* The likelihood that government or bureaucratic inefficiencies, societal tensions, inadequate legal system or international tensions will cause adverse developments for an insurer. Political risk comprises the stability of the government and society, the effectiveness of international diplomatic relationships, the reliability and integrity of the legal system and of the BUSINESS INFRASTRUCTURE, the efficiency of the government bureaucracy and the appropriateness and effectiveness of the government’s economic policies. * Philippines Significant Environmental Strains: * Deforestation, land degradation & other environmental stress caused by industry & migration marginalize indigenous groups & the rural poor and create incentives for violence or rebellion. * Declining access to freshwater creates competition and rivalry. * In the Philippines, the Communist New People's Army (NPA), the military wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), has been fighting the Philippine Armed Forces and National Police for political control of the country since 1969. High levels of violent conflict in the 1980s dropped in the early 1990s following a 1992 negotiation process. Levels of violence remained relatively low throughout the mid-1990s, and the number of NPA troops reduced by over 50% by mid- decade. In 1998, a human rights accord was signed between the government and the rebels, and periodic peace talks have continued since that time. Nonetheless, sporadic clashes continued, and have intensified in the past few years. * Since the 1970s, the government of the Philippines has faced armed opposition from several Muslim separatist groups seeking independence for the island of Mindanao in the Southern Philippines. These have included the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) and two breakaway groups, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and the Abu Sayyaf. In 1996, the government and the MNLF signed a peace agreement, but the breakaway groups opposed the settlement, as did Christian militia groups in the region. Sporadic clashes between government forces and rebel groups continued alongside government peace talks with the MILF. However, Philippine President Estrada called off the talks in 2000 and mobilized additional troops to counter rebel attacks, significantly heightening tensions and resulting in a sharp increase in the level of violent conflict. * Considered to have had a longer experience with the formal structures of democracy than any other South- Asian country, the Philippines has also hit stumbling blocks. Impeachment proceedings initiated against President Estrada in late 2000, only a year and a half after his 1998 election, which alleged charges including corruption, bribery, and betrayal of public trust. In January 2001, following the shifting of the armed forces’ support to the anti-Estrada movement, and the resignation of most of his cabinet, the Philippine Supreme Court declared the presidency vacant, and Estrada’s former vice president, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, was sworn in as president. * Philippine Armed Forces has had only limited capability to monitor the archipelago's vast air and sea spaces, or to defend the country’s 200-mile Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and its claims in the Spratly Islands (see Section IX). These factors have also contributing to rampant piracy, smuggling, and illegal fishing.
2. The linkages between economic performance