Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar Convention)

Agusan Marsh is included in the list of Wetlands of International Importance and has seven major wetland habitat types. (Photo Credit: Gerardo Lita)

The Convention on Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar Convention) is an intergovernmental treaty that provides the framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources. It was developed and adopted by participating nations in Ramsar, Iran on 2 February 1971 and came into force on 21 December 1975.

Focal Office:
Biodiversity Management Bureau (BMB)
Date Ratified:
November 8, 1994
Focal Persons:
Designated Ramsar Administrative Authority
       DENR - Biodiversity Management Bureau
       Tel. No. - (632) 920 4417
       Email - /

       Division Chief
       Caves, Wetlands and Other Ecosystems Division
       DENR - Biodiversity Management Bureau
       Tel. No. - (632) 925 8953
       Email -

Designated National Focal Point for Ramsar Convention Matters
       Division Chief, Coastal and Marine Division
       DENR - Biodiversity Management Bureau
       Tel. Nos. - (632) 924 6031 to 35 local 207, (632) 925 8948

Designated Government National Focal Point for Communication, Education, Participation and Awareness (CEPA) 
       Ecosystems Management Section Caves, Wetlands and Other Ecosystems Division
       DENR - Biodiversity Management Bureau
       Tel. Nos. - (632) 924 6031 to 35 local 228, (632) 925 8950
Under the Ramsar Convention, parties commit to work towards the wise use of all wetlands under their jurisdiction; designate suitable wetlands for the list of Wetlands of International Importance, called the "Ramsar List", and ensure their effective management; and cooperate with other countries related to transboundary wetlands, shared wetland systems and shared species.

As a member to the Ramsar Convention, the Philippines commits to report on the Compliance with the Convention, submitting triennial National Reports which follow the Strategic Plan of the Convention. 

The Convention's strategic plan also includes a Communication, Education, Participation and Awareness (CEPA) Plan to disseminate information to the public following the theme "People taking action for the wise use of wetlands".
Policy Issuances:
Republic Act 9147 Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act of 2001
Republic Act 7586 National Integrated Protected Areas System Act of 1992 (NIPAS Act)
Sources / Relevant Links:


The Biodiversity Management Bureau (BMB) has published a National Wetland Action Plan for 2011-2016 which provides updates for all Ramsar Sites as well as CEPA related activities, to be overseen by an Interim National Wetland Conservation Committee. The national report may be access here, through the Ramsar convention database.

Currently, the Philippines has six (6) parks/sanctuary included in the Ramsar List, with a total area of 154,409 hectares of wetland. These sites include:
1. Ramsar site no. 656: Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary. 01/07/94; Cebu; 5,800 ha; 10º16’N 124º03’E;
2. Ramsar site no. 1008: Naujan Lake National Park.12/11/99; Oriental Mindoro; 14,568 ha; 13º10’N 121º11’E; 
3. Ramsar site no. 1009: Agusan Marsh Wildlife Sanctuary. 12/11/99; Mindanao; 14,836 ha; 08º17’N 125º53’E; 
4. Ramsar Site no. 1010: Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park. 12/11/99; Sulu Sea; 96,828 ha; 8°57’N 119°52’E;
5. Ramsar Site no. 2084: Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park. 30/06/12; Palawan; 22,202 ha; 10º10’00”N 118º55’00”E;
6. Ramsar site no. 2124: Las Piñas – Parañaque Critical Habitat and Ecotourism Area. 15/03/2013; Manila; 175 ha; 14°29’35”N 120°58’50”E;
7. Ramsar site no. 2271: Negros Occidental Coastal Wetlands Conservation Area (NOCWCA). 20/10/16; Negros Occidental; 244,017 ha; 10°16'N 122°46'E 

Additionally, the DENR has four (4) wetlands declared as national Critical Habitats. These are:
  - Cabusao Wetland Area Critical Habitat in Camarines Sur, Luzon for the Philippine Duck (DAO 2011-10)
  - Malasi Tree Park and Wildlife Sanctuary Critical Habitat in Isabela, Luzon for waterbirds (DAO 2012-01
  - Carmen Critical Habitat in Agusan del Norte, Mindanao for marine turtles (DAO 2012-08)
  - Magsaysay Critical Habitat in Misamis Oriental, Mindanao for hawksbill turtles (DAO 2016-02)

The DENR, in partnership with the Society for the Conservation of Philippine Wetlands (SCPW), launched two publications during the 2017 World Wetlands Day. The publications are:
1. Atlas of Philippine Inland Wetlands and Caves
2. SCPW's Youth Eco Camp Training Manual
This Page was updated on 22 December 2017 and will be updated on 22 March 2018
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