Learn about Canada, the country to the north of the United States of America. (Hint: it’s NOT part of the US).
The Philippines has always had historically closer relations to the United States than Canada, so it really isn’t surprising to find that most Filipinos don’t know too much about the Great White North.
That being said, Canada has gained popularity with Filipinos over the past several years. From their generous response to the humanitarian crisis in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan to recent visits by its dashing young Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Canada’s relationship with the Philippines has improved a lot.
Here’s a primer of Canada.
Canada is a big country. As in, really big. It’s the second largest country in the world (by land area), having ten provinces and three territories. It covers almost 10 million square kilometres (compare that to the Philippines’ 300,000 square kilometres).
It’s also a very beautiful country. Most of Canada’s land is made up of forest and tundra (which is soil that is permanently frozen). Its border with the United States is the longest land border in the world.
Canada has four seasons: winter, spring, summer and fall. No doubt about it, it can get pretty cold in Canada. In the dead of winter, it seems like the snow will never melt. Most of the country experiences very cold winters, but some places can get just as warm as the Philippines during the summer.
While it’s the second biggest country in the world, there aren’t too many people living there. Some say it’s because of the cold (we tend to agree).
Canada is sparsely populated, with most of its more than 35 million people living in large to medium-sized cities along the southern border.
Before the arrival of European immigrants in the 16th century, indigenous peoples have been present in Canada for thousands of years. The French established the colony of Canada in 1535, but it wasn’t until 1867 that the different colonies came together to form the Dominion of Canada.
Today’s Canada is ethnically diverse and multicultural, the result of decades of carefully planned and executed immigration programs which brought in the world’s best and brightest.
Filipinos only recently came to Canada, with the first documented arrivals in the 1950s.
Its official languages are English and French. Tagalog is Canada’s fastest growing language.
2. Economy & Quality of Life
Canada’s abundant natural resources and its well developed international trade relationships has made its economy the 10th largest in the world.
Canadians enjoy the 15th highest nominal per capita income in the world, and ranks high in terms of government transparency, civil liberties, quality of life, economic freedom and education.
Canada is a liberal country, with abortion, gay marriage and pretty soon recreational marijuana are all legal.
Canada’s system of government is a federal parliamentary democracy and a constitutional democracy. Queen Elizabeth II is the head of state, while Justin Trudeau is the current Prime Minister.
Canada’s capital city is Ottawa, and its three largest cities are Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver.
Most people think that Canada is a pleasant country with polite people. Canada is a developed country, and enjoys a very favourable reputation on the international stage. It’s a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, the Francophonie, the United Nations, NATO, the G7, the G10, the G20, NAFTA and APEC.
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