the province lies on an unnamed peninsula that encloses Davao Gulf to the west.

The province is the top producer of coconut and copra in the country, earning the province the title Coconut Capital of the Philippines.[1][2] It is also home to Mount Hamiguitan Wildlife Sanctuary, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.


The name of the province was derived from the word, Dabaw, of which the center was west of the province.


Early history

Further information: Sultanate of Maguindanao

The present territory of Davao Oriental was covered by the historical region of Caraga, which was under the Sultanate of Maguindanao.

Spanish colonial era

The Spaniards established a permanent settlement in the region in 1591, and in 1844, the area was ceded by the Sultanate to Spain. An expedition was sent by the colonial government in Manila in 1847 to control the region, led by the Spaniard Jose Oyanguren, who settled in the town of Davao and organized the surrounding areas into the province of Nueva Guipozcoa in 1849. The province existed until 1858, when the politico-military commandancias of Davao and Bislig were created in its place. Bislig was incorporated into the District of Davao two years later.[5]

American colonial era

Further information: Moro Province, Department of Mindanao and Sulu, and Davao (province)

Davao province in 1918 encompassing the current provinces of Davao Region

In 1903, the colonial American government created the Moro Province comprising several districts, one of which was Davao. The Moro province was converted in 1914 into the Department of Mindanao and Sulu, and its component districts were made into independent provinces.[5]

Japanese occupation

In 1942, the territory of what is now Davao Oriental was occupied by the Japanese Imperial forces.[further explanation needed]

In 1945, the Battle of Davao began with the combined forces of the British, Australian, Dutch and the Filipino troops of the 6th, 101st, 102nd, 103rd, 104th, 106th, 107th and 110th Infantry Division of the Philippine Commonwealth Army and 10th Infantry Regiment of the Philippine Constabulary being supported by Davaoeño guerrilla fighter units in attacking Japanese Imperial forces during the liberation in Eastern Davao or Eastern Davao Campaign until the end of the Second World War.[further explanation needed]

Philippine independence


On May 8, 1967, through Republic Act No. 4867, the province of Davao was divided into three independent provinces, one of which was Davao Oriental.[6][5]

This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (December 2015)


Eastern coast showing Pujada Bay

Davao Oriental covers a total area of 5,679.64 square kilometres (2,192.92 sq mi)[7] occupying the eastern tip of the Davao Region in Mindanao. The province is bordered by Davao de Oro to the west, Agusan del Sur and Surigao del Sur to the north, Davao Gulf to the southwest, and the Philippine Sea to the east and southeast.

The Eastern Pacific Cordillera mountain range encompasses the province. To the east of the range lie narrow strips of coastal areas, which feature several inlets and bays.[8][9] The province encloses Davao Gulf to the southwest.


Davao Oriental has a pronounced rainy season and a short dry season, with maximum rainfall occurring from November to January especially at coastal areas.[5]

Climate data for Davao Oriental
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Mean daily maximum °C (°F) 30.5
Mean daily minimum °C (°F) 23.7
Average rainy days 15 11 13 11 15 17 15 14 13 15 15 13 167
Source: Storm247 [10]

Administrative divisions

Davao Oriental comprises 10 municipalities and 1 city, all organized into 2 legislative districts. There are 183 barangays in the province.

Political map of Davao Oriental


Population census of Davao Oriental
YearPop.±% p.a.
1903 25,971—    
1918 38,315+2.63%
1939 60,744+2.22%
1948 68,365+1.32%
1960 132,593+5.67%
1970 247,995+6.45%
1975 299,426+3.85%
1980 339,931+2.57%
1990 394,697+1.51%
1995 413,472+0.87%
2000 446,191+1.65%
2007 486,104+1.19%
2010 517,618+2.31%
2015 558,958+1.47%
2020 576,343+0.60%
Source: Philippine Statistics Authority[11][12][12]

The population of Davao Oriental in the 2020 census was 576,343 people,[4] with a density of 100 inhabitants per square kilometre or 260 inhabitants per square mile.

The province is mostly inhabited by Cebuanos, who settled the province in the early 20th century from Visayas. Other ethnic groups include the Mandayas, Mansakas, Manobos and the Kalagan.[5]

While the native languages spoken in the province are Kalagan, Mandaya, and Davaoeño. Cebuano is the dominant first language. Chavacano is spoken by a minority, while Tagalog and English are widely used in business, education, and government.

Even some of the natives adhere to Christian faith (mostly Catholics), they are syncretic[clarification needed] in some of their beliefs. Muslim Kagans traditionally inhabited the plains and coastal areas of the Municipalities of Banaybanay, Lupon, San Isidro, Governor Generoso, Mati and Tarragona.


Poverty incidence of Davao Oriental


Source: Philippine Statistics Authority[13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20]

Aliwagwag Protected Landscape

Davao Oriental is the top coconut and copra (dried coconut meat) producer in the Philippines.[1] It also is a major producer of abacá, and exports crude oil and copra pellets.[2]

On March 20, 2018, Davao Oriental signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Pionaire Finance Limited, a Hong Kong-based foreign firm for a $27-billion industrial park.[21][22][23][24]


