Negros Occidental is a province of the Philippines located in the Western Visayas region. Its capital is Bacolod City and occupies at the northwestern half of Negros island; Negros Oriental is at the southeastern half. Across the Panay Gulf and the Guimaras Strait to the northwest is the island-province of Guimaras and the province of Iloilo on Panay island.
It is predominantly a Hiligaynon-speaking province. However, on the east coast of the province, facing Cebu Island, a few cities and towns are Cebuano-speaking. Residents of Negros are called “Negrense”.
The sugar industry is the lifeblood of the economy of Negros Occidental, producing more than half of the country’s sugar. There are 15 sugar centrals located throughout the plains of the province. Victorias Mill in Victorias City is the largest sugar mill in the country, and the world’s largest integrated sugar mill and refinery. Sugar is transported from plantations to refineries by large trucks that use the national highway, often causing massive damage to the roads.
Because of the priority given to sugar plantations, much of the province’s food has to be imported from neighboring islands.
A fishing industry is found in Cadiz City, and other fishponds dot the province. One of the country’s largest copper mines is located in Sipalay City. There also exists a cottage industry which produced handicrafts made from indiginous materials.