Philippines slams China fishing law

The Philippines denounced on Friday a new Chinese law that Manila says compels foreign vessels to seek a permit from Chinese regional authorities for activities in large areas of the South China Sea.

"We have requested China to immediately clarify the new fisheries law issued by the Hainan Provincial People's Congress," the Filipino foreign department said in a statement.

"We are gravely concerned by this new regulation that would require foreign fishing vessels to obtain approval from Chinese regional authorities before fishing or surveying in a large portion of the South China Sea."

Press reports said the law was passed last year and took effect on January 1.

China claims almost all the South China Sea but the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan have overlapping claims.

Tensions between the Philippines and China have risen in recent years as Beijing becomes more aggressive in asserting its claims.

Earlier this year Manila took Beijing to a United Nations tribunal over the contested Scarborough Shoal, which has been controlled by Chinese government vessels since last year.

"This new law reinforces China's expansive claim under the 9-dash line," the Philippine foreign department alleged Friday, referring to China's delineation of the extent of its maritime territorial claim.

"It is a gross violation of international law," the statement added.

"This development escalates tensions, unnecessarily complicates the situation in the South China Sea, and threatens the peace and stability of the region."

The statement said the Philippines was not the only country to be affected by the new Hainan regulations.

"These regulations seriously violate the freedom of navigation and the right to fish of all states in the high seas, as provided for under UNCLOS (the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea)," it said.

"Under customary international law, no state can subject the high seas to its sovereignty."

Share your thoughts

Discussion 1 : 10/01/2014 at 08:39 PM
China has become rich and powerful and overproud too . But there is a yellow lane that is dangerous to outpass . China is playing with fire .
Discussion 2 : 10/01/2014 at 08:05 PM
The Philippines should draw their own borders and position their own navy together with the US there since Chinese dont respect other people. They only respect power and force, the red emperors in Beijing think they can rule Asia. The ASEAN should cancel all free trade with the Chinese and put high duties on their products which are mostly junk anyway. After they will start to get cooperative, communists only understand power and fierce resistance preferable when it starts to hurt on the money side.
Discussion 3 : 10/01/2014 at 07:29 PM
Not so different from any major powers. China is learning from the west which regularly launches military attacks without UN consent and for profit. Sad in all cases, so I would not single any countries out.
Discussion 4 : 10/01/2014 at 06:14 PM
The only law the china respects is Chinese law.

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