  1. ^ a b c Duallo, Neela (July 31, 2009). "1st Mindanao Coconut Summit takes centerstage in coco capital of RP". PIA Archive News Reader. Philippine Information Agency. Archived from the original on March 28, 2016. Retrieved March 19, 2016. Being the number one coconut producer in the country, the province of Davao Oriental, the local government unit of Mati and the Mindanao Business Council has taken the initiative in addressing the today's plight of the coconut industry, initiate moves to save the industry, and help the coconut farmers so they can hold on, continue to cultivate their land, and bring back the glory of the product that has given both comfort and challenge to the economic lives of the people of the province.
  2. ^ a b c "Davao Oriental Gov Malanyaon joins GMA in Spain". Mindanao News and Information Cooperative Center. Davao Oriental Information Office. November 30, 2007. Retrieved March 19, 2016. As the "coconut capital" of the Philippines, Davao Oriental produces one billion nuts annually covering a total crop area of 154,000 hectares. The major products exported by the province through the International Copra Exporter's Corporation are crude oil and copra pellets. Records show that export of 816,863 metric tons of crude oil and pellets from 1997 to 2001 is valued at $185.7 million. Davao Oriental is also the top producer of abaca fiber in Southern Mindanao. A total of 7,110 hectares is planted to abaca with production volume of 7,500 metric tons. The provincial government says that another 200,000 hectares is being targeted for the expansion of abaca production. Abaca plantations are located in the municipalities of Manay, Baganga, Cateel, Boston, Tarragona, Lupon, Banaybanay and in the City of Mati, the province's capital. Recently, the province started to plant banana for export particularly in the municipality of Lupon, San Isidro, Governor Generoso and Mati.
  3. ^ "List of Provinces". PSGC Interactive. Makati, Philippines: National Statistical Coordination Board. Archived from the original on January 11, 2013. Retrieved April 15, 2014.
  4. ^ a b c Census of Population (2020). "Region XI (Davao Region)". Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved July 8, 2021.
  5. ^ a b c d e Lancion, Conrado M. Jr. (1995). "The Provinces; Davao Oriental". Fast Facts about Philippine Provinces. cartography by de Guzman, Rey (The 2000 Millenium ed.). Makati, Metro Manila, Philippines: Tahanan Books. p. 70. ISBN 971-630-037-9. Retrieved April 28, 2016.
  6. ^ "Republic Act No. 4867 - An Act Creating the Provinces of Davao del Norte, Davao del Sur and Davao Oriental". Chan Robles Virtual Law Library. May 8, 1967. Retrieved January 30, 2016.
  7. ^ a b "Province: Davao Oriental". PSGC Interactive. Quezon City, Philippines: Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved January 8, 2016.
  8. ^ Wernstedt, Frederick L.; Spencer, Joseph Earl (1978). The Philippine Island World: A Physical, Cultural, and Regional Geography. Berkeley: University of California Press. pp. 32-37. ISBN 9780520035133. Retrieved January 27, 2016.
  9. ^ Hinz, Erhard (1985). Human Helminthiases in the Philippines the Epidemiological and Geomedical Situation. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer Berlin Heidelberg. pp. 129–131. ISBN 9783642708411. Retrieved January 27, 2016.
  10. ^ "Weather forecast for Davao Oriental, Philippines". Storm247.com. Bergen, NO: StormGeo AS. Archived from the original on December 1, 2018. Retrieved April 28, 2016.
  11. ^ a b Census of Population (2015). "Region XI (Davao Region)". Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved June 20, 2016.
  12. ^ a b Census of Population and Housing (2010). "Region XI (Davao Region)" (PDF). Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. National Statistics Office. Retrieved June 29, 2016.
  13. ^ "Poverty incidence (PI):". Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved December 28, 2020.
  14. ^ "Estimation of Local Poverty in the Philippines" (PDF). Philippine Statistics Authority. November 29, 2005.
  15. ^ "2009 Official Poverty Statistics of the Philippines" (PDF). Philippine Statistics Authority. February 8, 2011.
  16. ^ "Annual Per Capita Poverty Threshold, Poverty Incidence and Magnitude of Poor Population, by Region and Province: 1991, 2006, 2009, 2012 and 2015". Philippine Statistics Authority. August 27, 2016.
  17. ^ "Annual Per Capita Poverty Threshold, Poverty Incidence and Magnitude of Poor Population, by Region and Province: 1991, 2006, 2009, 2012 and 2015". Philippine Statistics Authority. August 27, 2016.
  18. ^ "Annual Per Capita Poverty Threshold, Poverty Incidence and Magnitude of Poor Population, by Region and Province: 1991, 2006, 2009, 2012 and 2015". Philippine Statistics Authority. August 27, 2016.
  19. ^ "Updated Annual Per Capita Poverty Threshold, Poverty Incidence and Magnitude of Poor Population with Measures of Precision, by Region and Province: 2015 and 2018". Philippine Statistics Authority. June 4, 2020.
  20. ^ "2021 Full Year Official Poverty Statistics of the Philippines" (PDF). Philippine Statistics Authority. August 15, 2022. Retrieved April 28, 2024.
  21. ^ Davao Oriental, Pionaire sign MOU for $27-B industrial park https://www.rappler.com/business/198568-davao-oriental-mou-industrial-park-pionaire
  22. ^ Residents to benefit from US$27-billion industrial park in Davao - Guv http://pia.gov.ph/news/articles/1006034
  23. ^ Industrial Park to rise in Davao Oriental http://davaotoday.com/main/economy/industrial-park-to-rise-in-davao-oriental/
  24. ^ GOV, PARTNERS LEAD HISTORIC GROUNDBREAKING OF DAVAO ORIENTAL INDUSTRIAL PARK http://news.davaooriental.com.ph/index.php/gov-partners-lead-historic-groundbreaking-of-davao-oriental-industrial-park/