The Philippines has a representative democracy modelled on the U.S. system. The 1987 constitution, adopted during the Corazon Aquino administration, re-established a presidential system of government with a bicameral legislature and an independent judiciary. The president is limited to one 6-year term. Provision also was made in the constitution for autonomous regions in Muslim areas of Mindanao and in the Cordillera region of northern Luzon, where many aboriginal tribes still live.

Despite challenges to her presidency and resistance to reforms by vested interests, the Arroyo administration made considerable progress in restoring macroeconomic stability during the period 2001-2010. The current elected Benigno S. Aquino administration has assembled a strong economic team and has focused on combating corruption and focused spending on education, health and other social services. It is addressing the country’s infrastructure shortcomings through a Public-Private Partnership infrastructure initiative.