Cebuano or Visayan is the name for one fifth of the national population that lives in the Visayas. In addition, there are three linguistically and culturally distinct groups which are not exactly as well disposed.
Samar and Leyte Waray (in the upper northern part of Leyte) live in one of the least developed regions of the country. Only separated by the narrow San Bernardino Strait (a bridge and posted road), the two islands lie directly in the area of incidence of typhoons coming from the Pacific Ocean. An invalid road, especially in Samar, hindered the development of trade and the general development of this area in the past. The completion of the Pan Philippine (Maharlika) Highway in Samar and Leyte only in the last few years fullfill a change. Rugged hills, traversed by small planes, characterize Samar.
Leyte will run from a north-south ridge into two parts divided. Although commercially and culturally, Leyte, Cebu is associated with, migrates from a considerable number of residents.
Cebuano Bisaya is the most spoken language. Cebu City is almost the same urbanized as Manila. It has large number of a strong Chinese community and counts as the oldest city in the Philippines as trade and transportation hub of the South, concerning air and sea routes. His more than two million inhabitants, is aware that they should show more commitment than the brazen cosmopolitan Manila, yet, greater efforts remain within the limits of national character of the Visayan. New business opportunities are seeking in the Cebuano area than compare in the North of Mindanao.
Among the "Southerners" refers to the Illongo of Westnegros the Southpanay are particularly decadent. In some ways, they embody the Cebuano-type par excellence: the finer things in life inclined, with contempt looking down on the harsh realities of life. Sugar is the key word for comfortable lifestyle of the Ilonggo.
More than two thirds of sugar for export of the Philippines comes from the broad volcanic plains of the western lowland of Negros.
Recently their political influence has reduced, however, since the induced fall of world sugar prices, the government decided to take the sugar export under their own control.
The sugar production on a commercial basis began on the island of Negros at the End of the 19th century, when some European business men helped the Spanish “Mestizos” settlers to modernize this industry. Since that time, leads to a constant influx of “Sacadas” (seasonal workers) who came from all over the Visayas region.
Although on the south-eastern side of the extinct volcano “Kanlaon”, of the Eastern Negros Province (Negros Oriental) can’t be found as many wide plains. There exist several “Haciendas” (plantations), whose workforces were closed by an almost autonomous communities form. Timber and products made from coconut are other important sources of revenue. Culturally and linguistically, there is seen a relationship of the inhabitants of this region to the Cebuano.
Bacolod, the capital of Negros Occidental (Western Negros), is a relatively new city, which owes its rise to the sugar.
Iloilo City, the capital of Iloilo province, on the southeastern coast of the island of Panay, is seen as a culturally older Ilonggo Center, which has retained much of his Castilian heritage. Opposite Bacolod located, on the other side of the Guimaras Strait, the city remains as the principal port of the region. Legazpi had heard about the excellent port conditions already in 1569 and made Iloilo to the starting point of his expeditions to the north. In 1855, the port was opened for the international shipping traffic.