Manila: The toll from the powerful typhoon that swept through the southern Philippines last Tuesday has reached 620 while the number of missing people also rose to 817, authorities said on Sunday.

According to Benito Ramos, executive director of National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), they were not giving up hope of recovering more survivors as the search, rescue, and retrieval operations were being carried out, a news agency reported.  Ramos said they were confident of finding out survivors.

 "We hope to find more survivors, especially in isolated areas which are yet to be reached by our rescuers." Of the 817 missing, Ramos said, over 500 were from Compostela Valley and Davao Oriental which was ravaged by flashfloods and strong winds.

On Sunday evening, the number affected population exceeded over five million. Out of this, 131,000 people were still housed in 172 evacuation centres.

The initial cost of damage due to Typhoon Bopha to agriculture, infrastructure and property is now estimated to be 6.4 billion pesos ($159 million), Ramos said.


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