The El Nino phenomenon is an "anomalous climatic condition in the tropical Pacific region which occurs every two to seven years and affects the global climate". There is a greater increase in the water surface temperature of the eastern tropical and central tropical Pacific during an El Nino episode relative to that of the western tropical Pacific. The phenomenon causes fluctuations in rainfall, resulting in drought in some areas and heavy rainfall in others. During the El Nino of 1990-1992, the damage caused by the drought in the Philippines was estimated to be P4.1 billion (PhP24 = US$1). While the damage to agriculture is well documented, the impact on fisheries has not been considered. The impacts of the El Nino episode of 1997-1998 were assessed in the Philippines by the filed personnel of the Department of Agriculture and representatives of the private sector in the 15 regions of the country. Data on the losses caused by the phenomenon were obtained from interviews, surveys and reports of local government units and provincial agricultural offices for the period October 1997-June 1998. The effects of El Nino on aquaculture, marine fisheries and inland fisheries were determined.