Executive Intelligence Review


China and Philippines Moves Toward Co-Development of the South China Sea

Oct. 19, 2018 (EIRNS)—China and the Philippines held their third meeting of the Bilateral Consultation Mechanism on the South China Sea on Oct. 18, Global Times reported. Many government agencies from both sides participated, including national defense, natural resources and environmental protection, fisheries, transportation, energy and the coast guard. The delegations were led by Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Kong Xuanyou and Philippine Foreign Undersecretary Enrique Manalo.

These annual meeting began in 2017 when Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte was elected and turned to China for cooperation, rejecting than the conflict instigated by U.S. President Barack Obama. “Full-fledged cooperation between China and the Philippines will pave the way for the eventual settlement of bilateral maritime disputes,” Global Times wrote.

President Duterte told the Chinese Ambassador to Manila last week that his government would not participate in any U.S. naval exercises in the area during Xi Jinping’s state visit to Manila in November.

“We don’t want anything to mar the visit of President Xi. I think the Department of Foreign Affairs will do all that it can to make sure that President Xi’s visit will be fruitful and as productive as we want it to be,”

said Duterte’s spokesman.

The two countries are “working on a framework of joint exploration” in the South China Sea, reported Global Times, which, “if successfully agreed upon, will serve as a preliminary step toward an actual joint development agreement in overlapping claim areas.”